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New Website, New Blog, but the Old Blog Archive remains: September 28, 2023

After many years of wanting a real website, this month I finally have a website designed by the very knowledgeable Rey Rey Rodriguez ( TheMindOfReyRey ). My old blog,  Vacation-Travel-Adventure  continues with the same address but it is located in the "Archives" tab on my new website . The new blog which is a continuation but with much better resolution for 4K screens, it is now at .

Maramureş County, The Craftspeople of Sărbi, Romania: April 30, 2018

Gheorghe Opriş, maker of palinka bottled with a wooden ladder.
When we arrived, Gheorghe Opriş was tending his bubbling palinka (fruit brandy). This one was being made from apples The fire was hot, and the still distilling. He took a break to share a shot of palinka with us, and then he entertained us with his music and singing. We eventually progressed into his ladder-making workshop where he showed us how he inserts small ladders into the bottles that he then fills with his excellent homemade brew.

While Gheorghe was entertaining us, his wife was washing a large sheepskin blanket. 

Water from the stream flows rapidly into a wooden circle, a washing whirlpool, that is used for washing heavy items. Throw the blanket or carpet into the hydro-powered washing whirlpool and the stream water pounds it clean.

Hydro-powered washing whirlpool
Nearby we visited Vasily Borodi who makes traditional Maramureş hats for men.

We're always looking for a hat for Dan. He tried on one, but it wasn't the look we were going for.

Our next stop was to the home of textile maker extraordinaire Ioana Pop. 

Her home was packed with her traditional Maramureş textiles all made by her.

A ready-made dowry
 Dan tried on a shepherd's jacket, and I had to talk him out of it. It was heavy enough to be suitable for Antarctica. The hat was good though.

Ioana Pop
Ioana Pop is holding the beautiful blanket I bought from her. She spun the wool and loomed it into this beautiful piece. As we were leaving, Ioana was gathering her tools to return to working in the field with her daughter and son-in-law.