May 21, 2001
"Most Vagy Soha!" That's the Hungarian version of "Who Wants to be a Millionaire?" We also got to see "Die Quiz Show," the same thing on the German channel. We watched some TV tonight in our 4th floor room in the Hotel Panorama. It's a nicely decorated inn housed in two buildings at the edge of this 15-letter town.
It was a 46 km day - flat and easy. Dave and I split up for three hours this morning to wander Bratislava. I mailed some postcards and hiked up the hill to a castle. There was another good view of the town from up there, although the castle itself had nothing inside to see but a museum that was closed on Mondays. I bought my first international Big Mac (exactly the same!) and a bag of pastries to eat on the ride.
We were slightly confused leaving Bratislava and at one point had to turn around on a dirt road that ended in an impassable ditch being worked on by a bulldozer. When we finally found the correct trail, it was on the other side of a field of tall grass. We sliced over the field on our bikes and joined the trail. We saw many storks today, especially in small towns where they nest in utility poles. Most of the ride today was level and sunny on a bike trail near the Danube River. After the Hungarian border crossing, the directions gave us the option of either a long or a short route. We took the short route, arriving in town tonight in time to walk downtown for dinner.
We ate at a fairly typical restaurant for these parts, with no English menu and no idea how to know what we were getting. Luckily, the menu included some German, which we could basically identify. We both ordered chicken dishes, which were quite good. Dave's soup came first. Dave frowned as he tasted it. "I've never had this meat before," he said. "It tastes kinda like liver." The rest of the meal was quite good, and both of us ate a lot.
Earlier, I navigated a Hungarian supermarket to get jam, peanuts, cheese rolls, canned ham, Melba toast, a Coca Cola and a candy bar. Looking at the shelves of cans, I got some idea what it must feel like to be illiterate.
Mosonmagyaróvár is nice, but not stunning in any way. It has lots of conveniences for the traveler, provided the traveler speaks Hungarian or German.