Monday, 14 April 2014

The public space in Romania

A question I have wanted to ask for 15 years: why do many Romanians walk around the streets in their dressing gowns? Not, admittedly, Romanians from the best circles.


  1. Hello Mr. Wood, nice blog. I'm a freelance reporter from The Netherlands. I'm looking for great feature stories and I'm looking for them in Eastern European corners, simply because I love to have an excuse to go there.

    I'm looking for anything with a good universal appeal: subcultures, weird festivals, adventurous traditions, inspiring people, undercurrents in society – all types of phenomena that make an entertaining and meaningful story.

    It appears you have a finger on the pulse in Romania. Maybe you have good ideas for leads. I would really appreciate it. Would have send you an email, but couldn't find it… My email:

    Thank a lot. Nice day to you! Hedde

  2. I can honestly say that I haven't seen that happening in Romanian on a regular basis or even occasionally. I did see a medical intern wearing a dressing gown in my ex doctor's office once but that was only to keep warm (she was fully clothed underneath it) and I found it a bit weird.

    1. Yes I went to a doctor who was wearing a dressing gown.

  3. Thete are a few possibilities:
    1. A pacient in a hospital gets out the hospital to buy something. Or a doctor who also serves night shifts might wear it, especially if it's cold. During communism most of the doctors used to wear a thick dressing gown while on duty. The gowns wete supplied by the hospital and kept very warm while looking horrible. My mother was a pediatrician and I remember it from my childhood. Hers was an ugly mousy brown...
    2. It sonetimes happens with very poor people, people from the country, people from the "mahala". Do you know what mahala is? That place at the perifery of a big town, where urban and countryside culture merge with gipsy culture and form a sort of individual expression of its own. It usually develops its own do's and don'ts.