Today we went to visit what is called the Merry Cemetery. This cemetery on each gravestone has a colorful picture of either a significant time in the person’s life or a scene of what lead to their ultimate demise. We arrived at the cemetery just when a busload of German tourists had just come. The cemetery was crowded with tourists and church goers who were attending service for the church on the same property. It was fascinating to see the pictures on the gravestones. After I had my fill of the gravestone pictures, I migrated into the church to see their traditional church service. All the women were dressed in traditional costumes and everyone sang along to the prayers.
After the cemetery we went across the street to eat a traditional Romanian meal served and cooked by an older lady. Plum brandy was served and alcohol was flowing freely. By the time the lady had served the first course, I had already downed a few shots of her brandy. The room this meal was being served at was decorated with plates and colorful handmade blankets. The first course was a vegetable soup with meatballs. The second course consisted of stuffed cabbage leaves and sausage with polenta. The meal was thoroughly enjoyable. We thanked the lady and continued towards Sighet.
When we arrived in Sighet we visited the Victims of Communism Museum, which was housed at the former communist prison. Each exhibit was in a former jail cell and you continued on to see each exhibit. The topics ranged from how Communist law was enforced to how the government suppressed dissent. We felt the museum had an agenda but my brother and I were interested about the topic of communism as it isn’t often we hear this perspective of history.
After the museum we visited Elie Wiesel Memorial House. Elie Wiesel is a famous Jewish author who was a Holocaust survivor and a Nobel Prize Winner. Frankly I was not so familiar with his works, so I didn’t get too much out of the museum. However, we had an English speaking guide show us around the museum, which made the exhibits more meaningful. We then continued on our hotel.
After resting awhile at the hotel we had dinner in the back terrace. Still a bit full from lunch we had a small dinner. It was warm but we benefited from a constant mist that was sprayed from overhead misters installed to keep diners cool. Tomorrow we are going to Bukovina.