Bogi is now into the Japanese cartoons that come in after 8.30pm. These are bizarrely fascinating. Her favourite is “Yu-Gi-Oh”, who is this big-eyed spiky-haired kid of indeterminate age (frankly all Japanese cartoon characters are big-eyed spiky-haired kids of indeterminate age) who, every episode, plays top trumps with someone. Yes, that’s right, the cartoon depicts a game of what is essentially top trumps. Strangely, it’s absorbing watching two exaggerated animated characters playing a game of top trumps, even when you can't understand the dialogue (something which I'm sure doesn't detract from the experience) – sadly it’s top trumps monsters rather than test cricketers or something genuinely interesting, but still. [Good god. I've just googled "Yu-Gi-Oh". It's frigging terrifying. Makes Dungeons and Dragons look like a pleasant hobby for the well-adjusted kid about the school yard]
Going for a Halliburton
I have been discovering more about Gigi Becali, the president of Steaua Bucharest, who I suggested looked like a gangster. Well, his money apparently came legally. In as much as he has basically made it by buying things and selling them to the army, or somehow otherwise getting cash from the Romanian army. So, basically, not a gangster but a legitimate businessman – like a Balkan Dick Cheney.
The first Easter of the year
We’re off on a tour of Saxon Transylvania for the next few days on an Easter break. It’s actually not the national Easter, but what is known here as “Catholic Easter” as the Orthodox church celebrates Easter later, and the country is mostly Orthodox. However the Hungarian community is mostly Catholic or Reform, so Csikszereda is having a long weekend. Perhaps we’ll get another one when Easter II rolls around. Tomorrow, we head to Sibiu for a couple of nights (meeting up with some friends from Budapest). Sibiu is supposed to be gorgeous and I’m really looking forward to seeing it. From there on Saturday we’ll head to Sighisoara via a number of fortified Saxon churches many of which appear to be on the UNESCO world heritage site list. Should be good. Sunday we’re doing some family thing in Targu Mures, and then Monday back here. On Monday there is some curious Transylvanian tradition in which men chuck water on women, and get eggs in return. I’ll investigate and let you know what it’s all about.
Podcast 98: The Albums You Can’t Be Without
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