Rambling Robert's Travels

This blog chronicals the travels of myself, Rambling Robert, on my next adventure to South America.

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I am a world traveller. I do not work as such. I have been homeless and unemployed since 1October 2003. I worked as a chef for 30 years in America.

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Greetings from Romania

In Bulgaria, when people say yes (das) they shake their head from side to side.
No (nay) and they move their head up and down. For an American, that is soooo weird!! I really have a hard time getting used to this.
Varna is a beach side resort city on the Black Sea. I am staying in a tiny little village called Zvezditsa. It is about 8km out of the city in the mountains. Very quaint and quiet. There are 3 little one room shops the largest, about 15sq meters and no bars or cafes or restaurants. Absolutely no night life at all. No police station no fire station. Every house has a garden and fruit trees and you can walk up to the house and whistle and the people come out and sell you tomatoes and peppers (chilis, capsicum) and peaches, plums, grapes, cabbage, green or yellow beans... Nice place to hide out for a week. The bus costs 50cents to get to Varna and takes 15 minutes. ]

Varna is full of almost naked beautiful young slavic women sunbathing all day at the beach in thongs and no tops and dancing all night in the discos. Many of the seaside cafes have lound techno style music playing and all these almost naked nymphs dancing together on the sand. I love my life.

Varna has a nice train station and a beautiful cathedral (Bulgarian Orthodox). There are a lot of wonderful pedestrian plazas near the sea and surrounding the cathedral. A very ugly opera house which has no opera until mid September (bummer, I will already be in Romania, tough break ).

The place I am staying is called Gregorys Backpackers and it is run by a nice young english couple, Terry and Georgie. They are most exceptional innkeepers and they have made what would be a very ordinary hostel into a wonderful oasis of hospitality by their charm character and wit. They are da kine.

"For my part, I travel not to go anywhere, but to go. I travel for travel's sake. The great affair is to move." Robert Louis Stevenson

Ah yes mayber old RLS was the original Rambling Robert eh? I will soon be leaving on the night train to Moscow, but I will be getting off in Bucharest Romania.

On October 1, 2006 I will begin my fourth year of being "unemployed and homeless". I am still just loving it. Doing nothing suits me just fine! I remember in the beginning I was afraid I might get bored. Hahh What a laugh! Work was boring, I was never bored on my days off!!
"Does the rose have to do something? No, the purpose of a rose is to be a rose. Your purpose is to be yourself." Thich Nhat Hanh

I never seem to grow weary of new places and never feel like I dont belong. I have become quite content to be a stranger on a train. I make new aquaintences all the time. I am friends with strangers for a few days and then we say good-bye usually forever. Almost everyone who is getting this e-mail is one of those people. I wish you all were here. But wherever you are, I hope you are as happy with what you are doing as I am.

I am reading all the time. Dharma books about buddhism and novels about all kinds of stuff. I am 200 pages into Alexander Dumas' masterpeiced "The Count of Monte Cristo". Simultaaneously I am about 200 pages into Thich Nhat Hahn's masterpiece "The heart of the Buddhas teaching" Both books are brilliant.

Dumas was the john grisham, the stephen king, of his time. the book is a total page turner. you stay up late with it you cant stop reading!! Thich is my hero. He is the living buddha. I am learning so much from him and from his example of a peaceful life. I believe this is the 8th book of his I am reading and each one is more moving than the one before.

I take refuge in the buddha, the one who shows the way in this lifetime
I take refuge in the dharma, the way of understanding and love
I take refuge in the sangha, the community that lives in harmony and understanding
Say that three times fast (or not so fast) and guess what? you are a budhist!!! Its that easy and no fees to pay!! No holy water to sprinkle on your head.

So soon I will go to Bucharest and from there I will explore the wilds of Romania. I want to go to Transylvania. I want to see Ceaucescus palace I just want to be in Romania. From there the plan is to go to Jordan (during Ramazan) and then to Egypt with my old travelling mate Peta. We travelled in Turkey together during Ramazan also. We are getting experienced at this.

"Human beings are more alike than unalike, and what is true anywhere is true everywhere, yet I encourage travel to as many destinations as possible for the sake of education as well as pleasure". Maya Angelou

Well I am furthering my education as a travelling scholar. I am reading more now than I ever did when I was in School and learning new things everyday!! My mind is one step ahead of my body and I am already begining to think of my upcoming journey to the Middle east and to Africa. As I travel for longer and longer i go to more places that are like off the beaten track. I am starting to go to the places that most people can not point ot on a map without doing some research. This suits me fine. The longer one travels the more one feels comfortable in this lifestyle.

So now it is a week later and I am in Transylvania (central Romania) Tomorrow I will go to Bram Castel and see where the real Dracula used to live. I spent two un eventful days in Bucharest and decided to do the boogaloo and head here to Transylvania. I will be in Romania for another 3 weeks or so and then to Jordan or maybe Cairo. Either way, my next three countrys will be Egypt Israel and Jordan so if any of you gets this e-mail and lives in or plans to be travelling in these countries let me know. I hope we can meet up again. I hope some of my Israeli buddies will remember me and help to show me around their country.
Next update in two weeks. Here as always is a little quote to munch on as food for thought...
You don't stop laughing because you grow old, you grow old because you stop laughing.-Michael Pritchard


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