A Travellerspoint blog

Placement Tests

Yeah that is plural, 3 days of testing!

rain 11 °C
View Eastern Europe on Caitlin L's travel map.

Surprise! School doesn't start this week... we have a whole week of TESTING. Everyone is very anxious about them but I am feeling cool and collected because they are placement tests, we aren't supposed to know everything before we start school! The good news is we have plenty of time during the day because we just an hour of testing and an hour of Hungarian classes. I am learning a lot now; I can now and can say: "I am..." fill in with nationality, age, name, feeling ect. I am now learning all of the feelings, I have a few down.
Because I have had extra time in the day I have found the pool and been several times. It is a really nice pool and I enjoy swimming in it, it is heated, shallow the whole length, indoor, very clean and new. But it does cost a lot per visit. Soon I will get a membership but I am waiting until school starts and I get my schedule.
I am also enjoy using the extra time to meet my new classmates. Every night we go across the street to the Teatrum, a tea room; however, most people do not get tea there. It is very cozy, they speak English and it is so close, I will be spending a lot of time over there.
It is showering constantly and it is already cold. It went from 100 to 60 in a 1.5 weeks. It is crazy but I don't think that it will get much warmer so I am trying to get used to dressing for the cold.
I am looking forward to school starting so that I can get into a real routine and start learning. I enjoy having all this time on my hands but I am not used to it, normally I am running around trying to get everything done. I miss you all and I hope that you are enjoying my blog, I am coming quite fond of it myself. Have a good week!

Posted by Caitlin L 22:40 Archived in Hungary Comments (0)

Settling In

overcast 18 °C

This weekend was very relaxing. I went to the store and got some hangers and other necessities, so now I am finally able to completely unpack. Kate, my roommate, and I lucked out with our room. It is meant for 4 people but it is just the two of us in there. So I defiantly have enough space for everything including my new purchase, a basket. All the women here have wicker baskets that they bring to the market. This weekend there was a street fair in the main square and a woman was selling handmade baskets for so cheap so I HAD to get one (it was only $22)! It is quite sweet and I hope that I can get it back.
This weekend was also full of many adventures. Me and a few girls took the bus to the local Walmart (it's called Tesco). It was the biggest store I have ever been in and it had everything. So I bought things I couldn't find in town like tortillas, cheddar cheese, cream based soups ect. It was quite a challenge to figure out the buses but we managed to do it together.
CIMG0896.jpg
Then Kate and I went on a huge adventure. We took a two hour bus into Budapest and the metro into down town to spend the afternoon walking around the city. We had some great Chinese food, gelato and finished the night with a great Renaissance choir concert in St. Stephens Cathedral. This year Hungary is celebrating the Renaissance so this concert was part of that program. The singing was good and I am glad that we went, but it was kinda expensive to get into the city. And we almost missed the last bus out of the city, but after running from the Metro to the bus we made it in the nick of time.
I am looking forward to traveling and seeing a little bit of Europe on the weekends. I am now getting the hang of traveling where they don't speak English. Maps do wonders!
Everyone has arrived now and I am really enjoying getting to know everyone. There are 20 students here and 17 that live here. There are people from all around the world: China, Malaysia, Korea, Poland, Ireland, Spain, Australia, Canada, and all over the states. It is cool to be in this meld of cultures but we all have one thing in common: we are all trying to figure out the strange culture of Hungary.

Posted by Caitlin L 13:31 Archived in Hungary Comments (0)

Lake Balaton

overcast 20 °C

CIMG0872.jpg
Wow I can't believe this is my last day of traveling around Hungary. It seems like this week went by so fast! Today was a fun day that started at the lake. Everyone was wearing speedo's, which I expected, but I didn't expect to see a man mowing his lawn in a speedo! he he he!
We finished our week at the Herend Porcelain factory and museum. We watched them make several pieces. It is quite amazing how much work goes into one of those plates. After going through the museum we got to eat on Herend china for lunch. This was the best meal I had the whole trip and the china was so beautiful.

n46002787_..6706_1_.jpg

One day when I am rich and famous I will buy a set. There was a set in the window with a price tag of 6,000,000.00 Forints which is more then their lottery (it is about $35,000.00) but seeing all of those zeros was crazy.
Then we drove to my first wine tasting. Suprisingly I really enjoyed it. We had 5 white wines: Chardonnay, Pinot Grigio, Pinot Blanc, a dessert wine and one other that I can't remember (of course it was my favorite and I can't remember the name of it!).
Now I am home and I am looking forward to finally settling in, doing some shopping and getting some more food. I hope that everyone is doing well. Rachel- I am so glad that you are safe and sound. Kelley- I am proud of you for standing in front of that board! I miss everyone so much and I am hoping that once school starts I will be a little bit more distracted to get my mind off of home. Love you all!

Posted by Caitlin L 14:18 Archived in Hungary Comments (0)

Vezprem and Pannonhalma

sunny 23 °C

n46002787_..2630_1_.jpg
Today was a day full of travel, it began with a 3 hour bus ride and I spent most of the day inside the bus, but it was well worth the trip. The day started in Vezprem, our tour wasn't very good but I enjoyed the architecture on most of the buildings and I really liked the doors in this city. We had the most amazing lunch, I tried my first liver (I have had worse) and tasted the best lava cake I have ever had in my life. All of our meals and admission to everything is paid for and I have enjoyed eating at nice restaurants this week because my budget will not allow me to do that for the rest of the semester.
Our next stop was in Pannonhalma at the only monastery in Hungary. It was stunning, the church was Gothic and had great acoustics but what I will always remember is the library.
n694606276..20_9554.jpg
It was straight out of Beauty and the Beast. It was amazing, if you read a book a day from the library you wold be reading for over 1000 years. They had a 800-year-old Bible and they used the original cataloging system done by where the book is. So if you pick up a book and put in on a random shelf it is gone forever.
I am enjoying getting to know the people on our trip and we are starting to mold together so that is nice. Tomorrow is our last day of traveling and I am looking forward to unpacking completely and getting into a routine.

Posted by Caitlin L 11:34 Archived in Hungary Comments (1)

Holloko and Godollo

sunny 22 °C

n46002787_..6803_1_.jpg n46002787_..152_173.jpg
This by far has been my favorite day of our travels. The day started in Holloko, a little town northern Hungary, that allows tourist to see what is was like to live in Hungary in the late 1800's. Our tour guide, Piroskana, was born here and lived here her whole life. She told us about making the thread and weaving her wedding bed cover and preceded to dress two of my classmates up and go through most of the wedding traditions with them.
n46002787_..2929_2_.jpg
I learned a lot about the Hungarian culture and enjoyed seeing Paprika drying on the houses and seeing the beautiful embroidery on all of the fabrics. These pillows show a families wealth, the more the wealthier, these people were well off.
n46002787_..5680_1_.jpg
We then went to a fort at the top of the hill. It was very cool and I felt like a child running around an ancient castle.
n46002787_..7366_1_.jpg
We finished the day at a castle that Queen Elisabeth and Emperor Franz Joseph I stayed for a while. It is one a few baroque castles in Hungary and only one theater so it was cool to see it; however, I wasn't very impressed with the inside of the building. The reconstruction had just begun (the Russian soldiers occupied it and left it as rubble) so I hope that when it is finished it will be cooler. I am learning a lot about the Russian occupation some bad things but I am always reminded by locals of the good things as well.
As you can tell by the number of pictures I really enjoyed today and I hope that I get to take my parents there when they come and visit.

Posted by Caitlin L 06:38 Archived in Hungary Comments (0)

(Entries 11 - 15 of 20) « Page 1 2 [3] 4 »