January 6th, 2006

ichigo calendar

All your picspams are belong to us.

So whilst in Cambridge, I hijacked much_reality's superfast connection to upload something to the tune of 400 photos from when goneril, much_reality and flobble_wangler were in Budapest this summer -- the ones I hadn't uploaded yet.

Városliget (City Park) is the largest public park and cultural centre in Budapest. One of the attractions is the Budapest Zoo -- it's not spectacular as zoological gardens go, but it's one of the oldest zoos in the world (completed in 1911) and some of the turn-of-the-century buildings are still intact (I am inordinately fond of big cats, btw, and it shows).

My favourite part of the City Park is the Vajdahunyad castle which is a little like Budapest's own Hogwarts. It was built between 1896 and 1908 and its various parts illustrate different styles of Hungarian architecture. Near the castle lives the statue of Anonymous by Miklós Ligeti -- Anonymous was a chronicler to King Béla, and is thought to be responsible for chronicling the history of the early Hungarians. Local writers often visit the statue and touch its quill for inspiration.

Another architectural landmark in the City Park are the Széchényi Baths -- the largest thermal bath in Budapest; the thermal springs that power the baths (the deepest and warmest wells in Budapest) were discovered in 1879 and the neo-baroque baths themselves were built in 1913.

goneril and I had also spent some time hanging out at the @RC giant poster exhibition that's held annually near Heroes' Square (which marks the entrance to City Park). The exhibition is a competition for professional and amateur artists to create something extraordinary, fresh or shocking. The original concept developed from the idea that street advertising provides an important insight into what makes a city tick.

I was a little shocked to find out that I hadn't had any pictures of the Hungarian Parliament up at Flickr. It's such a symbol of the capital -- I mean, if you do a Google image search for "Budapest", the first picture you get is a view of the Parliament from the Buda bank of the Danube. The building is 26 metres (300 yards) long and 123 metres (140 yards) at its greatest width. It has 10 courts, 27 gates and 29 staircases -- when the Parliament was being built (1880 - 1902), the Danube bank's soil had to be reinforced by a 2-metre (7ft) deep concrete foundation to support the building. The exterior is decorated with lace-like Gothic pinnacles and 88 statues representing Hungarian rulers, princes and military commanders.

Also, I've uploaded photos from my holiday in Cambridge plus pics from London (mostly the Tower of London, which was pretty much the only thing I got to see -- I'll just have to come back one of these days XD). We met up with shabzilla, who is awesome and squeetastic. I was half-dead that day from pulling an all-nighter but we did get to geek out a bit so that was fun.
  • mood: relaxed relaxed
  • now playing: Some Russian Orthodox priest babbling about Christmas on TV