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January 15, 2018

France - Route du vins in Alsace

Boys and girls,

I know Christmas is gone and it's already January, but the Christmassy feeling is one of the most peaceful I know, so why not prolong it into the New Year?

And what other Christmassy place you know in this region but Alsace? If you just passed through Strasbourg you know what I'm talking about, but there is also Colmar and Riquewihr (if that's not a name form Lord of the Rings, I don't know what it is) and other small towns and places promoted and written about on blogs and present on vlogs and Instagram. Because you see, in this social media age, I've found out about this region from Instagram and thought "I'm just three hours away, why not give it a try?".

Truth is , I've been to Strasbourg a lot of times and in the first year when we spent Christmas here we went to Strasbourg to celebrate it. It was a sad Christmas, because all the markets were closed, all the restaurants were closed and we ended up eating our "Christmas dinner" at a Chinese restaurant. But going there in the month before Christmas is great and its a bucket list experience you have to have once in your lifetime.

I consider myself a very lucky person, because although we intended to go to Colmar for a weekend, there were no rooms left at a reasonable price in Colmar and we picked the first good looking room in a town called, Itterswiller.


This is the hotel where we stayed, it's a little family run inn which we found on booking.com. It was so lovely and the atmosphere was so nice that we decided to eat there and spend most of our time in that village.

And so I am writing this post to advise you to forget about Colmar and Strasbourg and even Riquewihr (although it's a nice looking town) during the Christmas Season. Try Route du vins (the wine road) instead, it is amazing!

You will get small, fairy-tale towns with small Christmas Markets with the same souvenirs and the same pottery to take home, but at reasonable prices, with no crowds and no queues and no hassle. Believe me, the Route du vins is the place to be, until someone gets to promote it and Instagram it and the crowds will head that way. I was so impressed by it, that I've already made reservations to go during Spring.

I hope I'll convince you with some pictures.













So if you come from Luxembourg, go towards Strasbourg on the motorway, but exist at Saverne and then follow to old road (also called the wine road) towards Colmar. We did that up until Itterswiller where we stayed and we stopped in all the small towns to take pictures and try the local shops. The next day we went from Itterswiller to Colmar, again stopping in every town were we saw a Christmas Market or in every town that looked lovely. So we ended up arriving in Colmar at 4 p.m., but Colmar was crowded so we just had something to eat and headed back to Luxembourg.
It was a two day trip, but it filled my batteries to the max for the busy Christmas season.
That's it boys and girls. If you liked this article please do share it on social media and if you want to drop a line, you can find me at: Dichisuri.ro
Raluca

January 8, 2018

The highlights of 2017 from my Instagram

I was feeling a little depressed about 2017, considering it an ordinary year when nothing happened, but it did happen, a lot actually, so instead of lamenting myself, I will turn to my Instagram profile, which I encourage you to follow (these days I find it easier to use Instagram than any other social network, I don't know why).

Trips


In 2017 we continued to explore the area around Luxembourg, visiting new places or rediscovering the old ones.
In February we spent a week in Brussels with work, but we did find time to explore and get to know the city better (FYI I still don't like it, although I've discovered some nice corners and incredible good food).
Also in February we discovered three new castles (private ones) in Belgium and we went with our friends to Dinant (Belgium).
In March, I went to my hometown in Romania and visited the most beautiful palace ever, turned into a museum, the Palace of Culture in Iasi, Romania.
In April we went to Utrecht in Nederlands 
And we started the month of May in Amsterdam and at the tulip fields also in Nederlands.
Also in May we went to Bucharest for my friend's wedding and we explored the city better, seeing what has changed since we moved from Romania.
In June we went to Sierck-les-Bains and Rodemack in France
In July we went to Mulhouse in France 
Lake Maggiore in Italy 
Milano, Italy 
Lake Como, Italy
In August we went to Bouillon, Belgium
Also in August we went to Calais in France 
In September we returned to Rodemack, France 
and checked the Luxembourgish waterfall in Mullenthal. 
Also in September we went back to my hometown in Romania and visited a local palace in Miclauseni 
And in Bucharest I went to my favourite place, the Stavropoleos Monastery 
In October we went to Binche in Belgium to discover the secrets behind the Carnival. 
In November we went to Berlin and I loved it 
Also in November we toured the Christmas Markets in the area starting with Bernkastel-Kues in Germany 
In December we went to Alsace 
And during the Christmas Holidays we took our friends from Romania to a lot of nice places in the area.

Events


2017 meant also participating and organising a lot of events and mostly talking about the Romanian Blouse. We went to concerts and we went to protests, we celebrated local newspapers and went to conferences given by women.
In May I was invited to talk about a movie I've made about meaning making objects and forming an identity with the help of contact objects, but mostly I've talked about the Romanian Blouse and how it helps me to keep my identity in Luxembourg 
On June 24th, together with my good friends I've organised the fifth edition of The Day of the Romanian Blouse in Luxembourg 
In September, also with my friends we started organising the conference, IA, the Romanian Blouse. 
On October 11th we held the conference in one of the most iconic places in Luxembourg. It was a real honour and it was a great achievement. 

Folk celebrations


I am a firm believer in keeping ones identity, but the identity is not something fix is ever changing being influenced by a lot of factors and one of them is the place where you live. For me it is important to keep the Romanian traditions, but also to know and celebrate the ones in this region, being Luxembourgish or Belgian. 
The Romanian, Mărțișor the one who brings Spring
The Luxembourgish, Buergbrennen, the one who burns Winter 
The Irish, St. Patrick's Day 
The Carnival Season, this one in Arlon 
The Luxembourgish, Péckvillercher on Easter Monday 
The Luxembourgish, Schueberfouer 
The lampion night in Wiltz, Luxembourg 
Steinsel, apple picking 
The Nut Festival, Vianden 
Halloween
And those are my 2017 highlights. Incredible, isn't it? And I was the one feeling depressed as if nothing happened last year. And those are just the moments that made it to my Instagram, because there are more with my friends and family that I love and prefer to keep to myself. So friends, if you feel depressed look at your 2017 pictures and let's make 2018 a year at least as good as 2017. See you safe and sound next week!
Raluca
P.S. you can find me at: Dichisuri.ro

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