Saturday, June 28, 2008

Day 33- June 27th: Tell me why logic doesn't exist in OZ, Wonderland and Budapest!!!

pic: chairlift gondola ride down
pic: teenage train station gang

My friend Attila invited me for an outing today and I thought it would be nice to go explore the maze-like cave systems on the Buda side. We took the bus to an out-skirt part of the city and had a very nice walk in the mountain and through dense forest. The view of the hills around with Budapest in the basin was amazing. We also saw some strange wild life and tons of interesting bugs. We must have walked about 45 mins and I kept asking him where is this cave located and he kept on saying 'almost there'.

When we finally reached the mountain top but there was no cave in-sight. Only thing was a chair-lift gondola ride down the steep hills. We were both very confused and I finally called Beata and asked her the Hungarian pronunciation for “cave”. Attila was way wrong.. he thought I meant a ride down the hill but I meant to walk down underground into a 'cave'; regardless of the mistake it was a nice time.

We had a nice lunch at Mammoth- a mall built on ancient mammoth habitat (like the La Brea Tar-pit), the mall interior is dotted with display boxes of fossils of mammoth bones found on constructing the mall.

I than went to Gallert bath (built in the 1800's) by myself and it was what I expected: grand and very ornate. I actually prefer the a little run down Turkish ones (built in the 1600's) because it felt more 'real' to me and it feels like you have been taken back in time.

I than decide to go get my train ticket to Bratislava, Slovakia. I arrived at 6:48pm and was #706 and they were on the #630 I almost pass out because only 2 windows were open and 100 people waiting for their # to be called. During the 1 hour an 45 mins of my wait, I have encounter, angry, frustrated tourists, menacing teen gangs, tearful mothers, tricky con- artists, and all sorts of colorful people. Did I mention all tickets are issued by hand and written by hand! How delightful!

Also since I will be going to Prague from Bratislava I asked for 1 one- way ticket but she issued a round trip ticket I noticed the mistake and told the ticketing lady immediately but silly me; apparently one-way cost 22 euros and round trip cost 16 euros. So everyone gets a round trip ticket and save money! I am sure this experience makes going through immigration in the USA like going for a free shopping spree!

Also one additional note on the post office trip a couple of days ago, I went back and mailed more postcards and they do have computers and postage printer they just prefer to lick the stamp and stick 3 stamps per postcard manually because it doesn't matter if you help 100 guests per 8 hour shift or 10 guests. It's a government job and they just don't care... this element of the old soviet socialist really sucks ass.

Another odd thing: lot of men here mostly guys under the age of 35 shave or trimmed their underarm hair but some of them are missing more than a few teeth; try this for logic.
I have come to realized logic doesn't really work in Budapest. No one runs this country and you are govern by cashiers, train station, subway and theater Attendants. As long as you have money and a ticket you are ready to rock!

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