We Travel to the Hungarian Villages

August 2000:

Romania contains a sizable Hungarian population. Before World War I Transylvania was part of Hungary. Hungarians formed the ruling class. Even today in Hungary, people speak wistfully about Transylvania as the place where Hungarian Traditions are their strongest. Most of the tourist shops and flea markets around Budapest sell wares imported from Transylvania.







The villages today maintain their different costumes, dance forms, architecture and language. But though they might not want to admit it, in many ways the Hungarians living here have customs similar to those in our Village in Maramures.

These satellite dishes line the roads of Hungarian villages -- otherwise a TV does them no good because it only carries programming in Romanian.











Here in the village Mera a dance ensemble practices to perform in Hungary at a dance festival.




The tradition of keeping a "Beautiful Room" is carried on throughout the Hungarian Villages.

We traveled around with our friend Claire who had come for a dance camp from America (she's our New York friend we bumped into by surprise in Florence). She introduced us to a Hungarian family she knew. Claire, of course, was given the bed of honor.

Unlike Romanian "Beautiful Rooms," the Hungarian's decorate theirs in this red floral and avian decor.





Whenever we found a family that spoke Romanian, they'd invite us upstairs to their "Beautiful Room" for coffee and a look at any costumes we might want to buy...





We thought the costumes, like this one worn by Orsi (Or-shee), were sumptuous and bought several costume parts and tablecloths.



Like in Maramures, on Sundays folks of all ages wait on their bench for their neighbors to walk by and visit.





Those bright costumes are worn on Sunday to church -- in this case a Reformed Hungarian Church in the village of Macau (its Romanian name) or Makofalva (its Hungarian name).












   The organ takes two to make music -- one plays the keys while another pumps air into the organ with his feet.

Down below, children listen as the choir sings.







With the exception of the window fillets, (which seemed unintentional), there are no crosses in the reformed church.    



Before services, Kathleen is shown a precious relic of the church -- an old fresco hidden by bright tapestries.




During the week, like in Maramures, farming for sustenance takes up many people's lives.






The Hungarian carts seem narrower than the Maramures carts.





"How much milk you got today?"









Feeding the chicks in their protected house.




Outdoor kitchens.




This is a tombstone of a famous Hungarian dancer in the graveyard in Inucu (Romanian name) or Inaktelke (Hungarian name).






Old style Hungarian Village Home from Inucu/Inaktelke.




New style home from the same village. (Notice the satellite dish.)

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