Today I finally saw Parliament and my first Hungarian cat!

I’m feeling happy this evening. I was not feeling happy this morning! (God I’ve written that like an English teacher sentence… “students, discuss this statement in pairs, what tenses have I used?”)

I taught a lesson on holiday vocab at pre-intermediate level. I enjoyed the first half, students looked at photos of me and some other teachers on holiday and discussed them, which was fun. Then I had to introduce new vocab like ‘sightseeing’, ‘nightlife’ and ‘atmosphere’.  This bit was crap, I wasn’t happy with how I described and taught them, but oh well, in the feedback session after people said it was good, but I think half the time everyone is just being nice to each other. Anyway judging from my feedback sheet from my tutor I don’t think it was as awful as I thought, but it’s so hard to judge when you’re up there with 16 adults staring at you! We also played a game of consequences at the end where students had to write a complaint letter to a travel agent, some of them got it, but there are some students in our class who really do  not understand anything and they just don’t get any instructions! Its crazy how we have one guy who speaks really good English and can chat about loads, then at the other end of the scale one woman who struggles with basic questions. It makes it SO difficult to teach them and think of tasks that will challenge all students.

Anyway, enough about teaching. The afternoon was pretty boring, however after school finished me and 2 girls from my course went for a little sightseeing walk! It was really great as the sun was still shining and it was also so good to be outside! First of all we walked to the bridge near the parliament, this is the view:

Nice huh? Then we walked along the bridge and through some streets to get a closer look at the actual building. It’s so beautiful:

Yeahh I took that photo myself! It’s the second biggest parliament buildings in Europe (I think I read that somewhere!)

A bit further along from here there are loads of metal shoes scattered along the riverbank:

These are a memorial to the Jews of Budapest who left their shoes behind along the river bank when they were shot and fell into the water during World War Two. It was really moving and really captured the horror of the situation.

We carried on walking around to the front, which was really grand, gothic and awesome! There was a really interesting monument, presumably dedicated to those who died in the Hungarian uprising of 1956:

The flame continually burns all year round. Very inspiring anti-commie stuff!

After this I spotted my first Hungarian cat! I have been here nearly two weeks and in that time I have seen so many dogs (seriously, everyone here has dogs, they’re like some status symbol, there are so many cool looking breeds around from tiny sausage dogs to huge huskies) but I hadn’t seen any cats. Luckily I spotted this big tabby lurking behind some statues:

I then decided to do some feline stalking; I abandoned my two coursemates and prowled off to follow the cat. I pursued him quietly into the bushes, he tried to slink off but I was hot on his case:

Eventually I think he got fed up of me; I tried to talk to him and even gave him one of my mini-pretzels, he miowed at me and  made this face however:

Which I took as my cue to leave!!

Talking of animals, there’s a lovely dog that lives below my flat, I’ve named in Henry, even though he’s pretty noisy in the evenings I still like him.

This is him sitting in his weird way, looking at me, presumably thinking “who’s the crazy English lady on the balcony?”

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