Really really spring

by arianambrand

I went for a walk Monday, up Gellért Hill. It’s one of the bigger hills on the Buda side, and it rises almost straight up off the river bank, leaving just enough room for the road that passes beneath it. It’s named after St. Gellért, who was in Hungary attempting to convert the natives when they got fed up, put him a barrel and rolled him down the hill. It’s a pretty steep climb.

(Saw the first squirrel I’ve found in Hungary here but I was too startled to take a photograph. So here are some monk’s hood, I guess.)

The Austrians built a citadel on top of the hill, to be used in case of further revolt to shell the city from above. Some mid-20th century guns remain.

The statue of Liberty who stands at the end of the hill was added by the invading (“liberating”) Soviets who took over Hungary in 1945, beginning the second half of the double occupation. She has since been modified to commemorate “all who sacrificed their lives for the independence, freedom, and prosperity of Hungary” but as one of only two soviet monuments remaining in Budapest (the rest were dismantled and moved to Monument park outside the city, where you can pay to see them), she’s not exactly the most popular.

I totally forgot what spring in a temperate climate looks like. It’s so amazing.

Literally just wandered around taking pictures of flowers for like half an hour.

Looking southeastish. That’s the river down below.

Flowers. 🙂

Oh yes, there was something else: I’m off to Spain early early Saturday morning. I’m spending two days in northern Catalonia before heading south to Barcelona to meet up with Amalia. I’m so excited! Hopefully I’ll be able to update you guys at least once while I’m there, but photos will have to wait until next week. Wish me luck!

But first, have some more flowers, here:

A few more photos here.

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