Today at exactly 01:27:48 PM the thermometer located at the intersection of Dimitrie Cantermir and Mărăşeşti boulevards (an area also known as “Budapesta” because of the restaurant with the same name which, during the communist regime, used to be located on one of the corners of the intersection) the termomether was showing …. hmm … -5 degrees Celsius!
And since I mentioned Cocor Shopping Center yesterday, here’s a nightshot of it and its huge advertising screens.
Since last January Bucharest has its own local version of the Walk of Fame or Avenue of the Stars or whatever you want to call it. How about that? It lies in a little plaza near the Cocor Shopping Center and so far it has six stars (you can only see five in the photo because I took the picture at the beginning of the summer, before the sixth star was added). The project was the idea of Cocor Shopping Center and Metropolis Theater and is intended to pay tribute to Romanian actors. Out of the six actors/actresses/directors represented so far, my non-Romanian visitors might know the actress Maia Morgenstern who played Mary in the “The Passion of the Christ” by Mel Gibson.
Bucharest’s Old Town has changed a lot in the last two years, becoming the central hub for going out in the city, the place to hang out, to see and be seen. Many new restaurants, bars and clubs opened up, filling the sidewalks with their tables. But because this is Bucharest and no transformation is ever complete, you can still see some of the old shops hanging on, as in today’s photograph.
Since last year Bucharest has joined the example of other cities of the western world in offering free summer concerts of classical music. Going on from May 8th to September 25th, they start at 19.30 every Saturday and Sunday in Colțea Park, in the University Square, weather permitting of course. Did I mention they’re free? (or rather they’ve already been payed for from our taxes, I don’t really know to be honest).
The Cărturești graffiti photographed by me in August 2009 – wow, I can’t believe it’s been two years already – has changed to something more in sync with Cărturești’s main area of activity: books.
Today’s photo probably doesn’t mean much for my non-Romanian visitors. It’s a humorous yet sad poster that I’ve found in the city center, which pokes fun at the recent results registered at the Baccalaureate exam. The Baccalaureate is a comprehensive exam held in Romania when one graduates high school. This year the news that shocked the nation was that only 44.5% of the high school students passed the Baccalaureate, the poorest results in the last 20 years. Many of the students failed the Romanian language exam which I believe is mandatory for everyone, no matter the profile of the high school (science, arts etc). This failure is ridiculed by the poster, which reads “Do you know why I didn’t pass the “Bac” this year? Cause I wrote many pages”. The funny part is that every word without exception is spelled incorrectly. Even funnier is that someone answered the question by writing “You didn’t sign the paper” also in incorrect spelling.