We farewelled Mr P in Ljubljana as he had to return to work in Dordrecht whilst the rest of the touring party made their way to the train station to board the day train to Budapest. Eight hours Mr X so you had better watch that Slovenian/Hungarian scenery out that window and enjoy it. You were the one who always  wants to train it by day. 

I guess that was never going to happen. 

The train trip was punctuated by Netflix on iPads, eReaders, snoozing and more snoozing. Ms X finally got to watch Life is Beautiful and forgot where she was for a moment. Apparently everyone in the carriage looked aghast as she apparently said the words “Oh dear” aloud at the end of the movie (apparently very very loud with her headphones on and she even produced sobbing). Mr X  also had a moment. He woke himself up and everyone else in the carriage, with his snoring. All this entertainment  we provided to the rest of the passengers was free!

Mr and Ms X together with Ms C settled into an apartment on the Pest side of the bridge which they loved. The hipster bars and elegant cafes, the smorgasbord of restaurants catering fore everyone’s needs and the Berlin-vibe of the city appealed to them all.

The trio visited the largest synagogue in Europe. It is the only synagogue that has a graveyard. In the synagogue’s garden there are 2500 Hungarian Jews buried in a mass grave the size of a tennis court. All told, 800,000 Hungarian Jews were killed by the Nazis. There is a holocost monument at the front which was financed by actor Tony Curtis whose parents were both Hungarian Jewish refugees.

Within the former Jewish Quarter there are funky bars and cafes and even a little bit of Melbourne.   The Ruin Bars  that have sprung up in areas of unclaimed land are great to pass the time.

A trip to Budapest isn’t complete unless you go to the thermal bars and sta there until your hands are wrinkled. Which we did. There were all shapes, sizes and characters there and you just allow yourself to be Hungarian for a few hours and just go with the flow.  The Széchenyi Thermal Bath is o­ne of the largest spa complexes in Europe and was built in 1913. The so-called fancy bath house contains indoor and outdoor pools of varying temperatures. 

Now we aren’t quite sure a country of 10 million has to have a Parliament House so big but boy is it impressive. It may even be on a par with London’s Westminster, one of Ms X’s favourite buildings. At night this one likes to show off!! 

Our Cold War Historians also visited the former Soviet Secret police headquarters, known now as The House of Terror which is a reminder of life behind the iron curtain.     

The Holocaust Memorial beside the Danube was made of 32 pairs of shoes to represent the Hungarian Jews who were shot and thrown into the river in November 1944. 

A gift from Berlin- a section of the Berlin Wall.

Basilica in Budda