I’d been dreaming about ice cubes for weeks because they’re so rare here. If you get them in your drink (and I mean that as a big “if”), you usually only get one or two. This leads to them melting in a matter of seconds. Of course, you can buy drinks from refrigerators in stores, but I’m convinced those are more of a decoration than a device to keep things cool. I always dig to the very back searching for a cold one, but I usually just end up being the guy who touched every bottle in order to get one as warm as the rest. As far as I can tell, that doesn’t help me win any popularity contests.
The other day, I went to McDonald’s. They just remodeled it here, and they put in a self service soda machine. Naturally, I loaded the cup up with ice and just topped it off with a little Fanta. What happened? My body wanted to cry. It was the first truly cold drink I’d had in months, and it hurt my insides. I couldn’t handle it. I’ve changed…
Air conditioning is another luxury that I’m learning to live without. Apartments don’t usually have it, so everyone sits at home and sweats. You can go out to stores and restaurants seeking it, but even that’s not always successful. Many restaurants use it as their big selling points, but they’re often about the same temperature as outside. A waiter suckered me into a restaurant with the promise of cool air and, well, I was just glad the food was good.
The only difference between somewhere with air conditioning and somewhere without is the comparison to outside temperature. The AC causes the building to be to be about the same warmth as outside, or maybe a little bit less. Without this heavenly invention, a building feels like the fiery pits of hell.
A Hungarian woman actually complained to me that the air conditioning makes her feel sick. She gets angry when buildings have it. I was sweating like crazy while she was saying this, and I couldn’t even believe that the room had AC. I blame heat delirium.
Occasionally it rains, and that cools off the weather. But, I live in a giant cement apartment building, and it hoards heat like it’ll never come back. It’s ironic that I could see my breath all winter, and now I can’t drop the inside temperature below 9 million degrees.
Ice cream is probably the most popular product right now. It’s tasty and it’s everywhere. But, you have to eat it quickly or you find yourself with a cone full of very sugary juice.
As usual, I turn to the most dependable solution on the planet – beer. Bars typically keep this beverage pretty cold, and therefore, bars are typically pretty full. They’ve even risen to the occasion and there’s a whole line of summer fruit beers. Not really a beer, they’re really just juice with a small alcohol content.
People will do whatever they have to do to beat the heat. Now if you’ll excuse me, I better go check the bar and make sure the beer is still cold.
Hungarian phrase of the day:
Pronounced Mell-egg vawn (rhymes with pawn). This useful phrase means “it’s hot”. It’s a good conversation starter right now because you’re never a liar.