Csíkszereda Musings

My life in and around Csíkszereda, also known as Miercurea Ciuc.

Random thoughts

Posted by Andy Hockley on 14 April, 2008

I’m just back from England, where I attended the annual IATEFL conference in Exeter with Erika and something like 1600 other people. It was a good trip, though I wasn’t feeling at my best, since the cough I had a few weeks ago turns out to have been pneumonia (or at least some similar non-specific lung inflammation, of similar levels of intensity). I am waiting today to have another delightful visit to Csikszereda’s hospital so that I can work out whether or not more treatment is necessary (this possibly will involve spending a few nights in the aforementioned building while I get regular injections of antibiotics and/or monitoring of rampant blood pressure which has risen in accompaniment of the lung thing. So if I don’t post anything here for a while it is likely because I am stuck in hospital and hence offline.

One of the things that I have complained about often in Romania is the fact that people are so incredibly nesh here. If I dare to take Paula out in 20 degree temperatures without a hat, I get older people especially looking at me like I’m inhumane and ought to be arrested. You see people wearing cotton wool in their ears just to keep the draughts out (and also sounds and other such troublesome things). But I think there has to be some kind of happy medium between the approach to temperature in Romania and the approach to temperature in England.

To set the scene we flew into Luton last Sunday in the middle of a raging blizzard. In April. In southern England. No idea what’s going on. Anyway, it only really snowed on that day, but the temperature never really got very warm – most nights there was a heavy frost, and the daytime temps never rose much above 7 degrees. But in the midst of this hardly summery weather people walked around wearing not much more than their underwear. Mostly these people were teenagers, and especially teenage girls, it is true, so one can put some of this masochistic lunacy down to the vagaries of fashion, but it is a fashion which seems remarkably long-lasting. Whenever I go back and find myself wandering round an English town of an evening I usually find myself marvelling at the lack of warm clothing on those out carousing. This year, if anything the phenomenon has either got worse, or prolonged exposure to Romania has made me more sensitive to it. Perhaps I am becoming assmiliated and before long I, too, will be tutting concernedly at parents whose children are not buried in a vast heavily-lined, multi-layered, all-over burqa; wearing large clumps of cotton wool in my ears; and furiously closing every window in the train.

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4 Responses to “Random thoughts”

  1. ileana said

    Sorry to hear about your long lasting cold ! Hope you’ll get better soon.

    Indeed, many people in Romania would make kids sick by dressing them in too many layers. Even last summer when the temperatures were so high I had people asking to make my 4 month son wearing socks. I was happy that my father seemed to trust what I was doing 🙂

  2. Gadjo Dilo said

    Get well soon Andy. If you dress in many many layers of clothes then maybe you’ll get mistaken for a poor ţăran/paraszt and you won’t have to tip the doctors so much 😉

  3. Stay-At-Home Indie-Pop said

    Andy, just wanted to wish you a cough-free convalescence. Also, I drove through Leeds city centre at 10pm on a Friday evening this past January, and although it wasn’t an especially cold evening, it wasn’t that warm either, but all them young folk were walking around in short sleeves or sleeveless blouses, looking as cold as fuck, but no doubt suitably pullable once they reached the warmth of the pub. Let’s face it, there’s not much cool about pullovers and anoraks for a teenager. And I’m sure after the seventh drink the weather was irrelevant (that’s how I remember it, at least).

  4. Anonymous said

    the same is in the US, everyone is light dressed, even if it’s freezing outside.

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