After the symposion, no one dares as much as to look at me or to ever remember about my hotel bill and the return ticket which are not paid yet. Seeing that, I took my things and went out in the snow, pondering on the reasons of my banishment. The journey lasts from midday to the time of the night train. I walk through the park covered by high snow, and bump several times into something which I take to be either the chairs of the illustrious sculptor or some dogs that have been forgotten outside. I just want to go home, where I can defy the regime at 22 degree Celsius, I can muffle the phone with a pillow and say out loud whatever I feel like. My aunt Graziela did the right thing the other day, when she went out in the yard to take her newspaper from the postman, then went back in the house, locked the door, drew the shutters, torn the newspaper to pieces, trampled it under her feet, and then swallowed a sleeping pill. The train arrives just before my vital functions threaten to cease prematurely because of hypothermia.
The story is not over, though. Two weeks later, comrade vice-minister persuades the lady minister to come to the General Assembly of the employees of the Institute and criticize me once again ? in case she does not decide to lay me off, as she should. But Her Excellency, a sound-minded woman, ar maybe simply a woman in a good mood, contents herself to chide me like a mother and urge me to watch some more television, in particular The ?Folkloric Tresor? show, so that I can follow the example of comrade Marioara Murarescu, who knows about authentic folklore. (133)
Only those who left abroad could own it. They exchanged their savings?They were forced to keep it in banks, but no longer than 3 or 30 days. They could buy goods from duty free shops. (I.H., 54)
You were not allowed to own dollars at that time or any foreign currency. When you came from abroad you were obliged to deliver the currency which became part of an account at Com Turist. You could buy goods from the shops of Com Turist accroding to the money left. I had a friend who dealt with currency exchange. He paid the foreigners lei for currency and gathered so much that when one of his cousins went from Italy, he gave him a substantial sum and he bought a Fiat 124 from Italy and sent it to him. (C.V., 129)