There’s something about Romania that reminds me of the wind. It’s amazing how you can never visit a place and yet it somehow exports such a feeling. I think of a casual brisk walk through deciduous forests near dilapidated brick buildings.
Romania has not always had a carefree history nature. After a constant series of invasions in its provinces (one of them being the famous “Transylvania”) throughout the Middle Ages, eventual capture by the Ottoman Empire and the Communist bloc, Romania has only recently been liberated from outside strongholds. Although a recent inductee to the European Union, its older influences from the Roman Empire can still be seen in the language today. Romanian is perhaps the closest modern language to classical Latin.
WRITING SYSTEM: A Roman alphabet, no pun intended, is used here. Most of the letters are the same as in English, except for a few:
î, â = an “ew” sound (no similarities in English)
ş = a “shh” sound as in “sheep”
c = a “ch” sound as in “check”
ţ = a “tst” sound as the tz in “fritz”
ch = a hard “k” sound
ă = an “uh” sound
(Credit to Romanian Lessons for the pronunciation guide)
Some cool words I learned:
Nici o problema = No problem
Dragutz = honey
da = yes
FIRST IMPRESSIONS: If you were to play any random Eastern European language and Italian at the same time then you’d have Romanian. But wait, this make sense! Romanian is actually mutually intelligible with Italian many ways. In fact, the lexical similarity with Italian is 77 percent.
Along with that, the language has a tendency to flow beautifully, even as several words sound a bit rough, in a totally stereotypical brusque, Eastern European fashion. Add to that mix a dash of Gypsy influences. While listening to a Romanian pop station with your typical verbose DJs (I guess they really are universal), I couldn’t help but be swooned.
As I said, it all reminds me of the wind. More details soon. Until then, watch this adorable girl sing a video about Romania: