A story about Cluj!
It is a little bit longer, but please be patient up to the end. It is for YOU, and YOU and YOU…
Before starting to tell you about my visit in Cluj and what I have gained from this visit, I want to tell you that I don’t try to pose in a some kind of a too much talented writer. It’s not my main job and I don’t even want it to be. My main job is, according to my favourite saying, to be a ‘holiday merchant’.
I do not claim to be a travelling industry expert, I just try to enjoy doing my job in my own ‘shop’.
It was on a Friday evening, after I closed my ‘shop’, when I hopped into my car and went toward Cluj Napoca. It was such a joy and satisfaction, up until the half of the way, when a sort of impatience came over me, but this is another story.
Finally, I arived into Cluj Napoca after a whole night of driving, with my eyes blocked on the staring position.
After I had the scheduled business meetings, I decided to take this opportunity to visit also the old part of the city.
From this point after, the story begins: I heard that the old city of Cluj Napoca is very nice, but I was wondering what could be so spectacular? Well, yes, it is!
When I saw the old city, my tiredness was gone! I walked through all those tiny, paved streets and I felt like travelling back in time. But in the same time I felt sorrow for not seeing as many tourists as I expected.
And I was thinking: why?!
There is a Matia Corvin, born in Cluj Napoca, the last Royal figure of the Medieval Hungary. I want to make a specification: it’s not Matei Corvin (as many are naming him) but Matia Corvin. He was given this name of Matia as a credit to the day when he was born, 24th of February 1443, date when, according to the Roman calendar, was celebrated the Matia Apostle. He ruled over his kingdom for over 32 years and the story can go on, but I put it on short.
There is a Anna Bathory, well-known for her cruelty, a relative of the bloody Elisabeth Bathory. Anna Bathory, known in the history as the vampire woman, the woman which was taking the bath in the virgins blood, likewise her cousin Elisabeth, was obsessed of the black magic and also was accused of incest. The legend says that she was the mistress of her brother.
There is a Lucian Blaga, eternal love-poet, who married Cornelia in Cluj and besides, he had a muse in Cluj, Preoteasa on her name (a very beautiful and intelligent woman, who became one of the most beloved ones of Blaga).
The culture and art are at home in Cluj!
I was walking on the street and I saw people entertaining by reading books. Wow… here the books still have a life!
In Cluj you can find shops everywhere, nice open restaurants and lots of entertaining events. I also happened into a Street Food Fest and, of course, I tasted everything: ‘Papricaș’, ‘Varza a-la-Cluj’, ‘Gomboț’ and many other traditional food specialities.
The people of Cluj are very warm and kind, I only saw a single Transylvanian native which behaved in a different way (more Balkan 🙂 ), but after all they are very nice people.
What else you can do in Cluj? Well, you can visit the Unirii Square with its baroque buildings, the Museum Square with the little streets that I was talking about; you can take a look at the National Theatre in Cluj, there is the Banffy Palace (currently the Art Museum), there are lots of Pubs if you’re fond of entertainment.
Cutting short, there’s everything in Cluj.
I left for the last, but not least, a place that impressed me much, Insomnia Cafe which is not just a simple coffee house: when I walked inside I felt like I transposed into another time; there was a flavor of the times long gone. It was like I was waiting a classical writer to take a sit to my table, maybe a dramatist like Tolstoy or a novelist like Victor Hugo. I wasn’t wrong: inside this place a lot of cultural events are regularly organised.
It was the moment when I understood what is so special in Cluj Napoca: the bohemian flavor and the people who remained devoted to the good quality culture. One once said about this city that you can name it the ‘City of lost and found hearts’. He was right!
You come poor and leave rich!