Thursday, April 28, 2011

The Easter Belly

Touring downtown Medias with Tanya and Kay.
Cata's uncle is the first priest (white hair). He'll be conducting our engagement ceremony at this very church in September.

Easter midnight mass was a new thing for me. Everyone brings candles and light them beginning with the priests (who walk out of the church with lit candles). Then everyone walks around the church for a few loops.

Above, Christina (Cata's niece) and his mom on the far right.
Viorica Abagiu, April 2011.
After boiling/decorating the eggs we then eat one at each meal. First you say to someone "Christos Anviat!" to which they answer (while simultaneously hitting the top of your egg with theirs) "Adevarat a inviat!" This translates to "Christ has risen!" , response: Indeed he has risen!". The egg cracking continues until there is one person left who's egg survived all the beatings. The winner can either save their egg for later or just crack it themselves and eat.
I spy something Romanian.
BEFORE: My mini masterpieces before their red dye bath.
AFTER: Ta-da! We had a lot of fun with the eggs. Placing the leaves just right is tricky but I like the fun designs.

This was our Easter feast. Cata was grill-master extraordinaire. We ate grilled squash, mushrooms and onions with pork, beef and mici (meech). Delicious. Mici are like a very tasty sausage w/o the casing, get more info about them here.

My first Romanian Easter was fantastic. We spent the holiday at Cata's mom's house in Medias and invited my friends Tanya and Kay (K-eye) along for the trip. The city looks even better now than in the winter. Everything is blossoming and the air was refreshing compared to Bucharest smog. Our five day stay was felt like a relaxing vacation. Viorica was overwhelmingly kind and generous to us, her 'guests'. Every meal was filled with delicious homemade food, bread, desserts and wine or brandy. I think she was on a mission to make us gain several kilos before we left. She totally succeeded.

Easter is a very important holiday in Romania (at least for the religious). I partook in some new traditions, such as dying eggs with leaves and getting sprayed with perfume the day after Easter. The eggs I have in photos but the perfume spraying event was not documented. The tradition is that on the day after Easter boys and men come to the homes of women they know (and in the case of young guys, girls that they like) with perfume bottles in hand. Once they are greeted and welcomed into the house they say "I hear you have a flower in your garden, I've come to water it so that it doesn't wilt". That is when I got sprayed on the head and neck with perfume. The next step is to offer your visitors a drink such as wine or brandy. Once they are done, they go to the next house, and repeat. By the end of the day, all the women smell terrible and the men are liquored up. It was bizarre but fun.

Easter Highlights:
  • No Easter basket this year, but Cata did hand me a 2.5 liter bottle of coke since that is what I had given up for lent. I was high on sugar the rest of the week.
  • I tried and truly enjoyed eating smoked pig fat. Honestly, with a nice chunk of bread, it tastes like the best butter imaginable.
  • I went to Dracula's dad's house. He wasn't home though...
  • The weather all week was perfection. It was about 70 degrees and sunny everyday we were there. Everyday!


My story:

Girl meets boy.
Love strikes.
Boy moves to Romania,
girl (now engaged) follows suit.

I'll be living abroad for the first time in my life beginning January 11th 2011. Follow this blog if you want to see my adventures.