blog header image

From Bucharest to Nashville

Posted on Wednesday, February 27th, 2008.

Irene Popa and Julianna EricsonIrene Popa never dreamed she would end up in Nashville, Tennessee. Born to a poor family in Bucharest, Romania, she learned to be a survivor at a young age. Her family was so destitute, they had to send her away to “weekly care” during the work week, bringing her home only on the weekends. Recently, Popa, a local Nashville aesthetician, came to the Nashville StoryBooth to share her story with her “soul sister,” Julianna Ericson. She told Ericson that she finally found a home with her grandmother, an herbalist, who served as her village’s healer and midwife. Popa’s grandmother, she recalled, taught her how to make herbal remedies and body care products, many of which she uses today at her face and body studio. She also imparted her wisdom, which guides Popa even today.


Previous post:
Next post:

2 Responses to “From Bucharest to Nashville”

To preserve the StoryCorps mission and experience for our readers and participants, comments are subject to the StoryCorps Terms of Service. Comments may be held for moderation or removed if deemed offensive or off-topic. Please do not resubmit your comment if you don't see it right away, it will be approved as soon as possible. Thank you.

  • Thank you, Shelly! Between deciphering handwriting and my obviously poor knowledge of geography, Bucharest became Budapest. I’ve made the correction!

    Comment from Kate on March 12, 2008 at 12:27 pm - Reply to this Comment
  • Is it possible that Irene is from Bucharest, Romania? Budapest is the capital of Hungary and I don’t believe that their is a Budapest, Romania, there is however, a Bucharest, Romania. Inspiring story nevertheless!

    Comment from Shelly H. on March 12, 2008 at 11:58 am - Reply to this Comment

Leave a Reply


  • Major Funding Provided By

    CPB Logo
  • National Broadcast Sponsors

    CTCA Logo Ford Logo
  • National Partners

    NPR American Folklife Center at the Library of Congress
  • Charity Navigator Logo