Given that I was 6 years old when I took first “trip” (really, it was more of a refugee adventure) abroad was at 6, all by myself, on a plane, crossing the Balkan route from Romania to Germany I think you could say that I discovered my passion for the new and the unknown at a very early age.
Even though, I have spent the last 5 1/2 years traveling around the globe and writing about it, there are many many travel stories I have left out, or that have become funny (meaning: I am not too ashamed to tell them any more) only way, way, waaaaaay later. So I have decided to start a new Wanderstrudel tradition: Travel Tuesdays, in which I tell you more or less embarrassing travel stories.
Today’s story is set some time around 1985 in Romania.
I was 3 years old, and it was my very first vacation. My parents took me to the Black Sea, which was the thing back in communist Romania where you couldn’t really travel outside the country much.
This was also the time when the technology for colored pictures took the country by storm. All of my baby pictures up to that point are actually black and white.
So here I am playing half naked in the sand (this is Europe, so nobody cares about half naked babies or people, for that matter, at a beach). Every five minutes, a beach vendor passes us, offering pretty much anything from puffs (like cheese puffs, but without the cheese) and drinks, to ice cream and beach wear. The one vendor that really gets my attention though is the one offering to take colored pictures. Literally, he advertises (that is, he screams from the top of his lungs): BARE BUTT COLORS. To this day, I am not 100% sure what that’s supposed to mean, but(t) that phrase just fascinated me. So fascinated that I start screaming it myself: BARE BUTT COLORS. My parents, first in shock at their 3 year old daughter shouting about naked body parts, decided to laugh instead, and we ended up taking a bare butt colored picture – which, as soon as I have access again to my old photo albums, I will absolutely post … and no worries, nobody has a naked butt in that picture!