Monday, January 01, 2007

Open Spaces - Trust and Get Out of the Car

We find lovely remote spots everywhere. Leave the car and take a hike. Ours was fine and right where we left it, when we got back. We had seen people around when we headed off, but either we'd be ok or not, so no sense fussing. Just go.

This is on the way over the Carpathian Mountains, at the Transfagarasan Pass in Romania. There was supposed to be a fine waterfall just beyond, but this was fall and not spring, and we never did find it. Great little hike anyway.

Toilet variations. There will also be a toilet, or not, when you need one. You soon learn to navigate the "Turkish toilets," as they are called both here and in Greece, fully functioning and sensible, but you put your feet on the markers, and squat or aim over the hole between. No problem. Do carry some TP. Facing the door is best. They also flush, as you would expect. But, at the port-a-type, don't get your hopes up. Like here.

Pogonotrophy: Beard-Growing

You are in a different county, and suddenly start noticing that there are more of some things here, or fewer of some things.

Beards, for example. And the reasons for growing them - religious, other cultural, young people, old people. Look up the words for it. Pogonotomy is beard-cutting. Pogonotrophy is beard-cultivation. Tap the "surprise me" tab at this site:

Some religious traditions call for the beard, as here - a priest in the Orthodox Christian faith, in Romania. He was hitch-hiking and we invited him to join us in our car for the drive from Bistrita to Castel Dracula. See Romania Road Ways. He is married, grew up in the area, and spoke enough English that we could converse, and not just grunt about and nod vigorously, while not really sure what is being said.

Wonderful. For more of interest to the quirky, look up "weird words" and "turns of phrase" in the Worldwide Word site's left side index. If you once thought yourself reasonably educated, give yourself a vocabulary test at these sites and weep. For more of what most of us do not know, see the Colorado lexicon at Again, if the long address form does not work, just go to the home page and try from there - go to, for example.

Quick. The definition of inspissations. See the CMU lexicon at