10/31/2005

mitteleuropa, a first foray. part i: sights. matt and i went to budapest this weekend. he was in charge of the sights, and i, of course, was in charge of the eats. let's see how he fared: terrorháza, the house of terror, a museum that depicts the nazi and communist regimes in hungary and budapest and the unbelievable tragedies they wrought upon the people there. this definitely makes my top 6 museums of all time (which, in case you were wondering, are: 1. moma (new york city) 2. cooper hewitt (new york city) 3. terrorháza (budapest, hungary) 4. fondation maeght (st. paul de vence, france) 5. musée picasso (antibes, france) 6. tate modern (london, UK) who was it that requested more top __ lists? you happy now? and no, i still haven't been to the met. yes, yes, sad, i know.). it was remarkably designed -- singularly so -- and just had reams and reams of information about every aspect of these periods. this museum is located on andrássy ut, the big boulevard that runs out from the center, past the opera house and out to heroes square and városliget, the city park, which we unfortunately did not get to see in daylight. but here's the millenary monument in heroes square: budapest is divided by the danube into buda and pest. we spent most of our time in the city in pest, which seems to be where the action's at, but we crossed the bridge more than a few times, once at night (here, you can see the buda royal castle, all lit up in the distance. matt and i agree that the hungarians know how to illuminate their monuments.) and then again to see st. matthias church, a neo-gothic monster of a church that rises above the city and is conveniently right next to the buda royal castle. which i find more institutional-looking than most and really, not all that (but i'm difficult to impress when it comes to castles), but the view ain't bad:

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