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Friday, November 19, 2010

Coffee smells like freshly ground heaven.

10:37 pm CET

Today was a pretty decent day, despite it being Final Exam Friday. Yoana, Ada, and I were a little late for the test, but a struggle and a half later and I was done out of there, and ready to put it out of mind.

After we had all finished, Jane, Julianne, Yoana, Ada, and I took the six to Király utca (King Street) looking to get some coffee at the new Starbucks on the corner. It, however, is sadly still not open, so we went in search of another place to get a cup of joe. We found this cozy little café/pâtisserie-type place, so we all huddled around a small table with our coffee (absolutely outstanding) and cakes (also delicious)--by this time, Carrie had joined us, too--and discussed everything from theatre to kidnappings (I have no idea how we got there, either). It was great to just sit back and relax over a shot of espresso and some tasty pastries; definitely something we should all do more often.

When we had finished with our drinks, we relocated to a Mexican restaurant across the street for lunch. Following more crazy conversation and some good, but not really authentic mex later, the six of us decided to meet Tristan at the House of Terror, a museum dedicated to creeping the shit out of and upsetting all those who go by keeping the building's horrifying history alive. The four-story edifice was the headquarters of both the equally cruel Hungarian Nazis (the Arrow Cross Party) and the communist secret police (the State Protection Authority). Filled to the brim with propaganda posters and films, uniforms of the offiicers, memorials to the victims, and a giant military tank, there was certainly no lack of upsetting, thought-provoking content. I walked through solemnly, quietly, and relatively quickly, my heart heavy and chest tight. The experience was in no way exciting or fun; but it was a necessary plunge into a history that this country wants to be forgotten, but never lost.

Feeling in great need of something uplifting, we walked a short ways down and across the street to a slighly cramped english bookstore. The shelves were stuffed with volumes old and new, some used to the point of a cascade of pages upon opening, some still with a creaseless spine. I was tempted to purchase a few things (most notably a giant paperback of The Complete Works of Lewis Carroll), but decided against it, since I already have more than enough books with me here, and another two or three would just add weight to the already over-the-limit bags I will have to take home in February.

After several hours out, I headed home and have been here since, hanging around and watching random youtube videos (thanks Stumble). With Prague last weekend and Salzburg coming up next, I need this weekend to recuperate and prepare for the crazy week ahead; I'm certainly going to need every bit of energy I can muster.

Just as a sidenote: to all those who have already seen Harry Potter because their countries have a good film distribution standing, I hate you. I hate you so much... it-it the fee- it flame, flames, flames... on the side of my face... breathing breathle-, heaving breaths... heaving breaths...

1 comment:

  1. When I was in Italy senior year of high school, we visited this tiny town (I can't remember the name of it) and they had a torture museum. It was in this old building with no windows. I went with a friend, and we got seriously creeped out. You don't even want to know the kinds of torture devices that they had on display.