Tuesday, November 24, 2009


Moldova borders Romania on the NE border. To visit was a step back in time, beginning with the Harry Potter train ride which took every minute of 13 hours! We were well-advised to buy first class tickets. First Class means you have a private room with a bath, NOT! The room was private but the bathroom was...shall we say, "rustic"? At 2:00AM we were stopped at the border and rudely awakened by stern Russian customs/border agents demanding passports and reasons for our visit. My camera was handy but I opted not to take a picture of the fur-hatted guard wearing a hospital mask. That move would have drastically extended our trip!

This is a picture of our room. It was actually very clean and "cozy".

The seat was the bed and actually was magic! It transformed to a narrow slab during the night!

After the customs interrogation, the real fun began. For the next 2 hours, our train was jacked 6 feet up to change the wheels to fit the somewhat narrower tracks put in place in all Soviet countries. They don't let you out of the train to watch this process so all you hear is metal banging and Russian men yelling at each other for 2 hours. When the Soviets were in power, they purposely made their tracks different to discourage leaving in a hurry.

Once in Chisineau, we stopped to buy "a few" Russian stacking dolls.

The reason for the trip was to attend a closing ceremony for a water project just completed in a little village. Please watch the video in the previous post.

I couldn't resist taking random pictures of real-life people.

The cooks at the school showing off their new running water.

The English teacher at the school thanking the Hinsons for the water system.

Spunky little Romanian children. A second later, the older one tossed his apple core at me. Watch for it in the video! Cute!

These villagers stood outside their gate as we walked by. I couldn't resist taking a picture!

The smiling grandma!

Back in the city, this was a scene on a sidewalk. Everyone smokes!

I gave this little lady a coin just to get this pathetic picture.

Speaking of "pathetic". . . Sometimes the wind is just too cold for fashion!


  1. "Just like a temple." Haha! Fantastic! I'm especially loving the curtains... you didn't happen to make it out of there with those, did you?!?!

  2. You guys are a kick in the pants. And that last picture, where you have the scarf on your head, mom...that's one for the record books. LOVE IT!!!!!!!!!!

  3. Have a fabulous birthday Denny! Can't wait to see the pictures/video of THAT. Loved your 13 hour FIRST CLASS jaunt. The mirrors were definitely an added touch and way to make you feel not only like the room was bigger, but "just like a temple!" The "magic beds" looked slightly less than comfie. Can't wait for this weeks post.