In my previous blog, I wrote about the Jazz concert I attended last evening, and the jazz concert was wonderful! If you haven’t seen that blog, you need to because I recorded some of the songs for you, and they are really worth listening to. After that great concert, there was an equally great reception. The Romanians are extremely happy, friendly people, and their food is some of the best food in the world.
It is too bad everyone couldn’t have gone to this concert and reception, and is is a shame you weren’t there to taste some the great food! They had a buffet laid out. They were actually missing sarmale, one of my favorites Romanian foods, but the caterer said they would include it next time. It was catered by a Bulgarian restaurant from Itaewon, the place all foreigners in Korea end up. However, when I spoke to the workers, they were Romanian, so there were Romanian making this food.
Besides the food, the friendliness of the Romanian people must be included here. The people at this reception were no exception to the rule of Romanians being friendly. When I met the Romanian consulate, I didn’t know he was the Romanian consulate, but he stayed and talked to me for a long time thrilled with me speaking to him in Romanian even asking, “Are you sure you don’t have any Romanian roots?’ I wanted his picture because he was wearing a Romanian shirt, and he wanted his picture taken with me, so we had our picture taken together. He kept thinking he had met me somewhere, and it is possible because I have been to events like this in Korea before, and I have been to the Romanian embassy.
I didn’t just talk to the consulate. I talked to lots of people. At one point, it became confusing because our Korean friend was with me, and I was speaking to her in Korean trying to explain everything to her, and then turning around and speaking to the Romanians in Romanian, and I began getting mixed up who I was talking to and speaking the wrong language to the wrong person, but then I concentrated and got it right. I spoke to an older Korean couple for a long time, and I thought they were very kind because they kept saying, “Are you sure you aren’t Korean? Your Korean is too good not to be Korean.” I love the flattery people give me with I speak to them in their first language. I actually look much more Romanian than Korean, and it doesn’t surprise me when the Romanians think I am Romanian because they have been doing it a large portion of my life. However, there are Koreans who wonder if I am at least part Korean because of my coloring, and I think my coloring is part of why the Romanians think I am Romanian.
I spoke to a group of Romanian students for a long time. They were complaining about how hard Korean is, and one said she could speak Korean, and another said she couldn’t. They were really surprised when my Romanian friend told them how many languages I speak, and they wanted to know how I learned to do it, and I began listing off all the countries I had lived in and what I did in those countries, and they were truly shocked!
I also met the current Romanian ambassador. He wasn’t as loud and robust as the consult. His wife is from Sibiu, where I lived in Romania. I had met the previous Romanian ambassador before, and this guy was very different from the Romanian ambassador who had invited me to the embassy just for a chat. This guy seemed very quiet and well mannered and was wearing a suit. The other ambassador was well mannered, but not particularly quiet, and I never saw him in a suit. My Romanian friend took my picture with this ambassador, but she didn’t send it to me, so I don’t have it to share.
I’m not sure, but I think this is the wife of the consulate, and I think I have talked to her before at another Romanian party.
If you like good food, if you like friendly people, if you like to have a good time in general, going to a Romanian party is the way to go! This was a great reception! Everyone was friendly. The food was good. They did something else I really liked. Often at Romanian parties, the only thing they serve is liquor. The last Romanian party I went to, there was a drunk guy and workers were constantly chasing me trying to give me a glass of wine. However, they did much better this time, they gave the people a choice of Coca Cola, Sprite, wine, or juice. I also saw one guy being given a big bottle of some sort of hard liquor, but no one got drunk this time. However, everyone had a choice of what to drink. The Romanians are a great people! Their ancestors were Greeks and Romans, and their culture is a happy, robust culture. They are truly a pleasure to be around.