01 February, 2010

From the Vault: Advice to potential Bucharest immigrant

Matt Posted Mar 11, 2008 8:22 PM

Hi All,
Currently in the US, I have a job offer in Bucharest. Any answer to below are appreciated.

How big is the expat community in Bucharest?
How are the gyms and nightlife?
How big is the city?

Ken H. Posted Mar 11, 2008 11:10

Hi, Matt -

For a take-no-prisoners accurate description of Bucharest and its offerings, you could do much worse than "Bucharest In Your Pocket." It is almost like an anti-tourist guide, being written with much information which is more helpful to the poor suck- errr, distiguished expatriates who make Bucharest their home. It tells you what is truly worthwhile in this city and pulls no punches about what isn't. I am a big fan of the print version! It should answer most or all of your questions in a realistic, non "sponsored by Ministry of Tourism" way. But in the interests of instant gratification, my answers to your questions, off the top of my head are:

How big is the expat community in Bucharest?
Surprisingly big. Not without its share of near-criminal carpetbaggers who come here simply to grab what they can and run. Having said that, most are decent people and a very good representation are right here on this forum.

How are the gyms and nightlife?
Gyms are few and expensive. Very of both. I probably shouldn't speculate on this but I will anyway. Let's just say Bucharest doesn't share the US' 65% overweight rate. :) Therefore I submit that the few full-service gyms are targeted mainly to foreigners and under the assumption that their wallets need to lose weight as much as the rest of them.

Nightlife? Don't ask me... mine consists mainly of stalking online forums like this one. :) Once again, BIYP to the rescue!

How big is the city?
I suppose you could get the geographical statistics from Wikipedia, but an answer which probably more suits your intention for asking is:

Imagine your foot is a size 12. Now imagine your shoe is a size 8. This will give you a functional, if not scientific, insight into the look and feel of daily Bucharest. The concept of "personal space" is completely unknown, and if you're in line somewhere and NOT tightly compressed between an unwashed laborer and a clueless geriatric, well you're just being downright antisocial. Rumor has it the current "baby boom" in Bucharest originated largely in the queues at the Carrefour checkout.

Romania's capital has its many good points, but I grew up spoiled by New York and Los Angeles suburbs. That said, with a bit of tolerance, open-mind, thickish skin and spirit of adventure, you could do a LOT worse than Bucharest. Lacking the aforementioned qualities, you'll still do quite well if you're merely a cynic like myself - this place is a wet dream for that!

So in summary: it's probably best to ignore everything I just said and wait for Jackie or Stefan [Forum moderators, Ed.] to answer you usefully. It's also probably best if I stop logging on here sober, but again I digress!

Best of luck to you whatever your decision!

- Ken -


  1. Please remove your derogatory comments referring to my being married to you, my career and your luck of entertainment because of my career.

  2. The above comment serves a few entertaining purposes. First, it shows how posting as Anonymous to claim specific ownership of comments regarding my (not-at-the-time-of-writing) ex-wife, kind of defeats the purpose of being Anonymous, dunnit?

    Next, as one of endless examples of how dear Anonymous would classify something I wrote as "threat," "slander," "derogatory," "falsehood," and such, when in reality it was nothing more(legally or otherwise) than "Wah, I didn't like it."

    Finally, it shows you, dear reader, a tiny taste of what I had to live with for several years. But no more!

    Therefore, my answer to the above impassioned plea, no longer constrained by threat of divorce court blackmail or related hijinks, is a resounding "Uh... nope."

  3. Yes, I am the ex-wife and I prefer my name to be in a better company than with an adult blog writer. Me being married to you is an association I cannot change, unfortunately, is part of the history, but you having no better subject on your almost porn blog with porn readers/writers as an audience than what happen during the marriage shows the sad reality of you having no better luck with the entertainment after the divorce. Of course, these pages are already printed for the entertainment of the judge when we are going to discuss again how the daily job prevents you from being a better parent and provider for your kid (s).

  4. I swear I'm not making this stuff up, folks. I mean, you "porn readers," you. This from the one who called ME derogatory.


Comments which make me look good will be posted. Hey, if you don't like it, get your own blog!