Romania (Romanian: România) is a country located in between Central Europe and Southeastern Europe, bordering the Black Sea. Romania shares a border with Hungary and Serbia to the west, Ukraine and Moldova to the northeast and east, and Bulgaria to the south. At 238,391 square kilometres (92,043 sq mi), Romania is the eighth largest country of the European Union by area, and has the seventh largest population of the European Union with 20,121,641 people (20 October 2011). Its capital and largest city is Bucharest – the sixth largest city in the EU.
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- We must make cleverness our national trait... Stop showing a sullen, frowning face and clenched fist to the West. Start making it feel compassion for us, and you'll see how fast Western boycotts change into magnanimity. Let's present Romania as a Latin island in the Slavic sea... Our millenia-old traditions of independence aee now up against Moscow's political centrism... A pawn between two superpowers.
- There is an untranslatable Romanian word that expresses with great precision the kind of unbearable longing and nostalgia that grips one's heart when thinking of home. That word is dor. I have felt it many times. Nostalgia for the medieval squares of Sibiu steeped in golden light, longing for the outdoor cafes of Bucharest, drinking new wine, all of us young, intoxicated with poetry and song. I missed the smells of flowering linden trees, the blue reflections of deep mountain snow in the evenings, the old peasant villages that Ceauşescu's insanity almost wiped off the face of the earth. I missed the real fairy tales I was raised on. The story of the waters of life and death, youth without age, the tale of the sheep Mioriţa that recites the cosmic poetry of the sky, the story of the poplars that grew pears...
- Andrei Codrescu The Hole in the Flag - 1991