Trips to the beach

Well a couple of weeks  ago I went to Constanta – where the beaches are the best to visit family, and leave the girls there for a short 2 week stay.  Planned on getting pics then, but  no such luck as it rained cats and dogs.  There was actually quite a bit of flooding that went on down here in S.E. Romania.  Anyway, went back this past weekend to get the girls, and the weather was great, I got some sun, rather, I got a burn – not bad, but still, for fair skinned red heads, too much sun ain’t good = more freckles.  Did I mention I loathe my freckles!!!

Anyway, so here are a few shots of the girls at the beach, and yes, my youngest daughter is a total ham!
Enjoy!

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The Freaky, Neighbor dude…..

  I mentioned in my last post (if it ain’t 1 thing it’s 20) briefly about my freaky neighbor.  I went back through my blog to see if I had ever mentioned him, I haven’t.  Well here goes.  I happened to meet him in the stairwell last year sometime.  My husband wasn’t home at the time.  My Romanian was limited to hello’s, how are you, and good bye.  So I didn’t understand much.  I understood he asked something about a computer.  I responded ‘da’, and told him to come back tomorrow to talk to my husband.  Something seemed weird about him when I met him, but I chocked it up to my lack of conversational skills. So he comes by the next day when my husband is home.  My kids are naturally affectionate, they hug everyone!  So they were talking to the new guy, he was nice with them, but something was rubbing me the wrong way.  That nagging little feeling in the back of your head that screams “Danger! Danger Will Robinson!”

   He had asked if he could use our computer, we said okay.  He started showing up when my husband wasn’t here.  The way he talked to my kids made me nauseous.  He was all of about 17 I guess, said he wanted to be come a priest in the Orthadox church.  But there was something about him.  He was an only child and his father had died when he was young, so he was raised by an overly affectionate, indulgent, or worried mother.  I blamed his weirdness on that.  One evening when he was here, he was on his phone talking to a friend, my husband said he was flirting, but he was speaking in the masculine, when if he was speaking to a girl, he should have been saying things a different way.  When he got off the phone my husband asked him flat out, “Are you gay?”  It surprised him, and he asked Marius how he knew.  Marius was like well your body language is effiminate, but the way you were talking – you were speaking masculine, when you should have been speaking with the feminine.  He said yes, he was, and begged Marius not to say anything, cause no one knew, and here where we are in Romania, that can get you beat the hell up, or worse.  Marius said he wouldn’t say a word, but he asked him how he thought he could be a priest, he said he didn’t know.  He knew it was wrong, but he couldn’t help it.

  Not long after this,  was waiting and wondering  my oldest daughter was, she had long been due back from school.  My doorbell rings, I open it, and there is freaky neighbor with  my daughter!!!!!!  He comes in – I still don’t know why he kept coming over, when I didn’t understand a word he said, and visa versa!  Anyway he comes in, he uses the bathroom.  I asked Kelly, what was going on, she said he was waiting for her at her school, and he walked her home, but not the way she normally came back home, a different route, he took her to a park and asked her if she wanted to play, she said no, I need to go home, I’m going to be in trouble if I’m late.  He stopped at a little store to buy something, and he bought her a piece of candy!  I was ready to tear this little dude a new one!  Only I didn’t have the words.  He hung around for a while, used the computer I noticed he was using it to talk to some man, who was at least my age.  He finally left.  When Marius came home I told him what had happened, it was a good thing the kid wasn’t here at the time – Marius was livid, he would’ve ripped the kids head off.  Marius is very, very SLOW to anger, but once he’s there, you need to stay away!  Kelly informed us, he was regularly at the school.  Which is weird to me.  He isn’t in that school.  Why they allow people to be on the school grounds who have no business there is beyond me.  A few days went by before we saw him again, and when we did, Marius had calmed down, he told him – what you did was wrong, you NEVER take one of my children from school unless you are asked to.  He further told him, if you wait for my kid at the school again, I will go straight to the police, and what do you think will happen will I tell them a homosexual was waiting for my kid at her school, unasked by me or my wife.  He went white and apologized profusely!  Kelly said he made her feel weird.  After that when ever he came over, she gave him a wide berth, would barely talk to him.  The way he was with my son though – ugggggg!!!!!

  Marius had told him, if I’m not home, you don’t come to my house.  It doesn’t look right, and people will talk if they see you always over here with my wife and kids when I’m  not here.  He agreed, etc.  BUT, he come over more when Marius wasn’t here, than when he was.  Marius had by that time told him, no more using the computer, you’re using to continue a homosexual relationship, and I won’t be party to that.  But still he came.  Finally around Christmas, Marius had had it, he was ALWAYS at our house.  Marius had just come home from a pitiful little job that didn’t pay that much, things were tight, and the doorbell rings.  We all stayed quiet.  We were eating dinner as a family.  We ignored it, not 5 minutes later, it rings again.  Marius gets up from the table, opens the door and says.  “Man, it’s enough.  You are always over here, even when I’m not here, which I’ve asked you NOT to do.  If you have an emergency, and we can help, we will, but other than that, I’m sorry, but I’m done.  Good night.”  and he shut the door. 

  And that is the last we’ve heard from him.  We pass him on the street or in the stairs from time to time, and he still turns my stomach, and I want to bash his head in when he leans down to talk to my son.  The girls have figured out that Mommy doesn’t like him, she thinks he’s weird or bad, or something, so they don’t say much to him.  But my 3 year old – he doesn’t get it yet!

  So anyway, that is who informed me of water in my apartment yesterday, I would rather have been possessed by Satan than have heard that from this guy.  The less contact I have with freaky neighbor dude, the better!

If it ain’t 1 thing, it’s 20…..

  So my day started off rather uneventful, apart from sibling rivalry.  Fed kids breakfast and lunch, then at about 1:30 left to go get some things from the farmer’s market, which is about a 10 min. drive.  Me and kids leave, go to the market, take another 10-15 min. to get what I need, hop back in the car, drive home.  Get home and walked across the street of apartment building to the little store, grabbed a 2.5L of Pepsi, some tomato sauce.  As I’m leaving the store, my freaky little neighbor (mighta mentioned him another post, if not I’ll extrapolate in another post why he is weird), anyway, freaky neighbor dude says something about my apartment and water.  My five year old  translates as best she could, but she’s not really paying attention.  I shuffle the kids across the  street, while toting a sack of groceries that weighs about 15 pounds, and up  2 flights of stairs.

  There’s water on the stairs, and neighbors in front of my door.  I get that water is leaking from my apartment, but I was not expecting what I found when I opened my door.  There was 3 inches or so of water all in my apartment.  It didn’t quite make it all the way into the one bedroom or the living room, but it started to.  It was all in the bathroom, kitchen and entrance & hall way.  They have shut off the water to the building.  They turn it back on, and we find that it is coming from under my kitchen sink.  I’m standing at my sink, wildly turning the knobs to the pipes to make sure my water in the kitchen is indeed off.  I didn’t leave water running either, so please save those comments!

  So there I am standing at the kitchen sink, and I  just loose it.  I just broke down crying – not hysterically or even uncontrollably, but just crying.  You know, the tears you hold back and bottle up when things go south sometimes?!?  Well the flood gates opened.  My neighbors are standing in my doorway talking to each other, trying to talk to me.  I walk to the door, there’s 2 men standing there talking to me, and I finally say, through the tears “Nu intelegti nimic!!!”  That translates, I don’t understand anything!  Then in English I just simply say “I wanna go home, I just wanna go home!”  I felt like a 5 year old, who just got their butt whooped by the school bully!  I briefly pulled it together, and found my landlord’s number in my cell phone, dialed it, handed the phone to one  of the men talking at me and said “Proprietor, explicat el” – landlord, explain it to him.

  They explain, I understand landlord is on his way.  They give me the phone back, I then call my husband, whose working in Italy – cause these neighbors are asking when my husband will be home, I try to explain he’s working in Italy – they don’t understand me.  Hubby answers the phone, I hear loud noises in the background, he’s at work, in a shipyard.  I have to yell for him to hear and understand me.  At this point I’m not crying anymore, but the moment I have to start yelling, I break again.  He in turn gets worried, tells me to calm down, asks me why I’m crying, and I let loose on him:  “I’m crying because I’m in a place where I don’t understand anyone, and they don’t understand me, and everything is backwards.  Think back to when you first came to the U.S. and no one understood you, and you didn’t understand them, and everything worked differently!”  But it was different for him, he was with a lot of other Romanians.  So he had people to talk to, I have no one, just my kids!

  Anyway, landlord arrives, they find the busted pipe/tube, whatever, we start scooping and dumping the water, take all the rugs outside.  The neighbors are helping.  My kids, especially 3 year old is trying to help, but getting in the way.  I’ve stopped crying, momentarily, and am helping rid the apartment of water.  By this time, the neighbors have figured out from my crying rant at my husband that this was the straw that broke the camel’s back for me!  After several hours, the water is cleaned up, the pipes/tubes are repaired, landlord is not mad at me (thank goodness), and all is right, for now.  Called hubby, and had nice, calm conversation, apologized for the tear-fest, but he understood, and is thankful for such a wonderful wife, who left all behind to follow him to keep their family together!

  Okay, now I know you are thinking, okay, it was just a busted pipe, and yeah, you’re in a different country, but there was no need to cry.  But lately, it’s been one thing after another.  About 2 months ago, my laptop, a big monster of a thing broke, wouldn’t turn on.  Turned out to be a bad motherboard, which fried one of my hard drives.  So I just spent about $4-500 fixing that.  Gas in the car, bills left and right.  A mother in law who likes to stay in everyone’s business and create drama!  No friends to talk to, a husband working in another country because this one has no work for him!  Hot weather, no air conditioning, washing clothes by hand, and 3 kids who fight with each other, don’t listen to me, and keep my house looking like the wreck of the Hesperus.  It could have been worse though, this could have happened over the weekend while I was at the beach in Constanta, 2 hours away!  So I guess in a way, I was lucky.

  Today was just the day that it became too much to deal with anymore!  Ever have one of those days, if you say no, then you are either lying to me, or to yourself; take your pick!  But what’s really bad, is after I’ve cried at my hubby, gotten all the water scooped up, I’m mopping while the neighbor is fixing the pipes, the tears slowly start falling, not out of frustration, but this time out of anger – anger at my own country for putting me in this situation.  Yes, my hubby hand a hand in it too, but we didn’t meet the burden of proof for Political Asylum.  Yes, I’m angry at the U.S. because it sent 4 of it’s own to a foreign country just to make an example out of one person, a person, who if you needed it would give you everything he had, including a kidney or liver!  But the U.S. doesn’t want people like him, they want gang-banging, drug running thugs from Mexico!

  Okay, I’m done, cause now I’m just getting myself really ticked off, and I don’t want that, right now, I just want to eat my dinner that should be done in a little while, eat and read the rest of book three of a series of 7, then go to bed!

Where is Buster Pointdexter????

  Cause I’m feeling “Hot! Hot! HOT!”  And no not in that I’m a young smoking hot, sexy wife and momma.  No, hot as in the it’s 35 C, no breeze, no a/c & I’m taking HOT baths in a closed door bathroom just to get my body temp  higher than it is inside, so that when I open the door from the bathroom, the hot apartment is actually cooler than me!  Old trick my dad taught me as kid growing up in S.Louisiana when the window unit would break down!

  I mean I go sit on my balcony, which is has a door from the kitchen to it, which I keep closed, with butcher paper in the glass pane to block out the sunlight; i.e. heat.  So it’s unrealistically hot on the balcony.  I mean the walls are as hot as an oven – no lie!!!  So I go sit out there for a few minutes, and start sweating, then get up after about 5 minutes, and step back in the house, cause hey it’s cooler in here than the balcony!

  The upside, I only have like one more month of this heat, then fall weather will start setting in.  That’s another upside to living here, there are 4 distinct seasons, and summer is VERY short.  It doesn’t really start getting hot till like June 1st., and then starting around September 1st it starts cooling off.  Of course then come November it gets wickedly cold.  But it’s easier to get warm than it is to cool off, I mean let’s face it there is only so much you can take off, but you can always keep putting clothes on – hello Joey did it in an episode of Friends!  How you doin’???

Tom Jones, Mean Girls, et al

  Okay, this is going to be a totally random rant, so  bear  with me.

  Okay, we get “Duck Dodgers” over here, a cartoon starring Daffy Duck and Porky Pig, only sci-fi.  The theme song is sung by none other than Tom Jones.  I hate it and love it at the  same time.  Love it cause the lyrics are hysterical, at least I think so, and I hate it cause I can’t stand to hear Tom Jones sing. Seriously, the guy sounds like he’s in pain when he sings.  Take his voice and Aaron Neville’s face and it ain’t nothing but an auditory and visual pain fest!  Tom sounds as if in pain, and Aaron looks like he’s in pain!  Uggg….

  So my writer cousin wrote a blog the other day reviewing a YA (that’s Young Adult)  novel about mean girls, and it spurned discussions in the comments about our own kids; our thoughts, fears etc. for our own daughters, as well as our own experiences growing up.  Her post can be found here.  I had a hard time as a kid.  I didn’t have a big house, or new car, heck one parent  was MIA.  I wore hand me downs, lived in what looked like an over sized building block – no lie – it had a flat roof, and was made out of cinder blocks.   My brother was ADHD and  was constantly in trouble with the teachers and other students,  and I was always bailing him out.  I wanted to fit in hang out with the “cool” kids, only they didn’t like me.  It  wasn’t till high school that I realized that these people didn’t matter, that once we got out of school I would probably never see them again for as long as I lived.  I wish I would have gotten that earlier, woulda saved myself a lot of heartache, and probably would have focused more on my books!  Ah hind-sight!  Gotta love it!  Too little too late, I guess.  But I see my oldest daughter headed down the same path, she will do anything for approval, and that scares me.  The other  kids have figured this out, and use it to their advantage.  If I give Kelly a few bucks to buy herself some chips, or candy, that’s when she has “friends”.  If she doesn’t have anything, they don’t play with her.  I tried to explain to her what took me so long to learn.  I don’t know if she gets it.  I don’t want my kids to feel like I did, nor do I want them to be like the girls that were mean to me, which is what I have to worry about with my middle child, also a girl.  She is cute, and she knows it!  She loves you if you are pretty!!!  She only really likes people who are pretty!  She bases everything on looks.  She plays with kids who are older than her.  Only once have I seen her play with another kid her own age, and this was only a few weeks ago.  And this little girl was pretty, and knew it too.  Talk about 2 peas in a pod!  Isabel isn’t mean  to other kids,  but she will tell you point blank if she doesn’t like you, she doesn’t let anyone push her around.  Somewhat scary!  I pray for wisdom daily!  God, hello, do you hear me down here?  Can you help me?  Can you help my kids?  Hello?  HELLOOOOOO???????

  So I have taken some advice and started writing, not sure if it will be a novel yet, I’m kinda stuck, and I’m only in the 3rd chapter – not a great prospect!  No, it’s not about my life as an ex-pat, etc.  Completely fictional.  I should write about my life,  I mean they say to write what you know, right?  I just don’t know how to put our story on paper without some serious repercussions – for those of you not familiar with my situation and why I’m here, basically it could land my hubby in some serious political/criminal trouble with his government.  No, he didn’t kill anyone or anything like that, but hello, it’s only been 20 years since  Communism fell here, and  all the politicians are old Commies!  But I digress.  It should be interesting if I can figure out exactly what I want to do with my female lead.  I have the guy figured out, but not sure what to do with her, she’s complicate,  but then again, aren’t all  women???

  Last rant.  I wrote last week about how much it’s been raining here.  Towns  have completely flooded, etc.  It’s  been pretty bad.  But it finally stopped, only this week – the heat has been unbearable.  There is no such thing as central A/C, they do have units, and we could get one, but it would jack my electric bill up.  Electricity and gas are SKY HIGH here.  We have a fan, but I only run it during nap time, and at bed time in the kids room.  Anyway, so it rained today for about an hour, and I was happy, cause it cooled off for a few hours! WHOO-HOO!!!  But it stopped, and now it’s stifling again!  GAG!!!

  I thought about something else to rant about, but it has now escaped my mind!  Help me Lord!  The gray hairs have penetrated the brain!

Rain, Rain Go Away…

  So I  got up Friday morning and made the 2 hour drive to Constanta to visit my husband’s aunt, uncle, cousin, his wife and son.  As soon as me and the kids got in the car to leave Tulcea, the rain started – no exaggerating.  It literally POURED, and of course the idiot drivers here, scare me to death during good weather, imagine my nerves in the pouring rain  through winding roads, yes the highway has these hairpin curves – it’s crazy, and people think it’s totally cool to pass someone in a curve – MORONS!  Thankfully the kids sat still and quiet in the backseat, maybe because I threatened to pull the car over and wear out thier heinies if they didn’t stay seated and buckled up!  My 3 year old son wat the only one who wouldn’t stay in a seat belt, yeah, I know, but, what ya goona do?!? 

  I was hoping to take the kids to the beach, and take tons of pictures, but the rain kinda of prevented that, maybe when I go back from them in 2  weeks it won’t be raining, I don’t know we shall see!  It was pouring rain when I got back from  Italy 3 weeks ago, it rained so much that the Danube river has spilled over into the city, people who live in the lower laying areas of the city are flooded out of their apartments and houses.  THe city is giving those whose hourses are flooded free rooms in local hotels that include meals, some family showed up at my mother in law’s house last night evidentally to stay with her instead of going to a hotel.  This irritated my MIL to no end.  My MIL is a piece of work, she has her good points, as well as her irritating ones.

  Anyway, so it has been raining non stop here.  It’s good cause it helps cool it off a bit, however I don’t think this part of Romania has seen this much rain in YEARS.  I’m ready for it to stop, I would like to take my son to the lake to swim while his sisters are staying with their G.Aunt, Uncle & cousins in Constanta for the next 2  weeks.

A Ninja did it…..

   So as I was putting my kids to bed a little while ago, my 3 year old son says “Mommy!  Look!”  he is pointing to the light fixture in their room – the glass covering is missing.  He continues: 
  “Ninja did it! Nija face asa.  Kelly do’ed it cu Nija fac asa!”

To which I reply:  “Da! Stui.  Yes, I know.  Kelly did that.  It’s okay now, go to sleep.”

At first I was like a ‘Ninja’ came in here and Karate chopped the light, huh?  But then I remembered that the word for ball in romanian is “ninja”.  I know right?!?  I had to laugh at my own language learning curve, and the differences in words and their meanings in different languages.  Like in Romanian the word “Fac”, which means do, doing, etc.  is prounounced like the english word “F*ck”.  So for me, when I first met Marius and heard him speaking to other Romanians, I would blush, and look all dear caught in the headlights, I mean, this wonderful God loving man was CURSING!  After he explained it to me, I had to laugh.

  Another example is the English word “Foot”, in Romanian sounds like the RO version of  the F-Bomb!  Also the word Pull-Up sounds like the Romanian word for a man’s “member”!  So it’s kinda funny, yet embarrassing in a way, especially over here, when my kids are saying my foot hurts in public, and all the old people are looking at us horrified! 

Learning another language – it can be quite funny sometimes!!! A Ninja Did It –  Classic!!!

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