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A Country Festival In Rimet, Romania

Festival at Rimet

Travelling to Rîmeţ from our hotel in Aiud took first through the town on a fairly decent road out into the countryside. After only a few miles the road narrowed and became a rough unmetalled road with many ruts and pot-holes. It wound its way up through trees where people foraged for mushrooms, through cultivated […]
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Festivals for Informal Learning in Europe (FILE)

The people of the local communities were smartly dressed in their traditional black and white, embroidered costumes. Many of the menfolk wore splendid hats – some wore the traditional black Astrakhan hat, others a type of bowler hat and many others a trilby. Each commune’s tent was decorated inside with local crafts, furniture, produce and wonderfully vibrant woven fabrics. […]
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Exchange Visit to Estonia by Ellie Swinbank

Immediately upon arrival in the country I was struck by its unhurried, calm atmosphere, its cleanliness, and the friendliness of the people. All of these elements, very visible in Tallinn, only became even more apparent when we had moved on to more rural areas. Other broad impressions I formed were of a country hard at work defining itself within its relatively new-found independence and, successfully it would seem, claiming its place within the European Union and international community, and of a country where cutting edge modernity and ancient practices and traditions are held to be equally important and are celebrated side by side. From a heritage perspective, it is a very interesting country due to its newness. In many ways it feels like a blank canvas in terms of creating a heritage and tourism industry, or at least one that has only just started to be drawn on. It is also a fascinating place to compare with Scotland as many of the issues it faces are comparable, despite having different causes, such as the depopulation of its rural areas and its need and desire to preserve traditional ways of living and working. With these impressions and concepts in mind, this report will focus on an analysis of what I experienced and learned, broken into four key themes: museums and interpretation, creating visitor experiences, building an industry and preserving traditional skills. I will then go on to describe how I intend to disseminate what I have learned, and the skills that I can now apply to my own work and thinking before discussing potential opportunities I can see for co-operation between Scotland and Estonia. […]
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Estonia Report by Sharon Gunason

“Muhu—“Island where time rests”

Caithness, the rural part of Scotland where I live, though not an island, is often seen as just a place people drive through on their way to catch the ferry to the Orkney Islands. Muhu, our guide explains, is often overlooked by those heading to the larger, adjacent island of Saarema. […]
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CHIST Estonia Report by Olive Brown


The rest of the day was spent at Tihuse Horse Farm where they have about 300 horses as well as cattle and sheep. We went for a drive though the forest in two pony traps to a sacred boulder where Martin Kivoso explained the myths connected with the boulder, making each of us tap it and make a wish, before walking round it – a challenge for those of us with a Church of Scotland background! The (LEADER funded) restaurant is a really beautiful new building with, amazingly, a huge tree built into the centre of the main room. As a place to spend a holiday it was most inviting, with masses of information about the lore of the forest displayed on the walls. It wasn’t just a holiday place however as “real” farm life was going on. Martin’s two sons were to be up early next day to drive forty Herefords across Muhu to a small island with of course, the usual extensive EU paperwork to take away from the romantic idea of traditional cattle droving […]
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Milking Time

On day 1 we stopped in Ciclova Romana and Manuela went to collect sheep’s cheese. It was as if we’ve stepped back in time: green grass transported by horse drawn cart, hens pecking about, a cock crowing and the smell of mown hay and dung. When I went to primary school in the early 60s we passed a field with the last working horse; all farms had tractors by then. We hardly saw farm machinery in this part of Romania. Ten yards after the village of Ciclova Romana ends Ciclova Montana begins. We stayed there in a village house, within walking distance of forests, meadows and the Cheile Nerei-Beusnita National Park. We tried local produce and experienced some rhythms of village life, as we ate our first meal we heard bells from cows being driven home for milking. One day the water pump broke and we brought in water from the well in the garden and used the toilet there which emptied into the river rushing past. […]
Continue reading WITH SATUL VERDE IN ROMANIA Joint Report