Friday, April 24, 2015

Bucharest

Last night I got on the midnight bus from Sofia to Bucharest.  I rode through the night (sleeping most of the way), and arrived in Romania's beautiful capital early this morning.

The trip went well.  I fell asleep before we left Sofia, though I did drift back to consciousness from time to time as we crossed the Old Mountains that run through central Bulgaria.  At one point we stopped in what looked like a small city or large town.  I asked the guy next to me what time it was.  He responded, "Three thirty . . . Where are we?"

"I have no idea," was my reply.  I am guessing we were in Pleven as that seems a logical place to make a stop, and is conceivably a three hour bus ride from Sofia, but I was too tired to try to figure it out.

As the bus rolled out I drifted back to sleep and woke up two hours later at our next stop in Ruse, a major border city and port on the Danube river.  I realized it would still be about a half an hour or so before we crossed the border, so I tried unsuccessfully to sleep some more.

At about 6am we left the Ruse bus stop and proceed to the border check.  A man came in the bus and checked all our passports.  Then we drove across the river just as the sun was rising.

The Danube between Bulgaria and Romania near Ruse, Bulgaria

Next we went through the Romanian border check.  This took a bit longer as about half the bus was made up of non-E.U. citizens (such as myself), and every one of our passports had to be checked on the computer.  After all, Romania doesn't want illegal immigrants sneaking into their country any more than any other country would.

After clearing customs, we proceeded to our final destination, a bus stop on the south side of Bucharest. 

I am now sitting in my boss's living room waiting for the rest of the ReachGlobal city team leaders to arrive for our leadership huddle.  I will be here for most of the next week for a time of fellowship, growth, and peer mentoring.

I like these annual leadership huddles.  This is the fourth one I have attended, and I always come out of them better.

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