Sommer and Lindsey in Romania

Sommer and Lindsey are traveling to Romania for two weeks in summer 2009 to report on the status of orphanages, 20 years after the fall of communist dictator Nicolae Ceausescu. Their project is partially funded by a Meadows Exploration Award. Sommer ’08 graduated in December with degrees in journalism from Meadows School of the Arts and history from Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences. Lindsey is a senior marketing major in Cox School of Business and a photojournalist.

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How do you say ‘Carpe Diem’ in Romanian?

An update from Sommer on their site Romania Revisited:

Our first full day in Romania started in a church. Well, technically it started in the hotel dining room where we had hot dogs (not so great) and raspberry tea (AMAZING) for breakfast. But then we headed to the church where Livada Orphan Care’s (LOC) foster children attend. It was my first church service ever so it was a cultural experience on several fronts.

We arrived a bit late so we had to slip into the front row, but that was probably for the best. The entire service was in Romanian and we had to rely on the hand gestures and facial expressions of those on stage to figure out what was going on. When it was all over, we asked the LOC founder and president – and of course, handy-dandy team leader – to summarize what was preached during the sermon.

The theme of the service was ‘Carpe Diem.’ Specific to the church, it was about seizing every opportunity to serve God, but more generally it’s just about seizing every opportunity. I don’t know if it’s just me, but I think that theme fit our trip perfectly. That was the theme of our trip, pretty much. That and ‘Don’t let on that we’re crazy.’


After the service, we visited the children in the LOC foster homes and spent time interviewing a few of the children (they spoke great English). We really connected with them, and luckily Lindsey and I were able to visit them again later in the trip. And then we met even more people when we had a pizza dinner with the Romanian translators with whom we would be spending the next week. They all practically became family to the American team. It’s amazing how quickly a group can grow together. I think that’s a testament to how long the days were, how many obstacles everyone had to hurdle together and how genuine everyone was.

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    One Response to How do you say ‘Carpe Diem’ in Romanian?

    1. Nina Flournoy says:

      I’ve been following your journey and am so impressed by all you’re doing. I wanted to invite you to speak in my Global Civil Society class this fall, or whenever you return. It’s a CCPA class, dealing with communication in the international NGO sector. If you can, please bring back any media kits, brochures or press documents, as we are doing analysis of current comm. efforts among NGOs. Please email me at Keep up the good work. — Prof. Nina Flournoy

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