Trip Start Jul 16, 2008
43Trip End Ongoing
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I walked to a corner near the railway station with my suitcase because I seemed to remember that that's what I'd arranged the day before... and out of the blue one of the Vietnamese Esperantists wanders past on the way to the station! She was on the same train going to the same Esperanto event in Slovakia. What a coincidence!
Anyhow, I sent Péter an sms and before long he was there too.
I'd got the time of the train wrong so we had time for a few beers and some interesting Hungarian take-away food before the train was due to leave.
A very pleasant journey. I can't imagine living in Europe and not wanting to take a trip like this every chance I got. Though even the Europeans only want to go to the same places - Greece , Spain etc. for the sun. I think they don't really like each other that much - hey isn't that why Zamenhof invented Esperanto?!
Area around the railway station is certainly pretty grotty with some pretty desperate and strange faces hanging around. But they were friendly enough as I'd been lead to believe that one could walk to the bus stop for Modra but it turned out to be a fair way and the locals were urging us to take a bus, which we did do. I needed some change for the ticket vending machine and I tried the newspaper kiosk but the woman there refused... so I bought a newspaper. She asked which one do I want? I said any one will do. I suppose the sare sort of thing happens everywhere but if you have vending machines near the Central Station surely you need to make it easy for travellers to make change.
Anyway, where was I off to? Well, a (the) major website into getting people to learn Esperanto - and indeed successfully teaching people Esperanto - had organised a get-together of lernu.net users in combination with a week long school of Esperanto. I wasn't so much thinking about signing up for the courses but i had some time to kill in Europe and it's close to Szombathely so I thought I'd check it out.
So there I was on my way to Modra. It's only about 25 km from Bratislava so after about an hour I thought I'd better ask someone how far to go or whether we'd already passed it. Anyway, by the time i asked we were in Modra and our stop was next. Perfect!
Though a bit worrying as I could imagine others turning up on the bus and not knowing any Slavonic language, having a tough time asking for info.
The lernu.net do was in Modra-Harmonia but as I wasn't intending on staying up in the convention centre or whatever it was,
I was still curious about where this place was and what it was like so we went for a walk up into the hills. Again the directions were a bit dodgy. It was indeed really easy to find if you kept to the road but there was mention of a tourist trail which turned out to be rather confusing if you didn't know what you were looking for.
We eventually found the convention centre and it is indeed a surprisingly big building out in the middle of no-where.
Now my only problem is that the hotel near the convention centre is full till Monday and my hotel in town only has room for me for two days. I'l have to search around tomorrow for some more suitable digs. Everyone else is probably staying in the convention centre or in student accommodation nearby, but as is my usual custom, I like to find a nearby hotel - and at these prices, why not?!