9 July 2008. A picture from the Hungary/Romania trip.

We left Toroko and drove to the city where King John Sigismund is buried. Sadly, my notes don’t include the name of this town, and a quick Google isn’t spitting it out either, so that town shall remain unknown. We then drove to Deva, where Francis David was martyred. (AKA, died in a cold prison cell on the top of a windy and cold hill.)

In 2005, this was a very “pilgrimage” moment of the trip. We walked up to the top of the hill silently, thinking about religious freedom. At the top, where the memorial to Francis David is, there were picnic tables, a snack bar and loud music playing. Eva got very angry and yelled at the snack bar people. They turned off the music and we had a very moving ceremony. Because of my past experience, I was looking forward to this part of the trip.

This time, instead of walking, we were going to take the brand-new funicular to the top. I would have preferred the walk, but having never had a funicular ride, I was looking forward to that. Alas, neither were to be. The entire top of the hill was closed for renovation. We didn’t even get to ride the funicular to the top. Instead we had a makeshift ceremony in the park that was not nearly as moving. Then it was back on the bus for a very long ride back to Budapest.

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