For someone who had never left the country or flown on a plane, travelling 4,895 miles doing both was a big change. I was going on what I thought would be a nice mission’s trip to Romania. However, on the 7th of July 2008 my whole world changed.
Before I was actually in Romania, I journeyed to Texas for three days. I flew into Houston, but Global Expeditions (a subdivision of Teen Mania) was located in Garden Valley. There I met my team of 28 students, 3 team leaders, and our project director. Soon we learned we would be meeting 6 other students and other team leader. We were Romania B. The team was full of fantastic people. We were, and still are, a family. Three days in Texas concluded our American stay. We were on our way.
We loaded onto a bus and drove five hours to Dallas where we boarded a plane to Paris. As we landed in the De Galles airport I looked out my window and saw Le Tour d’Eiffel. It was so surreal and stunning. Our team ran to catch our flight to Budapest. We made it just in time. From Budapest we took a bus two hours to Oradea, Romania. We had finally arrived at Centrul Cre?tin Salem, the church where we were staying.
One of our main focuses was being in the streets of Romania. It was there that we got to meet Romanians of all ages. I can honestly say I have never met a more welcoming and warm group of people. The elderly people were sweet and gentle. The adults were hospitable and pleasant. The teens were fun and energetic and the kids were adorable. As well as the people of Romania, the scenery was wonderful. Everything was so unique I loved that it wasn’t your typical industrial city, but a place with rich history told by the buildings and landscape, sprinkled with modern structures. The streets of Romania, people and places, were magnificent.
Another focus was the orphanages. We went to a state run orphanage. It was in an older building and old part of town. The kids were amazing. It was great to be able to play with them. Soccer is the game. They were amazing and that is an understatement. I can still see the smiling faces which were just looking for friendship and love. Our team was able to bring them that. Being able to sit and talk to them was more than enough. Each and every one of their stories was incredible.
Our last place of ministry was the Gypsy Village; truly my favorite place. Gypsy’s are the outcasts of Europe. Yet I wonder how many people have taken the time to look deeper. I can say that the gypsies I met were a part of no stereotype. They’re starving for love, especially the kids. One time I witnessed a mother grab her child, who only could have been one year, throw her on the ground and beat her with a sandal. It was and still is heart breaking. I love the Gypsy’s of Romania. They are beautiful people who I will never forget.
My month excursion in Romania was unforgettable. It literally changed my life. I am in love with everything about Romania. I plan to return in summer of 2011. I made friends that I will keep forever. I went to try to make an impact in Romania, but Romania made an impact on me.
Dear Reader: This page may contain affiliate links which may earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase. Our independent journalism is not influenced by any advertiser or commercial initiative unless it is clearly marked as sponsored content. As travel products change, please be sure to reconfirm all details and stay up to date with current events to ensure a safe and successful trip.