Sunday 28 December 2008

New Jobs for the New Year

Believe it or not, we have both been offered new jobs which start in the new year.

I'll be working as a physic post-doc in the university of Szeged working on the development of equipment to monitor the quality of Silicon wafers. Check out the employers at

From January I am going to be working as a policy and advocacy officer with MDAC, a NGO based in Budapest. I am really psyched about this possibility check the website out at
I will also be teaching a couple of compressed courses on trial advocacy (in March) at the faculty of law here in Szeged which should be fun :) YAH!!!!

All this is quite amazing/answer to prayers as we couldn't find anything in the UK but within 3 months of being in Hungary, we've both been headhunted for cracking Jobs!!!!

Friday 26 December 2008

Wednesday 17 December 2008

Friday 5 December 2008

CHRISTmas Markets

Blogging has taken a nose dive recently due to the lack of time to sit in front of a computer and not be working and/or tired.
For Samm and myself, the last couple of weeks have been intense. We have been regularly getting up early (5:30->6:30) to catch buses into Szeged, or trains to budapest and then been getting back home late at night 8pm. Unfortunately, our days are a bit bitty, with a class or two here, a couple of hours wait, then other class. Hopefully this should all change soon.

Well CHRISTmas is coming, We know this because the weather is getting cold,( we had the first Snow of the year in November), the days are getting shorter and darker and the CHRISTmas Markets have arrived in the city centre.

On Friday the 29th November, We were killing time between lessons at one of these markets when we heard an noise! Surrounded by Medieval jesters, musicians, fire breathers and jugglers some on stilts, they were there to open the festival season by carrying a afire from one end of the city centre to the other by roping in volunteers. Despite protests that i didn't speak Hungarian, I was duped into to doing this and the fire is very very very heavy!!! Also, all the performers spoke amazing English... Very embarrassing!
There was a troll to be killed at the end of the walk and it was all much fun and games! We also ended up chatting to the bagpipe player who works at a children theatre in debresen. All in all an excellent evening of fun. Photos are here!

Wednesday 29 October 2008

just a couple of random things from Hungary

Today was a momentous day, I survived my first rugby training session with the Szeged rugby team! Lots of forwards work tonight with rucking and maul forming... I am sure that I will ache tomorrow but all good fun
Also, I had my fifth Hungarian lesson. My reward for doing so well, it to receive more work!!!
Hungarian is quite different from Latin based languages with suffixes doing most of the work in the language. The best analogy I could think of is that of tagging mp3 with possession, tense, plural status and much more being bolted together to form monster words!!!
I've also lost 10kg in weight in 6 weeks!!!

I wish to propose my first of many photos of hunglish, part Hungarian, part English (angol) all bad!

Tuesday 14 October 2008

Hungarian Bank holidays

Thursday the 23rd of October is a bank holiday remembering the Hungarian revolution.
So the next Friday is an "unoffical" holiday to make the weekend 4 days long. However, this day has to be made up, so this Saturday I will be working(!!!!!) the day which would be the 24th!
Confused, you should be!

Friday 3 October 2008

Half way there

We've (Chris O'Shea and Andy) made it to Hungary in a large
The journey in 2 days a nutshell

  • 1300 miles
  • 13h / 10h on the road
  • no accidents
  • 3.5 hours spent in traffic jams
  • Too many cans of coke and too much junk food

Now the return leg!

Tuesday 9 September 2008

New Nose!

Yesterday was interesting on numerous levels. After a night of non-sleep, Samm and I staggered to st.michael's hospital for 7:30am for my operation.
The Drs popped round at about 8am and then we waited till 2:45 for the operation ...boring, thank goodness for the laptop and Battlestar galactica!

Got down to the operating room, had a needle shoved in my hand and walked into theatre. Laid down on a bed which felt like a glorified dentist chair, had an injection in my hand and breathed in some oxygen and woke up later on from dreaming lots about battlestar glactica.

Back on the ward, I munched on beef and mushroom stew(first food for 15 hours...mmm) and then we waited another 4 hours to make sure I was ok. We return at 8:45pm all done and dusted and resting with 2 weeks off work


Worse moment was finding out that I was 18 stone!!! 115kg ouch
Best moment not being in EXTREME pain.

This is me today after a good nights sleep

Sunday 7 September 2008

Rhino Pastry

This last week has had its ups and downs but I think mainly up.
On Thursday, I received a call from the NHS saying that the operation for straightening the cartilage in my nose (approx date Feb 2009) would be able to occur in October (Just as we move). I called back on Friday and said

"Sorry, Can't make it due to new job, any cancellations for next week?"
They said
"Yes, can you do Monday?"

So at 7:30 am, on Monday, I'll be sitting in St Michael's Hospital in the ENT ward waiting for my 3o min operation .... Photos to follow

Tuesday 2 September 2008

My Testimonial

The 1st of September was day of destiny when Woodlands rangers gave me a testimonial game of football to celebrate my years off service before we head of to Hungary.
My mighty team of Cheese consisted of

Joel M
Joey Mitch Fluffy Jim Burns Tim Addy
Arnuad Drew Me Dave Jeal
Dave Corp Danny Arbon

Official Match commentator(s) : The Hall Tribe

We lost 4-2 but the game was so much fun... check out the pictures and the video and then we piled upstairs into the bar, ate pizza and chilled... A most excellent event and time. I will treasure the support and friendship shown that day for a long long time... and it looks like it could be my last game of footy in the uk ...(cue Next post)

Thursday 28 August 2008

Greenbelt thoughts

Over the last weekend (22nd -26th August), We were camping at the greenbelt festival in Cheltenham race course. All in all, we came away refreshed, relaxed and revived.

Highlights for us were:
  • Seeing Iain Archer and getting his new album signed by the Northern Ireland finger-picking guitar guru. The new album is great and is getting rapidly listened too
  • Listening to the Ian McMillan Orchestra : the most amazing mix of poetry, folk music, bizarre instruments and northern dialect
  • Discovering that I like poetry (Andy)
  • Overall the music wasn't too great, Seth Lakeman, MxPx , Beth Rowley and Fightstar were the mainstage exceptions. MxPx show improved as they progressed through their set list, with the bass solo(!) in a swing punk number being highly impressive. However, this is topped by the change of the bass guitars! Whenever Mr Herrera felt the need to change between his yellow and red Stingray bass, a roadie would appear from nowhere and with a fluid rotation, he was back in the game playing the new low-end instrument. However, disaster was lurking when the bass player was located on the left of the stage with a newly tuned bass axe waiting 10m away! Instead of running across with said axe, both roadie and Mr bass player lobbed their resplendent instruments at each other simultaneously. Both flew pass each other with no twisting and Mr Herrera caught his bass with the trademark twist of the body and was playing again within a blink of eye to the amazement of Mr Jeanneret and myself.
  • The Mcs on the main stage were shockingly bad, like cringey youth group leaders but worse! Their crowning moment of glory was getting the crowded to chant the star part of Fightstar's name to build up the excitement ... It went like this
  • Mcs: I say Fight, you[crowd] say star, ok?
    Mcs: Fight
    Crowd: Busted!
  • Continuing the Northern Ireland theme was the most Mr(Sure a Dr as he has a Ph.d) Peter rollins from the ikon community/crowd/ring doughnut ... there was lots to unpack from this session and the nice man waited patiently to talk to the streams of people(including us) after his session. Lots of amazing ideas, which are still resonating, there will be more from here later and may even a reflective post!
For the next couple of weeks we will be reading the books by interesting people there (and the manga bible!) and Dog training!

Tuesday 19 August 2008

New Job

I've (Andy) been offered the position of ovóbacsi! Yah!
Ovóbacsi is a kindergarten teacher and I will be working in October as a part-time English speaking preschool teacher.
This is excellent as it pays; enables me to have intensive 1-2-1 Hungarian lesson; do other stuff like privately teach chemistry/maths/physics to uni students and work on the farm/Coding etc

Much bouncing commences!

Friday 15 August 2008

2 weeks back, 47 days to go

Well, lots has happened since the last blog post but unfortunately its not been of the dynamic exciting nature.

We, I think have come back down to earth with bit of bump the harsh reality of what we are really undertaking to do is upon us! That is slightly daunting as neither of us is particularly organised.

We know we are meant to be going so there is no question in that it is just the "getting there" bit which is the next mountain that we have to climb but as with most mountains once you've climbed to the top, there is (usually) an amazing and breathtaking view awaiting you but also a HUGE sense of achievement at the other end. So, come on amazing view I say :)!!!!

Have been procrastinating a little bit today and went out and bought some beads to make a bracelet of some sorts I just had an unbelievable desire to be creative. So, if you see me around sporting an unique bracelet be sure to compliment!!!!
Am VERY excited about going back to Hungary and the new life and all of the things that await us there:) Its a BRILLIANT feeling :)

Also we are heading off to greenbelt next weekend to see what it is likely, Hopefully we will catch Iain Archer (6pm friday at and the main gig is half three sat (in centaur) ) amongst others whilst not drowning

Monday 21 July 2008

Hungarian barn dance

Well, the weekend is over and we survived!

There was an early start at 9:30 and most of the morning was spent preparing food for about 80 people and getting the farm(not ours but the mother-in-law's) ready for the forthcoming invasion and building the fires for the babgoulash(sounds like Bob-goulash).
The British contingent of the Motley crüe consisted of Samm, Ben, Andy and Magnus(left to right)

Events started at 2pm and there was a slow but steady flux of people arriving and chilling out on the farm. The weather was a mild 24ish Degrees Celsius. The first round of dances were a bit painful with unique interpretations but as people got the hang of the movements, the quality rocked through the roof ... We roped in Agi a friend of Samm's Mum and she was an awesome Hungarian caller!

Once most of the people had returned home, the remnant gathered round a bonfire and watched a virtually full moon rise into the crystal-clear night sky whilst slurping ice-cold beer. Timeless.


After awakening later in the morning, this day was spent in Szeged, showing Ben round the local area. The temperature was 32+ so we were all tired and hot. The first stop on the trip was to acacapella café which serves the best ice cream ever, 100s of variations from cherry/marzipan to honey/poppyseed via all flavours/colours. Armed with a three-scoop cones, we walked around downtown Szeged and then headed over the bridge to chill in the large but midly crowded open-air swiming pool(top middle). The day was finished off with a nice meal in the local fish restaurant with large plates of fried and grilled fish/meat munched by all. Magnus also mastered the fish soup, Szeged-style. Cocktails featured as the last drink of the night at the local pirate bar en route home!

Thursday 17 July 2008

Compost Heap

With all the cleaning of vegetation which is forthcoming, I need to think about the location of a new compost heap.
There are two promising locations here or here. Both are free standing structures with roofs which are away from the sight and smell of the main house.

Does anyone have any suggestions and composting tips?

Tuesday 15 July 2008

Busy Week on the farm ahead

We've have the first look out our farm in the summer of 2008 and there is lots of work to be done.
Getting into the farm proved slightly more tricky then expected as a large fern tree has decided to grow over the gate and will need to be tided back. Between the front door to the main house and the summer kitchen the sweet flowerbeds of gardens has evolved into a jungle of 2m tall bamboo and large weeds. Outside the main garden area, the grass has grown long and unmanageable... It will take about a week mowing to get this down to a manageable level, which reminds me of my need for a lawnmower or sheep! The sheep option is tempting for maintaining the back mini-field between the summer kitchen and the back field

The Garden patch with built-in plastic domes, is just as wild as the rest of the garden
However, the Well is looking in working order except for the need for a new bucket.
However, all is not doom and gloom as we found the motorbike left to us by a previous owner and discovered the smoker (featuring Magnus and Kimbo), so we can smoke any meat and/or fish which we may have. I look forward to the first generation of Cheesman self-smoked bacon. The motorbike may take serious work to get it roadworthy and may just be destined for the scrap heap

First Post

ummm, First post!!!!

Well this blog will tell all about our exciting Adventure relocating to Hungary and why/how/where things are going and much more

So here's to blogging and Magyar