The blog post that doesn't have much to do with photos (or maybe everything)


A couple of years ago, back in St Petersburg, I met an older Romanian couple and we talked for a little while, because that’s what you do when you run into fellow compatriots from the country you grew up in. We discussed the usual things that come up in these kinds of encounters; the when’s, the how’s and why’s we came here and stayed and how often we see our family. Then we talked about how long we’ve been where we are and whether or not we like it. Just small talk that I assume most immigrants start they’re conversations with when they first meet!

So I told them that we had just moved to St. Pete and that ever since I landed in the US I’ve moved to a different city just about every three years, forced by various circumstances like jobs, schools and other such things. All together with the moves between apartments and different living situations, I had probably packed and moved over 10 times since I landed in 2005. I also told them that we were thinking about moving again, north this time. Then the woman put her hand on my shoulder and looked at me with a look of a sorrow and worry and said to me (in Romanian of course), “ My dear, you have to pick a place! You must put your roots down and grow! We are like trees! You can only uproot a tree so many times before it stops growing and it dies!”


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I don’t remember exactly how I responded to that, but I do remember how I felt afterward and I know I’ll always remember that chance encounter. What she said made all the sense in the world to me and my heart sank. She was right and it saddened me. I was starting to recognize how I didn’t have a sense of belonging to any place and most of my new friends were mere acquaintances and our relationships were only held together by social media. And that’s just that’s just normal when you move so much!

Our moves never bothered me until that moment, but after that I almost convinced myself that we were done moving and that we had to stay put, despite the fact that we still had our little dream of moving to New England, a desire we had since our first year together. St. Pete was a beautiful city (the best of Florida, in my opinion), and with every completed project our little fixer upper had become more and more like our perfect dream home.

Still, as much as she was right in so many ways, she was also wrong in others!

I’m not a tree!

I’m a human and as humans we change and we adapt and we set roots or we don’t if we so wish! But change is hard, really hard! It’s very challenging and scary, and you doubt yourself with every new step and guilt yourself every time something goes wrong, especially if the change is made by choice. But change is good. Ohhh so good! You learn so much, you feel so much, you see so much, you meet amazing people in amazing places! It can even change you! She was wrong!

Looking back I realized that I had grown with every move we made. We, as a couple, had grown with every move and we continue to grow! We even made few friends along the way, the good kind that distance and time will never change. Now, after this long but gorgeous winter (that keeps on coming), I can confidently say that we still love it and this cold only make us feel very much ALIVE. And honestly it really isn’t so much about the weather conditions as it is about the people you’re with and the choice you make in your heart whether or not you want to be in a place and make the best of it. The best part is that we live in a country that we can freely make those choices. Our choice to put ourselves out there and venture outside of our comfort zones hasn’t been easy (still isn’t) but it has been oh so rewarding. That being said, I’m starting to get a very strong feeling that I really want to plant a tree up here somewhere and see it grow! At least for a while!


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And what this next pictures have to do with any of the above? Well, not much other than they were taken a couple weeks ago, in the teeth of this winter(that we were so strongly warned about) while enjoying a beautiful warm day out and about, visiting a local sugarhouse and a farm. Doesn’t it look like these Floridians are surviving their first New England winter quite well?


Just a 30 minute drive on a pretty country road to visit a traditional sugarhouse and learn about how maple syrup is made.

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And then we stopped at this beautiful local farm on top of a high hill with beautiful views all around.

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