27 October: Bukovina, Bilca

We were now in Bucovina, a region that spans Northwest Moldavia and southern Ukraine. It has been occupied by the the Russians, the Romans, the Ottoman Turks, Hapsburg Austrians, (not in that order though) and most recently was split in two as a result of the scandlous Stalin-Hitler pact of 1939 I wanted to get to the Northern village Bilca to meet the violinist Mîrcea, and it wasn’t so easy. We got directions to his place easily enough, but actually getting there meant going a kilometer or so up a dirt road, which at a point got too rough to drive, and we walked the remaining distance up to the house. The house was at the top of a gentle slope and fronted by a a Bukovina gate (an example of which I am afraid I didn’t get a photo). We peered over the gate, called out to see if someone was home, but got only silence in return. The only sound I could hear was the whistle of the wind and the sound of my heartbeat. It turned out however to be Sorin whistling a tune and tapping his fingers on the gate though.

We took a look around the perimeter of the house and on the far side we found a man cutting grass with a scythe, his sharpening stone on his belt. Sorin asked him about Mîrcea, The man thought they might be down in the village having dinner, or maybe not, and we should go see his brother, maybe he would know more. He led us across a couple fields.

We were suddenly transported to Tolkien's Middle-Earth; there were no paths, we simply walked over the grass, and around some vegetables that were growing, through a fence and to a little house where our friend (who could have been Frodo Baggins) knocked on the door. Alas, there was no answer there either. I took a couple pictures of our guide and we set off on the journey back to the house. I fell behind the others when I met a family with their bikes crossing my path in the grass and then got lost on my way back to the house. I found my way easily enough when I heard Sorin call out for me, and didn’t get to go on an epic journey through Middle-Earth. Silly me.

next: 27 October: Suceviţa and points north

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home