You know what, Fuck being prepared.
After reading so much about all the ham fisted tourist cons waiting for me in Budapest, I was terrified. So Shit scared about everything that even buying a cup of coffee needed a reconnaissance mission.
I was all in anal.
Every time I bought a beer, I waited, heart in mouth, for the doors to close and for some truck sized skin head bouncers to threaten us with the Sicilian ‘swim with the fishes’ line.
Well, just like the beautiful blondes who are attractive because-of -brains and-personality-and-not-chest-size who did not materialize, none of the tourist traps came to pass. I still have all my organs.
Blame it on the fear mongering Americans who dominate the internet.
So, what happened in Budapest?
‘This place is dirty.’ That is the first thing ‘Antonio’ said when we got off the train. (I forgot to mention that I was travelling with my very good Colombian friend.And no, we haven’t started importing cocaine.)
And he was right. But not the live, decaying dirt that plagues many cities not managed by Stepford Wives Union. Budapest (or as we later learnt, the Pest part of Budapest) is grimy. With years and years of accumulated soot that stains all it’s buildings a dark grey-ish color.
It was like stepping into a weird time warp universe.
The whole place had that brooding, cynical feel that all vampire movies (except for the sparkly pre teen wet dream that is Twilight) seem to have.
And then, because we spent time reading about stupid American tourists, we forgot about the weather. Which was freezing.
And a testament to Stalin’s do it big philosophy:
And of course, the museum…of the World War 2. I might need a citation, but Hungary basically supported Germany in both world wars. During world war 2, the boys at the top realized they had made a mistake again (after grabbing neighboring territories and basically participating in the Facist/Nazi orgy up to 1944), tried to join the winning team in secret. Hitler, like most people, was not very happy with this Judas move. So he taught them a lesson by flattening their city,wiping out the Jews and setting up a puppet government to keep an eye on the traitors.
(Okay, I enjoyed that waaay too much.We all done things we not proud of, okay? Don’t judge.)
And just in case you still think the world is a happy place with sunshine and butterflies…..
Yeah, well, it can’t be fun and jokes all the time I guess.
Eventually Budapest stopped sulking at us. And just like in those movies where the rebellious kid is finally accepted by everyone, we warmed up a little bit to her.
We stood on her huge bridges and wondered if we could find our very own non-gay Edward (n my case) and a taste of blonde double d’s (In Antonio’s case). We drank our coffee in brooding silence like the locals and rode the bus stone faced.
We made peace with each other. Especially after Hungarian goulash dumplings, incredibly cheap beer and this vanity project: