Sad to say the Queen Ana of Romania passed away last, Aug 8th at the age of 92.
in her honor at the Sibiu "Classics for Pleasure" program Sat. all the participants sang the national anthem with their hand over their heart as the audience stood in respect.
Watching the Romanian program wasn't all that interesting since we didn't understand the words. Sat. night was better than Friday night however. The opera singers Friday were beautiful and costumes glamorous but the rain dampened everyone in the audience. Our umbrella kept the rain off our heads but the folks umbrella in front dumped water on our laps and blocked the view of the stage. Sibiu needed a tent for the audience not just the performers. Rand fell asleep but our friend David Wisehart was impressed. I guess I didn't get a very favorable picture of David however.
While we're on public figures on the left is Klaus Iohannis President of Romania. Our camera takes pretty good pictures of pictures don't you think?
Florine is our star advanced English student. You may remember him from last week. He was the one with a beard and lots of black curly hair. What a surprise when he showed up so clean shaven. He is studying greek and when we told him our son-in-law served a mission there and may come visit us he keeps asking when Josh is coming so he can meet and talk with him in greek.
Is winter on it's way to Sibiu? It says Selimbar which is only 4 kilometers from Sibiu.
Abilene's temp was 84 degrees at the same time as the two above.
Waited two and a half months for this package notice to come. When we got to the post office to pick it up they told us they had had it for over a month and it had been returned. What? we just got the notice. Don't send any packages to us in Selimbar. So very disappointed.
Had to take a picture of this t-shirt. "daily dose" is the name of our English class instruction. Would have bought myself one if they had anything in adult sizes. We no longer teach beginning English however. We've advanced to advanced English because of the language barrier. Seems to work out either way for us.
Had the privilege of hosting a new couple who will be the branch president in Arad. The Days are presently from Vancouver Washington. He taught family life education in his career.
Now for our tour from last Monday's P day. With David here we wanted to do something special. The Transfagarasan highway is one of the famous roads in all of Europe and is only 75 kilometers from Sibiu. We hired an English speaking guide to drive us. She spent the day with us and here are some of the highlights of the trip from end of day to beginning. Don't ask how that happened.
Bells in the bell tower of Cisnădie fortress church that we climbed to.
View of the fortress wall from the bell tour.
Organs seem to be pretty simple in these ancient churches.
Organ pipes are much more interesting.
Looking at the wall with Nicoleta, our guide. She says three families would hide in each of these curved places along the outer wall. They carried with them food to keep them so that they could withstand the siege.
Pretty impressive entry door.
Visited the Carta monastery and gardens. On the right is the burial place of soldiers with church in background that has been restored inside and still in use.
Organ pipes and organ again in Carta Monastery.
Quite picturesque ruins don't you think?
Trying to get a little of the garden in a picture.
According to Nicoleta the Romanian national costume is in black and white. we have seen lots of more colorful costumes. Guess the new generation likes more color.
Nicoleta stopped for me to get a pictures of this truck. We've seen these parked in the country in several places. Can you guess what it has on the back?
They are bee hives. Next to the truck was the owner selling fresh honey. These hives can easily be moved to follow where the best pollen is. We thought they were pretty clever.
At the top of the transfagarasan highway was Balea lac, tunnel and waterfall. I was most fascinated by the sheep being lead by a shepherd and coaxed along by some very good sheep dogs. I sat down and they passed right by us. What fun.
At the top of the mountain and just beyond the lake is the tunnel that goes several kilometers through the mountain. When we got to the other side everything was covered in clouds so we turned around and came back.
Rand looking for trout in Balea lac. So beautiful and peaceful, reminded me of the lake on the hike to the top of Mt. timpanogos.
Where the lake empties out and cascades down the mountain and over the falls.
Nicoleta told us this is the ice church overlooking Balea lac. The actual road up here is not passable most of the year. It open in July and closes in Sept. But there is a gondola tourists can ride up to see the swirvey famous road and visit the ice church most of the year.
Clouds were a bit discouraging at first but they opened up occasionally to give us some amazing views.
This road was built by the last communist leader in Romania to give him a quicker way than around the Transfargarasan mountains. It took ten years to build.
Because of the clouds we didn't get the ideal spot to photograph this twisting road so you'll just have to use your imagination.
Clouds then no clouds.
Nicoleta our tour guide.
We're worried that winter is on it's way while we're still waiting for summer weather. Cold and cloudy as we showed David our walk around Selimbar.
Flowers everywhere to make even cold cloudy days beautiful.
Road marker telling how far to Sibiu.
Miere is honey. We bought some one day from a lovely lady who knew no English. Somehow we made it known to her that we were there to buy honey.
David didn't know this past weekend, when he needed to get to Bucharest for his next flight, was a holiday weekend. Turns out trains were almost non existent. He realized almost too late that he needed to leave a couple hours early. Enjoyed having him and hope his trip goes well. He is excited to visit the temple in Kiev Ukraine this next week.
More about the Romanian holiday Aug 13-15th. Romanians celebrate the Birthday of Mary, mother of Jesus. I don't remember scripture telling anywhere of that date being significant and the birth of Mary but many people are very committed to the Orthodox church. Some aren't so devote but live all the holidays. They have many rituals that many keep and the rest of the population at least understand them.
It makes me very thankful for a prophet who speaks for the Lord and teaches us what is important to do in this life and the commandments that if kept will lead to happiness.
If it doesn't work you can find it here.