Saturday, October 25, 2014

Pécs - Day 1

On Wednesday, Dan and I traveled to Pécs in southern Hungary.  The American Corner in Pécs has a English Conversation Club and we volunteered to be their guest native English speakers.  Our day began with a three hour train ride.  I enjoyed looking out the window during our ride. Southern Hungary is quite mountainous with lots of trees.  When we arrived in Pécs, we walked to our hotel near the city center.  We were immediately amazed by the beautiful architecture.  In the center of the city is the Mosque of Pasha Qasim.  The Turkish architecture stands in sharp contrast to the surrounding buildings.  It serves as a Catholic church today.  Unfortunately, it was under construction so we were unable to go inside.  This picture was our first sight of the mosque.

You will also notice a giant horse statue in the picture. This is a new addition to the city.  There is currently a Leonardo da Vinci exhibit in Pécs. The horse statue is something da Vinci had hoped to make himself.  A modern artist constructed this massive statue according to da Vinci's design.  

After we checked into our hotel and ate lunch, we walked to the Zsolnay Cultural Corner, the home of the American Corner.  During the Conversation Club, we talked about books, movies, food, and traditions with about 13 people. We had so much fun! The one hour event lasted about three hours. Getting to know the Hungarian people has been our favorite part of this Fulbright experience so far. Yes, my research is going well and the sights are great but the people are my favorite.  After speaking with people hoping to improve their English, Dan and I are always amazed at how exceptional their skills already are.  I wish my Hungarian was as good as their English. We have a few more events like this lined up but I hope we can do more.  I enjoy getting to know people and learn about their lives. 

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