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Published: September 6th 2010
Jay, me, Jackie and Camille walking across the bridge.
Day 14-Budapest, Hungary
We actually had clouds today. Still no rain.
We had two goals for our last full day in Budapest. First, we planned to shop at the Great Market Hall. Later, we planned to take the subway over to the famous hot springs baths.
Jay and Camille came with us. We first took a motor bus from the ship along the river to a stop near the Hotel Gellert and Baths. From there we walked across the Liberty Bridge to the mall. After shopping for an hour at the market (Jackie purchased the kids some jewelry), we walked for a while to find the Kalvin ter Metro station.
Once there, we purchased four tickets to use going out and coming home. After buying from a cashier, we headed for the escalator. There were four guards standing out front of them and waved us to go on down. BIG MISTAKE! We already knew from our friend Randy that you could be fined $30 per person if caught without a validated ticket. We were now on the platform waiting for the train looking for a meter to have the tickets stamped. Not seeing any we took
the train anyway.
The next mistake was stopping at the next station (one too soon) and taking the escalator up. As we exited we were all four stopped by the station guards off to the side to show our tickets. We had them but they were not properly validated. That did not satisfy the guards. They said we were to be fined $60 per couple!
We all complained. Jackie led the fight. She said to call the police. I said to call the American Embassy. Jay held out his hands and said "lock me up." And Camille kept repeating to the guards, "how can you sleep at night?"
After about fifthteen minutes, the guard reduced the fine to $30 per couple. I paid quickly so that we could just get the heck out of there. Jackie is convinced that we were set up. Who knows but I would warn anyone coming to make dang sure of validating your ticket before getting on the escalator.
After getting our senses back we caught the train to the next station, made the transfer to the Yellow line, and went out to the baths. According to Rick Steves, the baths
This church was bricked up by the communist but has now been reopened for services.
are the most popular attractions in Budapest. After an exciting few hours I would agree.
The big event was when Camille and Jay came out to find us in the outdoor pool. We had entered a circular wall area that had water jets bubbling up. At the very moment that Camille was wading up the jets changed. They became a roaring river maker. She was quickly swept away. Jay was a little ahead and did not get the full pressure. But now he had to swim with the current to save Camille. He did and they were both soon into the center with us. Later I got out and did a quick 20 or 30 laps myself. It is funny now but a little scary when it happened.
Tomorrow we leave Budapest for a road trip to Prague. We hear that we will really enjoy. I'm excited.
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