Charmed Life [Joy Williams]

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

[3 September 2009 - 5 September 2009]

In an attempt to catch up with real time I’m going to try and lump the more boring days together to move time along and get up to present, where I will hopefully be able to write daily. Pre-session isn’t that exciting, so I’ll just be brief and talk about the more exciting, after-school activities :)


Hungarian of the Day: Bathroom



This is quite the important word, isn’t it? More important is the question: “Hol van a mosdó?” (where is the bathroom?) Now, the problem with being able to ask this question is that the response can either be good or bad. Good responses include pointing; bad responses include Hungarian words of the I-don’t-know-them-yet variety. Luckily, I tend to get a combination of the two, so I just nod, smile, and follow the pointing.


Thursday was a very pointless day, as far as I’m concerned. I understand its merits for those in my program whose native language isn’t English, and even more for those who have never attended an American style school. I would have never understood this previously to today, but there is a HUGE difference in how papers are written/organized/constructed between non-American and American schools. If I got anything out of today, it was this understanding of greater-Academia.

What was this pointless class? “Academic Writing.” Or, how to write a paper. Oh yes. This included things like:

  • What is a topic sentence?
  • What is a sentence?
  • How do you write a paragraph?

Now, a Canadian was exempt from this class last year. Can someone PLEASE explain why the Americans (at an American based school, mind you) be exempt this year? It wouldn’t have been so bad if it had been taught in a constructive way. But instead of being concise and to the point we had two four hour sessions on Thursday and another four hour session on Friday morning. Oh, and we had a homework assignment to use our newfound paragraph writing skills to write a totally pointless paper. This is really all I am going to say about Thursday and Friday morning: I will never get those hours of my life back.

Friday afternoon was neat - we went to Aquincum. Aquincum is the remains of an ancient Roman town. They were excavated at the end of the 19th Century. There are streets, buildings, and assorted stone work. It’s really interesting, but really small at the same time. A lot of it is also reconstruction - to make you feel more like you’re actually in an ancient Roman city! So, at times it can really feel fake too. However they do have the only intact water piano/organ in existence. I’ll just post some pictures here to show the best of the visit.

They used to use these things as the heaters for the baths. They collected the sunlight through the days and would retain the heat through the evening hours. Pretty crafty. They would also pour hot water into the baths from the walls behind this and the stones would absorb some heat and keep the water hotter longer.

Friday night we decided that we (about 8 of us) needed some sort of entertainment to make up for the life-wasting that had become of our lives the days prior. So Jan, our German friend who has lived in Budapest for the past 5 years (I think) and is engaged to a wonderful Hungarian woman, decided we were going to a specific bar. We met up with him at our usual metro stop, from which we proceeded to walk about a half an hour to this nifty, but incredibly crowded

bar. Mind you, this bar was right next to the metro stop prior to the one we got off at. Jan seems to enjoy getting us to know the city better - we just enjoy being lazy. So, this bar (the name of which I cannot remember) is an old apartment building that has been made into a bar. Open air courtyard in the middle and four stories of random rooms with tables and chairs and couches and such. There was even one really creepy room that had a dentist's chair in it (and no one was hanging out in it, that should tell you how creepy it actually was!) and a basement (that was beyond humid and musty). It's apparently the most happinin' bar in the city at the moment - so, being a Friday night it was CROWDED. So, since it was only 9 we left and went to a Hookah Bar, which was less than exciting for me since I don't smoke anything (even a delightful smelling Apple-tobacco hookah). But the company was good which made for good conversation. Later that night we went back to the Apartment-bar and enjoyed being in the midst of the place to be in Budapest.

And finally, around 2AM we made our way home on the night bus (where, not to scare you but, our friend had his pocket picked - if you ever come to Budapest and are on a Night Bus make sure you guard your belongings. I don't think he believed the warning about this. What made the situation funny - even though it really wasn't - was that the bum who picked his pocket apologized for taking his wallet and gave it back. Our friend only realized after we got off the bus that in a matter of seconds the bum had picked his pocket, removed the money - about the equivalent of $25 - and handed his wallet back to him. Not the best story about Beautiful Budapest, but it's one of the realities to living in a tourist city like this.) And then we slept :)

Saturday I just slept in and hung around our part of town - this included shopping for some necessities at the Arkad (the mall) and Ikea. It was nice to just have a day off from everything. So nice.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Thank you all so much for your comments! I'm only happy when I have comments. Really. You are contributing to my future happiness right now! XOXO