Thursday, April 10, 2014

Pecs to Warsaw 4-10-14

I decided to take the train out of Pecs to Budapest, and then onto Warsaw. It was going to be a decently long trip, although most of it was going to be overnight in a “bunk” car. I was pretty excited about it, as I had never has a long train ride before. The longest was from Strasbourg to Zurich. I missed out on the previous evenings training because I decided to eat some McDonalds, which was a stupid idea. I don’t even eat that stuff at home, but I was tired and not in the mood to try to figure out the Hungarian menus nor did I was to assume anyone spoke English. Sometimes you gamble and win, this one was a loss. I ended up sticking in the hostel all evening until the next morning before it was time to head to the train station.

The ride out of Pecs wasn’t too bad. I picked up a snack and some drinks before heading out, not knowing if there would be a snack car on the train to Budapest. There ended up not being one, but it didn’t matter. The woman who ended up sitting across from me laid down a couple of Hungarian to English books before she sat down. She was attractive for her age, well maintained. However, she had to be my mother age at a minimum. I decided to stay in my own little realm in my head, reading Fight Club on my tablet. 

I always enjoyed Fight Club the movie, but never got into reading the book. I figured since I had the extra time, I would go ahead and check it out. Thankfully the book and the movie seemed to be pretty much the same, there was very little deviation between the two. I really liked how they both started, the peeling away from consumerism, the cries for minimalism, the echoes of anarchy, the use of fighting for meditation. But then things take a deeper and darker turn down the road of insanity, and that I couldn’t really get into. It almost felt as though the author needed to tie everything back together in a hurry or risk having to write another book. I think he should have went the route of writing another book or two. 

The fighting for mediation part really hits home for me. I enjoy some “zazen”, or “sitting down, shutting up” as Soto Zen Master Brad Werner would say. But I also enjoy combat. While our training combat is “safe”, there is that risk of death or injury in the back of your mind. An analogy that I use for explaining why I do what I do to people who don’t train is this: My dog is a German Shepherd Dog, she’s great. Although a bit high energy. If I don’t play with her, run her around, take her to the dog park, or anything stimulating to help her burn off energy then she acts up. Her discipline goes out the door (although by American standards people still believe her to be very well trained) and she messes with me. Commands she would normally follow with only being told once will start to take 3-4 times with a stern voice from me if she doesn’t get that exercise. I’m a lot like my dog. If I don’t train, I start to get irritable or want to “fight the man”, whoever “the man” might be. 

There have been some rough times in my life while training Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. The loss of my career, having troubles getting back into the workforce due to having a very specific set of skills, the threat of losing all my valuable “stuff” to pay bills, wrecking my credit because I couldn’t find a new job, losing a girlfriend who I thought was the one I would end up spending a lot of my life with, etc. The moment I step on the mats and have that first roll of the night, that all goes away. The person across from me doesn’t care what I have going on in my life at that moment, they only know that I want to hurt them. And all I know is that they want to hurt me. The little “zen” state I hit of not thinking, only reacting, is great for my mental health. It may not be great for my BJJ game, but it’s done me good so far in life. There hasn’t been a night of sparring where I get off the mat and immediately start thinking of my problems. They just don’t exist anymore at that point. I’m sure just about everyone who trains that reads this can relate in some way, and those who don’t train are probably struggling to figure out how in the hell it works this way. It just does. 

So anyway, back to the ride on the train. It was pretty uneventful overall. Just the older cougar reading her books, and glancing up at me from time to time. I had the feeling that she thought I may be American, but because I never spoke she couldn’t tell for sure. I figured maybe she wanted to practice her English skills with me, but I was too entrenched in my digital novel. After about a three hour ride we arrived at the Budapest station.

I had about 2 hours to kill, so I walked around for a bit. I found a money changer and changed some of my Euros and Swiss Francs out for some Hungarian Fornits. I grabbed a bottle of water, a beer, and went outside the station to take a couple of quick pictures. There was a restaurant next to the tracks, so I headed over there to grab a quick bite to eat before catching my ride to Warsaw. 

The night train from Budapest to Warsaw wasn’t horrible. My cabin mates were a young Polish couple who spoke pretty good English. I left the cabin early on to go try and get some writing done for the blog, but ended up playing portal for a couple of hours instead. Around 2300 I decided I would go back to the bunk car and try to get some sleep.

The best that I can describe the “sleep” that I got was that of just having my eyes shut, and being aware of every single damn bump that the train hit. I knew my cabin mates were getting up around 0400 because there stop was coming around that time. When the train finally made the stop, the guy of the couple was nice enough to “wake” me up and give me some advice about being in Poland. Watch out for pickpockets, lock the cabin door when they left, etc. I thanked him and tried to fall asleep, but had no luck.

Somewhere in Slovakia

                                                             The station at Budapest

No comments:

Post a Comment