Magyar Living Newsletter #157
Love celebrating Hungarian heritage? You are in the right place!
I just returned from two weeks in Transylvania, the Hungarian area of Romania and it was so refreshing! I grew up in a city so I welcome any time in the countryside because I find the pace, the fresh air, and the friendliness of the people so revitalizing. One delightful evening we even watched the cows come home! [Click Cows come home to watch a snippet] I am sure the villagers thought we were crazy but we all loved it. In Torockószentgyörgy, an area known for delicious cheeses, families with cows send them up to pasture each day with a cow herdsman. In the early morning, you can hear the cow bells slowly dongle as the cows amble their way up the mountain. In the evening, the cows return. Two hundred plus cows walk down the village road, headed for their homes along the path. Each cow knows exactly where she lives and will walk to her home and into her gate without any prompting from anyone. If the gate is closed when she arrives, she will bellow until her owner comes out and opens the gate.
This past Saturday we co-hosted a Hungarian Meet & Greet with Laszlo’s Corporation in St. Louis and we had a great time. We have been initiating these events and have been thrilled with the response as it is a much more relaxed pace than a festival. It gives people the space and time to make a connection and have conversation. We had a Hungarian wine tasting, a nice cultural display, Hungarian food and pastries, and we had a sampling of Magyar Marketing items for sale. But, the most important outcome was the chance to hear and share stories. The attendees ranged in age from 10 – 80+ years old! Some were born in Hungary while others were born in the U.S. Some spoke fluent Hungarian while others knew only a few words. It was a great opportunity to discuss what we miss and even what we may have missed out on as we shared our Hungarian heritage with one another!
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Looking for events that celebrate Hungarian heritage? Check out our listing here. If you know of a Hungarian event coming up that isn’t posted, please send the digital poster in jpg or png format to email@example.com and we will share the information! And if you live near Cedar Rapids, Iowa we have a Magyar Living Meetup coming up on Friday, July 5th from 1-4pm. When I lived in Nebraska I would have jumped at the chance to connect with other Hungarians. Of course, that was before the days of social media so it was much more difficult but, even now, we know there are people who feel isolated from others who share their Hungarian heritage. There are many first, second, third, and fourth generation Hungarians who love the food and culture of Hungary but don’t even know where to go to connect. If you don’t live near your family, consider making an effort to connect with those who live nearby who share a heart for Hungary!
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Sour Cherry Soup!
‘Tis the season! Hannah is our youngest daughter and one of her Hungarian favorites is Sour Cherry Soup. She will be studying Hungarian in Debrecen for this summer and is super excited about adding to her language skills! In honor of her adventure, I am including her adapted recipe for Sour Cherry Soup here. If you are fortunate enough to have access to sour cherries, you can make this fresh. But if you don’t, sour cherries in a jar can work too. With all the lactose free products out there, I bet some substitutions can be made for those who are trying to avoid traditional dairy products. Jó étvágyat! Enjoy your meal!
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We enjoyed this incredible view for days! And we did our fair share of boosting the local economy by trying local brews. A new fun find is this light and summery raspberry vitamin beer, but the Csíki brand carries something for everyone! We tried Csíki Sör, Csíki Krém, Csíki Barna, and Csíki Vadmalna. We did not see any Csíki Mézes this time around but that gives us something to hunt for when we return!
Our tour group was delightful! While we all had a variety of life experiences and goals for this trip, we all came together to enjoy the beauty of Transylvania. We traveled through breathtaking landscape and we even had a few yoga classes in front of this spectacular mountain view!
We visited fortified churches and learned about the birth of the Unitarian Church — in Transylvania in the mid 16th century. We took a wagon ride and hike into the Harghita Mountains and had a szalonnasütés (bacon roast). One of our tourmates had strong family ties to Kolosvár and she was able to take the time to honor her ancestors by cleaning up the gravesite and placing a wreath on the graves. Each person contributed their enthusiasm, knowledge, and curiosity to make our group diverse and thoroughly enjoyable. We were in a beautiful area of the world and everywhere we looked there was something new and interesting to see — from the many stork nests to the roadside poppies to the sheep grazing on the hills on a sunny day.
As we prepared for this tour, rain was in the forecast for every single day in every location we were visiting. However, I am happy to report that while we did have a little rain and few storms, nothing of any consequence happened to make us adjust our schedule! We were so thankful!
One of my favorite experiences was being able to climb up to some castle ruins that I have had my eye on since our trip in 2017. We stormed the castle and we were rewarded with some incredible views at the top! Even though restored castles are amazing to see, I really love castle ruins. And, if I was an artist, I might have sat there all day and sketched. But, instead, I had my camera along and documented the adventure! Pictured above is the crew who took on the challenge! If you would like to join us on our next trip to Transylvania in Fall 2021, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org requesting details and we will be sure to keep you informed as plans are made.
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Interested in traveling to Hungary? Check our listing of our upcoming tours! Please call us at 1-800-786-7851 or email email@example.com for itinerary details!
- 12 nights in 4 star hotels (or best in region)
- 2 meals each full day
- Ground transportation in a/c coach
- Full time, bilingual tour guide
- Tour escort from the USA
- All entrance fees to scheduled events
- Local, English speaking guides
- Time in Budapest and the countryside
Our tours require moderate physical effort and mental independence. Knowledge of the Hungarian language is useful but not required. Our smaller group size (18-28 people) allows for enough variety among the participants and also lets us be flexible with our schedule.
Our tour price does not include: airfare, passport and luggage fees, gratuities, travel insurance, or alcoholic drinks (unless a part of our activity).
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Did you miss the June issue of the Magyar Marketing e-newsletter? Click here! To receive our monthly e-newsletter in your inbox so you never miss an issue, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org and say Sign Me Up!
We hope to see you soon at one of the upcoming Hungarian festivals!
All the best!
Liz and Don Vos
Our mission is to provide you with resources and encouragement to discover, celebrate, and share your Hungarian heritage with friends and family!
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