We arrived safely back in Budapest after our eventful extended weekend in Venice. Tuesday morning I checked out a local gym, I’ve been eating a little too much I think :). It was very refreshing to work out again but more importantly in terms of my experience, it was interesting to compare a local gym in Hungary to a local gym in America! I found that the gym here was smaller than gyms in America, but other than that is was surprisingly similar! The descriptions on the machines were even in English, which was surprising to me. Following my workout I visited another bath house called Rudas. It was on the other side of the Danube, in the Buda side of the city. I found that it was smaller than Gellert, but less touristy, which was refreshing and more of a true cultural experience. The thermal baths contain minerals in the water that supposedly make your skin soft, something that I am looking forward too!
Yesterday we visited the Roma Parliament again, as we did last Wednesday. We toured the surrounding area, known as the international district in Budapest where a lot of the Roma people live. The Roma here definitely live differently than the Roma do in Italy. Although their conditions are still ‘ghetto’ – like, they are worlds better than the conditions that the Italian Roma live in. Today we toured the Jewish Synagogue as a class, visiting the on-site museum and Holocaust memorial as well. The museum was small, but it showed artifacts that are important to the Jewish culture such as objects used for holiday celebration and ancient scrolls written in Hebrew. The Holocaust memorial was very moving. I specifically learned about Hungarian Jews and their fate, as well as the fate of so many Roma people. Most of the Hungarians who were taken by the Nazi’s were sent to Auschwitz.
Tomorrow will be another eventful day, I will be sure to post about my adventures as soon as I can! We have been having class here in a local Pub, Leonardo attended today! I think it will be difficult to go home and have to sit in an actual classroom for class :).