Wednesday, July 13, 2011

European Chronicles June 23, 2011

Well, folks, we survived our first full day in Hungary! After my dad woke us up a bit before 11:00 (I'm pretty sure I could have slept all day), I braved the small shower (I only have one bruise on my shoulder), and got ready for the day. I was a bit nervous about my appliances working--and if you know me at all, you know that's a BIG deal--but alas, the hair dryer and straightener worked like gems and I looked like my usual self (I hope that's a good thing).

We left the house a bit before noon and drove (who knows where because all these streets are curvy and there are lots of trees and interesting buildings everywhere) to my dad's Hungarian teacher's house and picked him up for lunch. And no, we didn't eat Hungarian food--we had.....drumroll please...CHINESE food! Yup, good ole Chinese food (and man was it good!) I sipped on my little Cola light (key word SIPPED because you don't get refills) and enjoyed my soup (which was a bit too spicy) and my chicken fried rice (which was delicious!). We chatted for a bit (so interesting to hang out with a native and hear cool stories) and headed back to his house where we met his wife. We sat in the living room and got our first experience with REAL Hungarian food! I don't know the name of what we ate, but it was like this thick pancake thing with sour cream and cheese on top (yes please!) and drank Alder (or Elder?) flower juice (homemade might I add) and it was AWESOME! I'm pretty sure I had like three glasses!

We had to make a pit stop on the way home to pay a bill at the Posta (post office). Yes, folks, you have to go into the posta to pay your bills here (I am only imagine the chaos and uproar if we had to do this in America--be grateful). There were signs posted everywhere telling us not to take pictures (really? why?) and I normally wouldn't have wanted to except for the Hannah Montana books that were translated into Hungarian and the book about cats that I should have purchased for Marcie. We also found an ATM and got some cash (amazing that my Kern Schools card works all the way around the world).

Then it was back to dad's house where Sam and I went to relax a bit (and TOTALLY fell asleep). Not long after that we left to pick up some of dad's friends (Mike and Nancy) for dinner. (Yes, all we've done so far here is eat). Anyway, we went to a Hungarian restaurant that served BIG (and by big I mean a normal glass in the US) glasses of Cola light (happy AMY) and delicious food. I had pork strips (which they called stripes until recently) and chips. YUM! Mike and Nancy have been in Europe for about thirty years, so it was really interesting to hear their stories. Ice cream followed dinner (raspberry gelato to be exact) and it was quite a treat. We spent some time on Mike and Nancy’s patio after dinner drinking coffee (water for me) and visiting more. The weather was BEAUTIFUL. It’s been pretty hot during the day (and in the upstairs part of this house), but the patio was nice.

Guess what we did when we came back to dad’s house?!? DUTCH BLITZ!!!! Oh the joy of that game. AND I won—but I can’t celebrate too much because I am the only one that’s ever played. J Perhaps they’ll beat me as the week goes on.
Tomorrow we’ll be up at 8 for a FULL day of sightseeing! I am SO excited to actually go into town and see all the gloriousness of it. I’ve seen most of Budapest before, but I just can’t get enough of it. I’m sure we’ll have lots more stories to tell tomorrow.

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