The second week we were here we went hunting for homes and cars, and ended up choosing both! I’ll make a separate post about the house and next month when we get our car I’ll post photos of that too. We won’t be able to move in until they do a little bit of work to prepare the house for new tenants but we couldn’t be more thrilled with what we found! And we won’t be able to own and drive the car until we are residents, which will happen the first of May.
Services here are very affordable. We arrived too late in the year to join the free preschool in town called the “Ovoda” so Willow started a private daycare a couple of days per week (about $18/day which includes all food, snacks and activities!). She is the only English speaking child there but so far it hasn’t phased her! One of the teachers speaks English well and she LOVES her – Miss Fanni (pronounced “fawny”). Willow has also made friends and is very excited for her “school!” Other services we are hunting for are a housekeeper (about $20/wk), a landscaper (about $20/wk), manicurist (I don’t usually get my nails done but who can resist at less than $10/french gel?!), masseuse (we have heard of good ones for around $32/90 minutes!) and babysitters.
In the first couple of weeks we went on a day trip down to Lake Balaton and Tihany (see Observacations) and on a nice hike in the Bakony forest with new friends Meryl and Josh (from Boston and Maine!)…
We took a trip up to Vienna where we met up with Aroostook County boy Phil Yaeger who gave us a mini tour of historic Vienna (see Observacations). We joined the school’s walk-a-thon in Döbrönte and explored the ruins there after a 5K in flip flops (our household goods haven’t arrived yet, so I didn’t have sneakers!). Beau took a big digger on one of the trails and ended up gouging his elbow pretty bad. He was bleeding but still crossed the finish line! I know he was proud to say he pushed through it with his friends’ encouragement!
I went on a day trip to Budapest to an antique shop with some girlfriends and since we got our van cleared to drive with Delaware plates and Hungarian insurance, I volunteered to drive a van-load of women on a chocolate factory tour at Harrer Chocolates in Sopron, Hungary. *A sincere apology to all the women for the extremely rough, naseau-inducing ride. The roads were terrible to Sopron, and it was 90 minutes of bump, jerky, winding borderline car-sickness that nobody expected, and I felt so bad! Thankfully the mini factory tour and lunch afterwards made it all worthwhile!
I said “yes!” to a pilates class from Urska (a fellow international spouse), and then tried another class w/ Viola who is a brilliant award-winning Hungarian aerial dancer, pilates teacher and masseuse. I also attended my first spouse meetings and by the end of April we finally signed the rental contract for our house! Yahoooo! Movers come the 27th!