Budapest, Hungary - Polarsteps
Our train to Bucharest was due to leave at 7 O’clock that night. We had the whole day to ourselves to prepare and chill really. It had been an expensive few days and we thought it would be best to wind it in a bit and spend some time at a local library.
We abandoned our bags in the lockers at the train station, and wandered through mock renaissance backstreets to the spot.
Shoutout to the locker attendant, what a geezer. To get our bags into the locker he took our money, dismantled the locker itself using some of the biggest biceps I’ve ever seen, and rebuilt it. Pretty secure? I guess? Anyway, I felt safe (on my bags behalf) in his arms.
Whiling the afternoon away in the library, I read my book, taught for an hour and cracked out some emails. Also did some remote work over FaceTime with the missus, great stuff.
Ellis played poker for four straight hours. Listening to “Happy Donk”. If you haven’t heard the genre, give it a listen, you might find you love it, you might find you have an annuerism.
We gathered supplies, whisky and some pastries, and, uncharacteristically, some fruit from a local supermarket and made our way onto the train.
Our 3 man sleeper berth was shared with a Scot called Pete. He was lovely, but he didn’t want to drink. Glaswegians!
So we went drinking with an older American couple next door. They were an interesting pair, pretty much everything you might expect from older Americans from the South, Kentucky if I remember correctly. They had a pet python called Monty. As in, Monty, the Python… Genius
The chap worked for Boeing and was working out of Hungary with a view to move to the Caribbean for a new post in a few short weeks. He did microavionics for fighter jet cockpits. Pretty badass shit.
They didn’t drink much, basically Ellis and I got pissed in front of them and chuffed a fat one out the train toilet. We all had a good laugh and when bedtime came, the comforting rickety rocking of the sleeper held me asleep until the morn.