Contrary to the title, I’m actually in the middle of a great group of fellow guests.
I arrived into Cluj-Napoca and checked into my hostel. I chose my bed and immediately laid down. I thought I would have a slow evening but apparently fate had a different path for me. After a little bit of relaxation, I meandered into the common room and was greeted by some of the giddiest people this side of sober. We chatted for a few hours, exchanged stories and tales and as the night progressed, I was invited out to meet a friend of a friend of a friend. I met a small group of people, locals and foreigners and we took a midnight tour of the city. Safe to say, that was the most intense greeting in a long time. Sunday was a write-off, I had to gain some composure and by late afternoon I found myself back in the common room meeting a whole host of new guests.
The monday was the first day I actaully found myself outside during sunlight. A small group of us from the hostel; a bubbly Brazilian, a German gent, and a Portugese pal, explored some of the city. We headed up to a viewpoint in the north, taking a lot longer than normal due to many spontaneous snowball fights and snowman building events. When we reached the top we absorbed the fantastic scenery before heading down the other side of the hill in search of a art gallery. We found a door but it was locked, either it was closed or we didn’t find the exact entrance. We did find an underground Irish bar instead so we ventured inside for some Irish coffee and food. Following that, we headed back to the hostel to start the evenings events.
Tuesday was the day the group and I, plus a Finnish fellow, went in search of the supposed ‘Haunted Forest’. We took a bus to the outskirts of the city and started our tour, stopping only briefly to explore an abandoned and burnt out train. The fellowship then found a path into the forest, I did see a couple of deer belt out from the woodland and scarper into the mist. I was now on the lookout for more wildlife but unfortunately none were found. We did find the slanted trees however, and they seemed more like the after effects of a storm as opposed to a spooky phenomenon. We did find ourselves out on the edge of the woods though and looking out over the city before strolling back towards the centre. The day was finalised by a large group meal cooked by yours truly.
As the Wednesday came around, I realised I should probably start exploring some other cities in the Transyvania area and so the German, the Portugese and I decided to investigate the nearby city of Sibiu. We relaxed on the Wednesday and made preparations to travel on the Thursday. The day itself was more spent relaxing and soaking up some of the hostel atmosphere. In the afternoon of the Thursday my entourage and I boarded an Intercity train to Sibiu.