28 June 2007


I was not in Budapest long enough, I need to go back very soon. I know people call cities cosmopolitan without batting an eye, but Budapest was very cosmopolitan, furreal, and the Budapestians seem to be such cool people.

A shoutout to cousin Jimmy, who suggested I go to the Szoborpark, an excellent suggestion. The Szoborpark (Statue Park) is a museum dedicated to the fall of communism, and is where they've put many of the statues from around Budapest that were propaganda monuments most people didn't want around anymore, but they didn't want to get rid of them, either. There are some interesting thoughts about outdoor museum conservation issues to be had.

A Best General View of the park.

Stalin's Boots, from the Stalin Statue in Budapest. In a move ala Berlin, Baghdad, et al, during the 1956 Revolution, the Budapestians tore down the statue at the knees. It happened to stand above the viewing stand (also in the picture) used by the bigtime Party people during military parades, but from 1956-1989, they were ironically standing under this symbol of the 1956 Revolution, the antithesis of what they stood for. There's a lot of irony in 20th century communism.

Now, for the most imporant thing I accomplished while in Budapest:
Langos (pronounced lan-go-sh) is a magical Hungarian street food that can be found in other eastern European countries who were formerly oppressed by Hungarians during the Austro-Hungarian Empire. It is deep fried dough, with soft cheese, garlic juice, and grated cheese on top, which is melty and gooey and delightfully delicious. This is not the time of year to be eating it really, because it is hot and heavy, but there are few pleasures on Earth this good, and it was worth the ensuing two days of garlic breath. I had it with a Borsodi beer, making the whole thing exceptionally authentic. ...In many places, my language is limited to me asking for my favorite local food: éna souvlaki, Παρακαλω; langos, kérem, köszönöm; poutine, merci.

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