Well quick knitting content first. I found some sort of yarn shops here in Budapest, but they were more fabric shops which sold yarn- so I didn't bother noting the addresses.
Amazingly I was able to get my wooden clover sock needles through the xray machine at Perth airport- so I was then able to get them onto the Emerates plane. I knitted a little of my sock but slept most of the way. I also made a soft wollen scarf whilst here in Budapest, whilst attempting to teach my friend to knit. I shall post pictures later.
In the meantime here is a copy of the email I sent to all just a moment ago:
Well it is my last day here in Budapest so I thought I would update you on my trip so far. It has been fascinating yet exasperating at the same time.First the annoying stuff. It can be summed up in 2 words: Yucky Weather! A huge storm front has passed over eastern Europe this past week resulting in torrential downpours, hailstones the size of footballs (in Croatia), entire villages flooding (Austria, Hungary and Slovakia) and even deaths by lightning (Slovakia and Austria). My first encounter with the weather was when I stepped off the plane in Vienna. It was raining, windy and freezing cold. Not good when all you have packed for is 35 degree heat summer weather. After finding the hotel and donning 3 layers, Alex and I did a little exploring around St. Stephan's square. The hotel was right on the square, about 50m from the metro station, and 100m from St. Stephan's cathedral. It was a perfect location. The weather for the other 2 days in Vienna was not as bad as the first day, but still overcast and chilly. The sites whilst incredible, was a little disappointing for my first view of Europe, a fact that in retrospect I put down to the depressing weather.Photos from Vienna can be found here: http://au.pg.photos.yahoo.com/ph/katefreedman/album?.dir=/d429&.src=ph&.tok=ph4lPUDBNGBFJmUY
When we got to Budapest I was welcomed with open arms by Alex's family. Her mum is an amazing cook and I think I have put on a few kilos this last 10 days. However, I am sure I will walk it off the next few weeks. The site seeing was interrupted by the afore mentioned thunderstorms, and yesterday the road by the Danube in downtown Budapest was closed as the river had flooded over the road. Budapest, however is beautiful. Very green, hilly and pretty. I think my opinion has been influenced by the fact that I am staying out of the city and am not surrounded by it 24 hours a day. We went to some amazing buildings in Budapest, one of which was the Great Synagogue. It has only been reopen to tourists since 2002 as it was being restored. It is amazing, and has a beautiful memorial to those who died in WW2. The other beautiful building in Budapest that has been restored is also a church- well cathedral - St. Stephan's standing on top of the Hills on the Buda side of the Danube. With an amazing view (even given the weather) the area of the church and palace is definatly a 'to do'. The church was covered in frescos inside- all restored to their original glory. By the way- the Danube is not blue!!!
On a different note we also went to the Terror House. This museum was the home of the nazi SS and the communist KGB during the years of their associated occupation. The basment has been reconstructed to showing how the cells were during the buildings use for holding and executing polital prisoners. It was an interesting yet disturbing building and whilst open to tourists seemed mainly orientated to the new generation of Hungarian's so they did not forget what happened under soviet occupation.
Happily though, the weather has improved the last few days to actually resemble summer- complete with the digging out of the sarong! I am attempting to wring every minute out of this weather, as the forcast for Krakow and Warsaw over the next week is Thunderstorms (again!!!).
Photos for Budapest can be found here: http://au.pg.photos.yahoo.com/ph/katefreedman/album?.dir=/2a4d&.src=ph&.tok=phdlPUDBTsy0_Xmv
Hope everyone is well and it is not too wet in Perth. Don't forget to email me and keep me up to date on what is happening.
Love to all