Thursday, May 12, 2011

Ah! I'm in Europe!

I think it's about time for an update that is more than pictures. I know, pictures are worth a thousand words, but sometimes a picture just doesn't do justice to all that is taking place.

As you know, I (along with a group of 3 girls and a professor from Covenant College) arrived in Budapest Tuesday afternoon after two plane trips. The first was long, although not nearly as long as a plane trip to Africa. I know some people aren't fans of long plane trips, but for me, I just love them. It gives me a chance to sit down and process everything before I get to my destination. I'm pretty sure the whole flight over I was saying to myself, "AH! I'm going to EUROPE! AH! I'm going to Europe!!" So, processing or getting very excited, one of those things take place on a long plane trip.

The second leg of the journey our group was split up on the flight. I ended up sitting next to a Hungarian woman, and a man who has been living in Hungary. They were like tour guides. They told me places to see, food to try, and history of their country. It was great! Of course, being semi-jetlagged I'm not sure how much of that good info I retained. Oh well, it made for a great second leg of the journey.

When we arrived we were met by some folks who work at the school. They took us grocery shopping, got us our bus passes and student IDs, got us dinner, and took us to our home for the next few weeks. I think I was in a daze because the moment my head hit the pillow I was out.

The next morning we went to the International Christian School of Budapest. We were put into our classrooms and I am with Mrs. M. She is amazing! She teaches third grade and does an amazing job. I am SO blessed to be able to intern under her. Everything she does is so smart and so well planned. I'm amazed! And from the git go she let me jump in and do stuff.

Within minutes I had met all the kids (there's 8 of them) and was warmly welcomed in. They had each made a card for me with information about themselves. I also got to do one-on-one tutoring with a boy and walked around the classroom helping wherever I could. I got to grade many papers, read books, and just talk with students. It was amazing! And really the first chance I've had to DO stuff in a classroom.

After we got a tour of the school we left and walked around the area a bit. Hungary isn't quite like Portugal, which is what I was expecting. There's not many cobblestone roads around or big cathedrals. But it is beautiful nonetheless. We came back to our "home" and took an hour nap. (Which is also what is taking place right now. I think it is tradition... go to school, come home, take a nap, then out to the city for dinner.)

After nap time we decided to take a bus to a local mall to grab a bite to eat. Well, Hungarian is a HARD language! I thought my Portuguese would help me some, but it doesn't. (Although I SO want to speak it to everyone!!) And we miss read signs or something. Anyways, we ended up at the wrong mall and didn't want to eat there. So, we asked a local man where we could go to get some dinner. He told us to get on a tram and go down 5 stops and we'd reach some fantastic restaurants.

He wasn't lying! One tram, a trip across the bridge over the Danube River, and 5 stops later we arrived at Restaurant Road. Picture Europe and that is the road! It was amazing! Here are a few pictures just to paint that in your mind.

One of six bridges across the Danube River in Budapest.

 A random building we drove past in the tram.

Restaurant Road. ie: EUROPE! 

Looking at the menu trying to figure out what was cheap but also sounded good.

The four of us. L to R: Me, Lynn, Georgia, and Dasom. 

The restaurant where we ate.

Hungarian Menu.

YUM! Garlic cream soup in a cheese bread bowl! SO GOOD! 

And glass water bottles! 

The tram.


We stopped off at this hotel just for fun. 

Dasom and me at the tram stop waiting for our tram.

So, as you can see we had a delicious dinner complete with beautiful Budapest sights all around us. It was a fun night. 

This morning we were in school once again and again I got to do even more hands-on stuff. I am loving it! Mrs. M is encouraging about the littlest things I do which is so helpful, and the kids are so loving and kind. I'm also going to be teaching a science lesson/experiment on Monday, so for those of you who read this and are praying for me, please pray that that goes well... science isn't really my strong suit. ( :) ) 

Anyways, nap time is over and it is time to go exploring and see where we'll end up for dinner tonight. Sorry for the haphazard/sporadic update. Hopefully the next one will be a little more interesting and coherent. Until then, ciya from Hungary! :)  

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