Tuesday April 25-The adventure begins at the Denver airport.
For some reason I’m TSA-Pre approved but my husband is not. The guy who checks the tickets looked bored. I asked if he was lonely but he said he was fine with not working so hard.
He asked about the significance of the Kokopelli moose pin on my cape, I responded with an explanation of the Kokopelli story.
TSA-Pre is nice. You don’t have to take off shoes or belts. The X-ray people were fairly idle too. I looked back at their screen as my things went through the machine but couldn’t decipher anything from the images. Apparently, fortunately the X-ray folks are trained to identify things. The young man complimented me on Kokopelli moose.
Meanwhile my husband was disrobing to the extent required by the general security line. When he finally came out on the other end he called me to watch his laptop as security was going to go through his carry on case. Going through the bag with his blue nitrile gloves, the TSA guy identified the suspicious item, a shopping bag full of beautifully individually gift wrapped boxes of Colorado’s famous Enstrom’s toffee, purchased for our closest Hungarian relatives. Hubby had to unwrap every one of the packages. I really don’t want to think what they are doing with all the other gifts in our checked luggage.
Sírhely the Hungarian word for gravesite was new to me. Sír (sheer), I knew, means cry and hely (hay) is place. On a day trip from southern Hungary we visited two crying places, scenes of heartbreaking death and destruction that took place over 4 centuries apart.
In 1976, 450 years after the battle that destroyed the Kingdom of Hungary, the Mohács Memorial was opened. Scattered about the wide green park are 120 wooden grave poles beautifully carved in the Hungarian style depicting the horrors and sorrows of a brutal war. They are not grave markers, but reminders of the vastness of the bloody battlefield. Still, I was careful where I walked on the lawn, respectful of the souls that died here. Continue reading
This is the address where my great-grandparents lived in Kolozsvár, Hungary when my grandpa was born. Today it is called Cluj-Napoca, Romania.
Some of the buildings on the street are run-down but this looks better and it has some nice details.
It has lace curtains in the windows and a bit of a garden in the back. I bet great-grandmother would have loved that. Continue reading
We arrive in the evening, blasted with Hungarian in the airport.
Vasárnap este – Saturday evening.
Find our luggage, track down the hotel shuttle and head for castle hill.
We have been planning this trip for a couple of years. Part genealogy pilgrimage, part family vacation and the rest will be the adventure of visiting countries where we don’t know the language.
My family descends from the Magyars as far back as anyone can tell. Having spent several months this year learning to read and write the language I will soon find out how well that translates into actual conversations with the locals.
We visited Budapest a few years back and loved it. On the same trip my entire immediate family along with spouses, children, and other relatives trekked over to Transylvania to mother’s family’s home town. We had the good fortune to meet some cousins whom we had not even heard of before. We will check in with them again.
Just need to recheck the packing list and get the bags zipped up so we are ready for the airport shuttle. Let the adventures begin!
The phrase came from one of my Hungarian Facebook friends who shares my surname and may or may not be a distant relative. ‘We can talk on Skype’
Language is a living breathing growing thing. And the internet has grown all kinds of entertaining appendages onto many a non-English language.
We connected on Skype. He understood lots of what I said. I understood lots of what he said. I call that a great start.
We will be guests at his house on jetlag Sunday. Looking forward to visiting in his lovely garden.