This might sound crazy, but I’m in Romania right now. It’s the longest that I’ve ever left Tara and the kids. It hurts and I’ve only been gone for less than half of the time.
I’m here working on my Masters Degree. My degree has nothing to do with the Romanian language. I suppose that I could have done a lot of Summer school and gotten the credits in Tempe. But, for some reason this didn’t feel right.
So how do I reconcile leaving? Good question. In fact, I hadn’t even reconciled leaving as I kissed Tara goodbye at the airport. I left without conviction, just a little hope and a hunch. But amazing things happen with distance.
I had to find purpose to justify my absence and the expense of doing this.
Prior to leaving one of my professors told me about a Catholic Priest named Vladimir Ghika. He lived as a Saint and died in a political prison due to his unyielding faith and a system (communism), that hates God.
I was in a hurry to meet with different intellectuals, historians, and know-it’s in Romania when I got here. There were answers I wanted about Ghika... Facts about his life. I’m working on writing one of the first things ever about him in English (it’s mostly in French, Romanian, and Italian to this end).
But somewhere in looking for one answer, I started to find others. I discovered a class of people in Romania, the intellectual class. As a group, they lean harder to the right than most conservatives I know. Their conservatism isn’t mixed with political pressures and certainly isn’t tied to a particular candidate. It’s tied to love of the light and knowledge of the dark. In English, love of freedom and hatred of oppression... socialist, communist, or oppression by any other name.
I’ve had the honor to sit with former political prisoners, leaders of Romanian culture in it’s pre-communist form.
I hope you enjoy my questions and answers... I apologize in advance for any lack of quality in the videos I’m making (especially the audio!). It certainly would be a different situation if I had some of my talented friends with me. Maybe someday soon.
More to come...
PS. Special thanks to Marcel, the IT guy at Jilava. He is my interpreter and tour guide through the prison.