Adding some Scottish to the mix

The French philosopher Voltaire is reputed to have said ‘We look to Scotland for all our ideas of civilisation.’ Presumably, he was talking about the French. Some three centuries later, the British in Hungary are looking in that direction, too, this time for ideas on how to revamp the long-established British Chamber of Commerce in Hungary (BCCH). Enter Duncan Graham, one of the city’s best-known Scotsmen, and recently appointed Chair of the BCCH, the first non-Hungarian to hold the position in 15 years. Read more

2019 Grateful 28: Wallowing like Buffalo

It’s all happening in the village today. Well, technically, it’s all happening a little bit outside the village in Kápolnapuszta at the buffalo reserve. It’s their annual fete, complete with buffalo burgers, buffalo gulyas, and the Hungarian staple, kürtőskalács (chimney cake). Read more

Two pints stage scene

Two Pints: Roddy Doyle’s Dublin on Stage

A few years back, when I first came across Roddy Doyle’s Two Pints, I gave a copy to two Irish lads in Budapest thinking that it was worth staging. We never did, but the thought was there.

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2019 Grateful 29

On the metro to Kelenföld the other day, I sat across from a young lad, no younger than 18, no older than 25. He had the foppish-hair-and-glasses look that seemed a season or seven out of date. He wore jeans and a quotation t-shirt and clutched a retro green football kit bag in front of him partially obscuring the writing on the shirt. Read more

Twenty-first-century nightmare

When I stop to think about how connected the world is, how dependent we are on things that need charging, I can feel my blood pressure rise. A slight panic sets in and I need to think of something completely different to avoid working myself into a lather and succumbing to this twenty-first-century nightmare. Read more

Make room Jack Reacher

I’ll admit to being a tad obsessive. Once I find something I like, I can’t get enough of it. And then when I exhaust it, I look for something to replace it. Read more

2019 Grateful 31 & 30: Flight Fury

A double week this week as it’s taken me that long to calm down, to get the old blood pressure under control, and to talk myself out of flight fury. Read more

Bence Molnár wearing his golden keys

The Golden Keys

I was a fan of the 1980s American TV series Hotel, which opened with establishing shots of the legendary San Franciscan hotel The Fairmont. I’ve a great photo of a much younger me and my bestie Lori sipping Bloody Marys in the bar hoping to catch sight of Anne Baxter, James Brolin, or Connie Sellecca. Read more

2019 Grateful 32: Community Involvement

If I ever got to have a dinner with the dead, one of my invites would go to the economist Milton Friedman. His 1970 essay for the New York Times The Social Responsibility of Business is to Increase its Profits – would make a fascinating discussion over the roast lamb entrée.  Read more

Not the Girl

It was 2006. Rhonda Byrne’s book The Secret had everyone dreaming the impossible dream. I read it, too. Just to see what the hype was about. I remember being singularly unimpressed that nearly all (if not all) her examples of asking and receiving, of visualising, involved bigger houses, faster cars, better stuff. They all seemed to be about getting and having rather than dreaming and doing. That said, it was a while ago and I could be misremembering.

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