And for your listening pleasure, while you gaze at the picture:
From the Pest-side looking toward the Palace (Királyi Palota) on the Buda-side. The Chain Bridge (Széchenyi lánchíd) over the Danube is in the foreground.
Amphibious tour vehicles have been around for a while. However, most of the ones that I’ve seen are “Ducks”–the converted DUKW military amphibians. In Budapest this winter was the first time I’d seen one that looked like a run-of-the-mill tour bus–at least as it was tooling down the Danube. (Granted, most of my travel is in the developing world, so maybe these “buses” are old news throughout Europe and North America.)
On the bank of the Danube, Pest-side just south of the Parliament building, there is an eery memorial consisting of an irregular row of shoes. The shoes are made of metal, but their brown rust looks like worn, brown shoe leather. It is in remembrance of the victims of the Arrowcross Militia who were shot there and left to topple into the river.
The Arrowcross Militia were Hungary’s Nazis. Hungary was allied with Germany at the beginning of World War II, but at one point (in 1944, as I recall) Hungary tried to break this alliance. Germany responded by taking over Hungary, and giving the Arrowcross (their fellow hardcore fascists) greater power and influence.