Thursday, June 25, 2009

Ladies of The Night...or Mid-Afternoon...

Being that I am from a little suburb of Denver...heck, being that I'm from the U.S., "Ladies of the Night" are not something I've encountered in any way, shape, or form in my lifetime. The closest I've come to it is watching "Pretty Woman" and feeling uncomfortably antsy at the "sexy" parts. Anyways, with that said and my larger, more intellectual views on the subject set totally experience from yesterday is newsworthy. Let me preface the story by explaining that this occupation is technically legal in Hungary...with some limitations on where the exchanges can take place (i.e. not near schools, restaurants, etc.). So, Alvin and I were in a little town outside of Miskolc, Hungary exploring and gearing up to watch a bike race today. Our Hungarian friend Greg was driving us around and showing us things. Here is how this experience went down, as I remember it...
  • Greg: "Over there is a nice lake, and oh! We have &#%#$*'s here!"
  • A & H: "WHAT?"
  • Greg: "&#%#$*' know, #@**&(!"
  • Alvin: "Wait, beaches or peaches?"
  • Hanna: "Horses? Waaiiit, not mean c^%va (Hungarian word for the explitave that rhymes with horse...think about it...)
  • Greg: "Yes! They stand on the side of the road and wait for cars to stop!
At that moment, sure 3:30 in the afternoon, we drove by a woman standing suggestively on the side of the road, another walking towards a car that had pulled over. They were not dressed as my Grandma Helen would approve of. Me, being the sheltered American jumped with delight and this sight and almost felt the need to take a picture. Greg then honked and made another comment I will leave out of the blogging world and up to your imaginations to fill in. Oy vey.

Sunday, June 21, 2009


Ok, so some of you may have immediately noticed my type-o in the title. The term "Sziasztok" can mean "hello" or "goodbye" in Hungarian. One day however, while walking through Alvin's village, we noticed a family of storks living in a next on a telephone pole. I then proceeded to yell out, "SziaSTORK!" and have a laugh attack for about 10 minutes following. This isn't the point of my blog, though. I've spent the better part of the last 3 weeks saying lots of "hello's" and "goodbye's" here. A big hello was when my sister and her (now OUR) friend Kate came to visit Hungary. I couldn't have enjoyed their visit more. They were even initiated into the Statue-Accosting Association of Hungary while they were here! We made a visit to Vienna and Kaposvar, and even made a visit to my school to see my kids wonder who the heck this girl that looked exactly like Hanna was! I've also had to start saying a lot of the word "goodbye" here already, which is heartbreaking, really. My kids have been a huge part of my life this past year, and saying goodbye was not easy for me. I thought I was going to be able to hold it all together and get through it without tears until the last day of teaching as I was explaining to 1.c that I wasn't coming back (some of the kids still don't fully understand I won't be here in September, which hurts me more). As little Zsofi came to the realization, I saw little tears well up in her eyes as she sat with her chin in her hands and yup, that did it. Suddenly, I had 15 crying kids surrounding me making me realize that I really did have an impact on them. Enough of the sad stuff, though. I got to enjoy so many flowers, chocolates, and my favorite...lots of pictures they colored for me. I will not go home empty handed! I also got to go to an end-of-the year swimming party and watch the kids just have fun, outside of school. I couldn't be happier.
Here is little Zsofi from 1.c. Lili and Mate, enjoying the water.
And now I have a couple weeks to just enjoy Hungary! Alvin and I have already started aimlessly wandering around Budapest, along with hitting up sites on our "list". Here we are, climbing up Gellert Hill in Budapest! I'm happy to know Hungary isn't done with me yet! Nor will it be in July when I leave...I think I'll be back soon enough :-)

Monday, June 8, 2009

NYTimes Material

Woop, woop! Check out the shout-out to Budapest that was posted on the NYTimes website today...all quite true if I do say so myself:

Wake Up!

So yea, I woke up today and it hit me that today is June 8th. Yes, in one month exactly, I will be on a plane going back home to the States. I will toss the emotions of that idea aside for now though and focus on what amazing things are happening NOW. I had two of my best friends from home visiting, and they left yesterday. I LOVED having them here to just talk to, laugh with, have them meet the boy, and basque in good news together. To Han and Jo, thanks a MILLION for spending the money and time to come see my world over here, and I am so happy you got so explore some more of it too! I love you so much.We spent Saturday at Lake Balaton wandering around the lake and also saw Alvin in a bike race. This wasn't just any easy bike race went the whole way around Lake Balaton (that's about 200km, people!). He finished in about the top 30 out of about 1,000 racers, and I'm really proud of him. He even managed to have enough energy afterward to meet the girls and answer their pressing questions :-) In the picture below, Alvin is all the way on the left of the group, in the elbow pit of the man with the tattoo. Good lucking seeing it! It was quite the sprint to the finish!In other news, this is my last week of teaching! I'm trying to enjoy and savor the last hugs and fun moments with the little ones before I leave. Tomorrow I get to go to Parliament with 2.c! So excited. Also, my sister Katie and her friend Kate fly into Budapest Thursday. I absolutely cannot WAIT to have my sister here. So yea, there's way more fun to come before July we'll consider that later :-)

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Pulling a Jon Clark

So my wonderful friend who also teaches here in Hungary has a blog that he dedicates almost entirely to amazing things he cooks here. And when I say cook, I'm not just talking about making a tasty cream sauce or a good batch of cookies...I'm talking about making his own noodles from scratch, making homemade limoncello...he even made foam for our coffee on his stove when I visited once. Anyways, I always get such a kick out of his blog entries (not to mention a hungry tummy), and while Alvin and I were making salad with veggies straight from his backyard over the weekend, I got excited and said, "I am going to pull a Jon Clark and write a blog about this!". So here I am, with pictures of our beautiful, delicious and fresh salads that came right out of Alvin's backyard. The bread was freshly baked from the bakery in Kaposvar. And yes, the loaf IS about the size of someone's head...or maybe two someones. Oh, and since I've dedicated almost a whole blog entry to Jon Clark, I will include a link to his blog here (hope you don't mind the publicity, Jon!): Jon's amazing blog (I suggest not reading while hungry)