Budapest hey.... hmmm

Trip Start Jan 07, 2010
Trip End Apr 12, 2010

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Flag of Hungary  ,
Sunday, February 28, 2010

Budapest, another city that I never planned on visiting for even thought about!
A friend back in Spain mentioned going there and I said "hm, Budapest...never thought about
that". In Prague I met two other people who were going to Budapest nearly same day as I
planned on. The day prior to leaving I went to train station to ensure a trouble free ride
the next day and was told 11:40am, use eurorail pass, noooo problem! It was the first time
where a reservation was not required so I didn't have to get any tickets or pay anything. A
little concerned but I trusted her. Next day I show up and go to make sure no problems, but
the lady told me the train passes through Slovakia which Europasses don't cover, so I would
need to pay about 35 euros. I did not want to do that, so I decided to be creative and use
my pass to go around Slovakia since its unlimited riding for that date. So after waiting
2 hours for the next train to Vienna I jumped on and headed southeast and than east from
Vienna to Budapest. It was about a 7.5 hour trip, involving 4 different trains. My
schedule was printed in Czech language which was fun deciphering. The final train
ride was very quiet, nearly a whole train to myself. It always a challenge knowing which
station to get off when you reach your destination. What I thought was a good station to get off
in Budapest arrived I decided to leave. I faced a gigantic problem tho, I walked to the
door and looked for some method of opening it only to find nothing using common sense. I
knew I only had a minute to get off or the train would leave so I started pulling, pressing,
and turning ANYTHING I could find. No luck so I ran to a different car and luckily a
worker saw me trying to get out so he opened it. I than started walking and asked worker
woman where was "Metro" and she said with her rough english, next station... SHit, so I ran
back to train and barely made it on. I asked a train ticket checker to show me door and
I will descibe the PROCESS of opening this train door in the photo...

Budapest, (Budapesh Locally) was truely a good experience. It was different since I was
getting into more eastern europe and little did I know had Caves and Thermal Pools!! The
Caves were amazing, such a crazy experience! There are not lights anywhere except for the
one on your helmet. We crawled and slithered through spaces I seriously didn't believe I
could get through! If your claustrophobic at all not a good idea. The Thermal Spa experience
was amazing as well, there were 3 large outdoor pools and a dozen inside, some heated and
some not. My favorite was the one outside heated to around 38 celcius. There were bubble
makers, jets, waterfalls, and all sorts of cool things everywhere. One pool had an
inner circle that once you entered where pushed around a circle only by the water itself. The
jets were positioned to push you, all you had to do was float there and you would move around
the pool! There were many saunas with all different temperaturs. An unforgettable one would
be the 80-100 celcius room! They had a snow maker before you entered, I believe to cool your
seat and use anyway you wanted, but WOW that was soooooo hot!!!!

Agriculture is very important in Hungary and you really notice as you enter the country. Fields
looking very similar to Saskatchewans start to appear out the train windows. The snow has
tappered off into just a little pile every now and then. The weather was awsome, maybe 5-10
celcius, with the except of 1 rain day (no problem since went to Thermal Bath and Caves).

I sort of followed a friend I made back in Prague, Priscella had a hostel booked and I
assumed she did all the research for it so I just copied! AFter a tour Priscilla and I were
about to cross a street but just missed the green so we were hungry and glanced around only
to see a little restaurant in the corner. We entered only to see staring in shock at us,
Rain! It was crazy that of all the places in Budapest we entered the one where our other
Prague friend was in! So after a very enjoying and interesting metting we all decided to
attend a local Opera. We paid 2 euro...(crazy cheap!-not best seats forsure) and I experienced
my first Opera, not bad... the music was my favorite so my goal is to now see a full out Orchestra!
Hungarian food was delicious! Learned alot about the country, lots of bribery and a very
expensive democracy. Ex. 1000 government workers doing the work of 300. Very Slack jobs, our
guide was very interesting, it was the first time someone actually put down things in their
country and talked about the struggles almost as if she hated the place, but you could tell
she was just telling it as it was and she did Love her country. She was 36, but looked 10
years younger.

I am now sitting in a train heading back to Vienna, I will spend 3 nights there before heading
down into Italy.

Jot Notes:
-Pool Surpirse
-Garlic Cream Soup with Crutons
- 1 Canadian Dollar equals around 200 Kp.
- Worst Sleep Ever First Nite ( woke up every 2 hours)
-Room Beside Reception
-Parliament Building
-Broken Screen on MP3 Player - #$%#$%#$%
-Bought new jeans, army pants, socks, underwear
-Backpack too full
-Ate chilli cheese nuggets
-Deep convo. with Rain and Priscilla
-Ripped off, didn't get welcome drink - (did in end)
-Sewed Backpack
-Felt as if the further east you go, the more western it feels... (interesting thought)
-Got very angry and frustrated first night when couldn't find hostel
 wrote directions poorly, asked for help, people could barely read my writing.
 Eventually young girl called boyfriend and I found it! Thanks Girly
-Had a moment where I was soo tired of being lost and sick of learning a new city AGAIN.
 Kicking / punching air and swearing as I walked through park at night doing circles.
 Good Now Tho! Just a bad night! :)
-Met a Father from Australia that knows a teacher from Regina, saskatchewan. He has met up
 with his son and they are doing some travelling together, very cool story. Met in Caves
-Very difficult experience buying bananas, apparently need to weigh them first...long story
 involving language barrier...
-Tourismim isn't like Prague or Paris, hostels arn't full, streets arn't clogged. Unfortuant
 for Budapest since it has alot to offer. 
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