congee hanzi

my place in the old world

I may have slept too long on composing this entry: my Euro vacation is over and I'm back in Albuquerque; so much has happened between then/there and now/here that I feel like I'm trying to write about the distant past rather than two weeks ago! Oh well, I'll do my best to make it interesting even if it's not quite fresh. This entry is about Budapest.

I never really got comfortable with the Hungarian Forint (US$1 = 193.77Ft). Every time I bought something, I'd scrabble frantically through my wallet, unsure whether the banknote I eventually thrust at the cashier would be enough to cover my tab or too small by an order of magnitude. I was so overwhelmed by arithmetic that my practice of vigilant change husbandry lapsed into chaos: by the end of the trip, my coin purse was literally bursting at the seams with Hungarian shrapnel of every denomination. The dudes on the bills gazed 'pon my fumbles with frosty disapproval.



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congee hanzi

fault linez

I always scold myself on the kinda-rare occasions that I buy emergency socks or underwear instead of doing laundry: like, how wasteful and disorganized. How contemptible! But oops, life got so entropic in Budapest that I found myself in the panty zone of a supermarket, late nite, weighing my options. Go commando the next day? Drive down the dirty dual lanes of Inside-Out Avenue? Or cough up for cheap Hungarian drawers? Well.

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congee hanzi

comment solicitation (written in haste!)

Vienna was not really part of the plan, but I ended up here on a layover, awaiting a train to Budapest tomorrow morning. Arrived after midnight and just got back from a long walk around: maybe my blood is just boiling from all the sugar I've eaten (literally had naught else today but 1.33 apples and a bu-uu-nch of candy), maybe it's the random luck of this nice hotel in a cool 'hood with its affable desk clerk Heinz, maybe it's just the vestiges of my explosive childhood crush on Tom Hulce in Amadeus, but Austria is giving me a really good feeling and I'm sorry that I'm not going to get to lamp here longer. So commenters, does anybody live here? Anybody have a good Vienna story to tell me? Anybody got Tom-Hulce-in-Amadeus' number?

Any Budapest tips/tricks/dares also warmly welcomed.

Unrelated decoration: Swiss banknote.
congee hanzi

mein Lieblingsgemüse

Hey dudes. As of today, I'm on Euro vacation: warm greetings from the Continent.


I had a li'l layover this afternoon in the World's Second-Worst Airport (London Heathrow), just long enough to flip through a copy of The Independent looking for signs of rhodri, snicker up and down the aisles of the airport convenience store, and shake the ashes out of my pant legs (Murkin panties combusting as they do in the presence of British accents. Cad fancy!).

My countrymen, did y'all know that they basically speak Murkin in the mirrorworld, skewed about fifteen degrees more hilarious? Do they do it just to tickle me pink, or do others find these product names amusing too? To get the full effect, you must imagine a Yank saying the name, chewing up his /r/s like hunks of Oberto. "You guys gotny mora those Revels? C'n I've a Starbar?" It's not natural. British Brunch Bar and NutriGrain Elevenses Raisin Bake are not meant to share a 7-11 shelf with Funyuns and Flamin' Hot Asteroids.




For some reason, the process doesn't produce the same effect in reverse: the thought of a British accent murmuring "Pop Tarts, Cooler Ranch Doritos, Cinnamon Toast Crunch" just makes my nips tingle.

So. I'm in Düsseldorf now, plotting a course for Points Beyond. Don't ask where: dunno yet. Meanwhile, light a candle for me tonight as you pray to the Patron Saint of Free Wifi, that I may continue to blog 'em as I see 'em. Amen.