sprite writes
broodings from the burrow

April 13, 2015


budapest, day two: background, bikes, bath, and bar
posted by soe 2:03 am

[The start to our Hungarian trip can be found summarized here.]

After a fortifying and thorough morning meal in what was once the palace’s courtyard and now serves as the breakfast room, Rudi and I checked out of the Hotel Palazzo Zichy. Because we had a few hours to kill before check-in opened at our next hotel, we opted to spend midday at the nearby Hungarian National Museum, where we could put our luggage in storage, boning up on the history of our host nation. I came away with a few pieces of information:

Mosaic Design

  1. Hungary was invaded a lot.
  2. If you, like me, have not made the connection, Hungary< ---Huns (as in Atilla the).
  3. Hungary, despite their Soviet overlords, had a relatively robust middle class even before the fall of Communism in the late 1980s. Their nation was considered one of, if not the, most liberal of the Eastern Bloc.
  4. A lapidarium is not a pool, but a repository of stone artifacts. The museum’s, located in the basement below the cafe, is home to a beautiful mosaic floor that dates back to the 3rd century A.D.
  5. To photograph much of the museum and its collection requires an extra fee. We are cheap.

Rudi on the Steps of the Hungarian National Museum

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April 9, 2015


budapest: departure and arrival
posted by soe 11:41 pm

Before any more time gets away, I thought I’d share some of our travel adventures from last month. Tonight you get the start of our trip, which occurred five weeks ago today:

We left D.C. Wednesday afternoon, heading to BWI for the first of our three-leg overnight journey. First, we flew to Charlotte. My major impression of its airport is that it’s a bit of a throwback because the main bathrooms had attendants stationed in them.

Leaving on a Jet Plane

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rising, passing, and pick-up
posted by soe 5:36 pm

White House Easter Egg Roll

Three beautiful things from Easter week:

1. Gramma has had a bad afternoon and I’ve stayed late at the nursing home in an effort to keep her calm (and, if truth be told, to help alleviate the guilt I feel about being far away most of the time these days). As I’m pulling out of the driveway to head back to my folks’ house, a full moon rises over the horizon behind me.

2. A guy and I bump into each other in the line for coffee at the Montvale rest stop and we both make jokes about being tired from the road. As I’m doctoring my drinks, he comes over to inquire if I’ve been in the traffic heading north. No, I say, I’m heading south. There’s a big accident on your side of the road, he warns; all his traffic has been caused by rubberneckers. Rudi and I bale across the river from the Garden State and traverse our way south through Newark, keeping our trip home from grinding to a halt.

3. Volleyball resumed this week, but with fewer teams in this new session. As a result, a court opens up in the final hour, where the league invites players to join in a pick-up match. I get in nearly two hours of play time and leave so soaked there’s nowhere dry to wipe my hands off before serving. It’s a nice way to spend an evening.

How about you? What’s been beautiful in your world this week?

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April 3, 2015


shared ride, farewell, and new specs
posted by soe 10:40 pm

Sorry I’m a day late with this, but I was traveling during the usual time I blog. Here, though, are three beautiful from last week:

1. It’s a late night at the office and it’s past nine when I get to the metro station, feeling drained and a bit grumpy. I’ve barely settled in to wait for the train when I see my friend Susan walking up the platform after a late meeting. We chat about the project she’s working on until I reach my stop in a more cheerful mood.

2. We head to our local indie cinema for its final weekend in business. We watch a showing of Monty Python and the Holy Grail and eat delicious popcorn and think fond thoughts of all the movies we’ve enjoyed there.

3. I’m fed up with my glasses and their wonky arm, so instead of re-glueing them, I head to CostCo and order a new pair. They’re different from anything I’ve ever worn, so I’m looking forward to picking them up next week. (And, yes, I’ll post a photo here so you all can see them, too.)

How about you? What’s been beautiful in your world this week?

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March 27, 2015


improvement, warm, and recognized
posted by soe 2:04 am

hyacinth

Three beautiful things from my past week:

1. Gramma had a mild stroke over the weekend, but has rallied significantly as the week has gone on. Today she moved into a nursing home for a short period of rehab before she returns home.

2. Today the high exceeded 70 degrees, which made wearing a tshirt, sitting outside for lunch, and biking home from work possible and pleasant.

3. On Sunday, I found myself in Savage, Maryland, for a yarn event. The French bakery* that is usually at my farmers market, but that’s been absent this month, happens to be located in the same building, so after I finished my shopping I went for a snack. To my surprise, the woman came rushing up to the counter exclaiming her shock and delight at finding me there, rather than in my usual habitat, and then told all of her colleagues that I was one of her regulars. We’ve had some pleasant exchanges over the years they’ve been coming to the market, but I’d always assumed they were impersonal, and certainly never expected to be recognized away from it. My almond croissant, still warm from the oven, tasted even better than usual.

*Bonaparte Breads, owned by French expats, makes croissants as good as any we had in France when we visited.

How about you? What’s been beautiful in your world this week?

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March 21, 2015


weekend to-do list
posted by soe 3:08 am

It’s the final ski racing weekend of the season, so I’m on my own again. Here’s what I’m hoping the weekend holds for me:

  • Knitting on my new Sock Madness pattern.
  • Spending time outside.
  • Uploading photos from Hungary.
  • Submitting my Errandonnee report.
  • Tackling laundry mountain.
  • Listening to an audiobook.
  • Buying cat litter.
  • Shopping at the farmers market.
  • Attending the Hometown Yarn Party.
  • Taking a yoga class.

How about you? What do you hope to do this weekend?

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