Trip Start Mar 19, 2008
Trip End Jul 01, 2008

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Where I stayed
A train car

Flag of Hungary  , Budapest,
Sunday, May 11, 2008


I pull into Budapest at 5:00am sharp and am definitely still
tired. I was constantly being woken up last night to have my passport checked,
and because it was just so damn cold-I could see my breath at times. Because I
still had two hours before anything opened up, I wandered the streets like a
homeless person for two hours. This city is just amazing. It was the look and
feel of Eastern Europe, but definitely shares many architectural ques of
Austria-they were in the same empire after all. As soon as 7:00 rolled around,
I headed back to the train station to buy my ticket to Krakow, and pick up a
map of the city. I find it easy enough to buy the ticket, and its cheap as
well; only 39 Euros for a 12-hour ticket. After picking out a amp, I get a
rough idea of where I want to go and how I'll get there ingrained in my brain;
this map is bulky, and in Italian. I try to stick to the plan, but every time I
see something cool the next block over, I can't help but to investigate it. I
end up walking to about every scenic location on the map that day. From the
Buda Castle hilltop I can see the entire city, the green-forested hills
everywhere, and up and down the river. I don't know what people think when they
hear Hungary, but Budapest is a must visit. I could have spent two or three
days here easily-there are just so many museums, boat tours, and other random
things to do. And just as in Belgrade, the people here are all so friendly. I
did find it quite difficult to find food in my price range though; there really
weren't too many street vendors. Nearing the end of my walking tour, I sat down
in the grass in a great little river island park. I could have easily fallen
asleep here, but didn't want to miss my train or get ripped off. Thankfully, I
was able to find a huge Church that I had spotted from the hill. The interior
was just amazing; it really made me wish I had brought my tripod to use in the
low light. The paintings, mosaics, and woodwork were just amazing and over the
top. The atmosphere was made complete with the pip organ playing in the
background. As I get back to the train station, an old man sitting at a bench
motions for me to play him in chess; I usually would have taken him up on the
offer, but I just wasn't feelin it today. I end up just waiting around for
about an hour for my train to arrive. When it does pull in, I'm met with an
awesome surprise. I don't have to sleep in a chair tonight! I get an honest bed
in a sleeping car; ahhh, this is going to be nice. Unfortuneatly I'm on the top
third bunk, but eh, I'll be sleeping the whole time so whatever.

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