What I love about Romania - Alan Corbett (British): Once life returns to normal, I will spend time there to learn Romanian
As part of our Romania Appreciation Weeks campaign, we're inviting our readers to share their stories and tell the world what they love about the country. British Alan Corbett joined our campaign and filled in this questionnaire. Below you can read more about how his connection to Romania and what he loves about the country.
Alan Corbett has gained many insights into Romanian culture after teaching Romanian students English and German for several years. He only has words of praise for his Romanian students and lists the language among the things he likes about the country. He also plans to come to Romania to learn the language once the Covid-19 restrictions are lifted. More about what he likes about the country in the Q&A below.
What is your name, and what is your nationality?
Alan Corbett, UK.
Please share your story with us, briefly, so we understand your relationship with Romania.
I have taught English and German to Romanians for several years. As such, I have developed a good insight into their culture, their strengths, and their challenges.
Would you recommend Romania as a country to live in or to visit?
My plans to visit have been put on indefinite hold due to Covid-19, but once life returns to normal, I will spend time there to learn Romanian.
What are some of the misconceptions you most often hear about Romania, and how do you feel about them?
The image is universally bad - but that is not my view - I have only ever met charming, intelligent, and dedicated students.
What is the most powerful feeling that Romania brings to you and why?
They are hardworking and especially gifted at languages (due to the Latin-based nature of their language).
Please tell us the three things you like the most about Romania.
The delightful nature of the people - I have never witnessed the slightest aggression – but have seen their delight in helping those in need of assistance.
If you had to advertise for Romania as a country, what would be the top things you would mention to promote it?
A determination to self-improve.
Ability to learn languages and thus integrate wherever they choose to go.
What could make Romania the perfect country for you (what's missing)?
I am on the verge of retirement but, alas, Brexit renders it unwise to retire to the country due to pension and health issues related to our exit and not associated with the country.
What are your favorite places in Romania and why?
Transylvania - no explanation needed
What do you like about Romanian culture, history, customs?
As a linguist, I am fascinated by the Roman heritage, especially in the language. My students learning German are far ahead of their peers from other language groups.
What are the Romanian words/phrases a non-Romanian speaker should know, in your opinion?
Ce mai faci?
Puteți să repetați, vă rog?
(Photo courtesy of Alan Corbett)