Last night as evening was approaching the other volunteer who was staying in the TDY apartment with me suggested we go on a walk because we were getting kind of restless after sitting around for most of the rainy day. The sun had started to come out and it looked like it was going to be a nice evening. We grabbed a little bit of cash and walked out the door... No camera in hand (sometimes it is nice just to take a walk without anything to take it all in). Of course the light was beautiful and I found myself wanting to take tons of pictures, but you know, such is life. Anyways, we decided to go down a random cobbled street to see where it would take us. We saw a very modern and contemporary looking house that was totally out of place in Moldova because usually they all pretty much look the same, depending on the size. Then we walked though a block of apartments and there were so many people outside. We saw tons of children riding their bikes and playing n the playground, women sitting on the benches probably gossiping about the latest story, and men playing cards. Mold ova tends to have a pretty bad rap for being sad and depressed, but on the inside of this apartment block life was just happening and people seemed really happy.
Eventually we made our way out of the apartments and to a busy street. We saw a restaurant called "la Roma" that had a beautiful outdoor seating patio so we decided to grab a glass of wine because we were low on cash and we figured the food would be really expensive. Much to our surprise the food was actually reasonably priced (it was possible to get some pasta dishes for 25 lei, or about $2), but there were also some expensive meals (200 lei or about $15) and very expensive wine (a bottle from 1964 was 1800 lei, about $160). What was really funny about this restaurant was that they were playing Edith Piaf's music.... French music in an italian restaurant. But then the music stopped and a man with a saxophone took a seat in the center of the patio and began to play music. The other volunteer and I kept saying over and over that it just didn't feel like we were in Moldova- and it didn't. We will definitely be back there. Sometimes it's necessary to escape "real life" in the sense that you're back in the "reality" of life back in America.