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New to Pécs (in five days!)

Hello! In five days I leave Italy, where I've been for too many years, to experience a new country...well, with a brief 24-hour stop in Zagreb just the heck of it! So I guess technically the subject should say "New to Pécs (in seven days!).  I thought long and hard about Budapest (I'd heard so many wonderful things about it) but somehow found myself researching Pécs. It looks absolutely lovely, and seems to have everything that's usually on my "list" ;-) I've spoken to a few people there already but would love to meet anyone else there!

I'm in my mid-50s, there's just me and two suitcases and my laptop (I keep downsizing and will one day get down to just one suitcase!) -- my leash, I call it -- and I love to experience the culture of wherever I am. The food, the wine, the culture, the wine, learning the customs, tasting the wines....did I mention I really like wine tasting?! :proud

I would love to meet up with anyone for a nice aperitivo (do they do that there?) sometime!

Maria

If you ever come into Budapest, let us know, maybe a few of us ex pat ladies can meet up for coffee or better yet, for a beer!

Yes there are several of us around now it seems! :)

I wonder if nearly everyone here is in their approximately in their mid-50s (me included) or early 60s.  Must be attractive for our age group or maybe it's because only people of a certain age are hanging about in this forum.

Our generation still knows how to make personal contact with people, I don't even know how to text!
One has to be in my opinion young and perhaps a student to travel or older and wanting to have a few adventures while they still can.

Or be like me in the mid-50s with an EU passport, no ties, no kids, no furniture, an online job that allows me to do it anywhere, and an insatiable desire to see it all  ;-) THREE MORE DAYS!!  (Marilyn, you're right about the personal contact thing -- I wrote about that once in an old blog, about those days when we would sit and write a long letter, take the fat envelope to be mailed, and wait and wait and wait....until a fat envelope arrived in our mailbox with a friend's address on it. You'd take it inside, get all curled up on a chair or sofa and open it up...the anticipation of all those pages!)

Hm..... I am under 50.  :|

But I do not use things like Facebook, Twitter, et al. I am on Linkedin and some others, but rarely use them anymore. I have not found them useful or interesting. But I do subscribe to many forums and those I do find useful.

Meanwhile, single subject forums are not that popular with younger people these days. Exceptions being some of the more technical forums that deal more deeply in specialized or complex topics that do not quite fit the chatter more common on social media.

Kevin, we should talk/meet -- not only do I love wine, but I'm the copyeditor for a new international food and wine magazine  ;)

I agree -- it sometimes amazes me how our young social media person is all over the Internet and has given us a list of all these sites she's using and twittering (or is it tweeting) and fb'ing and this'ing and that'ing....a singular subject on a forum such as various expat ones are more for "discussion" rather than "need a room/flat, anyone know of one, yeah, great, thanks, done over and out".

If you love red wine, then you definitely need to visit Villány, which is just south of Pécs. Best red wine in Hungary, in my humble opinion (especially if you like Cabernet Franc, which I do -- The best Cabernet Franc from Villány can hold its own to any other wine region on the planet). Also Villány is one of the few places in Hungary with a high winery to high quality ratio (another is the region around Sopron). That is, most of the wineries in Villány produce a decent product. There are many wine regions in Hungary, but sadly in many of those regions there are also a lot of bad wines created by wineries of all shapes and sizes.

Otherwise, for my contact information I will send you a private message.

I've spent years wine-tasting in Oregon and Italy, and tasted many wines from France and others...but never Hungary. I am SO looking forward to it! I've been told (and seen on my little google-guy walks around town) that there are quite a few restaurants in Pécs that offer wine tasting, plus cafes and of course wine shops that do as well. Heck I'm so looking forward to weekend trips -- as long as there are trains, I'm good to go (I have no car)!

Buses in Hungary are better than most trains (except on the main routes, buses are usually newer and more comfortable).

This is the Hungarian bus company web site:

http://menetrendek.hu/

Sadly, they recently re-did the site and there is no longer an "English" site option that once existed (it is on my "to do list" to email them to complain that they seem to hate tourists and expats). "Honnan" means "from" and "Hova" means "to". Given that info you can type in the "from" and "to" destinations to get the bus schedule.

FWIIW: I have directly wine tasted at vineyards in California (I lived near Napa), Oregon and Washington. As well as Germany, Switzerland, and South Africa. And of course in Hungary. Of course I have tried wines from many countries I have not actually visited. And I saw Hungarian wine for sale when I was in Vietnam... how odd I found that at the time since I knew the winery and did not think much of them.

Have train or bus, will travel :-) Thanks for the link! Oh I love SA wines! And Spain...Portugal...hell let's face it, I just love wine. But mostly reds -- I'm not a big white wine fan. I don't like the whole fruit/sweet aspect of it, don't like bubbly either. Which made living in Lambrusco-land a pain!

cantstopmoving :

And Spain...Portugal...

A Spanish and Portuguese wine tour is on my "to do" list.

cantstopmoving :

hell let's face it, I just love wine.

And this is where we pause, bow our heads, and say "amen".....  Then drink some wine. :top:

cantstopmoving :

But mostly reds -- I'm not a big white wine fan.

Vast parts of Hungary are white wine. My wine region is mostly white wine (the only reds I grow are Pinot noir (because it tolerates the cooler climate) and Turán). So you picked right to go to Pécs as that is one of the better red wine regions.

I didn't say I was averse to *trying* the whites from Hungary -- I always try at least once! I shall try yours :-)

What in the hell am I going to do for 1.5 hours in Gyekenyes when I'm dragging two suitcases with me.........I think I may have seen a little store with something next to it that had picnic table things outside...could not find any way to avoid that hour and a half layover!

I am actually really looking forward to the food pairing with the wines also -- I know so little about Hungarian food (except for goulash and paprika) so it will be interesting and fun.  *amen*

cantstopmoving :

I didn't say I was averse to *trying* the whites from Hungary -- I always try at least once!

Attagirl!!

cantstopmoving :

What in the hell am I going to do for 1.5 hours in Gyekenyes when I'm dragging two suitcases with me.........I think I may have seen a little store with something next to it that had picnic table things outside...could not find any way to avoid that hour and a half layover!

That is Hungary. Slower life style. Enjoy the 90 minute layover the best you can.....

cantstopmoving :

I am actually really looking forward to the food pairing with the wines also -- I know so little about Hungarian food (except for goulash and paprika) so it will be interesting and fun.  *amen*

Oddly, most Hungarian food does best with Cuvées (i.e. blended wine). Also, try the Hungarian fish soup -- ideal with a red such as Kadarka if you can get this wine as a varietal. If not, try it with Kékfrankos (Hungarian .... a.k.a Blaufränkisch in German).

14 years in Italy, some of that in deep Sicily...I know all about slower lifestyle, I get it  :sleep  ;-)

The google map doesn't get close enough for me to see if that place is a little cafe or what.

Speaking for the younger crowd, he hee

I just turned 36 this past January

Yes there seems to be two groups of expats either young collage kids or yes older over 50 year old people. Rarely do i run into people around my age. I think mostly to be an expat you are either retired or have independent income or you are young and still starting your career.

I thought there would be more people here due to marriage to Hungarians but i guess that does not happen as much people say

I wanted to move to Europe when i was in my 20s but it did not happen until December 2015 with m y father who is 58 and retired 3 times. (Both i had a job that the company went out of business before i got a transfer and i was engaged to a man back when i was 22 but he was killed before we were married so i did not move to Czech Rep back then.)

But that said most people i know my age are all into the social media stuff and truly am not! I never hardly even used my mobile phone back in USA and do not much here either. I am old fashioned i like to sit down and write an email or talk on the phone! Course i am a very old fashioned person anyway so i do enjoy hanging around older people.

FeliciaOni :

But that said most people i know my age are all into the social media stuff and truly am not! I never hardly even used my mobile phone back in USA and do not much here either. I am old fashioned i like to sit down and write an email or talk on the phone! Course i am a very old fashioned person anyway so i do enjoy hanging around older people.

20 years ago, a friend of mine told me I was an "old soul" that has seen it all already, and who has been around enough to know what is valuable.

I took that as a compliment.  :)

If there's one thing my "gypsy" life has taught me, it's that. Keeping my eyes and ears open to everything around me, listening to everyone of all age groups. Years and years ago I worked and lived on a reservation in Arizona and was heavily involved in Native law and affairs. It's all been an amazing journey and I am so looking forward to more -- but unfortunately that's what happens sometimes, people forget to keep their ears and minds open.

Okay, the little place in Gyekenyes is a little grocery store! A coop mini! And it looks like there are these two little places right there by the station that have those old pepsi/soda/whatever signs on them. Now, maybe I'll get lucky and there'll be a way to leave my two big suitcases at the station while I go wander?

cantstopmoving :

The google map doesn't get close enough for me to see if that place is a little cafe or what.

I have noted a lot of errors in Google maps in Hungary. But they are getting better.

If you do not speak Hungarian, it will be tough. Start by saying "nem beszélek magyarul" (I do not speak Hungarian) then follow with "Beszélsz angolul?" (Do you speak English). If they say "nem", then ask "Do you have an English menu" in Hungarian:  "Van egy angol menü"? They may not understand your accent, so repeat if necessary.

Note: "egy" is pronounced like "edge", "sz" is "s" in Hungarian (so just pronounce is like the "z" is not there)

The picture just isn't at the correct angle -- i can see the shadow of the google car LOL

Okay....and "cs" (as in Pécs) is "ch" from what I understand of what I've been told.

cantstopmoving :

Okay....and "cs" (as in Pécs) is "ch" from what I understand of what I've been told.

To an English speaker, Pécs is more pronounced like "Page". The "ch" is hard, like in "church".

ah...so it's more a combination "soft g" and "ch" (I go through this kind of stuff with my Italian ESL students! Except Italian is easier--if the letter is there, pronounce it)

cantstopmoving :

if the letter is there, pronounce it)

Hungarian is similar. But things like "sz" and "cs" are considered "letters". They are always pronounced the same when encountered. (unlike an English "c" in "cat" versus "city"). There are also added letters in the Hungarian alphabet like ö ü ó ő ú é á ű  which also have unique pronunciations.

And interesting language.

Red, Red Wine makes me feel fine is my motto!
Nice to know we are not the only "Gypsy Spirits" in Hungary.
Seems I am forever living out of a suitcase.
I wish I had a 90 min lay over, leaving tonight on a long haul back into HU. Only a 6 hour lay over in London... Glad I stocked up on my valium!!!
Will be interesting to read about how you like Peces.

FeliciaOni :

.....Yes there seems to be two groups of expats either young collage kids or yes older over 50 year old people. Rarely do i run into people around my age. I think mostly to be an expat you are either retired or have independent income or you are young and still starting your career.

Many people with young kids will have been sent to HU by their employers.  I came here to work way back in 1994 but I intended to stay for 1 year only which was the length of my contract.    Other people will travel (to here to take it easy or even work) when their kids have left the nest.  I know a few people on contract who are just working internationally in some kind of pre-retirement adventure.

In my own case I met Mrs Fluffy here, we travelled extensively all over the world, then we had some kids before we got too old and now it's 2016.   Not retired and no independent income. And sometimes I wonder if I should restart my career and get a proper job.

fluffy2560 :

.....Not retired and no independent income. And sometimes I wonder if I should restart my career and get a proper job.

Meh...that whole "proper job" thing is overrated ;-) I'm neither retired nor have a portfolio nor anything like that -- just fortunate to have finally, after a lot of years, gotten myself into the position of having a job I can do anywhere, as long as I have good Internet service.

FeliciaOni :

I think mostly to be an expat you are either retired or have independent income or you are young and still starting your career.

Well, because most salaries in Hungary are less than in western countries why would a 30-something professional building their career independently come to live in Hungary, get a job in a difficult language environment, and take a pay cut for their effort?

Most expat professionals are experienced managers (i.e. over 40) on short term assignments, are TEFL 20-somethings using that job as a good excuse to see the world, or are students. All of those are short term residents in the country and will typically leave in a few years.

But you also forgot to mention those that work "online" or remotely. Those people, who are usually free lancers, can live wherever they want. But many of those tend to be older as they are selling their experience (which comes with age).

So 30-ish age bracket expats are the most uncommon here.

FeliciaOni :

I thought there would be more people here due to marriage to Hungarians but i guess that does not happen as much people say

From my personal observation (so take it for what it is worth), it happens, but that does not mean the couple ends up living in Hungary. That depends on the directional vector of the marriage.

Those coming from the East to marry a Hungarian tend to settle in Hungary.

Those in Hungary marrying someone from the west tend to leave Hungary and go to the spouse's home country (sooner or later).

There are exceptions to this observation of mine of course. And many of those are regular commentators at this forum.  :)

TWO SLEEPS people, TWO SLEEPS!! (well okay technically four since the first night I'm spending in Zagreb since I get in late and decided to take advantage of it and stay the next day and night, but still..........)

You know I have not visited Pecs yet  and I would really like to see more of Hungary.  So maybe us Budapest gents and ladies can come on a day trip to meet you? The trains are cheap and it could be a good outing? Or wine buying opportunity. I am visiting UK til mid May but me and Marilyn can look into organising it.
It's odd for me, when I moved country  I expected to see more of Hungary but I'm busy all the time, either trips to elsewhere, gardening at my little holiday Tanya or just trying to get to know Budapest.
Sometimes when I am just home alone in Budapest I just like to veg out and spend the day at home....so maybe I have just settled. Up until November 30 th last year I worked full time, in a big job, in the UK. Having now taken early retirement I intend to just work a little just to keep up to date with my profession and try and keep a few brain cells alive.
Otherwise my only ambitions are to paint and draw, travel and grow nasturtiums.
Welcome and regards  Anns ( settled in Hungary and of a certain old fashioned age).

anns :

You know I have not visited Pecs yet  and I would really like to see more of Hungary.

Pécs the city is "okay". But the region around Pécs is really a lovely part of Hungary. Definitely worth a visit.

There was uranium mining in the Mecsek hills during the communist period (I think at least one has reopened), and that impacted Pécs to some extent (i.e. ugly communistic period concrete apartments to house miners).

Are you in Pécs now?

If so, what do you think of the city?

Welcome to Pécs! 
My wife and I have lived here for 3 years. It is a beautiful and vibrant city with gentle hills tó the North and Croatia to the South. No uranium is mined here these days.
Although older than you we would love to share our knowledge of both the area and its wine.
Best regards
Graham

croftg :

No uranium is mined here these days.

You are right.

I had not kept up with the most recent events; and so I just checked and it looks like Wildhorse Energy Ltd., which for many years had stated their intention to restart mining in the Mecsek Hills, just sold their Hungarian subsidiary last October. So no current Uranium mining. I do not know if the buyer intends to restart the mines or will wind down the operation.

klsallee :

Are you in Pécs now? If so, what do you think of the city?

I'm here, I'm here! I'm sorry I didn't check in, but I was busy looking at apartments and wandering the city :-)  I like it! And I was fortunate enough to get here two days before a big wine festival, so I've been having a great time not only tasting the cuisine, but tasting so many (so very many LOL) of the wines. And I've now found an apartment and move in on Monday.

croftg :

Welcome to Pécs! 
My wife and I have lived here for 3 years. It is a beautiful and vibrant city with gentle hills tó the North and Croatia to the South. No uranium is mined here these days.
Although older than you we would love to share our knowledge of both the area and its wine.
Best regards -- Graham

Hi Graham and wife! As I mentioned above, I found a flat and will be living off Kiraly Ut -- on one of the side streets right by .... Sch-something Terrace piazza.....the big piazza. I know very very very few street/piazza names yet! This weekend I'm just hanging out here at Palatinus, waiting for Monday so I can move in. I'd love to meet! I found a new "home" -- a cute new wine bar, where I've already hung out once ;-)

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