Looking back

15th January 2016


It’s past my bedtime so I’ll keep it brief… “When are you off to Romania?” a message asks…

Good question I think

Trawling through negs and hard drives seems to be the story of my life and I came across this one yesterday. It reminded me of how when you’re faced with a language barrier it can actually simplify human connections. I enjoyed being forced into silence and left Andrei to drive whilst I accompanied these girls on a walk to their church. I occasionally trailed behind and then re-joined them; greeted by genuinely warm, shy smiles. We exchanged broken English intermittently but mostly relished the crisp winter air and stunning scenery. By the time Andrei and Katherine joined us I felt an unspoken kind of familiarity with the sisters. We hadn’t necessarily bonded or connected but they seemed at ease and unfazed by the randomness of our interruption. It felt like we didn’t need to speak the same language; as if small talk would annoyingly replace the comfortable silence. If only all exchanges could be so effortless.

I reply explaining it’s not Romania I’m fleeing too this time but the assumption definitely spurs some desire in me to revisit. I’ve put my trails in Maramures to one side, waiting for my head to clear and ideas to blossom. I also want to miss it a little and I hadn’t until now…