Budapest, Part One.

Originally published 27th December 2012.

Damn, the Budapesti know how to eat, drink and be merry.  A mere three hours after arriving at our digs (the rather magnificent Boscolo Budapest Hotel) I was enjoying the best coffee of my life, a  rogue’s parade of delicious cheeses, kipfel, and a particularly runny version of Donauwellen cake that almost brought tears to my eyes.

Of course, my judgement could have been clouded as the previous twenty hours had been somewhat fraught, beginning with a laughably delayed flight from London to Budapest Ferenc Liszt International Airport due to the latter running out of electricity.  Fair play to Wizz Air; they were the only airline to get passengers to at least striking distance to Hungary – we were however delayed from two o’clock in the afternoon until midnight – meaning that a) we were existing on food-voucher-subsidised Burger Kings, Starbucks and Mojitos and b) I saw in my birthday in the Luton departure lounge with a pint of bitter.  To be fair, I have had way worse starts to birthdays (a nasty bout of hangover-fuelled gastroenteritis in 2005 springs to mind).

All being said, a diet reminiscent of Viktor Navorski in The Terminal followed with a nasty budget airline ride to Bratislava (it was a miracle that we even got there at all after one idiot knocked himself out in the toilet on the plane), then followed by a two-hour coach trip to the Hungarian capital, precipitating a stolen tram ride to Blaha Lujza tér metro station resulting in a 6am check in (breathe, Mike) had rendered my faculties of food appreciation somewhat stunted.  In all honesty, I would have eaten a plateful of tree bark if it was presented in front of me right there and then.

The hotel room was heavenly, especially after the trip we had.  Two of my mates hadn’t managed to make it in the wake of the airport chaos and so in the spirit of finding the silver linings I managed to convert the room from a twin to a king and had a lovely big bed for myself.  Just as well really, seeing as there was a massive, open, pervy bath dominating the room.  I love my mates, but not that much.

Budapest was tit-freezingly cold, but here we were, checked in and the weekend beckoned.  Whatever should we do next?

Food.  As long as it wasn’t Burger King or Starbucks.

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