A hitchhiker experiment 2

So it all started about 4 years ago, when I looked at the map. No, this wasn’t my first time looking at a map, I always loved them since I was a child. Even before I went to school I loved my father’s Great World Atlas. But it was an older edition, so when I finally got to a geography class in school I was surprised that a few countries disappeared, such was Yugoslavia or Czechoslovakia. (I had to look up the spelling, I’m neveg gonna be able to learn it, sorry…)

But this isn’t really important.

So it all started about 4 years ago, when I had a funny thought. My home town’s name is Tata. When I mention it to foreigners they laugh and some of them says it means something in their language. That’s why I thought I’d try to look for other cities with the same name. And indeed I found one.

Tata, Hungary

Tata, Morocco

My brother and I decided to travel there and visit our town’s namesake. But since we are not rich guys with huge private planes, our only option is a low budget hitchhiking tour. So then we started to plan our trip and thought this summer we would take an experimental tour around Europe to see how it really works. None of us did this before, only I have a few friends who do it regularly. Based on their records and after a thorough research on the internet – the academic approach is very important in every situation – we planned the trip, then packed our backpacks and left. I asked my brother what place should be our ultimate goal and he immediately answered: “London”.

1st day

First day, first friends.

Our first two rides didn’t take us really far, in the afternoon we were still only 40 km from home. And no one would pick us up. We kept walking around the petrol station asking people if they would help us to move forvard. No luck. Then we met two men whom I asked

– Elnézést, beszélnek magyarul? (Excuse me, do you speak Hungarian)

They just stared at me

– Excuse me, do you speak English?

No answer for a while then one of them noticed the map in my hand and asked:

– Gde putuješ? (Where do you travel?)

Hearing someone just to speak to me in Serbian made my heart leap. I explaind them our plan. Unfortunately they were truck driveres, not allowed to take the highways during the weekend. Anyway they invited us to have lunch with them. They were from Macedonia, and on their way to Bratislava, Slovakia. Later with my brother we made a sign to Vienna, but no one would pick us up. We were devastated, and considered giving up. (no, not really but we were very very disappointed) We were also given dinner by other truck drivers, very hospitable people from Portugal. We didn’t even ask for it, they just told us to join them. They spoke Spanish and Italian, I speak English, Serbian and a little French. But they were still extremely friendly.

We waited a whole night there…

2nd day

About at 6 am we were already waiting for a ride with our sign “Vienna.” A van stopped, a red haired lady leaned out of the window and told us to get in. They said they don’t go into the city but can take us to really close to it. I explained that we were on our way to the Atlantic ocean and the sign simply indicated the direction, and we thought we can have more luck if we don’t write a place too far. She said they were on their way to Paris, so we are welcome to join them all the way to France. We accepted and had great time with them during the 19 hours dirve. They dropped us near a metro station, and we headed to the city centre still unable to believe how lucky we were.

3-4th day

Spent mostly with sightseeing, so there isn’t much exciting or funny things to tell. My brother kept quoting from movies in every situation, which was hilarious and we had lots and lots of fun. Later in the afternoon we took the train to Écouen cause we thought it’d be easier to get to the main road from a smaller town than from the middle of a metropolis. So we arrived into the most beautiful little village I ever have been in. An by the evening we got to the A16 highway. The night was incredibly cold and long.

5th day

Early in the morning we got up and a truck driver picked us up who was on his way to Belgium.

 

(to be continued…)

A hitchhiker experiment

Here I post a few pictures of our summer holiday hitchhiking adventure with my brother. It’s been a long time since I did post anything for the last time, but right now I’M working on something else, a homework essay in Serbian… 🙂 So here are the images, and the story comes later…

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Search for myself

in these days in my country there is a strange tendency that makes me feel unwelcome in my own homeland. sometimes, when i think about it, i almost start crying. it’s a way down on a slippery slope and i can’t feel i can do anything to stop it.

it came to the surface in a conflict with other guys from my university. they are big supporters of the hungarian national football selection. this wouldn’t be a problem, but hungary is much more succesful in any other sports than football. it also never happened in this country that the supporters of the waterpolo team, the wrestlers, the swimmers or the hammer throwers, after a competition went out to fight each other on the streets or destroyed subway cars. this is only associated with the football supporter “culture.”

but this friend told me how exciting it was to go to romania for a match and how they saw the romanian suppoters and policeman hating them, and how cool it was to get into a fight with them. i did not understand what the point was in this. so i asked why do they need the football for this. can’t they go there to fight just at any time, and the government money wasted on stadium building can be spent on (ex.:) education.

they were outraged. (ok, i love teasing others…) because they think that this is part of whi they are, and to hate the other nations around us is a crucial part of our national identity. (sic!) unfortunately many youngsters in these days find themselfs unter the influence of these ideas.

but i never could feel this way since the most interesting things in this world are the cultures; the culture of my nation and the culture of others. does this mean that because hatred is not part of my identity, i am not hungarian? i love my country, more than one could suspect since i look a really passionless person. but i really do. i’m full of pride when i read a book of a foreign author and see hungarians mentionned. i think this is the way to look at ourselfs. to search what is the perception of other nations about us, then shape this picture to the better. i was reading a few days ago Virginia Woolf’s Mrs. Dalloway. though it is not a really important moment in the novel, once therre is a scene when people drink Tokay. (or Tokaji 🙂 ) it is indeed one of the most famous product of our country, and why not to be happy when i see it mentionned. but i want to go further. i want to know our history, literature, music, fine arts as deeply as possible. and guess what i want this about other nations… i’d bet those, who hate romanians, serbians, slovakians so much, never had read the tinyest piece of their literature ever. they actually know nothing about them.

and it’s all about the way you approach others. i’m positively sure that i will be welcomed when i go to belgrade next week-end. because i could never hate anybody there and somehow people can sense this.

our love story with fear

today i s aw a picture which made me think about our fears and the emotional bund between us and our fears. no, not the objects we fear but the fear itself. and i was thinking about the culture of fear specifically in the american culture.

if someone travels overseas to start a new life, what bring they there? but the more important question is that what can they leave behind? they have the opportunity that others rarely have in their lives. they could have left behind everything that hold us back. they could have got rid of every superstition, monster, demon, religion behind, but they chose to bring them along.

why do mankind choose to be afraid? why do we choose our fears instead of freedom?

how ironic that the old schemes and old regimes were built up again though they had the chance to create something totally new.

they called it freedom, but they were not free. Levaing Everything Behind: this is freedom.

and what made me think about this? this picture…Image

Grant Wood: American Gothic…

The first university occupation in Hungary

i proudly present that we moved in and don’t wanna leave the university building in budapest until the government starts listening to us! NOTHING ABOUT US WITHOUT US!

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the last week the government announced that in spite the previous promises they made, they want to include in the constitution the contract that students have to sign that obligates students to work in Hungary after graduation twice as long as they studied in high education. first of all this is against the EU laws that allows every EU citizen to work anywhere in the member countries. the so called reforms include the change of the whole application system, which is terribly unfair with the now graduating high-school students. the withdrawal of major financial supports causes the dismissal of high number of university employees as well. teachers, professors and students keep demonstrating together hoping that democracy will win at the end.

the aim of the demonstrator is to form a forum and commence the real dialogue with the decision makers and force them to consider our needs and will and make education available for even broader social classes . we want to live and work in our home land but not because we are forced to but because we can! we want the government to make us stay by providing employment and a way to use our skills and talents.

the forums we organise at the university day by day give an opportunity to everyone to practice our democratic rights to make  our own and our country’s future better.

i personally hope that the government will change this attitude before we have to take desperate and more radical moves. wee want real democracy that is not only for the good of the members of the parliament but for each citizen. we want SOLIDARITY regardless of age, race, sex, level of education. these things make us culourful but not more or less important!

Photo Title

i couldn’t find any title that could describe this picture… nor the feelings that made me draw it. this is one of my professors and we just call him the Datk Lord behind his back. he is absolutely evil and absolutely genius.
he teaches British and American Political Systems… does it matter after all?!