Postcard from Hungary: Exploring public spaces & challenges
- Name: Kerry Randazzo’20
- Hometown: Portland, Maine
- Major: Environmental Studies, Theatre Production
- Study Abroad Location: Budapest, Hungary
- Host Institutions: Eötvös Collegium & Hungarian University of Fine Arts
How is study abroad benefiting your Beloit College education?
I am getting the chance to gain perspectives on my Beloit College education outside of Beloit itself. Every day is an educational experience because being in an unfamiliar environment continuously challenges the things I thought I knew. It has been an exercise in looking deeper into what I have learned at Beloit and seeing how the same issues are being discussed abroad.
How are you engaging with people and place when you’re not in the classroom?
I have met a lot of people and learned much of what I know about Hungary by just regularly placing myself in public spaces and forming either passing or deeper relationships that way. It’s something that you can do more easily when you live in a bigger city like Budapest. I go to a cafe near my dorm most days and have become good friends with some of the Hungarians who work there. It’s a good way of meeting people who share your interests. They’re mostly students as well and have taught me a lot about Hungarian culture by taking me to their favorite places and showing me their version of Hungary.
One of the turrets at Buda Castle
What are the three most important things you packed in your suitcase?
My peanut card! It says that I’m allergic to peanuts in Hungarian in case a waiter doesn’t speak English. Pictures and drawings my friends made from back home. My sketchbook.
What is your favorite place in Budapest?
The citadella at the top of Gellért hill, on the Buda side of the city. It has an AMAZING view of the city.
The Hungarian Parliament building from across the Danube
What has been the most unexpected thing you encountered during your off-campus study experience?
A construction site near my dorm excavated a WWII air bomb left from when the allies took Budapest back from the Germans. We had to leave the dorm for the day while they removed it!
Describe some daily rituals/routines that you’ve observed while abroad!
I go for a run on the Danube every morning and get to see the sun rise over the city.
What is a common food there? What is the best meal you’ve had abroad?
Kürtos! It’s called “chimney cake” in English and is a popular Hungarian dessert that’s shaped like a tornado and roasted over hot coals with cinnamon sugar. It’s delicious!
The Kürtos Festival!