66 Seconds

A few years ago, a friend of mine discovered an enormous cache of photographs of her family from the late 1960s and early 1970s. She was more interested in the people in the photographs but because I didn’t know most of them, what caught my eye was everything else, the hair styles, the clothing styles, the cars in the background and other details like that.

Sometimes it is the “ordinary” things of life which can be fascinating and thus I present the video below – 66 seconds of pedestrians walking down the street in Unicorn City. There’s nothing “exciting” about it, there are no car chases or exchanges of gunfire. It is just a group of ordinary people walking down the street on an ordinary day.

One of the interesting things to me, since the very first day I ever came in Romania (lo, these many moons ago) is that every Romanian can tell me what America looks like, or even New York City specifically. It’s not because they’ve all traveled there in person but because there is such a plethora of film and TV shows showing America (or NYC) and after you see enough of them, you “just know” what it looks like.

The opposite is not true – very few Americans (or other “Westerners”) know what Romania looks like. The handful of films which make it on the international circuit are often grim, dreary and deliberately tragic. Maybe a few news broadcasts reach beyond the domestic market but other than that, there is precious little footage of “normal”, every day Romania.

If you’re Romanian and you live here, what follows will probably seem pretty boring to you – until 10 or 20 years pass and then you can chuckle and laugh at all those “weird” haircuts and clothing styles. But if you don’t live here, or have never been, here is a brief glimpse at what “normal” is here for us.

I really like this clip because you can see everything from young people to old, catch brief snippets of people talking in a couple of languages and hear the natural sounds of the street. Enjoy!