At Home in Vienna, Romanian at Heart

We kick off our new reportage series “Home is where the Herz is” with a heartfelt essay about Romanian Vienna.

December, 2013: It was that time between Christmas and the New Year, when the media were saturated with holiday coverage, and the news editors were fishing for topics in an ocean that was far too calm. “The Romanians are coming!” shouted a headline that caught my eye: As of January 1, 2014, workers from the new EU member, Romania, would have free access to the Austrian labor market. I smiled, thinking it’s none of my business, enjoying a glass of prosecco on the mild shores of Lago di Garda. Little did I know, I was soon to become one of them.

You’ve got your passion, you’ve got your pride

But don’t you know that only fools are satisfied?

Dream on, but don’t imagine they’ll all come true

When will you realize, Vienna waits for you?

In my imagination, Billy Joel must have known that – as far as Vienna was concerned – I was going to fall in love at first step. He must have written the song anticipating the warm welcome I was to be given. So here I am, bringing brilliant minds together to recount the untold stories of Romanians who left their mark on Vienna, and those who continue to do so.

We, the Wahlwiener (Viennese by choice) from Romania, are launching this special series with the story of those of us who tasted Austrian values and later shared them with the country they left behind (p.10). During this world-wide pandemic, we look to the Romanian women who come to Austria to take care of the elderly and at their essential role in our social system. But there’s so much more to learn from being At Home in Someone Else’s House (p.20).

One thing Romania does tragically well is exporting talent. One such super star is from the heart of Transylvania. Now world famous, the soprano Anita Hartig won Austrian hearts at her international debut at the Wiener Staatsoper (p.26). Allow my to correct myself: We export talent and brains. Three Romanian entrepreneurs are the living proof as they continue to flourish in and shape Vienna’s startup ecosystem (p.34).

The September issue would not be complete without the culture and history Romanians introduced and made here (p.40), some culinary delights (p.30), and of course, a truffle-hunting expedition in Europe’s last ancient woodland: Transylvania (p.46).

We, the Romanians of Vienna, are here to stay. In this issue, we share our passions and our pride. Come discover the city with us and see it through our eyes – Romanian Vienna waits for you.

Florin Avram
Journalist at heart, he fell in love with radio when he landed his first job at Europa FM in Bucharest. Self-taught urban gardener and space exploration aficionado Florin calls Vienna home, sweet home.

Help us help you

“Strong media and independent journalism are built on the shoulders of subscribers. Your support means the world to us.

Benjamin Wolf
COO & Managing Editor

The coronavirus outbreak affects and challenges your life in big and small ways. Metropole is here for you and we are proud to be your news source during this crisis.

But just as the coronavirus has increased the need for independent journalism, it has also undercut a major revenue source of media companies, ours included – advertising.

We need your support to keep it up – donate or subscribe and #helpushelpyou!

Support Metropole!


 

RECENT Articles

Coronavirus in Austria & Vienna | Austria Is Now Red According to the EU...

The coronavirus has arrived in Austria. Here’s all you need to know about current measures, including where to get help, information and tips – updated regularly.

Facing the Closed-Door Topic of Migrants and Sexual Assault

While most crime is down, alarming increases in violence against women, often by recent migrants, increases the pressure on efforts to support successful integration.

Black Voices – ‘Writing History’ in Austria

Following the popular Black Lives Matter protest in Vienna, young activists launched a Citizens’ Initiative demanding a national action plan against racism.

Vienna Election – The Greens Call for Unity as the SPÖ Weighs its Options

The mayor’s delegation will meet with all the parties before formal coalition negotiations begin on October 26.

Meet Mary Larunsi, an Austrian Fashion Model With Nigerian Roots

“What you see in the pictures is not necessarily the reality. I don’t get flown anywhere in a private jet with a glass of champagne in my hand. In the end, it’s hard work.”

Vienna Has Voted – The Final Results in Detail

Viennese voters have handed the ruling SPÖ of Mayor Michael Ludwig a decisive victory. All other parties win a higher vote share. Only the far-right-wing FPÖ implodes, losing more than three quarters of its voters.
 

METROPOLE NEWSLETTER

Join over 5,000 Metropolitans, who already get monthly news updates and event invitations.

X
X
X