The heaviness of power in the XIX century

October 3rd

Hotel Gellert in Budapest

Walking (and riding buses, trolleybuses, and trams) all over Budapest weighs me down. Literary — every street and plaza and boulevard in the inner, old city is lined up with amazing XIX century townhouses and palaces. Beautifully ornamented, some faithfully restored, some decaying. They still preserve the remembrance of domination over Central Europe that throughout the XIX century was concentrated in Budapest and Vienna under the Hapsburg dynasty. At the beginning of my sightseeing, I would take photo after photo of those buildings, but soon had to give up — there are too many of them. And each one is heavier in its footprint and thickness of concrete walls than the other. I guess the stagnation (and in this case Austro-Hungarian stagnation) actually added something — every generation added its layer of abuse of power and more money and dirt of hypocrisy and lack of morals. Each generation built upon and thicken the walls to hide themselves better from the plebeian crowds. And as each generation of the working class raised their voices louder, the thicker the walls had to be. No new voices calling for change were allowed to penetrate the stately townhouses of nobility and manufacturers and military officers. And each generation thought that simply working on muting those voices would make them go away. So they built higher and heavier until they themselves were weighted with an inability to even imagine any change, And then they perished, still in denial and still clinging to old ways. There is a moral in all this somewhere — and I hope the resolution will be the same and will happen soon.

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footsteps of the Furies

footsteps of the Furies

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“for they knew what sort of noise it was; they recognize, by now, the footsteps of the Furies”. Enjoying life on the road to recovery. Observing and writing.