This is Catalin Iliescu. For 10 years he worked at the reception desks of various hotels in Bucharest where he noticed steadily increasing demand for limousine service, especially among foreign visitors. So he started his own service, which has since grown from just him to include six other drivers. Romania today, he says, "looks like El Dorado. Foreigners are all coming because they see the chance to make lots of money quickly. Romanians are all moving to Spain."
Bucharest looks like a 100-year old back up of Paris, a compressed image of continental elegance recorded on a decaying medium. As one of the conference attendees put it, "It's like Havana, but cold." Things are changing quickly though, especially since Romania joined the EU this year. I don't imagine it will get much warmer, but who knows what it will be like in five years? It's a good time to be a Romanian planner.
A delayed thank you to Bogdana, Cristian, Diana and their Masterplan and APG Romania partners for inviting me to speak at the conference and taking me to the president's favorite restaurant. And to everyone who came to the workshop and helped me learn more about interestingness.
By the way, here are the results from the "Which is more interesting?" questions you kindly answered. (Note that while only 10% felt that Galaxy Quest looked more interesting than American Beauty, that's a 100% increase over the number who raised their hands for it in public.)