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.

Read more from Sommer and Lindsey in Romania

Once upon a time …

An update from Sommer on their site Romania Revisited:

Our trip to Romania was an adventure. I promise.

In fact, I’m going to prove it by recounting the most exciting moments of our two-week trip. Accessing the Internet wasn’t so easy in small Romania towns, gypsy villages or on sleeper trains, and finding the stamina to post after long days of day camps and baby hospitals was more difficult than we thought.

But no more excuses. Lindsey and I have brought out our journals that we so religiously updated (right, Lindsey?) and we’re sharing our profound observations and deepest thoughts. Get excited. And we’ll also keep everyone updated on our efforts to get our stories published. Trying to get major papers interested in an international story reported by two twenty-somethings fairly new to the turbulent field of journalism – that’s an adventure in and of itself.

So let’s start from the beginning.

The most exciting thing about getting there was when we almost didn’t. Our Delta flight from Atlanta to Amsterdam was delayed by more than an hour, so although Lindsey and I enjoyed watching The Reader on our flight, we couldn’t help but think about how difficult it was going to be to catch our next plane. We were scheduled to land at 9:40 a.m. Our flight was set to leave at 10:05 a.m. Could we do it? I thought we could.

So the minute the plane landed and the seat belt sign was turned off, I jumped out of my seat, grabbed our luggage and – got stuck standing behind a million other people trying to get off the plane. I secretly cursed them all in my head as Lindsey made conversation with the couple sitting in front of us. They felt compelled to tell us that we should never book flights so closely together. Thanks for the tip.

It took us what seemed like ages to get off our plane. Despite literally running through the Amsterdam airport, weaving in and out of throngs of people, and even catching a ride on one of those golf cart things, we didn’t quite make it.

Of course Lindsey and I put our game faces on, and we called the Livada office to let them know of the change in travel plans. Then we wandered aimlessly during our three-hour layover, admired the wooden tulips and talked about how exhausted we were.

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