România, îți dau inima mea is a zine, printed with photographs from Bucharest, Constanța, and Mamaia throughout August 2018.
I used Petnax Espio 738G on Kodak Gold 200, Fujifilm Superia 400, and Lomography Lady Grey 400 to create these images. In total there are forty photographs, thirty-two of which are in colour and eight in black and white.
Postcardesque views of monuments, architecture, and the beach. A glimpse of humans’ and friendly street dogs’ everyday lives.
These images were taken on my third yearly return to Romania. My first trip was a surprise birthday gift for my mother. We stayed in an old apartment in Bucharest, not too far from the old town. From there, we took trips to see castles, mud volcanoes, and a salt mine. A drive to see Constanța and the beaches of Mamaia. In awe of the beauty of the Romanian countryside.
On our second year, we went to Timișoara. From there we took the train across the country, eventually crossing into Bulgaria to see the city of Sofia.
“România, îți dau inima mea” translates to “Romania, I give you my heart.”
At Bran Castle in Brașov, our tour guide told the story of Queen Marie of Romania. The queen was born at Eastwell Manor in Ashford, Kent — not far from where I live. The queen had a final wish.
Her will was to have her heart buried at her favourite summer residence of Balchik Palace on the coast of the Black Sea. Two years after her death, in 1940, Balchik was handed to Bulgaria. A silver box with her heart got transferred to Bran Castle. Moved again to National Museum of Romanian History and Peleș Castle in 2013.
Today her heart is in the Golden Room, which is where it stopped beating in 1938.
Born into British Royalty, Marie was the last Queen of Romania. Inside the silver box, her heart is covered with the Romanian flag on one side and the British flag on the other.