Eric Noguez wraps up our journey to Romania by telling us about their last day of class and the wonderful feast they had at Dr. Teodoriu’s house. I wonder if he would be willing to cater the next MPGE function?
On our final day of class, we began the morning by visiting OMV Petrom in Bucharest, Romania for an in-house seminar of technical talks. Dr. Teodoriu began the seminar with his presentation on the importance of well integrity by highlighting that proper selection of tubulars is critical for the longevity of a well. The next presentation was given by Adonis Ichim and myslef on Life and Learning as a Sooner. Similar to the presentation we gave to the SPE chapter of UPG, we explained in detail what a Sooner is, what it means to be a Sooner, and why we chose to study at OU. The sub sequential talks were about using various commercial software to build a reservoir model and estimate the gas flow rate of gas wells in an area owned by OMV Petrom.
After the seminar, we ate lunch at the cafeteria of OMV Petrom’s campus where they served freshly made Romanian food, including one of my personal favorites, mamaliga, the Romanian version of polenta. Once we were done eating, we took our final exam (Dr. Teodoriu called it the “exam to go”) and headed back to Ploiesti for our final night in Romania.
Dr. Teodoriu invited us, once more, for a traditional Romanian feast at his house that started with a selection of cured meats and sausages along with a variety of locally made cheeses. To compliment the meats and cheeses, we were served balls of mamaliga that were filled with cheese and then cooked to perfection in the BBQ pit. The next course was an platter full of grilled chicken breasts and pork chops. It takes a great deal of self control to not gorge oneself too early because the food never seems to stop flowing forth! The main course was a plate of grilled mici (pronounced meetch), which is a traditional sausage made from a mixture of pork, beef, and spices which was followed by TWO desserts made by Dr. Tedoriu’s mother; Romanian style apple cake and and Romanian donuts covered in powdered sugar.
It is hard to believe that it is time to leave Romania already; we built so many memories together here. Our technical knowledge of the oil and gas industry and drilling operations has grown, as well as a greater understanding of the international nature of the field, we have developed a deeper respect for a culture that is different from our own and can further empathize with those students who came to study at OU with us from outside of the U.S. and the cultural shock they experience, and, due to all the wonderful food we discovered, I’m certain we are all leaving with increased waistlines, as well. Romania was filled with warm and friendly people, lively culture and breathtaking natural beauty. It is our hope that future students who partake in this study abroad class, whether in Romania or elsewhere, will share the same experience as we did and walk away better for having taken part in it.