Each summer an entire class of Flinn Scholars engages in a group study-travel seminar. This year’s seminar, held in Hungary and western Romania, runs from late in May to mid-June. Here’s a day-by-day account.
Amy Umaretiya (’11)
Today started with a “find your own way” to the Széchenyi Baths for our first lecture. We heard about the magical healing powers of the thermal water used in a lot of the baths in Hungary. Unfortunately, I sat right in front of Aubri, who handed me the wonderful signed picture of our class and the musical video postcard of Arizona that we had been thanking all of our lecturers with, and my streak of avoiding being the person who had to awkwardly present these gifts at the end of the lecture finally ended.
After the lecture we had free time, which most of us used to explore the baths. Highlight: going into the 80-100 degree Celcius sauna room with Julia and Van and then jumping into the 16 degree Celcius pool. After making our way through the saunas, steam rooms, whirpools, and pools of every temperature we left the bath house to go our separate ways before the architecture tour we had later that day.
That tour was by far the best one we had all trip. Our guide fully explained the significance of the buildings and streets he took us to see, but what’s more is that he tied them all into our theme of conflicts and resolutions. What stuck out the most to me was when we came up to his favorite street in Budapest and he said, “Every building on this street represents a different chapter in history.” From baroque to gothic to communist to art noveau, every style of architecture spoke of a different mindset, time period, and story. That is a rare sight to see where I’m from in Chandler, Arizona. Though I’m sure the Bashas’, Starbucks, and Wells Fargo buildings next to my house have some pretty interesting stories behind them too.
We ended up having dinner at an amazing restaurant after the tour was over. Cary and I went on missions to hoard cherries from the bowl they had on display and Olivia, Julia, Katherine and I had a great time looking at the intricate cabinets. And then finally, at the end of the night, Paul, Jacqui, and Patrick won the trip. Paul for his ability to multitask, Jacqui for her ability to be flexible, and Patrick for his ability to communicate with the group. All in all, a very good day!