On my walk across town when I arrived, I noticed most places advertised Hungarian paprika chicken so it seemed to be the local dish to try.
I walked a short way down to a spot that was highly rated and relatively inexpensive but I was the only one eating.
The chicken was served uniquely: a leg still attached to a boneless breast. It was good but I didn’t get a big paprika flavor.
There was a huge city map in the hostel that showed there was an island up the road that was entirely a park.
I crossed the elegant bridge over the Danube River humming the waltz all the way.
I was now in Buda as the map explained a long time ago Buda and Pest merged into the big city we know as Budapest.
It was over a mile walk but seeing the river and the city made it worth it.
I had to walk over another bridge to access a smaller bridge that lead to the park. It was crowded.
I finally located an empty bench but oddly all the benches faced away from the river so everyone sat backwards to see the boats, river.
I watched boats and ferries pass by for a while before walking to the interior hoping for a drinking fountain.
People rode by in a bike car contraption and it was funny to see usually only 1 person peddling while the rest just enjoyed the ride.
In most parks, there are spigots that I presumed were for humans to drink water.
There was an equal chance this water was for pets since most of the time they were located near a kiosk selling bottled water.
All I cared about in this moment was that my thirst was quenched. Plus I didn’t have anyone behind me waiting so I drank awhile.
I faintly hear classical music so I walk following the sound until I’m in a clearing with benches surrounding a large fountain.
Gah I stumbled onto another randomly cool event. Every night at 6 was a water show set to classical music in the park. I sat and watched.
Several symphonic pieces are played whilst the fountain shoots water in narrow streams in all directions until it lands perfectly into the pool of water. Very well synced up too
After the show ends I walk by the fountain and notice they have a small moat around it so you can dunk your feet into the water but not be all up in the fountain. That’s doing it right !
I walked back towards my hostel on the Pest side of town so I walked by their huge, elegant statehouse.
There was 1 brewery in town so I thought I should try it but I got fairly lost and found the scenic side of the city.
I suspected I was in the right place when I saw a large group disappear inside a building that was size of a city block. Massive.
I didn’t see a bar to sit at and the place is full. A portly man with an immaculate mustache stops me from leaving and points to a 2 seat table. ‘Please, we’d love to have you! Need a beer?’
I order a house beer, a pilsner, and settle into my seat. I hate sitting alone in a restaurant with servers. Feels odd, lonely and I know the servers hate it too. Only 1 person for same effort as 2-3.
This place is old, full of wood, history, large groups of tourists and old men pushing large carts full of Cole slaw, the house specialty.
I saw probably 10 carts go by me, en route to large private rooms that line the opposing sides of the restaurant. Long, communal tables lead into the central kitchen, bar area where everything was prepared.
I ordered roast beef with dumplings in a cream gravy off the house favorites.
Thing is out here, spices aren’t really a thing.
Cream or meat sauces are as good as they got, but really other than pepper, nothing had much flavor, much less heat or spice.
Plus the dumplings were more like light bread than the pasta like dumplings I grew up eating. It was a good meal, a different take on something I had grown up eating.
Earlier this morning at the hostel I’d talked with the receptionist who told me he enjoyed watching the sunset on a nearby bridge that was closed to cars as the city worked on adding a rail line.
I decided this was a great time to check out the bridge at sunset.
People would bring food, beer, wine and guitars to hang out for most of the night on the bridge.
The more daring people walked up a narrow beam to the highest point of the bridge for no doubt amazing but perilous views of the city and the Danube River below.
I bought a couple of cans of beer at a small shop on the way to the river. I sat down on a long wooden bench that stretched hundreds of meters along the river.
Off to one side kids were skateboarding, Turing tricks and filming their exploits.
I drank a beer while the sun went down watching party boats float by as well as the skaters before walking over to the bridge.
I was stunned by the view. The sun was just below the horizon lighting up just enough of the mountainside so that it glowed.
The city was also lit up and it was then that I realized walking a city at night is way better than during the day.
After crossing the bridge I began to notice the many spider webs built over the lights, lights which attracted moths, flies and other flying annoyances.
Every light and beam had a different web and spider in it. Some webs were huge and full of wings, others had just a lone spider.
Some spiders were small others nearly thumb sized.
No one else seemed to notice these feared predators were near.
I wondered if anyone thought it strange to see me hovering around the lights, but then I would see a moth fly into a web and quickly a spider pounced wrapping it up and I stopped caring.
Nature is fascinating and I’d rather check out spiders.
I made it back to the hostel and it’s still early so I buy a couple of beers while I chat with the receptionist.
He is from Germany studying in town and fell in love with the city. He was looking to find a place to live.
He was surprised I’d been to Karlsruhe, nobody goes there except students.
He tells me that a popular thing to do is visit the spas, pool all day. He tells me to go to one over in Buda that is very old and less touristy.
I finish my beer and bid him gutentag, then climbed into my top bunk. Always top bunk it seems for me.
Beer: Soproni Klasszikus
Song: Vivaldi the Four Seasons, Op. 8