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Budapest II

August 30, 2011

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Okay, so first thing we did today was do a practice run back to Keleti station, which we always do, because we’re leaving from there Thursday morning, and we want NO SURPRISES. Time, tide and the trains wait for no man, and if the train leaves at 9:10, you wanna be in your seat and luggage stowed well before that, so that when the train pulls out at 9:11, and passengers watch the landscape glide away, you aren’t part of that landscape. Above, chess players at Keleti palyaudvar.

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The platform head at Keleti, P to K4.

After that we wanted to go to the Budapest Museum of Fine Arts, which has a good collection of pre-twentieth century paintings. I was feeling pretty good about our abiIity to navigate thd local transportion system, so we hopped on a bus. After a while things looked sort of odd, and we decided to get off.

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We were, as it turned out, just a couple of stops beyond our destination, but it looked like we were out in The Valley, for pete’s sake, no curbs, weeds everywhere. With the help of a couple of nice folks, we were back on track.

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The museum, and…

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…here’s a shot from the night before.

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The museum itself is pretty impressive, and the collection is good, although if you’re looking for big names, most of them are elsewhere. One Hals, one Renoir, one Pisarro, one Breughel, etc. On the other hand, more El Grecos than I’ve seen elsewhere, and many examples of lesser masters.

Also on display were paintings from a group of Hungarian painters, exponents of Fauvism who called themselves The Eight. These I thought were for the most part very good and deserve more attention from the general art public.

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Afterwards we walked back to the central city on Andrassy Ut. It’s a beautiful, tree-lined boulevard, home to consulates and expensive apartments. Occasionally, though, in the middle of this opulence you will see grandiose old buildings that are derelicts. This is one example, although more magnification may be necessary to appreciate how sad it looks in comparison to its neighbors.

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Once we reached the Oktagon intersection, we took the number 6 tram back to our neighborhood for dinner, and then drinks at the local beer garden.

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…and so to bed.

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