Eastern Europe

Eastern Europe

During the past two weeks, I had the fantastic experience of visiting Eastern Europe on a river boat cruise on the Danube River: Budapest (Hungary), Bratislava (Slovakia), Vienna (Austria), and Prague (Czech Republic) as well as a number of smaller cities and towns.  Here in note form is a smattering of the highlights:

Most beautiful sight: Budapest at night from the Danube River   Buildings and bridges all etched with lights

Most educational: Buildings, statues, and historical commentary  Realize I have forgotten more than I ever knew about this part of the world

Most enlightening: First-hand accounts of life under the Communist regime  Learning that some cities which escaped damage in WW2 suffered destruction under Russian occupation

Most moving:  Shoe Memorial in Budapest   60 pairs of period shoes sculpted from iron and spread out on embankment of the Danube   In memory of Jewish victims shot into the Danube in 1944 -5

Most fun: Carriage- ride sight-seeing tour of Vienna

Most relaxing:  cruising along the Danube or sitting in outdoor cafés,  sipping cappuccino while people-watching

Most intimidating: dealing with three currencies: Forint (Hungary); Euro (Slovakia and Austria); Czech crown (Czech Republic)

Most personal: visit to a school and also a home visit, complete with coffee cake and conversation in Bratislava, Slovakia

Most challenging: managing the subway in Prague; lots of escalators: fast and steep

Biggest surprise: Medieval town of Czeshky Krumlov in Czech Republic   Charming

Most delicious: TRDELNIK in Prague:  round pasty shaped on a long stick and roasted in front of you; hot and crusty,  covered with sugar

Most unusual: Kafka’s statue in Prague  A small sculpture of Kafka seated on the shoulders of a headless man  Actually there are a number of unusual statues throughout the city

Most disappointing: Salzburg:   what did I expect? The hills actually alive with the sound of music?

Luckiest: weather: sunny and pleasantly warm, even in Salzburg which has a micro-climate and where it rains more than two thirds of days in a year

© Dorothy C. Judd

Next post: Monday, October 20  Please note change in schedule. Posts will appear each week on Monday only.

 

 

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About twofelines

What to say? I love my family and friends. I also love kids, cats, and books. Oh, and potato chips and Cheez-its. I am a retired teacher who still loves to be in the classroom, so now I am a substitute teacher.
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6 Responses to Eastern Europe

  1. Lisa Gross says:

    Wow! Sounds incredible. I feel like I was there with you. So descriptive.

  2. Lauren says:

    Sounds like an amazing trip! So glad you enjoyed it! Xoxo

  3. Ann says:

    I have always wanted to do that trip and cruise!! Thank you for sharing. Was it one of the Tufts tours? Big hugs. Ann-armchair-traveler

  4. Carol D'Agostino says:

    Thanks for the notes on your trip! Sounds fabulous! I was disappointed, however, that you were disappointed in Salzburg. I’ve wanted to return there since I went there on my grand tour in summer of 1964. We stayed at the Golden Stag Inn. I thought it was a magical place!

  5. twofelines says:

    Carol, I think it may very well be that 50 years makes a difference. There were hordes of tourists, and I found everything very commercial. I imagine it was unspoiled in 1964.

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