“Travels to a Different Time” : 30May1975: Budapest, Hungary: A Megaton Nuclear Blowout in Budapest; Bribery, Booze and a Brothel?

The day commenced in orderly fashion but it was going to end in a way it may never end for the rest of my life. Up early I read two books. Less weight to lug around. It is almost a fetish reading and dumping the too many books I have brought along. But better than television which is not so easily encountered in the Iron Curtain. Went to Elemizer to pick up breakfast supplies. I read some more and for lunch a bottle of peas and a room temperature beer. This time it was off to the old town which reminded me of Salzburg. There are more tourists in Budapest than I expected. The old city is walled and lies on a hill overlooking Budapest. I went into the military museum which was moderately interesting. Yes the communist soldiers were the bravest ever! The old guy taking the admissions let me in free if I taught him how to count from 5 to 10 in English. He already knew 1-5. A bit strange as we could only communicate in German. I bought some mineral water and chocolate wafers on the way home. I took the Metro to the Astoria station. I arrived home and ate the wafers I had not consumed along with the mineral water. I sat out on my regal balcony for awhile and had a stupendous non-meat dinner for 65 cents. On my long walk home near the river I crossed the bridge and I heard rock and roll music coming from a boat docked on the river. A big line up to get in which was solved by giving an American dollar. Drinks were $1 each and the place was hopping, “The place to be seen”! I met a guy Alzam from Tanzania here on an exchange programme. I met a nice-looking chick named Marian who spoke flawless English. Her dad is a big politico and next week they are moving to Belgrade where he will be working in the Hungarian Embassy. I danced with her most of the night but at 1 a.m. she had to split due to the Mom and Dad complex. I stayed with Alzam until the boat disco closed and he said he knew a great club that was still open. We walked forever and approached a residential area. He walked up to a house and knocked on the door and a bar slid open and we were inspected and let in. I think the meanest criminals and lowlifes were here. Dark lighting, red lush furniture, bottles of Champagne and many heavily made-up ladies. Never ever has this poor innocent Canadian seen something like this! What we drank I am not sure as my mind was not in the glass but on the bizarre movie set in front of my innocent eyes. Is this a brothel? A den of spies and snakes. Was Maid Marian on the boat a spy?  I did have a man approach me on the disco boat and whisper in my ear, “I am a Capitalist”. We left at 5 in the morning and swiped a couple bottles of delicious milk on doorsteps. Took a taxi home and thundered in the door at goodness knows what time to a surprised landlady!

Published by Robert K Stephen (CSW)

Robert K Stephen writes about food and drink, travel, and lifestyle issues. He is one of the few non-national writers to be certified as a wine specialist by the Society of Wine Educators, in Washington, DC. Robert was the first associate member of the Wine Writers’ Circle of Canada. He also holds a Mindfulness Certification from the University of Leiden and the University of Toronto. Be it Spanish cured meat, dried fruit, BBQ, or recycled bamboo place mats, Robert endeavours to escape the mundane, which is why he has established this publication. His motto is, "Have Story, Will Write."

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