The 3 M’s

There’s an old saying that people move to a new city (or country) for one of three reasons, Money, Marriage or Missionary work. Well, I haven’t gotten married just quite yet and I doubt I’ve made more than 100 euros here in all the years I’ve lived in Romania. But to my surprise, I find that I have indeed become a kind of missionary.

I certainly don’t work for any organized religious group and your private beliefs about the supernatural are none of my business but in a sense I realized that I have committed myself to spreading the Good Word. Instead of talking about Jesus or Joseph Smith though, I am here to open minds and hearts to the possibility that Romania both is (right now!) and can be (in the future) a wonderful place to live and visit for everyone.

Today I spent about two hours at the “Eugen Pora” high school here in lovely Unicorn City. On a side note I will add that they run a program that is partly financed by the government of Spain and that their language program is fantastic. I haven’t heard such good Spanish being spoken in a long time by anyone who wasn’t a native speaker (sinceramente me encanté mucho de oirlo).

But I wasn’t there to speak Spanish. I was there to meet with a student and her professor and talk about what is the “usual” for me, about why I live in Romania, why I chose this country and why I am so positive about this place. They are going to write up the interview and publish it in their student-produced magazine and they promised to send me a copy when that’s ready. I don’t think it will be viewable online and I know that if we’re lucky a few hundred students at most will read the article and hear what I had to say.

So why did I give this interview? It’s certainly nothing as glamorous as television or a national newspaper. It’s not even going to be posted on a popular blog. So why? Well I think the answer should be obvious to anyone who is a long-time reader of my stuff but I’ll go ahead and elaborate again because it is important.

The reason why I got invited down there today was because of my appearance on ProTV back in December. And the reason I was on ProTV was because of my interview in Gandul. And the reason I was interviewed in Gandul was because of an interview I did with another publication. And the reason that publication heard of me was because of another one. And so on and so forth all the way back to the beginning when I was a complete unknown writing on a free blog that no one read. A few people found me through a random search, told their friends about it, and we fast forward to what we have here today.

My point is that it is no different than a stone dropped into a pond. The stone may be small and make a small wave but it continues to spread outward, continually reaching more people. My “stone” is that I am a person with options and yet I freely choose to live in Romania because I honestly think it is a wonderful country. Because of historical and cultural reasons, this is a shocking and confusing thing for people living here and so it provokes a reaction. Either they are afraid to agree with me or else they have the courage to consider that my viewpoint might have some validity.

I told the the teacher (and remember, we were speaking for two hours for what will eventually be a few hundred words article at best) that she had two choices when considering our discussion – either I am crazy or else I might be right in what I believe. She made me grin because her response was, “I think you are a little bit of both”.

True enough, señora, true enough :)

4 thoughts on “The 3 M’s

  1. “Cold Mountain”,i wrote wrong “Could Mountain” my bad,my mistake ,sorry!>>>it’s 2.00 AM here i’m tired…


  2. I forgot to say that movie from Hollywood “Could Mountain”(2003)(directed by Anthony Minghella=rest in peace and with actors like Nicole Kidman and Jude Law in distribution) was made in Romania, in the Carpathian Mountains (near Brasov)…the story is about American Civil War in the 19th century…


  3. @Bill from California: Bill, if you go on trip to western countries from Europe (France,Spain,England,or Italy) and you say to them that you love Romania,they will look at you like being a crazy person “why do you like these people?,they are evil! they just steal,rape and begging people here”
    Now,when french,italians,or others from the west Europe coming here,they are quite surprised to found warm,funny people and most of them honest people despite these people maybe are not so wealthy persons,and sometimes,like in fairy tales, if you are foreigner and visit our country ,some people host you maybe 2 days,they invites you at a table to taste some romanian traditional food “mamaliga cu sarmale” for ex. and then drink “tuica” or “palinca”(romanian whiskey style)and then the hosts ask you with what thoughts you came here and what do you want,maybe to help you a little…some of the romanians really are like this…
    These people you may find in Transylvania (where Sam live,he stay in Cluj city,”Unicorn City” he like to say),Sibiu,Brasov,Timisoara also other cities for visit and living(for foreigners), other places to visit: Carpathian Mountains, a beautiful landscape,if you like sea,The Black Sea,or Delta Danube…
    You must take contact with Sam ,and if you really want to come here,Sam is already a “romanian” citizen to guide you on everything.


  4. Sam you have convinced me enough, that I am coming to see for myself. Of course I am also coming for one of the “3Ms” and I am not a Miissionary!

    I live in California near San Francisco in the heart of Silicon Valley and life is pretty good here. But I have seen a steady erosion of the environment and the moral fiber of the US I grew up in.

    From what I have read and seen and with your insight in talking to people I know in Romania, I love Romania and most of it’s people Ha ha , warts and all. It is a beautiful place populated with wonderful, tough, resilient, happy people with the potential of a great future!

    My only concern are words that keep running through my head from the song “The Last Resort” by Don Henley of the Eagles. So when I come Sam, to find my new paradise, if I find it as you say, I will keep it our secret and unspoiled as long as possible!

    But keep up the good work Sam! You are a candle in the darkness, a positive force in this in small world we all call home for a short time.

    “hope is a good thing, maybe the best of things and no good thing ever dies”
    from “The Shawshank Redemption”


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