Evaluating expat life in Hungary

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A little food for thought!

Hungary is an interesting place. Sometimes it all makes sense like a picture that comes into focus and you have a clear shot of exactly what is going on here. Other times you see behaviour that is so far North of centre; reactions that spin out of control towards crazy, that you wonder what species you are intermingling with.

I wish I were joking. Although it could probably be true of most places in the world.

Where I am from there is a code of ethics in place to treat all people equally, despite race, sexual preference, religion, nationality, sex or whatever minority or discriminatory group you may feel you are part of. In some ways we have all felt unfairly treated, perhaps at work not getting the promotion because of association, or being treated less for being a woman… discrimination sadly can be found everywhere, and we can all feel like a minority at times. Still, we give, or at least try to give, a common respect no matter what I might personally believe. I also try to gage people on past behaviour, watching how they respond to different scenarios and I then learn how to be around them. I get to know them first, never judge them, try to understand them. You can predict future behaviour, by observing past behaviour. Then you can decide if they are a good fit for a friendship. Normal right?

Not here! What I see here are some people who are very afraid of different. I know the knee jerk reaction is to give them an excuse, like 60 years ago they went under communist law and they were repressed, or that most grew up with nothing and so many generations of people stabbing each other in the back has made them a little fearful of outsiders. Hogwash!

***Note: The word hogges wash first appeared in the 1400s in its literal sense, meaning swill for a hog. By the 1600s hog wash was used in an informal manner to mean an alcoholic beverage that did not have a strong enough alcohol content for the drinker. Now often, the word hogwash is used in place of bullshit, or I don’t freaking believe it!!) SO HOGWASH, is the perfect word, because you sometimes need a strong drink to take it, and the behaviour is definitely bullshit!

At some point we, all of us, must be accountable for our own behaviours. Today’s actions! Reaction can not be base on what grandma or great-grandma went through, because that was her life, with a completely different set of circumstances. I am not saying to forget the past, but having the same repressed ideologies today as a woman who probably did not go to university yet alone high school, who did not travel the world or even had left Hungary, and who only knew Hungarian rural life is pretty irrelevant in today’s media based world. She also was most likely a stay-at-home mother, raising kids, and relied on her husband. There is a mould we must break ourselves free from. Not to give up on bettering ourselves, to be determined to grow as individuals and to believe that we are able to reach for the skies. This is the part of my own ‘American’ (I use the term loosely as you know that I am actually Canadian but they call me American all the time here, a part of the Americas on the other side of the world) culture that I miss most while living in Europe.

The idea that I can do anything. Like superman!

I have never doubted my abilities, and believe with all my heart that if there is something I want to achieve, I can do it! I might be naive, I might even be a little touched, however, I know if I get something in my head, I will die trying to figure it out. I hear a different story here. That everyone else is to blame for their unhappiness and that someone should step up and save them.

Here the negativity among the people is overwhelming, the no answer to every question, the impossibilities to every move. Hogwash! Every person has the same capabilities to do anything they desire, or why else would we have the desire in the first place? If you believe in god you could say he gave us the glimmer to show us the path to happiness. Personally I think it is a far more simpler reason. If you have the desire, you have the means to find a way to conquer any problem life puts in front of you. End of story.

Success is determined not by the mountain climbed but the obstacles overcome!

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Our mission is to share our family's move to France, and now to Hungary, how to slow travel with kids, and give tips and ideas as to what works and what doesn't being an expat and a travelling family in Europe. Expat experts on an adventure!

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