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10 Reasons Why Romania is Better Than America

Really? Yes, really. Let me count the ways.

In America you can get everything you've ever dreamed of: GameBoy, Sega Genesis, plants that look like faces, and more.  Maybe if you work really hard long hours at the job you hate (but that you tell everybody you love lest you appear to be a miserable person), you can even get a flat panel home theater TV that takes up half your basement (on credit, of course). Awesomeness!!
In America you can always be sure to be on top of the latest fad, such as devil sticks or Tamagochi and you will be first to read bestsellers like The DaVinci Code and Fifty Shades of Crap literature. Basically there are thousands of ways of feeling accomplished -or pretending that you are - you just need to be there to catch all these wonderful trends on time!

I know what you're thinking, how can Romania possibly top all that considering America is also the land of Root beer floats and Antoine Dodson?

Everything's been done in America, that's why people like Dodson and Snooki and all kinds of other morons become overnight celebrities. People there are SO bored by their own lives and so taken by so-called 'issues' like saving pandas, that they need reality shows and 'stars' to gawk at as caricatures of their fake lives.

Of course there are idiotic Romanian celebs, but it's not very socially acceptable to discuss their pathetic shenanigans around the water cooler at work. People instead talk about their own lives and thus relate to one another in very personal ways. Novel concept, I know.

Here are the 10 ways in which Romania is better than America:

1. America is no longer the land of opportunity. You have the opportunity to get into debt that's about it. In Romania, you could apply thousands of tried and tested business ideas. I'm not saying it's easy to start them all up, but do some market research and I'm sure you'll realize that when you're first to market with something that brings quality and value, you'll be doing really well here. My personal dream is a Mexican food truck, dishing out deliciously authentic burritos.

2. At the supermarket, you can actually find items in the grocery aisles that are made from less than five ingredients. In addition, you don't find high fructose corn syrup added to 90% of  food products. No Hungry-Man dinners here and no obesity problems either. So I'll go ahead and spell it out, Romania is better for your H-E-A-L-T-H.
 


3. There may be lots of poor and simple people in Romania, but at least they're normal. Don't give me any of that social construct bullshit about what 'normal' means. You know exactly what I'm talking about, People of Walmart wasn't invented in Europe.

4. You can walk places. It makes way more sense to walk to the store for a loaf of bread or some milk than to get into your inefficient atmosphere polluting car to drive there. Not only that but in the span of ten minutes you might pass through two distinctively different neighborhoods and pass by historical buildings.

5. You can participate in building the future. Assuming you're not simply looking to profiteer off the misery that does exist here in the way that politicians do, there are countless ways of becoming involved and volunteering for civic projects. If you try hard enough, you can leave your mark where it counts. Almost every single institution needs to be rebuilt so why not roll your sleeves up and put in some work? Your kids will thank you.

6. You can't get bored. Drugs are not a major concern in this country, as I mentioned above there are plenty of issues to worry about that make drugs both inaccessible and uninteresting. Why chase an artificial high when life is so exhilarating? Don't believe me, just try ordering a shot of vodka when the vodka is being sold at a higher measure than the amount which fits the shot glass. Bonus points if you can problem solve this one.

7. It's highly unlikely you will ever get murdered here. Yet in the US, there are certain areas in certain cities where walking for that bread or milk can increase the chances of your violent demise exponentially. Here it's the kind of thing you may worry about if you get married to a violent alcoholic, but why would you do that? PS: Stay away from Ferentari in Bucharest....

8. (If you're a man) The beautiful women that live here are usually also smart, nice, and classy.

9. (If you're a woman) The guy you're dating will most likely seriously consider you wife material and isn't playing games.

10.  When you want some cultural variety, you're only a couple of hours away from other cool countries in Europe. Return flights from Venice for $100, Rome, Barcelona, and Paris not much more.

All you Americans and Canadians, it's time to get crackin on that Pimsleur Romanian. Mexicans, you are also welcome, we are badly in need of cilantro!

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UPDATE: Why not take the discussion to this newer version of the post ?

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Comments

  1. wow; this all sounds very nice and is mostly true; the only sad thing for me is that we need a canadian to remind us of the great life we're living here, in Cluj ;)
    nicely put, MAtt ;)

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  2. I can tell that is not only cilantro what are you missing..there like in Mexico the Life is more real.. Really burritos Matt!? you gonna give me some credits on this ....nice pic eh!!
    Hope you doing well ;) Laura

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  3. 11. our currency allows you to purchase most basic needs items at a 1/3 to 1/4 of the price of countries using the € or the $

    12. you can talk ALL the religon and politics you want with anyone. It might turn into a heated debate, although, for the most part, people respect well argumented points of view even if they disagree, but no one will ever call the pc police on you! Nor will you get sued if someone gets an indigestion on the day they had lunch at your house.

    13. our politicians are evil and corrupt, like 90% of world's politicians, but at least they're authentic enough to let everyone know it so they can receive the due disdain from all citizens. In the US, I hear, there are millions who still believe Obama is after something other than the destruction of "his" country.

    14. Neighbours are neighbours. they watch the kids, bring you carrots when you run out, chit chat over the fence and, of course, know your name :)

    15. when someone asks you how you are, they wait and listen for the answer

    16. Did you mention that in 1.5hrs with under 100€ (return) you land in a cool city like Venice ? :)

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    1. #15 It is true, I have always wondered why in America is just "a word" with no meaning! Just like the smile and the "have a nice day" when most don't care! After 38 years of living here, I still want to know the answer to "how are you"? which seems to freak out the Americans!

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  4. Poate o sa aiba si tara aceasta un viitor luminos. Oricum ai dreptate. :D

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  5. I made friends with some wonderful people in the Banat. Romanian people are some of the nicest folk you could ever meet.

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  6. Yeah right, every romanian I have met has been a total jerk on a power trip.

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    1. Lol, I'd like to know where these powerful Romanians operate.

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    2. seriously? so mean to mexicans

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    3. Ah... you are not white! .. it explains it... if you don't dress proper or talk politely romanians mistake you for being a gypsy. Manners, ethics and self sufficientness is the standard, less than that is not accepted and is ridiculed and treated with disrespect.

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    4. lol ethics and self-sufficientness for romanians, what a joke :)))

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    5. Romanians jerks on a power trip? What kind of power? Most try to tell you to behave respectfully but, we never sugar coat anything! If you happen to behave like an idiot, we will tell you that as well. It is always meant to help you see your sort comings and correct it. We expect you to learn from that and grow as a person!

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  7. My boyfriend is from Romania and I love him more than words can express, plus he's helped me learn a lot about how other countries differ from here in America, including Romania. ;)

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    1. glad you got yourself a hard-working Romanian husband...I am stuck here with all the lazy Americans

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  8. I'm from Romania and I call bullshit.

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    1. Bine zis!! Asta e bolnav habar nu are ce scrie ce nu ma mira e ca prostia are parte de companie. Saraciile astea de prin america sunt total absente in ceea ce ne priveste pe noi aici acasa.

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    2. asta zice unu' care n-are habar de "saraciile din America"

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  9. I can't believe I'm reading this.
    After a couple of years of Canada I've came exactly to the same thoughts.

    PS: originally I'm from Cluj as well ;)

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    1. Hey at least you get it. Better than living the delusion that you're top of the heap just because the roads are better and buildings are taller.
      Looking forward to having you back someday ;)

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    2. I am on the same wagon as you...can't wait to go back as soon as my girl is 18

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  10. Never thought that I"ll read something like this about romania. Seriously. Most romanians can't wait to find an oportunity to leave. It's really nice. Thank you Matt

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    1. Just trying to do my part to reverse the brain drain.

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    2. was one of them, deeply regret I sold everything before going to so called "freedom land"

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    3. I know this is a late response but my husband move to the United States 9 years ago. We are considering moving our family back to Romania so our kids can have a "better" childhood. Yes they would have material things here in the United States but home is where the heart is and family. Are there work opportunities over there?

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  11. You couldn`t say it better. I am currently in Toronto, but thinking of coming back to Cluj.
    D.

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    1. Same here. Living in Toronto, thinking of coming back to Brasov. :P
      L.

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    2. I'm actually thinking to go back to Bucharest so much hated once

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  12. Agree, and don't forget you can listen to classical music at the Philharmonic in most cities for $3 to $5 a ticket! Can't beat that - my son and I have been to 100 concerts in 5 years here. All superb. So, among other things, you don't have to live your life at the mall.

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  13. I'm !00% American living here in Romania. To be very honest, it took my a couple years to get used to everything (street dogs and all) but now after 5 years I truly love Romania. The country side and villages are simply amazing and truly beautiful and most of the people are very friendly. On another note, it seems that most Romanian people seem to be very hard workers but extremely under paid. Also there are alot of scams here(beware of internet/online scams) and the police do very very little. Just like anyplace, Romania has it's share of the good, bad and ugly but tons of beauty :)

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  14. Thanks a lot for this spill. I am from Romania and been living for 8 years in Australia (aka copycat America) and all I can think about is coming back! Which will happen next year!

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  15. Serios?! Tu ori ai 19 ani ori habar nu ai ce inseamna calitate a vietii. Daca asta este ce iti lipseste in Canada e trist, nu vad care e problema ca nu iti cunosti vecinii sau ca nu iti da nimeni castraveti sau morcovi canfd nu ai ...eu unul prefer sa ma urc in masina sa conduc 3 minute si sa ii cumpar. Oamenii sunt mai reali e adevarat dar sunt aceeqasi care-si plimba caini si ii lasa sa se cace la usa ta ...aceeasi care se sterg pe picioare de noroi pe presul tau sa nu il murdareasca pe al lor aceeasi oameni care se baga in fata cand stai la rand la patiserie. Noi care suntem plecati nu am plecat pentru ca simteam nevoia sa fim in varful unei false piramide ci pentru ca am considerat ca putem sa facem mai mult muncind ca in romania si putem sa oferim copiilor nostri un viitor fara atatea griji ... e adevarat ca ne lipseste tara si o parte din oameni insa asta este pretul pe care trebuie sa il platim pentru a fi tratati ca oameni si nu ca fiinte bipede care se intampla sa convietuiasca printre tigani si borfasi. Cluj e silicon valley cand o sa fiu eu protopop ...

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    1. Eu unul prefer sa nu ma plang ca un iobag si sa ma pun pe treaba sa fac din tara mea ce este si in alte tari. Bine ca ai plecat la un loc unde alti au facut toate astea pentru tine. Acum ai un pat moale, si toata lumea iti zambeste, si viata e dulce. Binenteles ca tu nu ai contribuit cu nimic la acestea, da bravo oricum, ca macar ai 'scapat' de Romania.
      Hai dute la supermarket sa-ti ei un suc de mere 'organic'.

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    2. Matt se pare ca desi ai crescut intr-o tara unde se presupune ca te invata sa fii civilizat nu ai reusit sa intelegi can cum vine asta. NU te-am atacat personal si nici nu te-am facut puturos, din fericire eu sunt realizat atat in romania cat si in strainatete si nu am nevoie de incurajarile altora sa fiu constient de ce sunt. Cat despre construit poate ca nu stii si e normal "stiinta" vine cu experienta si este dependenta de cultura fiecaruia (iar eu unu nu pot sa te invinovatesc de vre-o una) insa oriunde ai fi voluntar sau involuntar tot aduci un aport mic (sau mare) comunitatii in care existi asa ca basmul tau cu au construit altii pentru tine este in cel mai fericit caz imatur. Hai sa-ti raspund cu acelasi to pe care l-ai folosit tu: e adevarat, am un pat moale pentru ca mi-l permit si mi-l permit pentru ca muncesc, nu am scapat de romania ci de oameni ca tine si altii ca tine de o cultura si inteligenta indoielnica caere sunt vesnic pusi pe artag.

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    3. Wow, Anonymous YOU AMAZE ME! Really.
      Out of curiosity... if you are "out there, out loud and on the "right wing" why the heck you are Anonymous? I don't get it dude, at least have the courage to print your name along with the garbage you type.

      Matt, you hit the nail on the head my friend,my hat is off to you.
      From Texas (in body) and with the Cluj in my heart with all the respect for a piece of text well done.
      An English Teacher in Dallas, Texas USA.

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    4. Hon, I stay anonymous to aoid people such as you. Knowing my name wouldn't make you smarter or more realistic. In fact you really have no chance to change, obviously. Furthermore, for an English teacher using "dude" when you write to people you don't know is pretty poor; so please don't be surprised if I believe yoi are a teacher as much as I believe you are a semi-smart gal.

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    5. Nici nu stiu daca sa scriu in engleza sau in romana...

      Vreau sa incep prin a aprecia dragostea si consideratia pe care o aveti pentru tara noastra, atat a autorului acestui articol cat si a persoanelor care au comentat, sa stiti ca in mare parte sunt de acord cu voi.

      Problema cea mare e ca eu am fost si in Canada si in SUA si mai peste tot in Europa si pot sa afirm cu mana pe inima ca in 98% din partile pe care am fost norocos sa le vizitez am intalnit oameni mai civilizati, mai educati si mai politicosi decat in Romania. Da... poate sunt falsi, dar prefer un zambet fals decat o injuratura sincera. Cred ca sunteti plecati de prea mult timp si ati uitat motivul pentru care plecati. O sa insir eu aici cateva motive:

      1) Salariul minim pe economie este de 725 RON ($170)
      2) Un medic in primii ani castiga 1500 RON ($350)
      3) Invatamantul superior in Romania e o gluma
      4) Platim taxe si impozite si totusi drumurile ne distrug masinile
      5) Sa-ti gasesti un loc de munca e o adevarate aventura
      6) Sa-ti cumperi o casa e o utopie.
      7) Sa-ti permiti vacante si concedii daca esti un om de rand (middle-class) e un lux
      8) Iti schimbi masina odata la 10 ani si atunci cumperi "ramasitele" celor din 'vest'

      Dupa ce ati citit toate aceste 'motive' va rog sa va ganditi la faptul ca pretul la mancare si cand spun mancare ma refer strict la cea din supermarket este comparabila cu cea din SUA (eu am fost doar in Maine si Florida), mai scumpa ca in Germania, Italia, Franta, Austria si Ungaria. Combustibilul, atat diesel cat si benzina este mai scumpa decat in toate tarile enumerate mai sus.

      Va intreb atunci cu maxim respect si consideratie, cum poti sa fii fericit aici daca studiezi 10 ani si castigi intr-o luna cat castiga un medic in SUA intr-un an? Cand vezi ca ai un salar de 1500 RON, iar intretinerea, incalzirea, curentul, taxele + combustibilul ca sa ajungi la munca sunt de 8 milioane si tie iti raman 700 RON ($180 / LUNA!!)

      Da, e o tara frumoasa, dar dupa cum spuneai mai sus, draga blogger, "anonymus" nu a facut nimic ca sa merite acel pat cald. Ei... nici eu nu am facut nimic rau ca sa merit un asemenea nivel de trai.

      Va salut si imi cer scuze pentru postarea kilometrica.

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    6. Sunt cetatean american, am crescut in Romania pana la 20 de ani, am plecat in America, am incercat sa traiesc acolo, salariul minim este de 1100$ in mana daca lucrezi 40-45 de ore pe saptamana, au vrut sa-mi ia 1000$ pe luna la asigurarea masinii doar pentru faptul ca nu am trait acolo si nu aveam istorie, dupa lungi cautari am gasit un agent care a reusit sa-mi faca asigurarea la 250$ pe luna la un mitsubishi eclipse din 2002, ea a costat 3500$, agentul mi-a spus ca pot fi un terorist pentru ca nu am istorie si nici tranzactii bancare, in general se practica angajarea part-time ca angajatorul sa nu plateasca beneficii, asta inseamna 500$ pe luna, ai de platit asigurarea masinii 250$, asigurarea de sanatate intre 200$ si 800$ pe luna, depinde de stat, chiria cea mai mica pe o camera este de 450$ cu tot cu utilitati si mancarea extrem de proasta care te costa injur de 600$ pe luna sa mananci cat de cat ok si sa nu fi obligat sa mananci de la mc donald cum vor ei adica de 8$ pe zi, deci salariu minim doar sa reusesti sa respiri, sa mananci si sa ai unde sa dormi te duce la 1700$ in conditiile in care faci maxim 1000-1100$, stiu foarte bine ce vorbesc, am trait un an acolo, timp in care nimeni nu a vrut sa ma angajeze din cauza obsesiei terorismului pentru ca nu ma cunosc, nu stiu nimic despre mine, nu sunt inchis la culoare, nu sunt tigan si nici negru, sunt cat se poate de alb, tatal meu traieste acolo, face 4500$ pe luna la o pizzerie la care lucreaza de 20 de ani, salariul este de 2000$ dar restul ii face din bacsis, are casa de platit de 240.000$, fara etaj, 3 camere mai mici decat un apartament din Romania, si are datorii de zeci de mii de dolari, viata este extrem de falsa si trista in SUA, te ingrasi orice ai manca, toti oamenii sunt extrem de speriati, credeti-ma ca este extrem de deprimanta viata acolo, se vinde o falsa imagine a americii, m-am intors in Romania si nici nu vreau sa ma mai gandesc la America, este un cosmar si cei ce comenteaza despre Roamnia si nu le convine nimic aici le recomand o reeducare in SUA, romanilor le place doar sa se planga nu sa gaseasca solutii.

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    7. Thanks for adding this reality check. I included some of these points in the new post, here: http://expatro.blogspot.ro/2015/10/10-more-reasons-romania-is-better-than.html

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    8. Unknown ai dreptate Asa este viata in america si asemanatoare este si in Canada . Numai diferente in Canada nu se plateste medical este free si mancare putin mai buna in rest la fel ca in america. Ai dreptate se traieste si aici de pe o zi la alta . In romania 98 % au platita locuinta in america sau canada este invers datori la banci. Acestea inseamna sluga moderna . Adevarat ceia ce ai scris . Trebuie citi mai multi oameni cinstiti sa spuna adevarul cum este.

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    9. Unknown 100% right what you are saying

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  16. Do I get it right? You are born in Romania and raised in Canada yet you speak out of your butt about Romania vs USA? Canada and US are two different animals one is considered out countryside and by fortune you ended up with some of our stores, Canada doesn't even have 80% of our buying power, Canada is a leveled society ;pretty darn close to Romania prior to '89. It is no surprise you consider Cluj silicon valley since you probably never been to silicon valley. Silicon valley is home of Google, Yahoo, CISCO and so many others what is Cluj home to ... except Mr. Vasile or Maricica? Buddy America was and still is the land of opportunity if you are smart enough and persuade your opportunities, as opposed to Romania, US is encouraging initiative there are support programs that are accessible without bribery and nepotism. I am surprised your idea of success in your so called land of opportunities -Romania- is ...oh well ... a burrito truck?? Anyhow, here's a piece of advise stop comparing apples to screws it doesn't work mostly if you never saw an apple.... Good luck in your endeavour in Romania and I wish you loads of patience to put up with officialized idiocracy and human rudeness ...all of these for borrowing a carrot from your poorer neighbor...

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    1. Great, now that you're finished with that ill-informed rant, here's some advice for you:

      1. Learn to write English well. It's worth it.
      2. Canada is not *your* anything, but it has been said that it's America's hat :)
      3. Learn everything you can about running a business in America because:
      a) You won't "make it" in America, you'll live a decent, comfortable life (at best.)
      b) When you're bored of your decent American life you'll want to come back to Romania where you'll have many an opportunity to do something good - for yourself, and for the country.

      Anyway, enjoy America for what it has to offer, but when you want to really live life, you're welcome to come back. Hope you'll have become a nicer person, too.

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    2. Bud I write better english than you can read.

      Canada it's said to be Canada if you think Canada's US hat or condom or whatever else you think of it, you are delusional my friend.

      I know about running a company in US, I run one yet this is not your concern. :)

      Oh! I am beyond bored with my life in US, but I don't yet consider returning at least not until you get to start the burrito business. :)))
      BTW will you consider yourself a foreign investor? Why selling burrito's and why not hot dogs?

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    3. to the Anonymous with "Do I get it right?" ..related to the Silicon Valley

      Bro - if you can't get the meaning, then, at least do not express your wisdom. .

      It was not a direct comparison with Silicon Valley, It sounds like 'the Silicon Valley of Romania' - a scaled down comparison, which is very usual in conversation all over the world.I think 99% of the readers here got the point -but hey, you are probably a 'typical american' and that explain a lot (often they feed they own fears with the sentiment of superiority). By the way - America is made from Italians, Germans, Romanians, Russians, there are no 'native americans' people except Navajo, Comanche, Apache, etc. To be clear, all nations contributed to the technical advancement of US, many of them having east-european, asian, african roots - they all makes Apple, Microsoft, Google, to be what they are now.

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  17. And let's not forget that the Internet in Romania is the third fastest Internet in the world.

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    1. Unde ba al al meu e muci? Tu când mergi cu 20 de km pe ora mergi repede?

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    2. This blog is another way to show others how to hate USA...i can't believe Matt is Born in Romania and raised in Canada but have the audacity to trash talk USA....unbelievable.

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  18. My wife and I were married in Cluj seven years ago while I was working there (originally from San Jose, CA). We recently purchased an apartment in Cluj and will be moving back indefinitely in less than a month from now. We can't wait to become part of the community again and help to contribute to the growth of such an awesome city. Thanks for your point of view Matt, it's true that in many places, it takes the eyes of an outsider to truly appreciate a city.

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    1. Ain't that the truth.
      Great to hear you've got a home here, hope to see you around.

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    2. PS: Not a coffee drinker, but just saw your page, great initiative!

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  19. I am an american building a house with my wife in Alba Iulia. Why Romania? For all of the above reasons and.. Insane internet speeds $10 a month. Black Sea? One of those few places on the planet where we can go from the cool mountains to the hot beach in a few hours. Keep up the chatter.. hmm.. word gets out and it could get crowded.

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    1. Sucker! Alba Iulia is not at sea shore, as for Internet in alba Iulia do let us know if you get 20 kbps download :))))

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    2. Another Anonymous full of proud of stupidity - we have a word for that - "if the stupid is not proud also, then he's not stupid enough". Who's telling you Alba Iulia is at seashore Anonymous, or how you deduced he say that ?. He's already there and he's already connected ..no one need your poorly joke with 20kb/s.

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  20. Give me a break Matt. I wouldn't even move to Canada, let alone Romania. I have no intention on moving to one of the poorest countries in the world.

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    1. One of the poorest countries of the world ?

      Wow - that's another one - tell me Robert Smith that you are US american then we can give you the benefit of the 'typical american dude'.

      For sure many US citizens are educated and with the sense of reality but the bad part is that some very vocal and 'superior' guys (all over internet), struggle to maintain the image of the 'typical ignorant american'. This is a brand which most american people does not deserve for sure but people like R.S. just help the unhappy number to grow.

      I am back in Romania - just because this poorest country give me a lot of joy in many fields. I do programming for web applications - I can live well in US (part of my family is in NY, part in Canada from 1920). I live now in Bistrita, a city with less than 80.000 inhabitants, were the highest building is a church from 1600. I have here all ingredients of personal happiness - less financial benefits, true - but educated peoples around me, full of joy (this is probably the most important point), a rich cultural activity, healthy food, beautiful scenery - not to mention the high internet speed + the very cheap cost for calls in US / Canada / Hong Kong, both being crucial for my job. Probably none of these mean something for you therefore is better for you to stay where you are...

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  21. I will be moving to Romania in 2 months and will be bringing my 2 dogs with me. Will I have problems with the stray dogs around the city trying to attack mine?

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    1. the stray dogs are weak, unfed and poor minded beasts
      they only attack if they get in huge packs and they starve to death
      most packs have only 5-10 skinny dogs

      to make sure you will never be attacked carry a bag of the cheapest kind of food (not dog food, any kind of food, even chips) and trow them on the ground (not all at once) if the dogs seem aggressive

      I live for years next to some of the biggest packs, once they know you and you give them some food they are your best friends


      the sad truth is that even the kindest of animals can be broken by abuse and turned into beasts by mean humans

      but those are extremely rare cases, and you usually spot an aggressive dog a mile away

      most stray dogs (99.99%) are pathetic creatures scavenging for food in garbage not paying attention to anyone



      if you have dogs, make sure to keep them on the leash not because they may get attacked but because they may get mounted

      if your dogs are medium or big you will never fear a stray dog in Romania

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  22. Sure romania has some benefits but i have to come here every year waste my summer here and i HATE it here. Sure iget to visit relatives But for what i spend everyday bored. Yea im an american but i have no problem with getting excercise and eating healthy and the only reason a lot of people are smart here because there arnet many good jobs by that i mean pay you enough to like live well on abd be able to raise theor familys on so people cram as much knowledge in their head as possible so when they grow up they can support themselves and their family

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    1. ....it's pretty obvious that in America cramming knowledge into your head is not very important. I mean, like, why even know stuff, right?

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  23. Well,I'm aware this is an old article and my reply is kind of late and out of place but..I felt like I needed to thank you for all the nice words you've written here about our country. Is not often when you see foreigners or Romanians which grew up abroad or used to live abroad say such kind words so I'm really grateful. I hope you accommodated well here and eventually maybe you'll start making blog entries again. Cheers!
    PS: excuse my not so perfect English please :D

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    1. Your English is much better than many of our members of the US congress, most US citizens in Baltimore MD (where I loath to admit that I reside) and hardly anyone in East LA understand no less speak English since it's full of Mexicans and federal government workers. Ole!

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    2. BTW: how is life for a 60 y.o. Caucasian retiree? Can I live a nicely with a fixed income between $1300 to $2,000 US Dollars a year? Can I afford to buy a used by nice 4x4? Rent of buy a small house not in a city by nearby? Would I find an attractive woman in their upper 20s to late 30s for a wife that won't suck my money dry or rob me blind, or steal my kidneys (still working well) while I slumber under her soft tender gaze?

      Delete
  24. ''Born in Romania and grew up in Canada'' So how are you able to comment about America since you have no connection with that country?? Do you mean ''North America'' like USA, Canada, and Mexico? Romania is better then Mexico I will give you that much. Canada is not really all that much like USA so living in Canada does not give you credentials to compare USA ('"America'') with Romania. I have lived a little bit in Canada and more then half my life in the USA and just under half in Romania. Romania's greatest gift to me is that it has made a huge American patriot. I have a new appreciation of America that I think I never would have got had I not had this experience. Romania is an awful place. It has no infastructure. You generally pay more for less.. You learn to lower your standards greatly..stand in bread lines to do anything.. bag your own groceries while people behind you push at you. For sure, there are some great Romanians. Wonderful people. However I would say more then 90% are really horrible rotten people. Most (again not all) Romanians are only friendly when they need something. Money is almost always the main idea driving anything they are doing. Romanians do not (again speaking in general terms) value things like kindness and etiquette and personal space which is what is roughest about the country. People chain smoke -- over you -- and even worse, their own children..all the time, everywhere you go. If you learn Romanian you discover everyone always has some kind of sarcatic remark to make about everything.
    The country is befuddled in corruption and Romanians will take to task any outsider that comments about it. That makes them very different then other peoples from developing countries. Bulgarians, Moldovans, Serbians, etc. are very welcoming to foreigners, new thoughts, etc. while Romanians are very hostile too it. Romania is not a very good place for a sane American because you will have a hard time leaving the country the same way you came.
    Things might not be perfect in America but consider yourself damned lucky if you have the opportunity that country brings you versus the one Romania brings it people. People should also be aware that there is a very antisemitic tone to most Romanians that you will not find outside of Muslim countries. People of good will regardless of religion or ethniticity will find themselves in an uncomfortable position dealing with antisemitic comments. To me this is the classic Romanian -- smoking, somewhat hostile, aggravated, hurried, impolite,
    antisemitic/hate filled, arrogant and very close minded...and very happy about all of that. I have often thought to do a You Tube video just to show everyday life in Romania and translate conversations with people. All of that being said.. Romania doesn't really have any violent crime to speak of which is it's strongest asset. They might say the food -- however they are comparing McDonalds to a a home cooked meal not an American home cooked meal to a Romanian one and please note the food is not ''bio''..chickens drink from flowing sewage on country roads and then the ''bio '' chicken is served at a local restaurant and you won't wonder why the pharmacy has so many products for food poisoning.
    Sorry I can't say very much good about Romania.. There are some fantastic people there..most of them are the ones who are leaving.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I have wanted to retire there; read so much goody-goody reviews and how "friendly" the folks are and how cheap things cost ... I nearly took the bait. I truly appreciate your comments not knowing if you are a cynic or a man that got screwed by them or telling it like it is. With that said, I now hold two options left : New Brunswick Canada or Medellin Colombia.

      Delete
    2. Some counterpoints to the Anonymous rant:

      - Romania has no cross country highways and that sucks, but they will be there someday.
      Speaking of horrible infrastructure though, American ISPs charge exorbitant rates for sub-standard internet connections (not to mention the data caps) while Romania's got some of the fastest broadband connections in the world. Hope America takes this basic step into the 21st century soon, but unlikely given government corruption and the meddling communications lobby that wants to maintain the status quo.

      - Stand in bread lines? Why bring pre '89 Romania into this? As for bagging your own groceries? That is indeed a travesty I have learned to live with. It was really, really hard for about 5 seconds while I just stood there watching my groceries not getting bagged, but I'm fine now.

      - "90% are horrible rotten people" - What a bullshit comment.

      - Sarcastic remarks just mean people are actually weighing the good with the bad, they don't take everything at face value just because the TV or the president said so. Sarcasm is also a sign of intellect -an element sorely lacking in modern America.

      - The smoking sucks, but that too will be taken care of. The law will eventually pass...otherwise, there's always Non-Smoking Romania.com and non-smoking establishments.

      - Romanians are the opposite of unfriendly to foreigners. But you do have a point about the acceptance of new ideas...Maybe it's to do with that ultra-progressive ideology that ran the country to the ground for about 50 years.

      - Nice one; the ever-smoking, hostile, anti-semitic Romanian. Generalizations like that are fun to make, but it's a bullshit comment, again.

      - There are fantastic people in Romania, it's true. But you're wrong again, even on this point; they're not all leaving.

      Delete
    3. First off "anonymous" evidently has a complex fueled delusion of grandeur and is ignoring the light speed decline of the US caused by our liberal government kneeling before any minority group that wants to be labeled "special" (ie: blacks, muslims, gays, transgender).
      In america today you are considered "courageous" if you are a man that grows boobs puts on a dress and whines on Oprah (bruce jenner).
      The fact is the US infrastructure is in a state of decline while the emerging countries in eastern europe are improving.
      The US has also fallen behind in science engineering commerce all fields we once led not to mention the rampant obesity drug abuse and violent crime.
      The marxist utopia the liberals are trying to create has made a "free exchange" of ideas all but impossible the mantra of the new US regime is "speak and think our way or be ostracized and live in exile as a social outcast"
      I am actually part of a growing movement of US citizens leaving this country to destinations that still practice a little common sense for the common good. Sovereign nations should have some degree of nationalism and I respect that about Romania.
      I am planning my retirement to Brasov as soon as practical. I fully understand it will not be perfect and I will have to make small sacrifices, however it seems worth it to retire in peace where you aren't constantly confronted by malcontents that only care about their narrow agendas not to mention the thought police that are out to make sure you don't god forbid offend ANYONE no matter how bad their behavior heaven forbid any individual that is black, muslim, jewish, gay, transgender, fat, etc. get their poor little feelings hurt.
      For the purpose of full disclosure I am: 47 years old, white, christian, hold a advanced degree in sociology from a major university, served 22 years in the US Army and retired a major.
      I look forward to doing my best at assimilating into Romanian society unlike in the US where every minority group expects the government and society itself to make special accomadations and exceptions for them.

      Delete
    4. Thank you anonymous....USA is by far one of the best country in the world. As you can see, many of these Romanians are obviously not thankful for the opportunity they had or have in America because they are not Americans. They only love to complain about America but im sure they liked some of the opportunities they got here. I am actually glad many of these Romanians are going back to their Country Romania. God Bless USA and those who appreciate it.

      Delete
    5. Im glad those who do not appreciate USA should definitely leave USA. If you don't like USA, get out! Some will be grateful to enter this country. Oh yeah! USA and Canada are totally different countries.

      Delete
    6. If you are not truly Americans please do not comment about my Country USA. obviuosly some of you hate America, and only sees negative things, but like the opportunity America gives to some of you.

      Delete
    7. Matt is definitely USA hater...

      Delete
    8. Romania the greatest? Why are so Romanians laving your country......i just noticed also how ungrateful Romanians are.....Canada took you in to give opportunities to have a job to have a better living than Romania....USA took you in to give you opportunities to have a job or better living.....wow but all i hear is how negative USA is......it is funny but most of you live in Canada.......USA and Canada are totally different from each other.

      Delete
    9. By the way Unknown American, goodluck living in Romania.....i'm sure you won't come back to USA.....because i Hear Romania is the greatest?

      Delete
    10. Oh, get over it. Why leave 6 petty comments without addressing a single point that was made? Didn't you know that your outrage sustains me?

      Delete
    11. Never said Romania was the greatest tess, I admitted I will even have to make some sacrifices, but at least won't have to put up with obama, syrian refugees, or black lives matter
      The US is turning into a cesspool, that is coming from someone that served 22 years as an officer in the US Army and deployed 4 times

      Delete
  25. Many Romanians like me want to move out of Romania while you want to go there...

    ReplyDelete
  26. Matt, I like your wit and sense of adventure... will come back with more discussions if the site is still active. Cheers!

    ReplyDelete
  27. Well here is my take on life in romania..i was born there and left in 1987 to go live in usa. It all comes down to what to want to achieve in life who you are and what you do in life. Here in the states you need to complete a college in order to live well or work harder without a degree. Today dec of 2015 if you make 4000$ cash you can have a very decent life. I went to visit romania at least 25 times for the past 27 years and i like it as a visitor. In my opinion all countries are nice to visit i have seen 6 continents and over 100 countries within my life time ..and as i said it is one thing to visit a country or a city and something totally different to live in that country or city ! If i was to compare any of the countries to usa my thoughts are as follows: usa is the only country in the world where one can make great money in s quick and short time either as a professional or a hard worker job bartender etc..yes you can make 4k $ per month..in romania the most you can make is $1k per month and that is if you are a professional or know someone important.. within usa it all depends in which cities you actually live as they all differ and life is very different on many levels..for instance chicago and new york are best for europeans , vegas is universal and california is mostly for white people where lousiana is mostly for colored people. Life in romania is only enjoyable if you owe your own business and make at least 5k euros per month ..public hospitals are terrible qualiry food can be expensive and people are dishonest especially if they sense that you come from a foreign country. The positive things about romania are most people have an education people are more social and friendlier. Never tell anyone there that you are rich or have a large amount of money !

    ReplyDelete
  28. I came to the United States from Romania when I was 22. That was 13 years ago. The reasons I emigrated? I was starving. Half of each month passed on an empty stomach. The longest I had not eaten any food was 4 days. I could not even pay my college tuition of 200 Euros a year. I gave up college. I lived without electricity for two years in a small town of 9000 people, and no one gave a damn. People just knew how to gossip. My electricity bill was $100. No one would hire me, and even if I had been hired the salary would have been $200 a month.

    I would like to be very brief:

    For an American living in Romania from savings or an inheritance, or working at a Multinational American Corporation for the same salary as in the US, life can be really easy, financially. In today's world, the financial means influence greatly the standard of living on any country on earth. If you have a family and live on $300 a month, and you have to work for that $300 a full time job, than regardless of where you are, the quality of life sucks because the small earnings will trigger negative elements in your life. You can barely afford to buy shoes for your kids. A pair of quality shoes can be $50 dollars. Do you want to experiment? Go live with a family who earns very little for a few months, and you will see their life struggles. In Romania, providing food and heat to your family can be a life struggle.

    Indeed, if you move to Romania from the West you go back to the past. No doubt about that. It is a highly corrupted country with corruption infiltrated at all societal levels. The quality of education sucks. Cheating in school is an accepted phenomenon. People are given diplomas without deserving it.

    Romanians are very poor. Services are precarious. Customer service does not exist. You call at a city hall and you hear a voice eating "da". Healthcare sucks. You have to bring medicine from home. Romanians are extremely judgmental, gossipers, superficial, envious, egoistic, boastful, show off-ers, and dishonest. They are cowards because politicians build houses from public money and the public does not care. Romanians are very unorganized public ally. They build churches instead of building schools. They pay $500 million Euro for a church while thousands of kids give up school. 5 Million people have left Romania for better opportunities abroad. The country is semi-illiterate. In 25 years, Romanians have not even been capable of resolving the problem of the stray dogs. I think comparing the quality of life of Romanians and Americans is pointless. The winner is obvious. Way obvious.

    Of course, Romanian have certain values that lack in the US. They tend to work less hours, they are not so commercial, commercialism in US is well spread with people buying things they do not need, they know how to socialize more, etc.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think you make very valid points. My husband is born and raised there and moved to marry me 11 years ago. He was 112 lbs and 5'8" when he got here. He's now 150 lbs. The people are more hospitable and friendlier, but the cost of living to income ratio is rough for many. My in-laws depend on money from their children to afford some basic needs at times. I gave birth to one of my children there in a public hospital and that was the worst abuse I ever suffered in my life. My husband was in between jobs, so we were living with his parents... not doing that again.

      For the record, I love Romania and enjoyed the couple times I vacationed there/lived there for a couple months, but I don't think it is a good place to live permanently. It would be a fine place to retire if you have a good retirement savings. They have good private medical care and many things are a lot cheaper there since they make a lot less money there.

      Delete
  29. Hi there,

    I've been trying to find any advice on this all over the Web and decided to post the question here.

    I'm planning to relocate to Cluj-Napoca in March 2016. My partner is getting relocated there to work at some IT company. I decided I'd try this country too.
    Yet, I got no job as of now. By profession, I'm an English teacher with 10+ years of experience teaching in various corners of the world.
    I'm a non-native speaker - is there any demand for that kind of service in Romania?
    My job experience
    - working for various teaching organizations in Greece, Portugal, Serbia and Macedonia
    - working for a language franchise Speak Up (http://www.speak-up.com/) - 5 years
    - teaching English at public universities in Germany (Bremen) and Sweden

    Can anybody suggest any names of good language schools in Romania? (particularly Cluj-Napoca)
    What is the average wage that a non-native teacher can get in Romania?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. TS, translate tris. Scoala particulara este Waldorf, exista in mai multe cartiere din Cj.Ca sa predai limba engleza sau orice alta limba in scoala ,trebuia sa ai echivalarea diplomelor si studiilor ,dar poti sa incerci la scoli sau gradinite particulare.Nu te astepta la salariu mare, dar e o sansa sa accumulezi cunostinte noi si sa experimentezi sistemul educational din Romania. Chiria este mare la Cluj,sper ca sotul tau are salariu mare altfel nu stiu daca o sa acomodati .Daca asteptarile tale nu sunt mari si nu compari fiecare traire sau conditie de trai cu cea ce ai avut acolo in Canada, o sa fiti ok. Multa bafta!

      Delete
  30. Hi, I'm Romanian living in the States since '77 (16 yo at the time), born in Nasaud. Found out my mama's alive and paid her a visit after 40 years. My Brooklyn born wife loves Romania, and I ditto that. It's so much safer and cheaper there. Almost center Bucharest apartment with everything that you can think of included, for 400 Euros per month - amazing. My aunt was born and lived in Cluj all her life. Still a beautiful country after 40 years away. Numai bine si multa sanatate la toti!! Ghita si Cathy

    ReplyDelete
  31. Majority of romanians are rasist ,i have romanian citinship by birth and moldavian by birth and always i was considered inferior and it was hard for me to find a job.In SUA i was as a student ,and i was accpeted better than in Romania,even i was foreigner,i spend my money from SUA.So big difference!

    ReplyDelete
  32. I'd have to say there some really ignorant posts here. First off yes Canada is America just as Brazil and Columbia are. America is a continent not a country.

    Matt, I've been looking into Romania for a while now. Reading up on Cluj and it's a place I'm seriously considering. I'm also a Canadian citizen living in the USA. I also hold a British passport from birth which should make it easier to move to Romania.

    I've been checking out some of the meetup groups ther in Cluj for tech fields. I'd have to say there are some really cool things happening there. I do mobile game dev and found a few large meet ups there in the subject. Pretty cool!

    ReplyDelete
  33. Dude, I was born here in Romania, lived 30 years at home in Chicago, residing in Romania for about 18 mos. My $$$ can buy everything I need......well I can not wait to go back home to Chicago.. article is dated and untrue, ...for others America is what we call USA at home, Canada is Continental America, some comments "you are not white" ...are not american ways of thinking and about manners in Romania paleeez brother.....

    ReplyDelete
  34. ..some articles about Romanians are true but a real American would and should not pass judgments about another nation even that nation is my Mom's and Dad's. It is a shame...
    Romanians are Romanians and like in any nation there are good and bad ones so they are here or at home in America. It is true as my German uncle says: Romania is an ungovernable country and let's start from there. Cenzorii acestui site ar trebui sa fie mai putin permisivi cu unele opinii. I know it is a free country and you have rights, to shut the f....ront door is a right, ain't it!?

    ReplyDelete
  35. All right...I scrolled through the majority of the replies to your article and could not help myself from leaving a comment. I am unsure who or what you are trying to defend. Everybody knows that Romanians will do anything for money no matter where they are. I am happy for you that you have finally found your place in the world. Unfortunately, it can't be the same place for every one. I am also glad that you are content in your country as well as I am content in mine. It is such a pity that a lot of Romanians could not make it abroad and had to go back to their homeland. I am sure wherever they decide to go to they will be doing very well financially. Money talks bullshit walks. So, cut the crap.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Blah blah blah blah - just another "nice" anonymous opinion

      Delete
  36. Why is a Romanian in Canada writing about how bad the United States of America is?

    We have 330M+ people compared to your 20M so we're going to be FAR more diverse in all facets. The USA is the third most populated country in the world with 80% of its people living in the cities or suburbs. A lot of people do walk places BTW, but we do use our "horrible" cars to get around too.

    Romania is 90% Romanian by race and 80%+ are of the same religion. So most people come from similar ethnic backgrounds and religious backgrounds.

    If you really want to look at our "ethnic" diversity the USA is approximately:
    64% White
    16% Hispanic
    13% Black
    5% Asian
    etc

    It's a MUCH bigger social issue managing 15 times the number of people, who are also more ethnically diverse.

    We also use our "horrible, nasty, pollution producing vehicles to be more productive (and more efficient despite your comment).

    Our GDP is 18 Trillion, while Romania is 180 Billion.

    Our "poor" people are normal too. We may advertise some Walmart weirdo's for a laugh, but they're not all poor people. Normal people shop at Walmart too. People of Walmart wasn't created in Europe, because Walmart wasn't created in Europe. Walmart's total annual revenue is 482 Billion dollars. More than twice Romania's entire GDP.

    America (believe it or not) has hundreds of thousands of civic and community programs. But since you live in Canada, and come from Romania, you've probably never done a real comparison of any of your data (which BTW is not backed by any facts. It's all your narrow minded and uneducated opinion).

    Homicide rates are only high in densely populated, low income areas. More people = More violent crime. There are 91 countries with a higher homicide rate than the USA. Romania has a lower murder rate, but most of America is safe.

    The classy women and chivalrous men thing is so objective it's ridiculous to even mention them as reasons.

    As far as being "culturally diverse" it's not a good comparison. Eastern Europe has had thousands of years to build up it's society and culture (not all of which was beautiful and rosy BTW). America has only been around for 240 or so and that entire time we've been comprised of cultures from all over the world. I would ask that you explore the United States before you judge. From the Hispanic influences in the southwest, the French culture in Louisiana, The European influence all across the Midwest and North East, and the Island flavor in FL, we have plenty of culture to offer. We also have a unique brand of American culture.

    I don't know what prompted you to compare the two countries.

    They can't be looked at in an "apples to apples" style approach.

    Population: Vastly Different
    Diversity: Vastly Different
    Land Mass: Vastly Different
    World View: Vastly Different
    GDP: Vastly Different
    Time as a country: Vastly Different
    Etc...

    Do your research and state facts to back up your opinions. This BLOG is only helpful if people are receiving factual and correct information.

    Your opinions here are neither of these things.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Justin, it looks like you took things to heart.

      This blog is 90% opinions. A pretty subjective set of opinions at that. It's based on *my* experiences in America (Canada is also America) and in Romania. The anecdotes I use are selective at times, but that's my prerogative as the blog's owner.

      Delete
  37. I had to read until the last comment as I could not believe how a lot of people commenting here have such a strong opinion about everything. People that never travel to America (the continent) and people that have not visited Romania even for a day. Wow! And so many people stereotyping. Come on, you must know somewhere deep inside of you that we are all unique and we all view the world based on the circumstances we faced in our life. Myself, I am born in Romania - I am Balkanic mix... Half Greek, quarter Ukrainian and quarter Romanian (just in case somebody feels like categorizing me anywhere - as most of people here seem to love this) I live in Canada... I have been both happy and sad living in Romania and just as well in Canada - they both have pluses and minuses. At the end of the day you try to make the best of it, or chose to make it better elsewhere. I love Romania and I do love Canada - but I guess I am a realist - you take some, you lose some - there is no perfect place... and if there is - trust me, it is built on somebody's else misery... Just take it easy people - at the end of the day (to be read, life...) don't ask yourself who you are (American, English, Romanian, Gipsy or from the beautiful country of Tuvalu) - but ask yourself what have you done to make this world a better place... and stop stereotyping... please!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Well said, Eleni. I think stereotyping can't be helped, to some degree, but either way, it's always best to form opinions based on your own experiences...the more the better.

      Delete
  38. Wow! That is new, but some time you have to accept the harsh truth. US is not a land of opportunities anymore. Starting business will deprive you from your healthy sleep, comfort, and normal life. Fast pace life in US is a big problem and Roman is calm and free.

    ReplyDelete
  39. I just arrived in Romania and hope this time to stay permanently. I'm American by birth, lived 20+ years in UK, half a year in Transylvania, most recently resident of North African country, retired with small savings and modest pension. Moved around a lot in my life, lived in many countries, can honestly say I will never return to the United States to live. The country I grew up in is dead, shrivelled, poisoned by the pc mentality, past and present government corruption and chemicalized mind control, while Trump is a caricature who will only serve to kick off WW3. I'm a Mensa member so no dummy, and totally agree with each point of this article. Well done, Matt! To those who want to give Romania a try, don't be discouraged by negative posts on here. It's not about the money!

    ReplyDelete

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The Cluj Guide to Dining Out

Note: This is a 2016 update to the post originally written in 2012. 

Back in 2012, Toulouse was the only place in town to serve a halfway decent hamburger. How things have changed. There's been a veritable burger revolution and you'll be hard pressed to find bistro-style restaurants that don't offer the king of sandwiches. There are also several new, and very good, additions to the city's fine dining roster. But maybe the most positive change is in the market itself. Patrons have become more discerning about their options, there is a deeper appreciation for consistency, and, as a result, restaurants have responded with an elevated level of service and quality overall.
But there's still no authentic Mexican...


So, with no particular order in mind, let's get into it, shall we?

Via- The simple name denotes understated excellence. At least that's how I look at it now. Over the past couple of years, Via has cemented itself as one of my favourite Cluj …

Rosia Montana - An Informed Reply

It's always a pleasure to see a new email message from somebody who's been reading this blog. In this case, the message came in from a reader who first contacted me last year. He moved to Canada quite a while ago and settled in the Northwest Territories. He wanted to respond to the previous post on Rosia Montana, but given the length of the reply, I've asked him to allow me to publish it as its own post. He asked me not to share his name, but outside of that, I'm copying it verbatim.

(Edit: In Romana mai jos)

Hello Matt,

Here we go again: Rosia Montana. I got involved in this project about four years ago. I had had phone interviews with radio stations in Bucharest; I published several articles in two or three magazines in Bucharest. I hosted, guided and loaded up with data and portable computer equipment one “Romanian explorer” as the Romanian media called her: Uca Marinescu. Perhaps the name rings a bell. Anyhow she never got back to me; there was no feedback, no follo…