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Budapest

Ode to my suitcase

On the 1 of June I left Budapest. What a strange feeling: this part of my life is over! And soon my experience in Romania will be over too. I really liked Budapest and somehow I feel that I will go back there one day. It really is the city of my dreams. Big but not crowded. The perfect place to relax and to party. The city offers something for everyone: no matter if you are old, young, sick or healthy. The only problem: people tend to speak Hungarian. If I should ever go back there I will definately have to learn the language. I am afraid that I might spend years trying to learn it and in the end I will still not able to order a coffee....

While I was cleaning my room I was really sorry to leave. Such a nice room, not too expensive and a nice flat mate..... In the middle of the city center but yet very quiet. In Budapest you can find all the luxuries of modern life and even buy german black bread but yet you are so close to my beloved country Romania.

I paid my last visit to Margrit Island: I jumped on the trampolin for the last time and did my work out in the park. Margrit Island really is the greatest place on earth for open air excersise.

The day I left I spent quite some time waiting at a bus station. While I was waiting I was looking at my suitcase and petted it like a close friend. It has been with me for a very long time and been my companion wherever I went: USA, Japan, inter-railing, Italy, Romania, Georgia, Hungary. Lately it has served me well transporting my books back and forth because it has hand luaggage size and is not subject to any weight restrictions in planes.
If it could talk it would be the only witness of all the experiences I made in foreign countries, the good ones and the bad ones. I really love this suitcase. Even though it is in pretty bad shape I don't think I will through it away. It will travel with me until it is so broken that it cannot be fixed anymore. Hopefully I can keep it for many more years.

While thinking about my suitcase a black Mercedes passed the bus station. It had a German liscence plate from Cologne, a dark haired driver in a dress suit, talking on his cell phone while driving, and a Roma flag in the back window. I had never seen anything like that before and started to make up stories about who the driver might be. Maybe a German Roma activist visiting projects in Eastern Europe?
To me that car really was a sign. A sign that thing will be ok and that I am doing the right thing.

I am back in Cluj at the moment. I will leave Romania for good on the 5 of July. That is the deadline I gave myself and my plane ticket back to Germany is already booked.
I have no plans for the summer yet. Maybe I will work to earn some money. I applied for an internship, beginning in September or October, at the Roma and Travellers Division of the Council of Europe in Strassbourg/ France. It looks like they are going to take me which would be cool. Strassbourg is right at the boarder to southern Germany. Hopefully Avtandil will find a job there.
6.6.06 21:41


High Adrenaline

What is it that makes me so stress resistent these days? Well it is not the sunlight which I alsmost never see and if I do only because I force myself to do so.
Last night I stayed up working hard until almost 2 am. Maybe I was a little tired but I just kept working. My guess is that stress causes me to produce a lot of adrenaline. My drug of choice!

PS did the pants test this morning: they are not as tight as they used to be anymore....
4.4.06 13:54


Becoming an Associal Being

All I have been doing for the last two weeks is to work for my thesis and to follow my no diet diet. Well, as I said this month I am concentrating only on exercise and drinking a lot of fluids. Drinking is not that big of a problem but how to exercise when you are busy writing? Well, going to the library is quite a nice walk but I do not go there every day. I can work, diet and drink better at home.
This is my daily routine: When I get up in the morning I make a lot of tea, eat ceareal and start working. For the rest of the day I just work.
I cannot sleep during the nights because I am always thinking about "Roma Ethnic identity". Luckily my friend Willu is here but she is in the same stage than me so we do not do too much stuff together.
Whenever I do go to the library I meet people like me. Someone should make a study about how people react to stress because I have my own theory: Men stop washing themselves!!! It happened to me twice that I was sitting next to hard working males who had not shaved in weeks, had not taken a shower for who knows how long and the word washing machine did not seem to be part of their vocabulary. I have not observed any gender specific behaviour of females though....

When I am at home I also take care of body, I make my own Kefir, put Yoghurt and cucumbers into my face and every other day I cover my whole body with olive oil. Yesterday I took a bath with olive oil and kefir, tried to massage my cellulite away and enhanced my circulation by using a brush to massage my legs. That was almost as relaxing as that massage in Georgia....
Well the results are amazing though. My skin feels soft, my pimples have almost vanished and the dark circles under my eyes are getting brighter. I have less problems with digestion, no more gastrits and feel fitter. Lets hope things continue this way and my thesis turns out well.
2.4.06 20:48


1. Day in Budapest

I came back to Budapest this morning. I was welcomed by nice and warm spring sunshine and the first thing I did when I arrived at home was to put my winter coat into the cupboard. I hope the weather stays like this.

I love Budapest and seeing it in the sunshine this morning really gave me a lot of energy. Let's hope that it will turn out to be my lucky city and who knows, maybe I might come back one day?!

I guess my popularity wil increase by living here. But really, I have no time for the touristy stuff so whoever wants to visit me has to be a "help-yourself-guest".

My new home is a huge room in a two room apartment which I share with Zsuzsa who is Hungarian and very happy to practice her German. I hope that she will teach me some Hungarian too even though I do not intend to concentrate much on learning the language since I have another urgent thing to do. You know what I mean...
I live close to Nyugati train station and the walking distance to the library is enough to get my daily bit of exercise.

My apartment has a nice kitchen, a washing machine, and a tv! Unfortunately I have only two German channels (sorry one is Austrian) and the rest is in Hungarian. After having lived without a tv for one and a half years I have to say that I did not miss a thing and I think that I won' t watch it that much.

I fully equiped the kitchen with everything I need for my no diet diet, well, does anyone know where to find cheap peanut oil in Budapest? I read that it is very good for frying and has a nutty taste. Sounds interesting! Have to try that.
Speaking of oils: Did you know that olive oil is the best body lotion you could think of? You just have to be careful not to put too much because it is very greasy but gives you soft baby skin. I think the last time my butt felt so soft was after that "massage" in Tbilissi/ Georgia.... horrible memory.....

Since my no diet diet is also a no scale diet I decided to measure my success using one of my pants. When I left for Germany ten days ago it was quite tight. When I came back today it was even tighter!!!! I guess that's because I did not iron it....

Well, things will go slowly and before I waste my time thinking about health issues too much I should better invest my newly gained energy into my diploma thesis. Resolution for tomorrow: fully concentrate on my work!!
21.3.06 20:25





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