The Amazing Benefits of the 2-Christmas System

I’ve written about the surreal experience of living in a land with two Christmases before, but it wasn’t until this year that I learned to truly appreciate what a weird and serendipitous event the 2-Christmas System truly is. What a Long, Strange Trip It’s Been Christmas has always been a weird holiday. Just 200 years…

Wine Daze

Recently, a person whom I’ve known for many years asked me about why I haven’t included more entries in the “My Personal Life” category. What can I say? Sometimes, I honestly forget that anything I do might be of interest to anyone else. But since you asked, you shall receive! The Republic of Moldova is…

Sounds in the Cellar

Sadly, I’m far busier these days than I’d like to be, so I haven’t been able to write about the topics that are on my mind. Today, however, I thought I’d translate a news story from this part of the world just as a reminder that sometimes the big stories are informed by the little…

Yes, MASSR

One of the most interesting periods of history that very few people on either side of the Prut River remember today is that there was a Soviet Moldovan Republic long before Romania ceded Bessarabia without a fight in 1940. It took several years after the 1917 “October” Revolution in Russia before the Soviet Union was…

Games With Frontiers

Last week, I watched live as a commercial airliner heading from Moscow to Chisinau flew in circles inside Hungarian airspace before making an emergency landing in Belarus because an unidentified Romanian official spontaneously decided to ban the flight from crossing Romanian airspace. Unfortunately, as far as I can tell, only Russian-language media has written about…

Another Really Bad Day for Air Moldova

Air Moldova spokesperson Dumitru Niculăiță has been referring to the anonymous letter from Air Moldova employees a “fake”, but it’s becoming increasingly obvious that there are major problems going on with this airline. Yesterday alone, there were two incidents. The first one involved an Antalya (Turkey) to Chisinau flight. My translation: When the plane touched…

Air Moldova Problems Continue

Just days after I wrote about the dire situation at Air Moldova, two new incidents have come to light. In the first, a scheduled Air Moldova flight from Chisinau to Greece was grounded. My translation: Dozens of Moldovans who were ready to head to the Corfu Islands and Zakinthos in Greece on vacation were sent…