Sunday, June 15, 2008
If you spend the summer months here in Hungary, you've got to hit Lake Balaton. Summer weekends at the lake are an important part of life in Hungary. And if done right, a visit to the lake is very rewarding.
Coming from Milwaukee, the best analogy I can make is Summer Fest, because both are more than time spent near a body of water. Balaton, like Summer Fest, is a cultural touchstone in the region: a place, an event, and an experience. It comes with pluses and minuses, but if the summer goes by and you haven't visited, then you haven't really had a summer that reflects the place you are in.
Last weekend, Dorá, Lili, and I drove to the lake for a weekend get-together that Dorá's cousin Kazi planned. The company was great. I've known many of the people who were there for nearly a decade. There have been several marriages, some kids, and a lot of laughs exchanged in both broken English and Hungarian. It was a good group to share a Balaton weekend with.
During the day, we drank beer ate Lángos, Palacsinta, and Hekk. We threw the Frisbee around and wished the weather was more suitable for swimming. It was a good day. Relaxing.
We were in town called Balatonföldvár. Kazi's wife Kati has spent most of her summers there, and knows where to take guests. She showed us a hell of a night with some very odd karaoke and a great set of live music at some of the town's more lively bars. The most notable aspect of the karaoke was that the video accompaniment for all of the Beatles songs were soft porn fantasy sequences involving topless women and motorcycles. You don't get that many other places.
Posted by Hogan