Last night I went to Bal Populaire, hosted by the French Institute in Budapest. There was a French band Stabar (swing and humorous performances), Cabaret Medrano (one of the tons of Hungarian bands that play Balkan music), and the famous Dj Palotai.
It was fun to observe how people were dancing. Mostly French people showed up – turns out that there was another festival at the Balaton lake.
I wonder if any street festival can ever take place without a character like this appearing from somewhere and dancing away.
I am an active reporter and blogger for Cafe Babel, a multilingual European youth online magazine, since 2008. My profile with all articles and blog entries is here. You can follow my work on Twitter and Facebook.
I was the leader of Babel Lietuva, Cafe Babel’s Lithuanian branch, from 2011 to 2012. In 2010 and 2011 we hosted teams of international journalists in Vilnius under two “On the Ground” projects.
For various reasons, I visited Paris three times in 2013. I didn’t feel like blogging about it, because there’s not much I can say about Paris that people wouldn’t already know, and I blogged about it during my first visit there. But as I go through old travel photos in my computer and delete some, I will share a few interesting observations from my trips.
When I first visited Paris, I still had a journalist card, which was very useful in entering museums. Last year, without a journalist card, I visited only those that offered something for free or were super interesting.
When, due to EU laws, some countries had to stop using the term ‘champagne’ for sparkling wines produced outside of Champagne, the change was met with sarcasm and reluctance. Yet the history of Champagne and champagne is more about a local workers’ struggle against unfair trade than about French exceptionalism. Continue reading →
Metz (Northeast France) is excellent for a day trip, particularly when you are sick and tired of this year’s Europe’s prolonged winter. With a cute mixture of 13 century religious architecture, some French rationalist planning, astonishingly large and centrally located green spaces, and art venues, the city is simply a pleasant place to be, although, as some of us noticed, it did not seem there was much going on. It did not seem that crowds of tourists follow one another touring the city’s really impressive touristic objects – but this is perhaps to the benefit of the city’s cosiness. Continue reading →
I know that Paris is the city that so many people have either visited or seen in films, so if I simply describe what I saw there, I doubt if those of you who read this blog on Google Reader or similar will click on the link. However, there are many angles to look at Paris, and, interestingly enough, its not-so-touristic objects are much prettier and more interesting than those we know of. One interesting thing I noticed was that Paris gives you an impression of being eclectic and artsy, while in fact it is built and kept up in precise order and follows a set of rules. We have already talked about overplanned urban spaces, remember? I guess the key to the success that Paris demonstrates in avoiding something like this is the fact that it is so old, and its shapes have developed and been tested over time. Continue reading →