Comparing Cities

Sometimes i feel at a lose of what to say because either there are too many things to say or i have nothing to say. This week i feel like i have nothing to say.

i thought i could do a little compare contrast between Budapest and Lyon. i know it is not really fair to compare cities, but get over it. i guess what i can compare is the mentality which seems different.

In Budapest if you are running to the tram or bus, the driver will think you are just jogging and keep going. In Lyon, i have witnessed the buses letting people on after it left the stop and the tram has waited for me a couple times too. i almost had a heart-attack when the driver re-opened the doors for me.

One of the things that is similar between the two cities is the ticket controller (red arm bandits as some called them in Budapest). In Budapest they get on the tram and ride for a stop or two to check if you paid. Here in Lyon, the controllers wait at a stop and as you get off they are waiting at the door to check your ticket, although i have seen them get on too. It is fun to watch the people quickly stamp a ticket, which is another difference here. Many people step on and immediately stamp their ticket, but in Budapest they only did it when the controllers appeared.

There is something here that i have never seen, perhaps it is everywhere, but Budapest is always ten years or more behind. In some of the shops they have an automatic money machine that you put the bills and coins into and then it gives you the correct change. The cashier just rings in the price and hopefully has more time to be kind. i would love it because i hate touching money and hands, especially of men because i can never be sure if they washed after using the WC. In Budapest, the cashier would have more time to smoke a cigarette or chat on their mobile about their latest tanning at the salon, rather than be kind to the customer.

Finally, i will say that school is going along fine, i think. It is really difficult, but i enjoy being there with my classmates, especially the Koreans. We have some new students in our group, two Koreans, two Russians, one American and one Brit. They all seem really nice. Hopefully i am right.

i met a really cool guy at the bistro the other night. We were both sitting at the outside tables writing in our journals. His roommate eventually joined us. i tried some really good pate, which i do not think i have had or remember having. They invited me to their housewarming party, which is this week-end. i might actually go. It can be rather lonely in this flat, so i tend to go out too often to the bistro to study or write in my journal. i desire human contact at the moment.
more to come…


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