Posted by: bkropf | April 18, 2008

Dining with Dracula

After doing nothing all day I tried to call home to get some medical advice and talk to my parent. This is probably the longest period of time I haven’t talked to them (over 1 month).  They never answered, I think they were screening my calls.  I found a nurse from Australia and she thought my foot was not a stress fracture and would heal on its own.

Because I was not mobile I decided to go see a movie and Tyler came too.  We went to the only movie playing: Fools Gold.  Yes it was a chick flick but was it was nice to feel like I was back at home in the good old USA.  The theater was packed and because the whole thing was in Romanian subtitles people were reading the dialog and the music was really quiet.  The quiet music coupled with really loud popcorn bags being crumpled made it hard to hear.  I stand by my previous feeling that Matthew McConaughey is a one dimensional actor, and a chump.

I went to bed scared about the foot, but feeling a little better. 

The next day we got on the train to Sighisoara, the town where Vlad Dracula was born.  It is a World UNESCO site because it is a perfectly preserved medieval village.  It was really nice because our room was a private room with a tv.  I got to watch some Discovery Channel and rest the good ole foot while Tyler took some pictures of the town.

I finally got in touch with my parents and talked for a while and got caught up on all the haps from the community.  I also got the email address for my Uncle Dan, who is a doctor, to try to figure out what is going on with my foot.

We had dinner reservations at Vlad Dracula’s birth place at 7:30 so I hobbled over to meet Tyler for dinner.  The meal was tasty and there were no surprises.  I thought our meat might come to the table impaled or something!

The next morning there was a healthy rain.  I donned my Gortex jacket and took off.  The foot is feeling much better at this point.  I would say probably 86% back to normal.  It is so weird how it went from 100% to 0% and back to 86% health in the space of about 3 days.  We explored the town and there just really isn’t much to say about the town.  It was very small, no tourists at all, and it felt like I was walking around an old citadel.  Roads were dirt/mud.  The coolest part was the vampire we saw…no seriously though, I think we saw one!  We also saw some old creepy cemeteries and crypts under the fortified church.

Checking my email, Uncle Dan had responded that I had Gout!  I don’t know what Gout is but it sounds horrible.  I was just happy to hear nothing was broken.  After looking up Gout, it looks like you get it from eating lots of rich food (sausage, red meet, etc.) and having a lack of fruits and veggies.  Sounds like a pretty spot on diagnosis to me.  I am confused though, wouldn’t every European have Gout on that diet?  I hate the name Gout, couldn’t have they named it something more pleasant?  Now that the foot is feeling better I have called off my campaign for better disability rights for Americans traveling in Europe.

I have been having a constant internal struggle about what I should do when I finally get back to the States!  I know the chances are high I will be going to Mexico city for 3 months to help teach English, assist people who are starting churches and work with the region’s Treasury staff.  But when I get back from Mexico what am I to do?  I had been feeling that I wanted to go back up to Seattle to work for a few more years but lately I have been feeling like it would be better to stay in the Willamette valley.  I hate having to make decisions that affect multiple years of my life.  I have been praying about what to do.  Either way though I am happy because all options presenting themselves to me are absolutely amazing and I love each one!  That is what makes the decision so hard.

I have been a little homesick lately.  Today we got into Moldova.  Yeah, I had never heard of it either.  In the Lonely Planet, it says it is known for its organized crime, corruption and for being in the running of for the title of poorest country in Europe.  Getting across the border on the night train was pretty hairy.  We sat at the border from 2am until 6am.  Also, the train tracks are different sizes in Moldova so the whole train had to be picked up and different axles put under it.  Craziness!



  1. Mr. Barney Gout Kropf. It’s so good to here your foot is getting better.

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