It's nearly midnight here and we just finished eating dinner and walking up the four flights of stairs leading to our apartment. There's thirteen of us here and personalities mesh extremely well, which is surprising with so many of us in one space. Today was a day of exploring Budapest. It was extremely hot and humid and for someone who lives on the plain and mountains at 6,000 feet plus, it's nearly torture.
The entire apartment didn't wake up this morning until about 10:00 am. We were all exhausted. A few of us walked down to grab pastries for breakfast. Budapest in the day time is just as lovely as the evening.
We wandered through town to find the market and it was amazing! It was a tourist hot spot and lots of Hungarian goodies.
Budapest has a huge World War II history. The city was more than 75% Jewish prior to Hitler moving them to the ghetto. We saw a book cart in the city and this book caught my attention in the quick walk by. We also found a Starbucks and I was able to get a Budapest AND a Hungary mug, which was seriously a highlight!!
The city is very old and it has modern things thrown in at random points like this.
This is the book cart I found the Hitler book at. It absolutely reminded me of Belle's cart from Beauty and the Beast. Traveling Europe makes a lot of Disney movies make more sense.
We were on a mission to see the historical sites from the Jewish community. This is a Jewish temple that marked the beginning of the ghetto from the Nazi regime. It was remarkable.
This willow tree has a name written on every leaf. There were 400,000 Jews that were killed in Budapest alone. They literally decimated the population here. Hungary struggled to make a come back after the war because their wealthy business and professional class of doctors and business owners were murdered.
We wandered down to the Danube River and walked across a massive bride that was called The Chain Bridge. It was massive and gorgeous.
Along our journey, we went to The Shoes on the Danube Bank. This was what made it so very real to me. The shoes represented a few of the people who were shot and killed and shoved into the river. shot and killed and shoved into the river.
This couple were so sweet. They were touching the shoes and sobbing. I don't think I've ever seen history so real to me before. There were children's shoes lined up here to show that the Nazis made everyone remove their shoes before killing them. I was literally standing right where hundreds of Jews were murdered. The heartbreak was palpable.
The first feet photo that I've ever taken that actually means something more than cute shoes.
This is the Parliment building that was right in front of where the Nazis killed thousands of Jewish people. This was a gorgeous building with a fountain in the back.
I saw this couple trying to get a picture in front of Parliment so I walked over and asked if I could take their photo. They were STUNNING and her dress was literally breathtaking.
Next up...GELATO!!! But not the nasty stuff in the States. This stuff was unlike anything I had ever had before and they shaped it into roses.
We hung out in the afternoon inside the apartment since it was so hot. We were waiting for a few more team members to get in from the airport so we could go get dinner.