Tuesday, May 11, 2004
On May 1, Hungary joined the EU. At the time, I was in New York, and wondered what magical changes I'd return to. At Ferihegy Airport I eyed the passport control behind her glass, suspicious that she'd now point me to a back room to be grilled by sinister intelligence officers. No, that didn't happen. I took the mini-bus service back to my apartment, but on the way the buildings looked the same (though something had been added to the Elizabeth Bridge). My girlfriend still spoke in her heavily accented English (a Vojvodina Serb accent, not a Hungarian one), and only told me that on May 1 she was frustrated because she wanted to get back home, but all the busses and subways were closed during the firework celebrations. And over the next week of going out with friends it's all seemed the same. But today, while browsing the news, I've finally found the meat of the difference, perhaps even the "why" of EU succession. And it can all be boiled down into a single glass I just can't wait to get a taste of.