Sobreda in Budapest – a Colective Journal
Saturday, 10th January – Departure Day
The Portuguese group met at the airport at 7 in the morning and we were not only excited but also tired. Our flight was great and we arrived in Hungary at about 15.30 (local time) after landing in Prague for about 40 minutes. There we saw snow for the first time! The airport was completely white. However the group was just too much anxious to get to Budapest and to see who was on the other side of the door waiting for us. (*See the topic “Losing my ID card…” )
When we finally got out everybody was looking at the others’ faces to see if we could recognize our partner. Everything was ok and we went home with our new host family.
We have two different stories about what happened after meeting our new family:
At first I was scared because I had to speak in English but then everything was ok because she and her family were very nice to me. When I arrived home my partner (Niki) showed me her house and then she helped me brushing up my hair because we had her grandfather’s party.
The party was funny because I could see new habits, musics and I tasted different food. I was very tired and we went to sleep.
Daniela Costa (10º F)
When we were going home I could meet Vivi and her family. Then we arrived home she straightened my hair and we prepared ourselves to the party we were having with almost the whole group. That party was great not just because I liked it, but most important, because the Portuguese and the Hungarians could meet each other.
We had a good time together. Then I went to sleep.
Joana Vieira (10º F)
We will never forget the moment we saw for the first time our partner’s face. It was a kind of a magical moment!
Sunday, 11th January – Family Day
On Sunday I’m sure we all got up late because the night before we had been out. In fact I slept the whole morning but as it was the family day there was no problem. My partner and I were going to an exhibition with Rita and Bea. When we arrived there the place was full so we couldn’t enter there. Because of this we walked a little bit along the streets of Pest and we’ve taken some pictures. All of us had different programmes with our new families – some visited Budapest, some tried to ice-skate, others went to the near mountains or to icy lakes. All had fun!
Around 18:00pm we went to school to meet the others. Party time at school!
When we arrived at school everyone was already there so we put our things on a table of the canteen and we started having fun with the others. Some of the parents were also there and we ate and socialized a lot. We talked very much as we were all enthusisastic and anxious to tell our friends and teachers about our feelings and about the places we visited with the families. It was great to see the whole group together again.
The Hungarian boys invited the Portuguese to play poker and some of the girls played, too. It was just for fun but we could see Pedro is a lucky gambler!…
We stayed at school until half past eight and we all went home. The four of us went to the train station to go home and sleep well because we had to be prepared for the next day.
Rita Ramos (10º A) / Soraia Reis ( 10º A)
Monday, 12th January – Visiting Budapest (the Market / Heroes’ Square/ Danube River / Basilica / Parliament) / Ice Skating
On Monday, we visited many places in Budapest. It was the “first day” that we were going to see the town, and we were very excited 😀
The days always started at school at about half past eight. After meeting, the Hungarians stayed in school because they had classes and the Portuguese group went sightseing. First we went to a big, old and typical Market, where we bought many gifts for our friends and family.
Then we saw the Heroes’Square and then we went along the Danube River to the Parliament on foot. It was bloody cold and the river had lots of ice, specially near the banks. Can you imagine an icy river? There we also saw a strange iron sculpture – many shoes of different sizes and forms spread all over the floor. In fact, it was dedicated to the people who were shot and thrown to the river during the Second World War. The sculpture was inspired in the fact that the Nazis, after killing their victims, used to take their shoes off to give them to other people.
Then we visited the Basilica, where we saw Saint Andre’s mumified hand, and then we head on to the Parliament which is the biggest in Europe, just a few meters longer than the English one.
In the end of the afternoon we did one of the best things of the programme: Ice Skating! All the group was present again and every Portuguese tried to do it without… falling too much! It was worth the experience, no doubt. It was so cool, the falls, the laughs and everything that we all forgot the cold. It was GREAT! Everyone liked that 😀
Ana Barbosa (10º C) / Joana Machado (10º C) / Mariana Gaspar (10ºC)
Tuesday, 13th January – Visiting Budapest (House of the Future / Mammut Mall / Buda Castle) / Sports and Crafts (baking sweets) at school
On Tuesday, after meeting at school, the Portuguese group went to the House of the Future which is an interactive museum similar to our “Pavilhão do Conhecimento”. There we spent an hour and a half experiencing new things and testing our scientific knowledge. Lots of fun and laughs!!!
Then, as we were a little bit hungry, we stopped for lunch in a big mall in the nearby area (called Mammut).
In the afternoon, before returning to school where we would bake and practise some sports, we went to Buda Castle. There we walked on the walls from which we had a wonderful view over the river and the city. The weather didn’t help much. There was no sun, of course! We even came in the church nearby but the best parts were closed because they were making some repairs there.
Then, we went back to Bokay János School and it was so funny! We joined the Hungarian group and we baked some typical cookies with some strange things inside it, while some of us were playing volleyball or floor ball at their gymnasium. In the end , we went home and in the evening we all ate a lot and had a lot of fun with our partners.:D
Catharina Tavares (10º A) / Diana Vieira (10º A)
Wednesday, 14th January – All day trip: Icy lake / Szentendre / Thermal Bath
This is the best word to describe this day, and the week, in general. In our opinion, all the week was great and wonderful, but this day was clearly the best and it was very full.
Due to bad weather and to the dangerous icy rain, the programme had to be changed and we couldn’t go sledging. No snow but lots of ice and sleet! On the way we also saw snow everywhere and we even felt it falling upon us. So romantic it was…
This was the only day that the Hungarian group spent the whole day with us. We’ve met at the train station and we caught a train to an iced lake. Before starting to say what we have done there, we would like to say that everything was absolutely unique and magnificent. We spent, as always, a good time together sliding on the ice for fun, where some of us fell down and all laughed a lot. Then, we caught another train to a typical village, called Szentendre (Santo André). There the streets were so slippery and dangerous that most of us decided to spend the time having lunch inside of a warm bar to escape from the cold.
After that, we came back to Budapest, by train, of course. The trip was long, so, some of us slept the whole way. We were really tired due to this very active week.
Then we went directly to the “Aquaworld”, a new thermal bath, where the water is always hot in spite of the cold outside. Don’t forget that we had always negative temperatures and we desperately needed some warm! It was very, very cool and we all enjoyed it a lot. It was a nice water park where there were lots of ways to have fun, like tunnels and big slides. There was also a warm pool outside the building. Imagine to be inside warm water and feel -3º degrees around you.
At around 21:00 we had to come back to our homes with the respective partner. There was no party in the evening because the day had been very active and we were a little bit tired. But it was the only one.
Well, let’s stop making you jealous. The day was very special and it was just perfect. One of the best weeks of our lives, xd
Ruben Leston (10º C) / Raquel Belchior (10º D) / Gonçalo Valido (10º F)
Thursday, 15th January – School Activities (Projects: “Me and my Partner” / “Falling Water”) / Afternoon Free / Farewell Party
The morning was spent at school and the Portuguese group worked hard in class, making a project to be presented to their Hungarian partners. It was a kind of a summary of the most important things of the week – the relationships (“Me and my Partner”) and the topic of Water (“Falling Water”) because it had always been present in different forms – rain, ice, sleet, snow, thermal baths and even the Danube river. The presentation was very emotional indeed!
In the evening we went to a pub to celebrate our last night in Budapest, Hungary. It was the Farewell Party organized by the teachers in order to unite all the people at the time of saying goodbye to an excellent week. There we socialized and had the chance of playing baby foot, snooker and billiards. Later the teachers left the pub but the party went on for all the students…
Pedro Pires (10º A) / Alexandre Barbosa (10º B)
* Losing my ID card
I don’t know how to start this text, but it should be something like «I’ve lost my ID card». Yes, I’ve lost it. And if you think losing it once means I’m careless, the truth is that I’ve lost it twice.
The first time I left it in the airplane. I noticed I had lost it when we were picking up our bags. Immediately I went talking to the responsible teachers who tried to communicate with the security men from the Hungarian airport to search it in the plane because due to security issues I couldn’t go myself.
Unfortunately, there was a communication problem and my ID wasn’t found, what took us to a panic situation because I didn’t even know if I could enter Hungary and enjoy the exchange programme. However I could go out and I spent my first hour in Budapest at the police station. Let’s just tell that I had to write a declaration, sign a lot of papers and made my partner, my partner’s friend, their families and the teachers wait and worry for me.
In the end, all went well and we didn’t have to spend the whole monday at the Portuguese Embassy because my mother called me the next day telling that my ID had been found in the plane, in Lisbon (!!!) and that it would be sent to Hungary on that same day.
Personal note: when you have your ID in your hands make sure you put it on a safe place, because if you don’t you’ll probably lose it again, just like me. But that’s another story…
Opposite to what you may be thinking, I’m careless but not insensitive. So, I would like to thank my teachers that even after all the problems, confusions and disappointment that I caused them, were always there supporting me and helping me getting through this bad moment; «…to my partner, Ana, Panny, Panny’s stepfather, teacher Fernando and teacher Judit that were super sweet and worried about me, that waited in the airport the infinite time that I took at the police station; a special word to Mimi who was like an older sister and I’m saying this from the bottom of my heart because she truly was the best partner I could had ever wished for; to my mother who was really understanding even though in the beginning she was a little bit mad at me, what is totally understandable; to the policeman who was really nice and understood my situation; finally to all the people who cared about me like my partner’s parents and my friends. Thanks guys 🙂
Mariana Mateus (10ºA)