Today, I eulogize Big Red.

Big Red aka John Redling, the all-American, candy apple red Dodge Caravan that has been a part of my life since 1997 is being donated to Kars4Kids. He’s rusted through, almost entirely on the bottom, and it’s finally time to say goodbye. I’m not one to name inanimate objects, but Markie christened this car some time around 2009. She was one of his frequent drivers; in fact, all of the -arkies and most of my other good friends have had a turn in him at one point or another. Big Red was also the car I used to make frequent trips to my grandparents in Toronto, a 10-hour drive that he tolerated very well several times a year. During the college era, we had road trips to DC, Charleston, Asheville, and Big Red came with me to Boston one summer. In all earnestness, this adapted van with automatic ramp opened up a lot of possibilities for me.

Farewell, Big Red! You were a great vehicle for freedom.

Big Red in his parking spot on West Campus, covered in freshly fallen snow.

Big Red in his parking spot on West Campus, covered in freshly fallen snow.

See You Later, See You Soon

We’ve been sweating it out in the heat and doing major packing this weekend. My possessions are divided into “will need this summer” & “staying in BP”, most of them falling into the latter category so as not to lug them around for the next two months. Even though I won’t be leaving the city until the end of June, I’m putting things in storage this week at Anna’s cousin’s house. It was very kind of her to offer the space (and save me 2 months’ rent!); I hope she won’t regret it when she sees just how much STUFF I’m handing over.

Other than that, it’s been a social weekend – 3 outings in as many days! I guess I can’t claim hermit status anymore.

On Friday, I went to Gerbeaud, Budapest’s most famous café, for the first time. It’s in a beautiful part of the city teeming with tourists, and priced accordingly. Four of us shared this sampler platter:
Then, we walked around for a bit on Vaci utca before heading home. Budapest is radiant in the summer sun.

Yesterday, five of us had dinner at The Big Fish, billed as “the only restaurant in town that offers fresh seafood, made in front of you”. It was excellent, and I’m definitely planning on returning to try the paella, which was sold out (a common occurrence, apparently). The only blight on the meal was an injured pigeon in the middle of the sidewalk behind us. It had a broken leg and was trying to launch itself to a safer corner, which it ultimately did, but seeing it suffer was terrible.

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There’s been an undercurrent of goodbyes as we part for the summer months, but we’ll be back at the books before we know it.

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Today, I explain the break.

It’s been a few days with a couple of unexpected events and new lessons. A downside of blogging, especially “daily”, is that one often doesn’t feel like talking about personal things to an audience that feels public.

In the interest of partial disclosure, I said goodbye to someone important, to whom I will always owe a great deal.

I also felt the strong support of my family and friends. If you’re lucky, there are those people who act like safety nets; even if you don’t take them for granted, they can be a lot more buoyant than you anticipated when the fall comes.

On the medical school front, I feel a temporary grasp on the workload.  It’s tenuous, but maybe it’ll stay for the next few days!