Thursday, April 05, 2007

Another Day in Budapest

It was an overcast day yesterday. After a slow food lunch--arugula salad with Parmesanand walnutsfor me and rabbit with paprikas for my two lunch companions, we strolled the city streets. A shop here. The new Apple store. A shoe store. A store devoted to selling those machines that make coffee from those new pods. An art gallery or three. We made our way to my favorite tea shop, 1,000 Teas.

Since my last visit here (maybe more than a year ago) they have entirely renovated. It is still divine. We sat on low cushions. L. had a brief nap. I threw caution to the wind and had a strong Turkish tea with heavy doses of raw sugar crystals. We smoked my first waterpipe, which felt definitely exotic and even slightly illegal. Of course, ala Clinton, I don't inhale. In fact, I am abashed to say that I am constitutionally incapable, thank goodness. Not to mention that my body (thankfully) has no reaction to nicotine. A waterpipe sucks the smoke down into steam before you suck it into your mouth. Very steamy. Loads of hilarious pictures.

After the tea and smoke, we headed to the theater to see Lefele a hegyrol by Arthur Miller. We sat in the front row. L. and I had to move our legs each time an actor crossed the stage. It was a wonderful play skillfully acted. I have no idea what the English title of the play is. But the story involved a Lyman Felt who has two wives. A tricky situation. I loved that on occasion I would catch myself NOT translating and just enjoying the action.

Theater for the brain needs food for the gullet. We headed out thinking that we would haunt one of our favorite bars, the Castro, a Szerb place, on Raday utca about a thirty minute walk. Not a half block from the theater, there it was: the Castro. Since our last trip here the Castro had lost its lease and moved next to the theater! No tourists here. Just important cheap haircuts, scarves, and cigarettes all a dangle during intense conversations about who knows what.


Harry Heuser said...

Arthur Miller in Hungarian? It's The Ride Down Mt. Morgan (you made me look it up). I'm visiting Budapest for the first time next week. So, I appreciated these personal reflections. Isn't postmodernism a rejection of home? Cheers, Harry

J.K.Kelley said...

Enjoy your stay! Check out my other entries about Hungary/Transylvania by clicking on the label in the sidebar. I thought postmodernism is/was a loss of "home." See the the new exhibit in the contemporary art museum (Ludwig Museum) for further reflection.

And thanks for the English title!