Yesterday was St. Nicholas Day in Hungary. Somehow this nice dead Catholic bishop realized that I was in Hungary and left a package on the windowsill for me. It was really nice of him.

I had two speaking appointments yesterday. One in the morning in a state vocational school. Unfortunately someone got into their heads that it would be a perfect thing for English lessons. WRONG. I was thrown into a classroom with about 90 9th and 10th grade pupils, who definitely didn’t speak enough English to really understand what was going on. Wasted opportunity. The second hour it was 12th graders, who still had very poor English skills, but some of it went through.

I just found out that in Hungary there is a competitive secondary education system. Those who attend vocational schools are those who are not ready for a full academic curriculum that would make them eligible for college later on. I also met in the third hour with a class of 14th grade students who were ranging from young twenty somethings to a 54-year-old grandmother, who took on the extra years and courses to get their matriculation exam after vocational school. They were wonderful!

I and the peer ed coordinator went to lunch at a university canteen. Those coconut balls from the previous post were the best thing I’ve had for dessert for a long time.

In the afternoon I was talking to students at a Catholic university. That went pretty well.

In the evening we met two Americans and had dinner at TGI Friday’s at one of the malls. The food was okay, the cocktails nice. And we got one of these as we left!


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