The weather is better today, overcast but not raining, so we are going to venture out of the centre to what is known as the City Park. Walking up Andrassy avenue you are struck by two different things, there are many beautiful buildings, but also many sad ruins. A distressing number of building facades are crumbling, and many are surrounded by wooden braces, with a kind of veranda, to catch any bits of falling masonry.
One last comment about my phone, then I’ll give it away. There was a witness to the event, a young British man selling tours, and we ran into him again today. He said he thought the guy who took my phone was just some random crazy person, and he had discussed it with the other tour sellers and they could recall any similar incident in the last four years. So I feel somewhat better about it.
Before the park is Heros square, which strikes me as a bit stark. There are some pretty monumental statuary.
The square itself, is rather bleak, and was apparently used for rallies in the communist times. Also the National gallery, on one side, is closed for three years and the Art house, on the other is also not used currently. There is a display on the history of the park on one side of the square, it is being extensively renovated.
Within the park is the Vajdahunyad Castle, which makes a great reflection in the, currently unfrozen, ice skating rink.
The ice rink was formerly used for several international events, but is looking rather run down at the moment.
There is a fair or market in the grounds which gives an air of medieval activity to the castle.
I probably need to dispel the idea that Budapest is all beautiful ruins. This building is a stunning example of the best modern architecture.