Thursday, March 23, 2006

Spring Sprung?

A wonderful thing happened earlier this week. A traditional event in the Hungarian calandar where people cast off the cold grey winter and welcome in the bright new sunny season. I'm not talking about celebrations for the March 15th revolution or the just-around-the-corner Easter. I'm refering to tables sprouting up on Liszt Ferenc tér.

There may be blankets on the seats in case you get cold, but once their those chairs and tables hit the square, they'll cling on like limpets until September (or even October). A friend and I rejoiced with our first midday Meaf under blue skies. Alfresco at Fresco.

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The event was slightly sullied by a small pocket of grit exploding and spraying itself over our thankfully finished plates but these are risks worth taking. For the short-term, the tér is not just cafes, tables and chairs, but also prowling bobcats. That's not a euphimism for certain ladies (I think) but in fact the name of the mini-diggers and bulldozers, the type of which are reshaping good ol' LFT in a major way.

A few weeks ago I noticed a protest on the tér. It looked both pathetic and shocking at the same time. Pathetic as although there were TV crews from RTL Klub and Duna, there was only a handful of people holding placards and chanting. Shocking because it looked like someone was trying to bulldoze the square.

Turned out that the developers didn't have full permission to start the work. It had been picked up by the various political parties and they were making a fuss out of it. The work was stopped but later that day they were allowed to carry on.

There's a map at the ends of Liszt Ferenc tér that shows what they're planning. A series of walkways through the dog toilets green parts. The normal benchs will be chucked (I think) and replaced with seats afixed to the actual walls (so the dogs can pee on your shoulders as they get to business). I suppose the plan is to open up the square even more to squeeze even more tourists in. Or maybe the meandering paths are meant to make the place seem more magical. You'll have to make up your own minds when it's completed in the summer.

The paths are being worked on constantly so they should be finished soon. Until then, make sure you've got another diner/drinker on the outside tables to shield your own dish/drink from the curse of the flying grit.

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At 10:35 AM, Blogger verniciousknids said...

Spring is such an amazing really does feel like a new beginning when the flowers finally start to bloom again!


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