Oh, I see! moments
Travel Cultures Language

The Egg and “Ei”

by Joyce McGreevy on October 24, 2017

When four teenagers and a writer, Joyce McGreevy, meet in the Volksgarten, Vienna, Austria, they share the fun of speaking two languages. Image © Joyce McGreevy

Finding our voices in Vienna: Catrina, Cedric, the author, Nicky, and Adah. (Oh, and “Albert.”)
© Joyce McGreevy

What Four Viennese Teens Taught Me
About Speaking Two Languages

I was sitting on a park bench in Vienna when they approached me, speaking two languages.

What’s more international than the Volksgarten? An Austrian park in formal French style around a replica Greek temple, it attracts visitors from around the world.

The replica Temple of Theseus at the Volksgarten, Vienna gives a group of visitors an opportunity for speaking in two languages. (Public domain image by Norman Davies)

The Volksgarten (“people’s garden”) blooms with roses and buzzes with languages. 
Norman Davies (public domain)

I’d been thinking about language, about the surprising fact that I’d found it easier to speak Hungarian than German.

Budapest, Fast and Slow

by Joyce McGreevy on October 2, 2017

Chariot drivers and horses race at Heroes Square, reflecting the best of Budapest "fast and slow." Image © Joyce McGreevy

You can race through Budapest at a gallop, but you’ll notice more at a gentle pace.
© Joyce McGreevy

Hungarian Travel Tips in Two Tempos

I’m lingering at a bisztro in Budapest’s Jewish Quarter, savoring every bite of cholent.  It’s an Ashkenazi slow-and-low cooked casserole.  Guests keep arriving in waves. So, when the waiter approaches, I assume it’s to drop the bill and hasten me on my way.

Instead, he recommends flodni, a 20-ingredient stuffed wonder he airily summarizes as a “light pastry.” Or perhaps another glass of rozé?

A Tale of Two Jungles

by Eva Boynton on September 11, 2017

Trees in the jungle and a a city monument, symbolizing life in the jungle of Quintana Roo and the concrete jungle of Mexico City (images © Sam Anaya).

From the Mayan jungle to the concrete jungle
© Sam Anaya

Sensing Life in Quintana Roo & Mexico City

A symphony plays before me in an outdoor theater. The sun passes through a roof of leaves, tree branches crawl up and around the doorways, and rain delicately drizzles upon the earthen seats. This is the Mayan jungle in Quintana Roo, Mexico.

I had arrived here from another theater where sunlight illuminates towering structures and passes through glass windows. The red, yellow, and green of signal lights reflect in the puddles of afternoon rains. This is the concrete jungle of Mexico City.

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