Wednesday, October 05, 2005

A list of my own

Inspired by Gaines and several other blogs who have all recently done something similar, I’ve decided to do my own “happiness list”. In no particular order, things that make me happy about Hungary:

1) Valami Amerika. This is the only DVD I currently own, and thank god. It has never failed to make me laugh, and every time I watch it, I appreciate it’s brilliance a little bit more.

2) Some (but not all) of my classes: including but not limited to all of the 4th grade, particularly the trouble-making, non-English speaking, but endearing 4ab. My 6th grade conversation class, who I will always love because they were first class I ever taught. All but one of my 7th grade classes, because they are clever and funny without the attitude & hormones that the 8th graders have; all 5 of the students in my 7th grade conversation class, because although they insisted they don’t speak English, they managed to tell me about all the schools in Szolnok.

3) Coffee culture. Finally, I live in a place where the national culture is almost identical to my own in regards to coffee. The fact that (outside of Pest) I have never paid more than 180 Ft (90¢) for a coffee isn’t bad either.

4) Public Transportation. Okay, this “happiness” is a bit iffy. I do complain about not having a car, both to myself and others, with some frequency. And I have to say I’m not as impressed with the Hungarian system as I am with, say, the German one, which completely and wonderfully lives up to all the stereotypes about crisp, clean, timely German efficiency. Griping aside, the fact is that if, for some reason, I decided to travel to the farthest corner of Hungary, which for me would be Szentgotthárd, 400 km away on the Austrian border: this would cost me 1700 Ft. That’s $8.50. In contrast, if I wanted to travel between Boston and New York, which is a paltry 350 km, my options are: by train ($73), by bus ($35), or by plane ($50-odd). Need I say more.

5) My location, relative to my school. After talking to the other American teachers, it seems like many of them are in one of the following situations: one, they live in their school, in their school’s courtyard, or in some way connected to it. Or two, they live halfway across town from their school. So I would just like to say how thankful I am to live very near my school, literally half a block away, but in a regular apartment building which is in no way that I know affiliated with my school.

6) My location on a one-way street. Laugh if you will, but I truly believe that it makes my life easier not to have to look both ways. Also, I can walk up the street without worrying that I’ll be hit from behind.

7) Internet. Do I really need elaborate? No, but I will mention that my favorite sites today are NPR and Christian's & Scott's Interactive Top Ten List. In fact, the combination of the two makes me so happy, I’m done with this list.

1 comment:

jrj said...

so jeaouls of number 7, internet connection...