7/12/2006 09:00:00 pm

Greatest Hits

Posted by Unknown |

We're driving down route 6 and we've just left Budapest. I thought while we drive I could take this opportunity to finish my "Best of Budapest" perhaps as a little good bye ritual. I'm not sure if typing in the car makes me sick but I'm going to give it a go. You've gotta live life on the edge you know.

So let's get back to it.

Margrit Island

On Thursday we went out to Margrit Island which is an island in the middle of the supposedly blue Danube. We had to go and pick our tickets to the theatre the following night. So we arrived, didn't get the tickets, but Jo and I decided to stay and hang around and walk home. It was a lovely day.

So we bought an ice cream each so I could afford to go to the toilet (you have to pay to go to the toilet quite regularly here and in Russia it makes me rather sad.) Then we sat around the park in the sun, the sweet sun, for a while. The sun! The Sun! It's so exciting. Sydney is cold. We are hot. The sun actually does stuff here. Hooray!

What was I saying? Oh yes, the park. It was a big park. And mostly it was full of couples rolling about in the grass kissing and fondling each other. I think perhaps that is because there is so little grass for couples to roll and fondle on in Budapest that they have to come to the island. It's like Budapest's very own Temptation Island!

So apart from the discomfort of having to sit amongst people's intimate moments, it was a very nice place to be. When we were wandering back towards the bridge we found a fountain that danced and shot water up in time to music. The music was played very loudly and it was a little disconcerting, but it was nice to see dancing water. Then we wandered back through the city looking for dinner.

Dinner in the Square

And we found dinner! Oh did we find dinner. We ate at this restaurant which was on the square of St Stephen's Basilica (where the non-decomposed hand is) and well it was very nice. When the waiter arrived I said "G'day" it just slipped out. I try and avoid saying "G'day" when talking to non-Australians because it feels like I'm showing off how Aussie I am. The waiter replied with a "G'day mate" and I felt embarrassed. But this is all unimportant. The place was good. The food was nice and the waiters were friendly. Jo had a "Vegetarian Plate" which had ham on it. But the kitchen sent their apologies and gave us a discount. Hooray for ham induced discounts!

Fiddler on the Roof

On Friday night we went to see Fiddler on the Roof. It was back on Margrit Island at a big outdoor theatre. It was pretty cool. The whole production was in Hungarian, it was very strange. I remember listening to the soundtrack when we would go on family holidays as a kid. So seeing it all come to life but in the wrong language was like being in one of those feverish dreams where you can't make anything go right.

Speaking of dreams Jo and I have been having really vivid dreams lately. I dreamt in Russia that U2 announced that they would be coming to Australia on April 20 next year. The website told me that they will be announcing the dates this week so consider that a prophesy. And an important one too!

I've also kept dreaming that I'm in high school. It's a re-occurring holiday dream. Weird.

Anyway Fiddler was a little strange but it was good. Grandpa would translate for us and then it'd get passed down the line from Valentina, to me to Jo. It was like Chinese Whispers so I think Jo saw a completely different show to the one Valentina saw, but hey, we all enjoyed ourselves.

And from my limited knowledge of Hungarian I even got one joke all by myself. I'm amazing.

The Grill

The Grill was a restaurant near our flat that sold good food. We ate their twice. That's all.

Saturday Night

On Saturday Night Jo and I went out with Juli. Juli is a girl who read my Grandfather's book on the internet and sent him an email. So when we got Hungary she met us at the Relo bash.

Anyway being young and hip, she offered to take Jo and I out to do young people stuff. So on Saturday night she took us to a bar called Soda. In Budapest they have a few bars that have set themselves up in side old buildings. So that you wander in thinking that it's going to be a bit old and dodgy but they've hipified (that's "made hip", not "made hippy", that would be Hippyfied) the place. Like retrofied everything, and stuck big manga posters to the walls and retro furniture everywhere. It was cool.

We went to Soda first and had a beer. We were there to watch German and Portugal play, but the techos couldn't get their projector to work. So we had to leave. It was a bit sad. The poor place lost all it's business because they couldn't get the football happening.

We were met by Juli's flat mate, whose name I've forgotten but was a very friendly guy, and we wandered across town to a different, even cooler, hipified, retrofitted, bar. This one was even more run-down and well decorated. And it was packed. Their football screens were working.

So Germany won, and we sat around drinking for a while after, shooting the breeze, eating a fabulous local cuisine of fat on bread, talking about snow. And then we wandered home, Jo and I feeling like young people who do young people things. It was a fun night.

And that concludes my Best of Budapest. But just quickly...

Worst of Budapest

The Size of the Coke

I don't know if I've complained about it before, but even if I have it's worth complaining again. At almost every restaurant and cafe we went to you ask for a Coke and they give you a 200mL bottle. A measly little bottle, barely a gulp. It's horrible. You need to drink 3 to get the same size as a buddy! Oh how I love the Australian Buddys. Even the bottles you buy on the street are only 500mL. I'm used to 600mLs of Coke. That's the right size. Anything less and I'm feeling a little wanting. Give me 200mLs and it hasn't even begun to satisfy. If I lived here I'd be outside the Coke offices protesting till they only sold Coke in cans or bigger.

I hope the UK has bigger Coke.