Gimme Shelter — How about a Castle in Visegrád, Hungary?

© Stephanie Glaser 2006

Visegrád, Hungary, 2006. For a wedding setting, it’s hard to beat a medieval castle and citadel built in the 13th century on a high hill above the Danube River. My friend Rob and his Hungarian fiance, Kate, got married here. Most of the wedding took place at the citadel. The crumbling walls added an ancient feeling to the ceremony. At one point, Visegrád was the royal seat of Hungary, and the castle was King Matthias Corvinus’s summer abode in the earlier 1300’s.

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The Travel Ahh…Walking

© Stephanie Glaser 1989

On the move. Many of my travel photos share a theme of walking.  It’s such an ordinary action. However, I love scenes of people walking in towns, villages and cities. It shows people in motion and conveys a feeling of a vibrant place. Walking photos also can show a casual, laid back environment.

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This Buda’s for You — in Greek

A beautiful building in Buda. I have no idea what it is.
© Stephanie Glaser

The tour minivan emerged into what had to be an important historical area of Budapest. The view from the window closest to me was of an especially stately palace adorned with statues, gates, towers, spires — typical castle stuff.   The guide began to speak, and I eagerly waited to find out what iconic Hungarian landmark I was looking at.

“There are 16 McDonalds throughout the Buda and Pest metropolitan areas,” said Gabriella, a college student from Greece, who was translating the guide’s commentary, since I was on a tour of Budapest conducted entirely in Greek.

“Huh? Are we stopping for lunch?” was my first reaction to Gabriella’s comment. However, the seriousness of her tone convinced me that this was actually an authentic cultural tidbit she was relaying. Meanwhile, the tour guide, along with the rest of the passengers consisting of Iga, a woman traveling with her seven-year-old daughter, Katerina, as well as her parents and sister, turned to assess my response. None of them spoke English. Continue reading