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I suppose it takes 2 gentlemen to make a gentlemen's agreement.
Sad... people will do just about anything to get one over on a sucker!

Marilyn Tassy :

I suppose it takes 2 gentlemen to make a gentlemen's agreement.
Sad... people will do just about anything to get one over on a sucker!

Did you just call ksallee a sucker?  :D  :D

Vicces1 :

Did you just call ksallee a sucker?  :D  :D

I kind of was a sucker.

Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice (three times in my case), shame on me.....  :(

No of course not, just admitting we also have been suckered over the years and probably will be again...

Marilyn Tassy :

Gosh, wish it was ONLY my blood pressure, all I can say is "Edward Snowden time"...
Someday I may make the big "reveal" until then however I must curb my big mouth.
Funny really, here i am an "old lady" being "watched". So exciting, not!
The internet is not exactly private as I have learned.
Dang, I may of said too much already.

Just want to mention, that the Internet was not designed to be private. In fact, it's basic design is that of open and transparent communication. For example, when you visit a server I control, I know your IP address (assigned to your by your ISP (i.e. your Internet Service Provider)), which can be used to send me directly to who you are and where you live. There is nothing secret or secure about the Internet.

Unless you take steps to make it secure.

But those steps require action on your part. There are services and apps that can encrypt your text or even obfuscate your point of origin. But you have to actively use them. They are not part of the default web. So if you post anything without securing it first, just assume it is like painting that post an a placard that you then wear around your neck in public. Because being public such a post most certainly is.

I was "investigated" very "Eye Spy" or was it ," I Spy"?
I am harmless really...
In any case with this colder weather we may all be online more over the next few chilly months.

Marilyn Tassy :

I was "investigated" very "Eye Spy" or was it ," I Spy"?

For me, it was a very low tech "my spy":

https://stcoemgen.com/2013/09/13/my-spy/

I believe that if you can't say anything nice it is best not to comment.  Anything said on the net tends to hang around.  I don't always understand Hungarian attitudes and behaviour but I consider myself to be a guest in this country so try not to be critical without understanding the facts.
For instance the older hungarian body language of never smiling used to make me feel uncomfortable but now I understand that was how they were brought up I just accept it.
I still smile a lot but that is just part of my culture.

anns :

....f never smiling used to make me feel uncomfortable but now I understand that was how they were brought up I just accept it.
I still smile a lot but that is just part of my culture.

I'm with you there.  I work with a lot of people of different cultures and nationalities and smiling is a universal human trait.  One of the key milestones in baby development - 6 weeks after birth, one can usually get a bit of a smirk from any baby. 10 weeks, definite grin.  Same with laughing.  Unlearning all that is very difficult. I smile often with my peers because it's friendly, disarming and reduces tension.  But as with all "comedic" situations, timing is critical.  Bit too much and it can look insincere or even weird.

It looks weird if you don't look away awhile but keep a stare on your face while smiling.
I have landed more jobs then I can mention by just having a big smile on my face and a positive attitude.
My husband told me Hungarians don't smile because of several reasons.
The big no-no for a women in HU is to smile at a strange man.
It comes off in their minds as you are 1. Crazy 2. Drunk 3. Trying to pick them up ( maybe no 1 fits me!)
In the US as a girl we were told all the time by strangers to smile.
My mom would tell us to wipe that sour look off of our faces or go to our room until we were fit to be around others. Different culture.
My husband doesn't smile much and many people think he doesn't like them, not true just the way he is.
I rather like it because he looks serious, I never look serious enough. Between the two of us there is a happy middle ground.

Didn't want to go on too long about the subject of bad knees.
Moved here where "anything goes".
There is hope for tracking issues with knees, if you're up for a long haul of hard work and pain.
As girls my 2 older sisters had orthopedic shoes made every 2 or so months.
This was in the 1950's and each pair cost at least 2 weeks of my dad's pay.
Good thing our German grandfather was good at saving his Vet pay, he usually helped out with buying their shoes.
I come along, mom decided my knees were good and no special shoes for me. Figures I am the one with the bad knees now. Not always great to be the middle child that's for sure!
I had a wasted surgery here in HU on my knees, did more damage then good. They just scrapped around the knee cap.
3 years ago in Vegas I went to a orthopedic sports doctor , they gave me a shot of cortisone right there on the spot in the office and 2 knee braces.
Went to another doctor and they sent me to PT for 2 months 2 times a week for 90 mins.
Exercises for the knees really do help, hard to believe when you first go in for PT that anything will work.
There is also surgery but I would only do it if I was much younger then now.
Should of been done ages ago in my case.
Was going to have some surgery at age 12 but my mother decided she didn't want me to have a scar on my knee... Vain or what?
The surgery now involves cutting the IT band on each leg. Breaking the shin bone and resetting them straight.6 long intense month at least in recovery for each leg. Each surgery is done on one leg at a time.
Guess I will have to stick to the daily grind of knee exercises.
I starting wearing custom made orthopedic shoes around 15 years ago. Saw a foot specialist here in HU and got a script for shoes. A bit too late to do much good but keeps from getting too much worst.
It is very important I think for parents to have their kids feet looked at when they are young.
I  notice so many young women wearing skirts, shorts who have really bad leg issues. Youth may be keeping the demons at bay, for now.
Knock knees, pigeon toed girls, future ortho patients.
Women tend to have more knee issues due to the structure of their hips but men can also have problems.
My son wear custom orthotics in his shoes, cost is out of pocket every year with insurance, $500.

Marilyn Tassy :

....
The surgery now involves cutting the IT band on each leg. Breaking the shin bone and resetting them straight.6 long intense month at least in recovery for each leg. Each surgery is done on one leg at a time.
Guess I will have to stick to the daily grind of knee exercises.
I starting wearing custom made orthopedic shoes around 15 years ago. Saw a foot specialist here ....
My son wear custom orthotics in his shoes, cost is out of pocket every year with insurance, $500.

I have inserts also for my shoes and they seem to work but they simply do not last.  My right foot is very flat and it's thrown out my balance and gait. I  did not have any problems whatsoever until suddenly about 10-12 years ago, it all suddenly started playing up literally within just a few weeks. I've not found a solution. The inserts worked for a bit and now I'm seriously considering some surgical work on my right foot to try and improve the arch. If I don't, my knees will get worse and my hips could even go.  My back is suffering too.  I am beginning to hate stairs. Never found any exercises which would make any long term difference (I've looked - mainly on Youtube)

It's  shame but I think it is best to have these operations when one is young. The recovery period seems too long the older one gets.
One exception, my older friends who have hip replacement surgeries seem to get a real new lease of life.
Fortunately I have a very robust bone mass and can shilly shally down the fields with the best of them.
I used to find it a bit comical when my elderly mother and her friends went on about aches and pains and " guess who died". But age is upon me now and the only good thing about ageing is that we do it together.

I went to the pediatrician's with my nephew and sister. While waiting our turn to be seen, the waiting room was full of sunlight and children's toys, but not a lot of patience. The children were constantly trying to flit around to the tolerating views of their parents. Then in I walk with nephew. I know one of the other fathers with his daughter. She starts dancing and playing with me. I indulge. We dance and sing and smile. The others begin to watch this strange man with an accent playing with children, passing the time with toy blocks and smiles and tickles and levity and patience.  The women all around are watching me with thoughts that were a combination of (guessing) -- who is that weird animated man who is inspiring so much joy in these children? He can't be Hungarian or he would be sitting in a corner without a smile, patiently waiting his turn!  -- And -- Gee, why doesn't my husband act like that?!  Or at least that is optimistically what I choose to believe!

Funny stuff, my husband has told me to stop talking and acting "weird" in front of strangers!
Can't help myself, born to entertain and have a laugh, even at my own expense.
All I can say is Lucille Ball was my role model a combo of wit, charm beauty and silliness.
As far as inserts for shoes go, Mr Fluffy, I would look into getting yourself fitted with custom ortho shoes here in HU.
They really do help and they overall are not as pricey has getting new shoe pads all the time.
My son has them custom made because he stands all day long at work, these custom made shoes here in HU are allot cheaper and they are actual nice leather dress shoes.
You can pick your own style from what they have , chose what sort of sole and heel you wish etc.
Mine are all leather bottoms but next time I may go for a rubber sole for more traction in the winter.
They cost around $100. to $150. a pair depending on the style and what you want. Take about 2 months to get your order filled and I do not think they look bad.
If you have a script from a HU doctor and national health, they may even cost less. Not sure, I bought 6 or 7 pairs before I had national coverage.
Just change out the protective rubber heels once in awhile and they seem to last forever. Only had to toss out one pair so far from over using them.

Anyone else here ever sometimes feel stuck between two places, one here in Hungary and one from your home country?
We do most of our major banking still with our US bank.
New ATM cards are arriving soon and now we must rely on our son in the US to activate them for us in the states and make sure we get them in the mail here.
This sort of issue always drives me off the deep end.
Sometimes when it is not their business people drop the ball on you.
My new paperwork and test materials are also arriving anytime in the US again. Have to depend on others to forward me the test info and order a US money order for me, they only form of payment the NV state board of Cosmetology will expect.
Every 2 years I must retake a test online and forward new photos etc. just to be legal in the US to do hair if I ever work in that trade again. ( Think this will be my last time, hate to let it go after so many years)
Last time I had my older sister handle it for me, sent her money and photos, test results all inorder etc. She filled out the forms for me and forgot to check one little box.
Arrived in the US opened up my new license only to find they returned everything plus I now owned them late fees for 2 years!
This year I am counting on my son to handle it for me, fingers crossed.
It isn't easy to live in two worlds at the same time.

I constantly run into this problem.One feels helpless.

Helpless is the right word.
Would take me all of 30 mins to do it all myself at home, the test online takes about 15 mins.
All I can say is this is a test, if it doesn't stress you at it makes you stronger?...

Here's an interesting article....
http://www.bbc.com/capital/story/201610 … term-expat

Yes. I have not been out of the UK for long but I doubt if I would be able to resettle there again. I would like to spend more time in India and /or Mauritius. I have downsized really and doubt if I could afford to keep and maintain a home in the UK after settling in Hungary.

Mauritius sounds exciting!

It was nice and I missed the Hungarian winter but gained sun , sand and sea but it was far more expensive than Hungary , eating out and supermarket because everything is imported.

anns :

It was nice and I missed the Hungarian winter but gained sun , sand and sea but it was far more expensive than Hungary , eating out and supermarket because everything is imported.

I've had a similar experience.

I had the "pleasure" of working in the Maldives for a couple of months.  They have no agriculture except fishing and coconuts and no fresh vegetables.  As a consequence, they are all suffering from high blood pressure and diabetes.  They have a ship which goes every week to collect all the food from Sri Lanka. Tuna is nice but it's tuna this, tuna that, coconut surprise, tuna surprise etc.

After about a month, one gets island crazy despite the seemingly idyllic location.  Life is actually quite tough.  Mrs Fluffy and I had to get away and took a weekend trip to Colombo (Sri Lanka). By the end of 2 months we were nearly climbing the walls.

Love Island life but know the feeling of "Island Fever".
Lived in Hawaii for a few years, moved there twice, got hit by the fever and had to get away.
No wonder most Howlies( foreigners) smoke allot of you know what over there!
I can sometimes just kick myself for moving away and other times I remember the panic of seeing the ocean from every angle and wishing I could just swim away.
In fact my old friend still lives in Hawaii and when I told her we moved to New Mexico her reaction was, Wow, you can drive and drive for ever in one straight line"
I know the feeling of going round and round in circles on a Island.
Of course thinking about the clear blue waters and friendly people makes me long for a 3rd move there. Only problem is I know I only have one more big move in me, no mistakes this time.
Also next time I may finally take up some of natures bounty, Island style, natural way to calm down. Was surrounded by it but never wanted to slow down that much.
At this late date, it is not going to do much harm.
The last time we lived on the Islands in 1994 96, I spent at least $250. each and every week just in the grocery store.
We didn't even eat meat back then. Lots of fish and fresh vegies. Problem was we ate like we were still on the Mainland, potatoes instead of rice, our teenage son drank a ton of milk which was more then double the mainland price. Petrol was more then double , everything cost so much it was insane to keep living there without changing our diet or lifestyle.
Paying over $1,000 a month just on food and never really buying many junk snacks was killing us.
Rent, petrol, een clothing was double, can wear simple clothing on the Islands but that isn't always the case, Lived on a mountain top in the rain forest, gets cold up there.
Also our son was in his teens and felt like an outsider there, didn't speak the local slang, was too much of a Howlie boy in looks even though he was born on Maui. Was picked on by locals for having long red hair, too sensitive of a child, he never wanted to leave the house because people even adults there made  rude comments about his fair skin and red hair, just some ignorant people.
Also I had issues about cock fighting which is a pass time over there, dog fighting too. Often would see dead carcasses tossed on the side of the roads, just upsetting . Nothing to be done about it either, the cops were related to the offenders.

From:

http://www.expat.com/forum/viewtopic.ph … 55#3438304

fluffy2560 :

If one goes to the UK,  as I noted, it's possible to just buy another inbound luggage allowance or do a "cheap" upgrade on the return. I will do this in a week or so.  I have done this many times - Air France was the cheapest for a while but awkward to fly from HU (CDG is a crap airport). BA has put prices up and is not so competitive. Lufthansa was the priciest.

CDG is really bad. I have been known to pay more for another flight just to avoid that airport.

(In case anyone is wondering CDG is Charles de Gaulle Airport)

If people are thinking of where to settle as a final home you can't beat tropical.  Also  nicer places are also much more expensive to live in.  Otherwise I would consider Mauritius.

anns :

you can't beat tropical

Malaria, Leishmaniasis, Yellow fever, Dengue fever, Trypanosomiasis, Schistosomiasis, etc.

No place is perfect.   :)

anns :

....Otherwise I would consider Mauritius.

I was up for a short job of 1 month there once. I was rather interested!

I had even planned to take my mountain bike and get in some serious cycling - some great Youtube videos of MTB'ing there.

Unfortunately someone else was selected.

Disappointed.

fluffy2560 :
anns :

....Otherwise I would consider Mauritius.

I was up for a short job of 1 month there once. I was rather interested!

Never been there myself, but considering that the core Expat.com crew lives in Mauritius, it must be a very nice place to be an expat.

klsallee :
anns :

you can't beat tropical

Malaria, Leishmaniasis, Yellow fever, Dengue fever, Trypanosomiasis, Schistosomiasis, etc.

No place is perfect.   :)

...etc...should also include Rabies.....as I know all too well of late having been bitten by a street dog in Asia...I was very stupid for passing it too closely.   I was vaccinated pronto - within 1h.  I am alright (do wolf-voice) Nooooowwwwwwwllllll (Now).

As with any "risky" location, knowing your surroundings, keeping a large dose of common sense on hand plus some basic hygiene, first aid and protective measures are a good idea.

Malaria has relatively good prophylaxis (generic Malarone) and Rabies has a good vaccine (Verorab).   There's no excuse for Yellow Fever - 10 year vaccine easily available and cheap enough.  Dengue - nothing available.   Others, varying treatments but ultimately treatable.

Visited Belize in the mid 90's.
Thought about checking it out in person as we heard to was a nice place to retire.
Yea, guess so if you live on one of the cayes off the mainland.
We were stubborn and dumb, my husband had the travel agent in a panic when he insisted we stay in Belize city and not on a tourist caye Island. She said no one ever does that!
We did it, should of listened to the travel agent.
Our hotel manager did watch out for us, told us to be indoors at the hotel before dark, lock the door and don't open it or come out until daylight!
Living on a caye looks wonderful IF you can afford it.
I had the whole Pirates of the Carribean feel the whole time. Have allot of sail boats doing whatever to pay for the high cost of caye Island living.
Unless you have a small trust fund, it isn't all it is said to be.
If you're not a local then you are in for it, went inland, people were super nice outside of the city but we also stayed in at night in a 5 star hotel, the only one there back then.
Locked in our room of course.

fluffy2560 :

should also include Rabies

Rabies occurrence is world wide. In temperate zones as well, all the way to the Arctic. It can and does occur in Europe. I did not include it because it is not really then just a "tropical" disease like most of the others I listed. Malaria can also occur in parts of Europe, but not currently very active.

fluffy2560 :

Malaria has relatively good prophylaxis (generic Malarone)

Mefloquine, Doxycycline can be used long term, but Malarone is not always recommended for long term expats.

Add to that, Malarone is expensive. Must be taking daily. It can not be used by pregnant women.

While working in one West Africa country I took Malarone and it made me sick. I had a terrible reaction to this drug myself, including some of the worst known side effects. Would never take again. Every long term expat there I knew took nothing (because long term use of preventative prophylaxis for years is not a good idea for many reasons -- for one thing it can generate a drug resistance version of the diseases). They just "toughed it out" when they got Malaria. And every one of them had had Malaria, multiple times.

When we moved to Hawaii in the mid 90's we took our beloved Doberman with us.
He spent 4 long hard months locked up in quarantine property of the state of Hawaii. Basically he was confined to a dog run and not allowed out of his cell.
Even if he fell ill we had to hire state approved vets.
This was due to the so called threat of rabies.
Silly really since no pets were allowed to enter the Island without a exam and full set of shots. Just a way for the state to make a ton of money.
I know I spent well over $10,000 extra for bringing my dog. OK, maybe under $2,000 for his jail time , flight, carrier and snacks while locked up but emotionally I couldn't work those 4 long months because I drove over one hour 6 days a week in traffic to visit him, my fun time sitting in a dog run daily.
They put the station or as we owners called it, dog jail next to a real prison, no one lived out there in nowhere land.
Just before he was released from dog prison,we had to sit through a chat about aftercare. Found out that the Islands are the home of the Bufo Toad, a poisonous toad.
One night I went out to check on my 108 lb. baby outside. Not allowed indoors per my lease.
I turned the light on, found a huge, I mean huge bufo toad in his mouth, legs wiggling around. I screamed his name, Max he dropped that horrid thing and I ran to grab the garden hose, just about drowned him flushing out his mouth. Ran inside, called the vet, they told me by the time I could drive down from the mountain we lived on  20 mins, he would be dead.The only thing that saved him was my chance of going out,working fast cleaning his mouth out and him being a large dog.
We lived on 40 acres of land, no way could we fence chicken wire everywhere.
What "killed" me was the fact that after he was released and I knew more about the "culture" of the Islands, I was afraid for his safety all the time.
Our landlord warned me not to let my big black dog anywhere near his home, they chose to live more in the village area where his wife had family, rented us their beautiful large house.He said to me that once he saw a large black Rotty dog near his house, the dog wouldn't follow him to safety and as he said, "I see that dog no more", nice big chunks of BBQ meat!!!
It is said that black dogs taste the best!
What? After all we went through I had to worry about him being dinner?
Also many local dogs had never seen a vet in their lives let alone had shots.
Island living is not exactly what it seems.
While my pet was in lock down I had hours to talk with the workers at the station, other pet parents and such. Heard they had a huge scam where some local station workers were dognapping and selling large black dogs just a few years before we arrived.
Only cost the owners $850. for the lock up , basic rate without extras. The state only had to refund the fees that were left on the time served for the pets. That was very upsetting to hear.
Dinner is ready!!!

klsallee :

...
While working in one West Africa country I took Malarone and it made me sick. I had a terrible reaction to this drug myself, including some of the worst known side effects. Would never take again. Every long term expat there I knew took nothing (because long term use of preventative prophylaxis for years is not a good idea for many reasons -- for one thing it can generate a drug resistance version of the diseases). They just "toughed it out" when they got Malaria. And every one of them had had Malaria, multiple times.

Yes sure but immunity is sure tough to acquire and easily lost.  Locals do not take it but malaria kills 10s of thousands if not millions each year.

Are you sure it wasn't Lariam you had a reaction to? 

Malarone is quite safe  - $1.20 a pop as a generic so $40 a month, not too bad. Lariam is the one with truly awful side effects.  Stopped on that one as started to behave weird. Luckily no long term damage.

Doxy is OK but makes you extremely sensitive to sunlight - my exposed hands came out in itchy blotches. Nigerian doctor told me to stop taking it as it was well known.  Shame as it's incredibly cheap.

As for rabies, yes, it's all over but many people in Western countries (not Hungary!!!) have their pets inoculated as they travel.  Street dogs elsewhere have no such care.  Not to be controversial but dispatching them to a better place is a whole lot safer than trying to stop rabies after the event.

fluffy2560 :

Are you sure it wasn't Lariam you had a reaction to?

For years Lariam was my drug of choice working in central Africa. Never had and problems with Lariam. But in the place I went in West Africa,  Lariam was not recommended as there were already malaria resistant strains to Larium there. So I was given Malarone at the Swiss tropical medical clinic where I went for my routine checkup and vaccinations before I traveled.

So, yes, I am 100% sure it was Malarone.

Over 15 years working in the tropics I do know what malaria drugs I take on each trip.  Especially since Malarone is taken daily and Larium is taken weekly (and is a huge pill), it is rather difficult to confuse those drugs. :)

And when I came back (to Switzerland) quite sick (I was already sick in Africa), I went to the hospital with an all body rash, abdominal pains, diarrhea, lucid dreams, headache, fever, muscle pain (all possible reactions to Malarone). and was tested for all sorts of tropical diseases (including malaria) non of which I had -- I stopped taking the Malarone and my symptoms vanished. Medical conclusion was a significant reaction to Malarone.

A drug being declared "safe" is just a statement of statistics (i.e. many or most people have no problems). But that does not mean someone (a small percentage of users) can not have significant adverse reactions to that drug. Some people just do not deal with some drugs well. For me, one of those drugs is Malarone.

After that I took Artemisinin when I returned to West Africa (it was commonly available locally). No problems with drug reaction or malaria. But this drug is no longer recommended as a prophylaxis for malaria since my last visit to that country. And this was also before the huge counterfeit market for Artemisinin occurred.

fluffy2560 :

$1.20 a pop as a generic

It was considerably more expensive in Switzerland.

I heard quinine is good against malaria. So I drink gin and tonics as often as possible!
:D
(Tonic having quinine)

Vicces1 :

So I drink gin and tonics as often as possible!

I think having a good gin and tonic as often as possible can also be just an issue of happiness and mental health.  :)

klsallee :
fluffy2560 :

$1.20 a pop as a generic

It was considerably more expensive in Switzerland.

Malarone generics now available as it's off patent.  Prices have tumbled so it's more affordable now, especially if one's employer is paying.

Hmmm, Gin and tonic, sounds lovely!
Been awhile since I have indulged in that "treat".
Question, twist of lemon or lime?

Sounds a bit "risky" taking all those meds to prevent a deadly disease.
I know when anyone returns to the US they will not take your blood as a donation if you have been out of the country for more then 6 months.
Wonder what that is all about?
I have a rare blood group and I thought they would jump all over me to get a "pint".
Gin and tonic, yes, maybe it's time for a "stiff one"! Wine is lovely here in Hungary but every so often it is nice to indulge.

My husband visited S. Africa in 1975.
He felt like it was "home" even though he was just a little white boy from Hungary.
He really felt an emotional connection to the place.Did anyone else have that experience in Africa?
He loved it there.

With gin, I always prefer lime. With vodka, it's a toss-up between lime and lemon.
Given the price of limes in Hungary, I have to adjust.

I drink gin tonics on the patio in the summer for a refreshing treat. With food, or going out, it's beer in the summer. Most of the Spring, Autumn, and Winter it's red wine.  My Hungarian friends will force palinka and unicum (or unicum szilva) on me at various times, but it's not a regular thing.  But I generally enjoy my drinks.  :top:

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