I am restarting a cycle which I began (and never finished) two years ago and I named it then ‘Tourist in Romania’. There was a little bit of irony in the name, as Romania is my country of birth and the place where I lived half of my lifetime. Revisiting some of the places that I had walked as a youth, meeting new places but especially new realities in a country which underwent radical and sometimes traumatic transformation was a very special experience. And yet, I could not (and did not want to) avoid also a feeling of belonging and of homecoming at many instances. In the time since I left Romania in 1984 until today I walked, drove and flew half of the world becoming a passionate tourist. One thing is sure – traveling in Romania will never be for me just a touristic experience.

 

(video source http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VTqlLKBKFhg)

 

So – what color the Danube? The subject was discussed on my Facebook page while I was traveling on its shores, where I spend part of my vacation, in the Cazane (Cauldrons) Gorges area. It certainly is not always blue, as Johann Strauss II sung it in its famous waltz (above in the version directed by Karajan, to the end of this notes in another two versions). Blue Danube is more a state of mind, which was also our state of mind as we spent a week with a couple of our best friends from Bucharest. Yet it gets different colors and nuances, at different hours of the day. Here are a few.

 

a new day

 

in the light of the sunrise

 

the Cazane Gorges

 

the Mraconia Monastery

 

the Iron Gates dam

 

the Danube at Orsova

 

on the river

 

Decebal guards the Dacian border

 

at sunset

… and more music …

 

(video source http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SpvOUnz4T7Q)

 

(video source http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IDaJ7rFg66A)