Friday 7/3- Budapest

Today, although it rained a bit, we went into Pest (pronounced Pesht).  Budapest, which is a city now, used to be two cities, Buda & Pest.  They are separated by the Danube River (spelled and pronounced Duna here).  Buda, where our hotel is, is the older part of the city.  Pest is where the shopping and main tourist area is.  Actually all of Budapest is a tourist center.  This is the most Americans we have seen since we left home.

We tried to change our Polish Zlotys (money) at the hotel but they just laughed.  So did the local bank.  We have been changing currency as we arrive in each city, from the previous country's currency.  We really can't change it there because I don't know exactly what I will need at the airport when we depart.  Although all of the landing and parking, etc., fees have been able to be paid with a credit card, often times the fuel can not.  Most countries would accept only a carnet or cash for fuel.  The cash that Sweden, Finland, Germany, and Czech would accept was strictly their own.  Actually, in Poland they would NOT accept Polish Zlotys for fuel, only US Dollars.

We went into Pest to the only place that would exchange Polish Zlotys.  This is the main shopping and tourist street (top pix).  It cost about 17% based on wholesale, but that's better than nothing.  In the US we bought a little money changer calculator which calculates the exchanges between 20 countries.  We put in the wholesale rates based upon the US Dollar before we left, and it will convert any amount from one currency to another.  It's been a big help.

I wanted to digress from our usual study of offensive dress in each country, so the second picture begins our study of trams and trolleys.   Unfortunately, a subject relating to our previous study got in the way.  By the way, after Hungary we will begin studying Italian dress codes.  --  Stay tuned.

Although the weather wasn't always perfect, we were always prepared (bottom pix).

 

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