Monday, 3 September 2012

Friday 31st August 2012 - Sunday 2nd September 2012

Kezsthely cont.

The site is good, better than I had expected for a former Communist country, it is only about 8 years since they saw the light, so I am surprised at how good the infrastructure is.

Facilities are clean and functional, not as plush as we found in Germany and Austria, but OK. One "interesting feature", is the showers, which are just like a row of domestic shower cubicles, the only space to undress/dress and hang you gear is outside of the shower cubicle. The cubicles do not have doors, just a shower curtain (some do not even have that). They are not mixed, but, still very friendly.

The day starts warm and sunny, not quite as hot as yesterday.

We set off on on the bicycles to explore, have a coffee, and well, probably a beer or two.

We had assumed, this was a small place by the lake, but, it turns out to be a sizable place, even with a Tesco! (wonder if I can get my clubcard points here?).

There is a palace, which formerly belonged to a wealthy local family, but the Russians confiscated it in 1948. It has now been restored to something resembling it's former glory, but not to the family who originally owned it.

The main square and main street are pedestrianised and look very western already, but, without the familiar brands (ie Costa, McDonalds etc).

Most tourists are German and Dutch, with a few Polish and Czechs, so English does not appear to be widely spoken.

We manage with English and Kathleen's German to buy a belt for me (my packer forgot to bring my belt, you just cannot get the staff) and order coffee and sandwiches. We actually get what we (thought) we ordered.

The money is confusing, they are not in the Euro, and things look initially expensive. Our bill for two coffees and two sandwiches was 2140Florints. But, given the exchange rate of 325 Florints to 1 Pound, that is only  £6.50, so not expensive at all really.

Fortified, we cycle along the lake, for 12 miles, this involves ordering beer, but that is almost always manageable.

In the afternoon, we have a thunderstorm, but it is a half hearted affair with only on clap of thunder and a half hour of heavy rain, but the rest of the evening and through the night is windy and cold.

Saturday is scheduled as hair washing day, so a cloudy start is not a problem.

Once the hair is sorted, we walk into town, and visit the Palace. All very grand, but no photographs allowed.

Then, a very pleasant meal in a cafe, less than £20 for both of us, including bottle of wine, main course, sweet, coffee.

Kathleen then does the church bit, while I amuse myself reading the news via the free wifi spot I have found in the town square.

By now it is dark and we succeed in getting ourselves lost walking back to the campsite, everything looks different in the dark. Clearly, we eventually figure it out, and get back just before another night time shower.

Sunday, Kathleen eventually gets a mobile phone signal! Cannot explain why it took three days for it to hook on to the local network.

Another cycle ride along the lake, we make it as far as a golf club, about four villages away, I will not even attempt at spelling or pronouncing their names.

An amusing little incident as I struggle to order drinks, at the golf club, in German (I have got so used to everyone speaking German) and it turned out the waitress could speak perfectly good English.

We return to the campsite to relax, before driving to Budapest tomorrow.

Kathleen really has mastered the art of relaxing, they say, practice makes perfect, and she has clearly had plenty of practice.

As the sun moves around, Kathleen is forced to move to the pitch adjacent to us, to keep in the sun.

Shortly after she sets herself up there, a German couple arrive in their campervan, and she has to move. He seems a little surly, although his wife is friendly enough. Later in the evening, as Kathleen is doing her Peter, Paul and Mary session on her guitar, the German appears giving the thumbs up, he is a 60's music fan, so perhaps not so grumpy after all. Before long, we have the Danish couple next door clapping along as well. All is peace and tranquility after a few bottles of red.

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