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Buda & Pest: Budapest

Written 9 September 2005

My trip has (mostly) improved since leaving Dublin-only two things have gone wrong, nothing worth mentioning, or at least not that I feel like rambling about right now.

*sigh*

Seriously, I’m having a grand time in Budapest. I arrived at 12:30 at Budapest Airport’s Terminal 1-which (re)opened at the beginning of the month. The facility was apparently completely redone, and quite frankly, it had that new airport smell about it-something that I recall from the early days of Denver International Airport. Amusingly, the new terminal isn’t that well thought out-as I emerged through the door labeled “exit,” I encountered steps. Bad architect.

I had to get myself over to Terminal 2 where I was going to meet Mateo. Once there, I put my luggage in storage and headed to the open air museum at the airport where old planes are display: old Soviet planes, the Ilyusians (spelling?), in Malev colors. The park was fantastic, and I really enjoyed myself looking at the old planes-I imagine that Jerry’s partner, John, would have had an even more fantastic time than I did. Sitting in the cockpit was fun, and I got a big kick out of the seats, which looked like they were original to the plane, although the cloth head rests were clearly modern-each was labeled “www.malev.com”

Once Mateo emerged through Customs, we ordered a minibus ride and a few minutes later we were hurdling down the highway toward the city center with a driver who had little patient for people who hesitated for more than a millisecond. We may have set a land speed record for the trip.

Considering the fact that Mateo had just gotten off an intercontinental flight, he did remarkably well: we had a light dinner, wandered around town, took showers, and then wandered around town again. We saw St. Stephen’s Basilica at night, and it was fabulously beautiful.

Once we had showered and cleaned up, we went to the Darling Bar, a hustler bar. Unfortunately the boys weren’t talkative, so Mateo and I wandered over to a bar/club named “Action.” However everybody was standing around, watching silent porn, listening to pop music, and looking at each other, thus suggesting to me that “Inaction” would be a more appropriate name.

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