Oh Budapest. I planned to pop in for coffee on the way from Vienna, maybe stay a couple of nights. I stayed a fortnight. Such are your charms.
You seemed at first aloof and a little self absorbed. In mere mortals this would betray a lack of grace. Au contraire. You dance and the gods gaze enraptured.
The Buda and The Pest - I learned to love both sides of you: late nights downtown, ruined bars in the Jewish quarter; an ice cream in Magrit park, an early morning spa at the foot of the Gelert hills.
One’s friends illustrates one’s character. The Ibiza crowd rave for long weekends, executives jet in for midweek meetings. But unlike other cities you’ve not distanced your sisters - they can still afford your company.
In fact, it is they that are leaving you. Your cousins across the globe are inviting: Berlin, Gothenburg, Vienna. It’s not you, it’s your parents and the friends they keep - authoritarian, autocratic, 20th century parenting. You deserve better.