I feel as though there is a common theme between my posts. Something along the lines of: “I went to a city and did nothing that you were supposed to do in that city!” Let me clarify that I am not championing wasting time. Actually, I have a bit of a type-A personality when it comes to maximizing time in a city. Being with my friend Dani really forced me to slow down, firstly because she is more into chill time, and also because she had been traveling for far more days prior to my arrival. I commend her for keeping up with me because traveling consecutively is absolutely draining.
Indeed, I didn’t do anything one is supposed to do in Budapest. In fact, I never even stepped foot on the Buda side of the River Danube. Instead, I explored the Communist past (something that fascinates me) in the less glamorous area where I met 2 Brits and a Kiwi. We did accomplish one “must see” which was the natural hot springs bath.
That night we got home from the baths rather late and didn’t think we’d really make it out. We went somewhere near our flat and ate the opposite of Hungarian food: Mexican. I was delighted because I was craving it (clearly there is no Mexican food in Turkey). In the Mexican restaurant I embarked on both the longest wait for a mediocre burrito in the history of man and also the most hilarious 2 hours of encounters. From a Mexican Jew who lived in Budapest and his Mexican friend who lives in London and swears she will call me when she visits Turkey next week, to a crazy Hungarian man who tried speaking, English, Italian, Hungarian, Korean, and Turkish to me via a dictionary. I even flirted with a freshman from University of Edinburgh, he told me about his history major…wow I feel old.
We then met the two best Hungarians of all time, Buda and Daniel. We drank cheap wine at the Mexican place, went next door, almost got in a a bar fight…twice.. and then left. Buda drew us the most hilarious map of things to do in Budapest. We did only one of them, which was meet him the next morning to help him install his photography exhibit on Margaret Island.
As we left the Island the big water fountain in the piazza started dancing to some classical music, Dani and I literally stood there amazed at our timing. As we started leaving we looked up at the speakers blasting out the music and she turned and said “Wow, this is so cool. The weird thing is those speakers were probably used to enforce communist orders just a few years ago.” Oh the way traveling puts things in perspective!
We ended the day at the market, I had a giant sausage and Hungarian beer.
I may not have seen the Buda side of Budapest but I did meet Buda himself!
Only after I left Europe altogether and arrived back in NYC did I realize that Buda does a little commercial modeling! I was sitting there watching television when all of a sudden I see a Fererro Rocher commercial and the only man in the commercial is none other than Buda! You can watch it below:
I obviously asked if he got a lifetime supply of Fererro Rocher and if I could have some, but the sad answer is no, he does not. Tragic.