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The Rain in Buda is mainly in the Pest (by David)

by on August 2, 2015

We made it back to the apartment just ahead of “heavy thunderstoms with hail”, so we’ll have a lazy afternoon. We’ll see if we can get the kids to blog, instead of whatever else they do on their devices.

[Turns out the storm passed north of us … continuing our good luck on the weather… but I had a nice nap anyway]

We had a fun short adventure this morning:  we had an hour to kill before our tour of the Parliament building, so we went to the parks in the area.  We found some fun things:

The last remaining Soviet-era monument in the city, complete with hammer and sickle:  they’ve torn all the others down and sent them out to a storage yard outside town, but some treaty requires that they keep this one up… despite frequent graffiti and etc.

  
A statue to Ronald Reagan… striding toward the Soviet monument as if to say “here comes the new sheriff in town”

  
A monument just put up by the Prime Minister in honor of the citizens who died in WW II, which has everyone up in arms because it doesn’t give enough recognition to Jews who where killed or sent away, and it glosses over the fact that Hungary was on the wrong side for most of the war.

  
—————-

That’s the most shocking thing that Renee and I have learned on almost the entire trip….  we had no idea that Hungary was a member of the Axis.  They were only invaded by Germany in 1944 and a puppet government put in place, after the Hungarians got tired of the war and started to negotiate with the Allies.

—————

We intentionally did this trip as a “buffet” of Europe, so it’s getting a little repetitive.  We’re getting very good at it…. if one were to write instructions on how to visit a European Capital City, it might go like this: (Rachel and Virginia will recognize this list…..)

Take train to city.

At train station:

Change last countries’ money to new country.

Add lots of zeroes to the denominations as you move south

Buy tickets for the train to the next city

Take taxi to apartment

Watch route on GPS map to make sure you aren’t getting ripped off

Land in apartment and try to figure things out

How the heck does the washing machine work?

If successful, start a load of laundry

Is it stocked with basics:  paper towels, dish soap, laundry soap

How fast is the Wifi?

If slow, tell Alex that it will be OK, he’ll survive

Go to grocery store and stock up for 4 days

20 eggs, 12 yogurts, bread, jam, diet coke, ice cream, fruit, butter

Try to figure out which of the milk-looking cartons with strange words is actually Milk

Try to figure out if they have bacon or breakfast sausages that the kids will eat

Go out and about on first walk of the neighborhood

Have dinner… try to figure out the local food

Get home… try to figure out how the shower controls work

Blog

Bed

Next few days:

Check all the weather forecasts and try to guess which one of them will be correct for the day.

Take the Free Walking Tour of the town

Go to the Biggest Old Church

If it has stairs to the towers, climb them

If it’s having a wedding, watch the wedding

Go to the Big Old Castle

Open Trip Advisor app, and do everything in the Top 10 that isn’t an Old Church or a Museum

If the town has a river cruise, take it

If the town has a big ferris wheel, ride it (except Daddy)

Go adventuring and see what we find

Lunch and/or Dinner:

Day 1:  Make the kids try the local food

Day 2:  Find an Italian restaurant so they can have Margherita Pizza (Anna) and Spaghetti Bolognese (Alex)

Day 3:  Go to Hard Rock Cafe and have cheeseburgers and ribs

Last morning:  pack bags and go to train

Repeat 15 times.

13 down, 2 to go!

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