English travel writer Patrick Leigh Fermor wrote in 1934: "Transylvania had been a familiar name as long as I could remember. It was the very essence and symbol of remote, leafy, half-mythical strangeness; and, on the spot, it seemed remoter still and more fraught with charms."
This quote represents landscapes and places in this region so well. But this visual story is not about landscape or other forms of soulless beauty. It is about the human soul, a special category living in this magical lands—the elders.
I was born and raised in this place, so I had the chance to take many hikes through the countryside of Transylvania, Romania. My passion for photography and the avid curiosity to discover traditional lifestyle, centuries-old traditions and habits helped me to meet these people.
In these places, traditions are well preserved. The young generation is keeping traditions only on holidays due to the modern influences of social media, accessible technology, etc. The elders were not influenced, and they live like hundreds of years ago. They are the last witnesses and living proofs of centuries-old cultural lifestyle, beliefs, and habits.
Many of them live alone as they refuse to give up their traditional wooden houses and all their habits. Some of them struggle to carry a traditional lifestyle because it is really hard for them to work in the fields or take care of animals.
Baking the traditional bread for Easter.
Nea Vasile with his rural version of Facebook. Hundreds of photos of local traditional festivals, local craftsmen, and his neighbors in their everyday routine.