With the pressure that the current immigration discourse is putting on Romanians and Bulgarians living in the UK, it wouldn't be surprising if the girl with the beautiful high cheekbones didn't take my friend's question as a genuine invitation to talk a bit about herself and as an opportunity to learn something about him.
Immigration may well prove to be the death knell of the EU as we know it. But if it is, it will not have been due to immigration itself but rather to Brussels' tone deaf, inflexible, and insensitive response to the issue. The matter is highly emotional and goes to the very heart of people's values, sense of fairness, cultural identity and social cohesion. Trying to counter that either with cold numerical and economic arguments or with dismissive insults of xenophobia is not only futile, it is grist to the mill for the political parties which have successfully made immigration their main platform and that seem on track to form the largest single grouping in the European Parliament after the May elections. But it's worse than that. The Brussels response will be constructed by many as being absolute proof of a type of Union they reject.
The bitter winter of 2014 is passing and dogs have mysteriously disappeared leaving a river of blood and the evidence destroyed. Any tourist visiting should remember the haunting screams, the cries for help and the eventual cruel demise of these defenseless creatures. This is the dark secret of Craiova - The European Capital of Canine Cruelty.
Just a few days ago 29million Romanians and Bulgarians gained the right to settle in any part of the European Union, including Britain and Ireland. Although there are fears many will make their way here, the impact is unlikely to be as significant as in 2004 when the UK opened its borders to people from eight new member states including Poland and Hungary...
The UK is not a favoured destination for Romanians and Bulgarians, with Spain, Italy and Germany more attractive to prospective migrants. However, there is still considerable uncertainty, since migration is highly dependent on economic, political and social factors in sending and potential host countries.