Jesse and I just moved into our flat in Újpest – the fourth district in Budapest (of which I might add is barely in the city limits – I could crawl out if I wanted to). For the past week we have been in the first district (I think). If you did not already know, Budapest used to be three cities – Óbuda, Buda, and Pest – but were connected in the latter part of the 19th century. Buda consists of hills and is on the west side of the Danube. Pest, on the other hand, is extremely flat and is on the east side of the Danube. Budapest is also split up into twenty-three districts. I have yet to memorize them.
Orientation was lovely – I learned a lot about Hungary, mastered a few more phrases in Hungarian, and made several new friends. So far my experience with the Central European Teaching Program has been nothing short of amazing. Our directors, Mary and Hajni (along with some returning teachers), have basically done all of the “hard” work for me. Thanks guys!
My new friends and I frequently roamed the city without a care. This type of wandering made me feel alive. Instead of having a timed agenda, we enjoyed our new city and actually lived. I find living to be such a pleasant experience.
I have yet to experience the “shock” of living abroad, but I know my time is to come. I have felt almost numb since I left the United States. Let me clarify: I am not numb because I am unhappy – I think it just might still be too much to take in all at once. I am basically emotionless, yet I am so very happy. I guess I still have to sit and access my thoughts/feelings.
Jesse and I have also have met our new coworkers at the school we are working at. I will be teaching grades 5th and 6th. I am officially Miss Jennifer – at this primary school I was told that they call us by our first names. I cannot wait to meet all of my beautiful babies! My first day meeting them will be this Friday during our opening ceremony. I might or might not have to make a speech…
I love this city.
A lesson from Miss Jennifer: Gelato adds up. Stop while you are ahead.