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Last weekend was fantastic…  Earlier my mum and I decided to go, this year again, to the place my great-great grandfather and his brother (Marian and Florian Bilicki)  used to make our famous and beloved Tokaj wine. Actually it was a harvest festival, as in every year, in Hungary, all the wine-producing villages and towns organize events with concerts, a procession with folk costumes, folk songs and dances etc. But before, I found out that there would be three girls from Poland to visit us that weekend who, when I asked whether they wanted to join us became so excited about it. So we decided to go together wih them. But I didn’t tell them, before the arrival, the fact that the grandfather of my grandmother and his brother, whose cellars we were visiting were also from Poland…

We were lucky to be invited by the woman who owns some of the vineyards and cellars of Florian – her kindness was endless: she offered us a walk in the yards, made us visit the old cellars and we also had the chance to taste her wine.  The next day we attended a mass – such a mass I’ve never attended before, it was generally a celebration of the wine with the small church being decorated with grapes, the wines being blessed and the priest talking about the Polish-Hungarian friendship and “wine relations” 🙂  Besides this, we went to see the town of Tokaj which lies south of Abaújszántó and is maybe the most famous of all villages and towns in this region. While driving there we saw the gentle landscape all around us, with huge fields of grapevines and green hills in the far distance. After returning to Abaújszántó, however, I realized the view from there is definitely nicer than from Tokaj 🙂 At the end of the day we met a group of pilgrims who were visiting the statue of Virgin Mary that looks over and guards the vineyards, we picked the very special and very sweet grapes from which our Tokaj wines are made of.

I believe it was one of those things that make life more round and more complete… Now I feel I have a great fire in my soul, a great love towards this corner of the Earth and I have a dream to find out more about the story and spread it so that Florian’s soul could be reborn again.

Some pictures to show you what I felt there:

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So… Summer. Wandering around some parts of Europe, trying to fulfil my dream to see foreign lands, feel foreign feelings. Finland, Estonia, Latvia and then finally back to Lithuania once again. It was so wonderful, can’t really find words for it – and do you know what the greatest thing was? Discovering these countries from a completely different angle than from tourists do. Swimming in a lake in Finland by night, picking blueberries in an Estonian forest and standing at the very end of Saaremaa island was something that I could describe best as “uplifting” but even that word isn’t enough for that.

And then – Lithuania. The feeling I missed the most – being a part of a multinational community that is there for the same reason but is a mixture of many different cultures and ways of thinking – was totally present here. The worries I had – that being in the same country for the second time will disappoint me or that it will lose its wonder – disappeared from the first second I put my feet on Lithuanian soil. Really, really, there are so many things to discover there, even a life isn’t enough to get to know it… There were some places I visited for the first time this year, some others I revisited. There were some people I met for the first time, some I met for the first time this year. And there were people I wished to meet, but either one of us didn’t have time for that or they were staying far away from Vilnius.

And then came the terrible few days before my Business French language exam when I almost died from being exhausted and totally nervous… but I did it, and I think I also passed the exam (but I don’t want to feel happy about it too soon)

Now I’m more relaxed and balanced, but also stuck in Hungary for at least six months. But I like my internship place. I just feel the urge to escape once again from here.

Months go quickly, very quickly… And I don’t even feel how quickly I’m changing, too. At the same time, I feel that the end of my stay in France was either so long or just a few days ago. Soon I’m going to a new adventure – 4 countries of which there is 2 that I’ve never been to and another one I have only visited for a mere day.

Adventures… Yes. So many of them. I’m constantly being out of my comfort zone. You know, your comfort zone is the area where you feel the most relaxed, most “at home”, you are the most passive and so on. Some years ago I’ve heard from a girl that your personal development really happens when you get outside of your comfort zone. But now, I could say that I’ve been out of my comfort zone for months, if not years… I really should slow down a little bit. Well, I’m only saying this in relation to the future… For now, I have arranged the most crucial things for my shortest plans, but unti I got here, I had some tiring periods.

Let’s hope though that I can get over the difficulties and continue to be open for new adventures.

As a continuation to my last log, here are some pictures of the wonderful day when I met Natalija in Balatonföldvár 🙂

Thanks, Nat and Shadi, for some of the photos! 🙂

Tihany, my favourite place in Hungary:

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The Lithuanian cake! (Well, the choice of this cake was – believe me or not – totally unintentional! We only found out about the colours after having it on our table :D)

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The calvary of Tihany:

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…and the abbey:

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Hungarian king Andrew I (who founded the Tihany abbey) and his wife, Anastasia from Ukraine:

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Some traditional houses 🙂

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A part of old Hungarian folk life: the oven called “búboskemence” 🙂

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Picking some lemongrass to go with my lavenders I had collected before (Tihany is famous for its lavenders):

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The lake:

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After taking the ferry and arriving back to Szántód on the southern shore of the lake, Nat decided that we could hitchhike our way back home… 🙂

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This was already on the shore of Balatonföldvár. You can see such sunsets from the southern side, while those on the northern side get the sunrises 🙂

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Two of us, while the Iranian guests of my neighbour were also attending our sunset-watching session, talking, laughing and having a good time 🙂

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Me with the beer and birthday wishes 🙂 (as I had my birthday on that very day :))

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Black Daemon and Blonde Cyclone. Interesting names for beers…

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And as a finish for the day, we went to the centre of Balatonföldvár to sit in a bar (and listen to variable quality karaoke singing :D) I have never sung karaoke and I tried to convince my friends to form a choir (I was too afraid or sober to go alone :D) but I had no success… maybe next time! 😀

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I’ve been thinking how to sum up some of the most memorable moments of the past few months (I’m talking about positive moments of course) And later I realized that the best way would, probably, to share some of my pictures instead of trying to explain this period by words. (In the future I might write captions for some of the pictures though :))

So, look at them and enjoy!

And so I am in Hungary for almost two weeks, celebrating Easter with my family. I am over a very tiring time and I hardly can believe this country I am being now is my homeland. 😀 (If you reading my blog have visited home after a period which is longer than one month, you will understand me!)

My flight has an interesting story as well. In France I got to know someone who had worked for Air France before and for this reason could provide me with tickets at a reduced price – which, as a result of a code share agreement, could be purchased for Malév (Hungarian Airlines) flights, too. But as it was the day before Easter, there was of course over-booking for almost every flight and it wasn’t even certain that I could enter the first flight in the morning. But I managed it, thank God 😀 – and, top of this, I got a seat in the business class… 😉

It was already weird at the airport where I saw all those signs in Hungarian and when I entered a Hungarian supermarket. And it was embarrassing, too… Because in France I found out that swearing aloud (in Hungarian of course!) was a good way of relieving stress of being in a huge crowd approaching the metro in the morning. And one time something fell off my cart and I forgot about myself… do I have to say more? :S Well, I really need to drop this habit as I usually don’t have a dirty mouth. 🙂

On Saturday evening there was the usual resurrection mass of Holy Saturday that I attended, and yesterday it was the day of celebration with my family. Later today we are going to Balatonföldvár, the town which I adore to our house which I adore. 🙂 So no Internet for a few days.

So, see you later! And enjoy the spring if you have it right now where you are. 🙂

One of the beauties of having a laptop is the ability of using internet while sitting in my bed. As it’s Wednesday today, it’s my free day… and I decided not to go anywhere today I am still in PJs, stuck in the Bermuda-square (eheh) of my e-mail box, postcrossing forum, online games and my wordpress blog. I have just had a nice cup of Ceylon tea with milk (but the fact that the tea was Ceylon is, I think, totally unnecessary and redundant information at the moment).

I have slept until noon today, which is fantastic 😀 And I have homework to do, of Business French and Intercultural Negotiation, which is not so fantastic, but at least some interesting stuff 🙂 Unfortunately most of my classes are in English, and only now I can see how bad it is for me because having classes only in French language, just as some coursemates from my college do would have been much more fructifying for my language skills than having them in English. It’s only the French students here with whom I can speak French but for those Hungarian coursemates it’s everybody, even the other international students – in their schools, everyone speaks French while here it’s only the Frenchies and three international students in our group who do it. I am in quite a “what if” situation… what if I had chosen Le Havre instead of Paris… maybe I could learn more French there, who knows. And now I feel that my heart is aching not living in a town by the seaside (Le Havre is a very busy port town by the Channel).

But as in the title I was speaking about plans, here they are: tomorrow a French guy is organizing a dinner in a restaurant for all the group (international and French students together) which should be amazing, I can’t wait for it! I am also looking for a new place to live (as I mentioned). This morning I have written an e-mail as a reply to an announce looking for students for a one-week job in March who speak especially Polish, Danish etc… and Hungarian! (Let’s hope they will reply). And, I have noticed that Ryanair, that low-cost company, sometimes has ridiculously cheap promo prices, also to such interesting destinations as Glasgow, Shannon (Ireland), Porto or Stockholm. Who knows, maybe I’ll see Ireland (where I have been wanting to go for such a long time) sooner than I would think… 🙂

Yes, I know it was a very messy post, but sometimes I have to give out all the things I have inside, even if it means that it means that my writings would be clumsy and ununderstandable for some… 😀

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“My interest is in the future because I am going to spend the rest of my life there” and “I haven’t been everywhere, but it’s on my list”

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