October 5, 2008 - Posted by Erin in Travels in Europe

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Yes, folks, it’s been a big week! First of all, Romania – Bucharest, Romania to be exact. I’ve clearly taken my travels to new level, huh? This past week I traveled to Bucharest for work to visit our larger office where the majority of our team resides. I had no idea what to expect. What is tragic, is that I really didn’t get to see much at all of the city, mostly just the inside of our office, and then the J.W. Marriott. The small picture above of the landscape is the view from my hotel room, and sadly the only picture that I took on the trip.

Our team in Bucharest is fantastic though – a young, passionate team and so friendly. One of the days I was there, a couple of them took me to lunch. We went on a scenic walk through the city and then ate some Romanian cuisine (I am still not exactly sure what it was, but I enjoyed it). It was the highlight of the trip to see their culture a bit more through their eyes. My main take away from the trip was that the Romanians are very kind and polite people – at least those on my team anyway. I hope I can get to know the country and culture better during future visits.

As for the new car, I decided to start the search for a car a couple of weeks ago. Since we live in the outskirts, not having a car and having to go to work each day has become a real challenge and burden. Last Monday I decided which car I wanted to go with, and then departed for Bucharest, leaving Jacob with the challenge of tying up the loose ends (the car will go under his name since I don’t yet have a resident driver’s license). Here, when you buy a car, you don’t take it right off the lot, you must wait a few days while the papers are finalized with the DMV (cars never leave the lot without a license plate like in the States). The expectation was that I wouldn’t have my car until this coming Monday…but when I got home on Friday, Jacob had already brought it home for me!

I’ve driven around my new (used) car the last couple of days and I must admit I feel a bit like I am cheating on my car at home. I love my new Smart car, but nothing will beat my Jetta – it’s cozy butt warmers, satellite radio, and at this point, spaciousness! In reality though, Madrid is not a car friendly place because parking is a pain, and cars get very beat up – not a good home for a nice, new car. So I am embracing the used Smart as a cute, fuel efficient, economical and environmentally friendly car. I miss my Jetta, but it just wouldn’t work here (plus the only Jettas here are literally the white taxis – I otherwise never see them). If anyone is in the market for a new car and is interested in my Jetta, let me know! As much as I’d like to have a car in each country, I just don’t think I can pull it off for much longer.

These next couple of weeks will be quite busy. At work, we’ll be launching our new site (more to come on that in a future blog) which means a lot of work to be done. Lots of birthday celebrations too – Jacob’s mom, sister-in-law, a good friend of ours and myself, all in one week! I am anxious for the holidays to get here so that I can come back to the States and visit with everyone….I’m getting homesick!

Until next week amigos…

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