Meet the Romanian carpenter who turned heads at the White House
Welcome to our latest series of videos, Redirected: the Balkans, which sees social media influencer and YouTuber Eva zu Beck learning about the cultures, customs and traditions of Eastern Europe. Eva takes us off the beaten track on a road trip through Romania, Serbia, Bulgaria, North Macedonia and Albania.
We meet the wonderful people of the Balkans bringing a modern twist to ancient traditions and travel through pristine and unspoiled landscapes.
You may not have planned to visit these countries before, but one thing is for sure – they are about to become the first of your trips.
On the next leg of her road trip, Eva meets Toader Barsan, one of the last traditional carpenters in Romania.
Toader lives in Maramures in northern Romania, a fascinating region that makes you want to step back in time. The county has retained a way of life that most EU members abandoned decades ago.
Toader turns everyday objects into intricate wood carvings – from a baby’s cradle to the giant wooden doors that are the pride of many homes in this region.
Although his skills have earned him international fame, even while visiting the White House, Toader loves his hometown.
âI was in America, in Washington. They tried to convince me to stay there, to pay me a lot, âToader says. âNo, I didn’t accept. There is no country in this world like Romania. “
Using a simple ax, saw, hammer and chisel, Eva watches in amazement as Toader transforms a tree branch into a beautiful serving spoon.
She also tries to add some pressure by timing her sculpture. How long do you think it takes Toader to craft a kitchen utensil with basic tools?
Watch the video above to find out.
Previous episodes of Rerouted: The Balkans
What is Kukeri? Explore the incredible Bulgarian tradition that scares away evil spirits
Bagpipes in Bulgaria and how to make the most of a trip to the mountainous Smolyan region
It’s the most expensive cheese in the world and you won’t believe what it’s made of
Welcome to the family vineyard that survived two world wars
What is horinca? Learn how to make the drink that doubles the money