Romanians claim decent from the Roman colonists their land is named for, and their language is closer to Latin than any other Romance language. Occupied for much of its history, Romania did not become a sovereign nation until 1878 or gain permanent control of Transylvania until after World War II. The Romanian Orthodox Church is part of the national identity, but the Pentecostal movement—outlawed in the 1920s, recognized in the 1940s, and greatly limited until the overthrow of Communism in December 1989—is now one of the largest such movements in Europe.
Bucharest has plenty of Communist-style apartments, but its remaining historical buildings show why the city was once called Micul Paris ("Little Paris"). With all those apartments, the city has the roughly the same population and density as Queens, New York. The weather is similar to the upper Midwest in the US, with plenty of snow in winter and heat in the summer.
During the 2 years we lived in Bucharest, we rented a 3-bedroom apartment at a busy intersection in the northeast part of town (not far from the Cunninghams and the Kidz Romania office) and drove the boys to and from Bucharest Christian Academy on the southeast side. There was a park behind our bloc (building) where we would take our dog Lucy 3 times a day (we took turns). There was also a fast food place on the ground floor (snitzel and shaormas), with bakeries, banks, pharmacies, and small groceries around the corner; a bigger park nearby; and a metro station and tram stop within walking distance. Oh, and we had lots of noise outside, from ambulances for a nearby emergency clinic to a chorus of horn honking at rush hour to sometimes all-night construction clanging and beeping from the tram tracks being reconstructed from scratch: if it was that loud on the seventh floor, we can't imagine the din nearer street level!