Sunday in Szeged

Sunday seems to be family day in Szeged (not so different than in many parts of the US, in fact). Walk along the river, hang out at Dugonics Ter, even go for a beer at Malata, and you see families. The children delight in the fountain, of course,  and run around it like little maniacs. But they do generally tend to be quite well behaved, unlike a lot of children back home. I went for a walk over to my old stomping grounds in Uj-Szeged this morning, only to find a big children’s carnival going on in Erzebet Park. It had the typical rides–bumper cars, flying swings, etc., and various games and food booths. I walked around it and circled through the park to avoid the crowds, taking a peek at my old home, the Herman Otto Hostel, along the

Liszt Ferenc Walkway in Erzebet Park

It was another glorious day and the views from the river were superb.

View across the Tisza River

That’s the Dom, or the cathedral, with its spires rising above town. If you look at the river picture, you can see the high sea wall protecting Szeged from flooding. The town was originally at the bottom level of that wall, which was built sometime after the devastating flood of 1879. The level of the town was raised. Believe it or not, the level of the most recent flood (the highest yet) was almost to the top of that sea wall! Glad I wasn’t living in Uj-Szeged then.

Detail, Reok Palace

The Reok Palace was looking particularly fabulous in the sunshine, with its irises and curves and flourishes glistening on the white exterior.

 

1956 memorial

And I had to look in on my favorite 1956 memorial with the student revolutionaries carrying the dead butterfly of freedom.

Sitting in the garden at Malata  this evening sipping a beer, I began to wonder if no one in Hungary ever goes out for a drink or dinner alone. I cannot recall ever seeing anyone else sittting at a table alone, which does tend to make one feel conspicuous and a bit lonely. Oh well, it’s better than staying home all day alone.

I did have a lovely lunch with Réka and Robi–some nice chicken with potatoes and mixed sautéed veggies, with a starter of delicious spinach soup. And cakes for dessert from Suti nem Suti. Yesterday I also had a delicious although overly filling lunch with a friend at Malata–burger and beer–and some cake at Suti. Good thing I’m walking a lot. Tomorrow I meet another Agi (three friends here with that name!) for lunch.

I cannot believe I have to leave Tuesday, but I have to move on to the next phase of my trip, I suppose. I have completed the work I came here to do, and seen all the friends I had hoped to visit. It will be hard to leave, but knowing I’ll be back in November will ease the pain!

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