Canoe Trip

From Esztergom to Budapest the Danube waters flow

3 days and 3 boats, 11 people did go

Passing castles and ducks in flight

We were looking forward to a bogrács delight

Paddling on the left, paddling on the right

Waves from speeding boats gave us a fright

The Megyeri bridge at last made its show

And we rowed home swiftly with sore muscles in tow

Vrsno, Sovenia

Last weekend Laura and I had some meetings in Vrsno, Slovenia with our Central and Eastern European Colleagues (Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Poland, Bulgaria).  It was a very meaningful time in terms of our connection with friends who are tackling similar issues in their work.  We dug deep into our CEE related issues of Identity, Community, and Modeling.  It was also a rare opportunity to bring our kids with us to such a “work-oriented” meeting.  Thanks Milan, Dusan, and Stephan for making that possible!!

Now, let’s just say that Vrsno, Slovenia is not your typical meeting location.  It is a 7.5 hour drive to the West from Budapest (because I’m a slow driver), and it is an hour drive into the mountains from the border intersection of Austria, Italy, and Slovenia (It is amazing how close all of these countries are in Central Europe).  Vrsno is a little village at the top of a mountain (population of 60 people?, possibly 1700 meters?).  We stayed in a low-key panzio which was heated by a wood burning furnace, and there was a kitchen we could use to cook meals.

We spent the mornings and evenings working, and we used the afternoons to “get out” and have some adventures.  We are really looking forward to taking a group of students to Vrsno for an English Adventure Week.  Attention students, go to the outdoor club website for details.  And finally, I will let the pictures tell the rest of the story:

Yes, we will go swimming in this pool. No, I’m not kidding.

These are our neighbors.

Our Central European Network.

creatures on the mountain

Oh, I would love to do this.

mountain lake

NorthEastern Hungary

In the last couple weeks, we’ve been given two opportunities to see some of the most beautiful parts of Hungary and Slovenia (The next post will be pictures from our meetings in Slovenia). First, our friends Tamas and Zita took us to North Eastern Hungary into the Matras. I guess we’ve been waiting for almost three years to visit that part of Hungary. NorthEastern Hungary is about 3.5 hours from Budapest and is full of beautiful mountains, vineyards, and castles.

T & Z are the master program coordinators, and I think we took about 300 pictures of the following: Tokaji borvidéken séta, Telkibánya kincskeresés, piknik a réten a zemplénben, vacsora az ágyban mese, a panzió Sárospatakon, tengerszem Sárospatak mellett (túra), Füzéri vár, Sátoraljaújhely libegő, a leghosszabb Hu-n, Sárospatak Rákoczi vár, panzió reggeli, mesenézés, Tokaji borgyár, Boldogkőváralja várban, Lilafüred, ebéd, bableves. (In English, we walked through a Tokaji vineyard, we excavated crystals and gems from an extinct volcano, we had a picnic on a sheep farm, stayed in a panzio in Sárospatak, we hiked up to a mountain-top lakelet, we visited the Füzéri castle, we rode the longest mountain-side chair lift in Hungary in Sátoraljaújhely, we visited the Rákoczi castle, we visited the Boldogkőváralja castle, we hiked through Lilafüred and ate bean soup.)

Thanks T & Z for the great weekend!! You can see more pictures if you click here. Here’s a few pictures:

This is the Füzéri castle

Excavating gems from the surface of an extinct volcano.

This is a mountaintop lakelet near Sárospatak.

Seth lost a tooth.

Picnic on a sheep farm.

Picture by the Rákoczi castle.

this week

Yesterday we went downtown to see the Easter market at Vörösmarty tér.  On the way we stopped to play on one of the many awesome (and somewhat dangerous) playground toys they have in Hungary.

We also happened to see the city’s annual pillow fight.

It was so awesome to have a visit from our Szegedi friends (the Georges) and to share an early Easter dinner.

Seth has been working hard on reading and writing.  Here’s three of his latest words.  🙂

ezen a napon

Az idő szokatlanul szép volt ezen a napon.  Amikor felmentünk ezzel a mozgólépcsővel a HÉV végénél, láthattuk a kék éget.  Miután összetalálkoztam néhány ismerősömmel, gondoltam, hogy alkamas lefényképezni a Batthyányi tér környezetét és a napi munkát végző embereket, akik elsuhantak mellettem.  Talán többet kellene magyarul írnom.  🙂

Big Weekend With Jo-néni

While I was out of town this weekend for some meetings, Joanna came and stayed with Laura and the boys.  Joanna hanging out with the kids for a weekend = FUN.  Besides learning some new funky dances, the boys went to the city zoo.  (Jo, I lifted some of your pictures from facebook.  🙂  THANK YOU Joanna for serving us!  It was a beatuiful weekend, and Seth and Jacob were excited to finally  be able to wear their hokie hats.

At the Zoo.

Reading the Map

Jake and Dori discussing Hungarian politics.

On Friday night, while I was gone, Laura had a női búli, and she made the best cheesecake ever known to humankind.

Milyen magas vagy?

Backwards pants