Sunday, May 07, 2006


Yet another weekend spent in Szolnok, but that’s hardly worth mentioning anymore, it’s become typical. What was atypical about this weekend was the barbecue-cum-graduation party on Friday. That afternoon, Chad and Mike bought a grill at Cora. They parked it out in the Varga courtyard and invited everyone we knew, which boiled down to Juli, Tamás (Oxford teacher), Dóri (his wife), Tami (their adorable son), Zoli and Kati briefly, and a large bunch of Varga students. Many of whom were graduating the following day, early-ish. I had intentions of getting up and going to watch the ceremony, but I slept too late.

Great food, great company. Good booze, too. I of course had been keeping my Friday afternoon ritual of sitting at home with my bottle of wine since about 3. Then there was beer at the barbecue. Then there was champagne, because we were celebrating. A surprising number of Vargans did the prudent thing and stayed soberish, but there were enough who weren’t worrying about a hungover graduation to make for a good time.

The whole evening had a bit of a poignant tinge to it though. Chad’s 12C class showed up and sang to him, as departing classes do for teachers here. It was sad. They sang some Hungarian tunes; I was waiting for “Graduation (Friends Forever),” or something similar, but their English selection was “Come As You Are.”

But all-in-all, a fun night. Although I’ll only be here a few more weeks, I’m anticipating more barbecues as weather permits. Not to mention, I suspect at the end of the week, when Varga and other gymnasium students finish their finals week, the city will explode in a riot of parties. I have absolutely no evidence to support this suspicion.... I’m just really optimistic.

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