Saturday, March 12, 2011

And gone.

So we need the temp back. Again. It broke. Again.
A couple of us took it apart but it didn't help. Tried doing what I did last time. Didn't help either. I guess I might have to put it back together but I am guanning on about it.

And we had dinner at our old hunting grounds last night. It was a pretty large crowd too. Telluride joined in, most of the apartment and even the new kids on the block. Wang's got pictures. Its been a while since the last time I ate at Frymania. The place was full of other kids too - from all over the world. Some sort of conference going on. Some modern model version of the League of Nations. Always wondered what happened with that.

They were screening Dil Chahta Hai - an old classic favorite of mine, but I realized that I had finally got past the phase were I enjoyed those movies. Quite sad really.

Good to hear Sammy is enjoying Hungary. Especially that meat market has me quite envious. And we played Contact after a very long time. Wang was there - so it was pretty entertaining as usual.

Time to start watching the FA Cup game now.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Tomatoes and Bell Peppers

March 2nd marks the completion of exactly 30 days since my arrival here in Budapest. As the weeks go by, things have been getting progressively more exciting to say the least. I’ve pretty much settled into my apartment now, which is located in a very nice neighborhood. In fact, from what I’ve seen of the city so far, District V is hands down the BEST area of Pest at least. And if you happen to stroll around to the WestEnd City Center (15 minutes walk or 1 metro stop away from my place), you can verify a certain fact from my previous post ;)

This week also marks the fourth week of classes, which means no more add/drop of courses allowed. Having dropped two math classes already, I’m finally settled now with four math courses and Beginner’s Hungarian! Among my math classes, Analysis is thought-provoking and the most challenging, whereas Combinatorics is by far the most fun! The combinatorics lectures are the highlight of my week: the professor is extremely witty and amusing, and his t-shirts often have hilarious references to math, science and pop culture. He has also taught us a new way of solving math problems, something he calls “proof by thinking”. I bet Watson can't do that!

Ok, to tell you the truth, the real reason I’m writing this post today is because I am really excited and happy. Today, after countless many years, I have finally legitimately cooked my own food. It just so happened that early last week, a friend of mine took me to this big halal butchery in District VIII called Bab al-Hadeed. Apparently the place is a major meat supplier to many restaurants in the city, thus explaining their claims of compliance to Muslim dietary laws. Well, I made the best of the opportunity and purchased over a kilo of chicken. And after acquiring the appropriate ingredients and spices, I finally got down to making some good ol’ spicy boneless chicken in my kitchen tonight. The preparation and subsequent clean-up was backbreaking, but the tender, juicy and mouth-watering pieces of home-cooked chicken were more than enough compensation for all the hard-work. This is the end product on my plate!
(Yes I absolutely LOVE raw tomatoes and bell peppers!)

Unfortunately, I totally forgot about bringing some traditional naan from the nearby Pakistani restaurant, and there wasn’t any bread at home to eat the food with. I had to make the difficult decision of temporarily parting with my food in order to secure some delicious naan fitting for the occasion. One metro stop and 15 minutes later, I find myself at Kohinoor Étterem, only to find out that the restaurant had already closed for the day :(

There was still hope though. If I couldn’t obtain Pakistani naan, I could always get my hands on the American naan next door. And that’s exactly what ended up on my dining table!

Needless to say I was really happy at the end of the meal :D

And so ended a very successful day in Budapest. Let’s hope that there is a lot more of such good food in store for me in the next few weeks.