We spent an afternoon with the Shaw's and the Yoder's in a neighboring town where Dávid (the pastor of Agóra Corvin) lives called Szentendre. We bought our tickets and jumped on a train that took us about forty minutes outside of Budapest. It was my first time on a train and Johnny's first time since he was a baby, so getting to see the city streets turn to grassy villages was so much fun. We even talked to a Hungarian man who sat behind us who swore he was the train controller (he wasn't). He spoke English really well, but when he was struggling to get a few words out, Denise responded to him in fluent Hungarian and he told her to stop looking him in the eyes as intensely. We were all very confused, but he was nice so we kept talking to him until he wandered off to go and talk to someone else.
The best way we have heard Szentendre described is a town that is straight out of Epcot but 10x better and more authentic. And it's true, it looks like Disney based their European countries off of this town. We loved the old-style architecture, stone roads, and walking down the streets to poke our heads inside random shops. One of our favorite shops had to be the chocolate shop that Trey had pointed out to us. It was small inside but the walls were lined with all sorts of chocolates from all over Europe. We ended up paying around 2,300 forint (around $9-ish) for a square bar of sea salt caramel milk chocolate (it's one of the only sweets Johnny actually likes but its so hard to find anything sea salt caramel that isn't dark chocolate!) to share with everyone, and oh my gosh, was it the best.
Another shop we went inside was an art shop with pieces like coffee pots, coasters, paintings, and table runners. It was so cool, but sadly we didn't get any photos inside of it. Johnny & I both decided that for every country we visit or live in, we want to have something from there for our eventual home/home base, something that reminds us of our time there and is a conversation starter for anyone who comes into our home. Since Budapest is so well-known for its coffee, we've decided we want something coffee-related, so we almost bought a stovetop coffee maker from there, but then found out it was actually an Italian-made coffee maker, not a Hungarian one, so we will keep looking!
Langos is a very big traditional food here in Hungary, so we had to try it! It's a large piece of fried bread and it's normally topped with sour cream and cheese. We walked up a very narrow alleyway just to try it and it was SO FREAKING GOOD and so filling. I mean, of course fried bread with sour cream and cheese is going to taste delicious! Why are we continually this surprised when we eat the food and find out it tastes like food sent from Heaven?
We ended our day on the train heading back to Budapest. After spending a few days helping with church renovations, it was nice to have a day to just wander. Budapest is all sorts of wonderful and we absolutely love it, but it was great getting to get out of the city for a bit and explore. We're hoping to spend some time in Austria next month so that will be another amazing opportunity to be refreshed.
// Johnny + Sam (that's for you, Dóra 😉)