The bustling city is alive. The stimulation of crowds and traffic generate energy that challenges the human spirit. Perhaps that is why the city dweller reflects the image of an angry, stressed and unfriendly person. But that was not my case. Young, impatient, eager to make a difference, I was trying to open my way through the crowded streets, noisy and indifferent people. You could smell the excitement. Unfortunately, the revelry would not last too long. The tranquility of the country life that appealed my mind was recorded history. Bucharest, distinguished.
The sheer amalgamation of cultures and eras comes together wonderfully and uniquely and is easily identifiable by simply looking at the objects that render a city —the buildings. The way they were erected, the style that is embedded in them, and even the political statements that they seem to shout, it all makes the architecture of Bucharest extraordinary. I started wondering the streets and found myself amazed that beyond all the hostile appearance I could notice the three most prominent styles of architecture that could be seen in Romania’s capital.
The old fashioned and classic style of the baroque era that transformed Bucharest into the Paris of the East; The totalitarian and dominant style of the communist regimes and the style that immediately followed: modern Romanian architecture. The baroque and romantic years swept through the East and soon artisans of all sorts were embarking on journeys of creative freedom that permeated all aspects of life. Architecture was no exception. Around Bucharest, gargoyles loomed, guarding elaborately arched windows.
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The city skyline began to teem with decorated roofs, high and sweeping, shingled with coppers and stained woods. The sight of medieval architecture that survived the communism, combined with modernism, gave a special meaning to this city. Although the excitement is far from gone as the buildings collapsed in people’s indifference, I still find myself trapped in the magic that Bucharest inspired me from the beginning, to live and learn and mostly try to survive. I cannot say it is the best city I have ever seen. Far from being home, for me it was the best place to get lost in.
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