Déjà vu – I’ve Been Here Before

Hello Lovelies,

Have any of you ever had the feeling that you have been somewhere before, but there is no way that you could have?

This is the feeling I get in our new amazing apartment we moved to on Tuesday. After a busy day packing, cleaning and moving, my husband and I sat down at the antique dining table in our new apartment, feeling thoroughly exhausted but happy and content. My husband turned to me and asked me, “I have this feeling like I have been here before, I mean, I feel like I have lived here before, but I’ve never lived in this district before.” I guess he was describing a feeling of déjà vu and what is even more strange is I was having the exact same feeling, I felt it the first time we walked through the door to view the apartment and I felt it even more sitting at the table that night.

Antique Detail. Photo copyright The Writer Within 2015.
Antique Detail. Photo copyright The Writer Within 2015.
Antique Detail. Photo copyright The Writer Within 2015.
Antique Detail. Photo copyright The Writer Within 2015.
Antique Detail. Photo copyright The Writer Within 2015.
Antique Detail. Photo copyright The Writer Within 2015.

I know it can’t possibly be true, but I feel as though I have lived in this apartment before, not now though, not even a short time ago. I feel as though I lived here, a very long time ago. The building was new then, the view still amazing.

The view by night. Photo copyright The Writer Within 2015.
The view by night, Parliament House. Photo copyright The Writer Within 2015.
The view by night. Photo copyright The Writer Within 2015.
The view by night, Széchenyi “Chain” Bridge . Photo copyright The Writer Within 2015.

I know this can’t be possible, perhaps I feel this way because this is where we are supposed to be, but perhaps there is also another reason, one that I possibly shouldn’t even consider as I was raised as Catholic (reincarnation perhaps).

I spoke last week of the way that the apartment inspired me and how I began forming József’s story without even consciously trying. (If you missed it, you can read last week’s post here.) Perhaps this apartment is more than just inspiring for my writing, perhaps there is some sort of connection.

I know the feeling of déjà vu, is not particularly uncommon and it is something that people often describe, however when two people have the same feeling, there has to be something to it right? I can’t help but believe that I have been here before or perhaps I am connected with the people who came before in some way.

Whatever the connection might be, I’m not going to question it, I’m just going to embrace it. Whatever it is, it is doing wonders for the writer within, I am thinking and imagining more clearly than I have in months. I have even began writing and researching for my latest WIP. Those of you who right, will know and appreciate the simply amazing feeling of writing again and of making progress with something you’ve had to put on hold for quite some time.

Whilst I’m not writing thousands of words each day (hopefully that will come later), I am making progress each day either researching or finding out some of the finer details about the character. It truly is a wonderful feeling to be writing again.

So now I head off to enjoy my view a little more.

Enjoy your week and write when you can.

-KK

© Katherine A. Kovács and The Writer Within, (2013-2015). Unauthorised use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Katherine A. Kovács and The Writer Within with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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Back in Touch

Hello Lovelies,

Well, so much has happened this past week. I don’t really know where to begin, because not only is it a long list but I’m still in a slightly confused frame of mind with the different time zones and I probably wouldn’t be able to tell you what happened on what day anyway.

So in no particular order here is an annotated list of some of what has happened over this past week:

  • I had the pleasure (or not really) of experiencing the Hungarian health care system first hand – After trying to do everything myself the last 6 or 7 months and with all the craziness of packing and dragging ourselves halfway across the world, I got a little run down once things started to slow down. I guess everything just caught up with me at once. What started as a bit of a sore throat got even more serious quite quickly. I woke up the other morning feeling like I was being choked and my throat was so swollen I could only just swallow and also had a bit of trouble breathing. I honestly felt like something was stuck in my throat and had these horrible visions of some big blood clot or something that had taken up residence in my throat overnight. When I went to try and cough out whatever I was chocking on, it seemed to be stuck on the back of my tongue which made me choke even more and totally freak out too! After a trip to the GP clinic at the local hospital, it turns out it is *just* a throat infection. I say *just* but there’s a little more to it than that. My throat was so badly swollen that the thing I thought I was choking on was actually my uvula (you know the dangly thing at the back of your throat) that was so swollen that it was touching the back of my tongue and when I tried to cough it out it flipped forward and was lying along my tongue, choking me further until I had to forcibly (a very  painfully) swallow it back down. The good news is that I am feeling much better today (after some pretty hefty antibiotics and painkillers, these Hungarian doctors don’t mess around). The doctors at the hospital were very efficient, I only waited around ten minutes before seeing a doctor, they were also very kind and comforting as well, which I’ve found is often a rare combination. They took the time to explain and reassure me, they also spoke English to me reassuring me that everything was Okay and explain to me what had happened, even though my husband was there ready to translate if needed. Despite the delights of the Hungarian health system, it’s not something I would like to experience again, the feeling of choking on my own throat bits is not one I would like to repeat in the near future.
  • Just finished unpacking, now we’re moving again – Yes, annoying as it sounds, it will be for the best. Even though we have only been in this apartment for 2 weeks and had only recently finished unpacking, we are moving again starting from tomorrow. So when I am finished writing this blog post and also started and finished my assignment (yes, I still haven’t done that, but I think choking on your uvula is a pretty good excuse this time), I will be packing up our 65 square metre apartment and moving our family of five to an apartment that is nearly 100 square metres. There are many reasons that we are leaving this apartment and not just because it is very small for a family of five. At first we saw the apartment as retro and quaint, it was built in the sixties and very much looks like it despite the near new Ikea furniture. This retro and quaint notion grew old rather quickly. We then began to see the apartment for what it really was: a small, old apartment with outdated appliances (the gas stove nearly blew up in my face), the tiniest washing machine that has a weird smell even after cleaning it, a bath that you have to wash before each use (as the washing machine drains into the bath), that gets stifling hot even though it’s cold outside (the central heating units can’t be adjusted as the tap handle things are either missing or don’t turn), that is constantly dirty and dusty due to the dirt and dust from the elevator shaft constantly finding its way in through every crack and vent in the place (seriously, I mop, dust and clean the whole apartment and by the time I’m done it’s filthy again), this constant influx of dust and dirt has also caused allergies in myself and the kids and finally lets not forget my favourite peeve about this apartment…. the toilet has a “poop deck”. Yes, you have read correctly, the toilet has what I like to refer to as a “poop deck”.  Let me take a moment to explain this intriguing and disgusting notion a little further.  After Googling, “My toilet has a poop deck wtf” the results explained that this toilet bowl (which is not the shape of toilet bowl I am used to seeing) is in fact an “inspection shelf” toilet bowl, which allows you to… well inspect your…. well you can guess what you might be inspecting, hence the reason why I refer to it as a “poop deck”. During my Google research in an attempt to explain the aforementioned “poop deck”, I did find an interesting post from a UK uni student studying in Europe, which clearly and humourously sums of what the purpose of “inspection shelf” toilet actually is —– Inspection Shelf Toilet WTF!
  • Inspecting the new apartment – We traveled to the first district of Budapest, aptly referred to as Castle Hill, because, yup you guessed it, Buda Castle sits on top of the hill. This is very much a tourist district as it is home to not only Buda Castle but also many other tourist attraction such as the Citadel and the many vantage points up on the hills of this district provide stunning views across the Danube of the many bridges that cross the river and one of my sons favourite buildings – Parliament House. When we found the address we were meeting the real estate agent at, we were surprised to see that it is right in front of the Danube, when entering the apartment though we were even more surprised, pleasantly this time. Even though the building is old, it is not asbestos dust wielding elevator shaft old, it is much, much older than this. The building is made of stone, stone stairs, stone walls and super high ceilings, the apartment is furnished, mostly with gorgeous antique furniture and perhaps best of all, it has a full-sized bathroom and the toilet DOES NOT have a “poop deck”. Oh and one more small thing, this is the view….
    View of Parliament House. Image copyright The Writer Within 2015.
    View of Parliament House. Image copyright The Writer Within 2015.

    So, now onto the reason for the title of today’s post. A wonderful thing happened to me this past week and it wasn’t finding a bigger apartment with an amazing view, although I think that had something to do with it. The night after we found the apartment, I settled down to try and get some sleep and my mind started racing. Yet it wasn’t the kind of thoughts that have filled my mind these past few months, it wasn’t “will everything be ok?” “I have so much to do?” “How will I get everything done?” and other thoughts that are more worries and concerns than anything else. No, this night the thoughts that filled my mind were imagining the apartment we are moving to, how it would have been long ago. Perhaps the original inhabitants liked to entertain friends, perhaps not. Perhaps they were a young couple, who dreamed of having one of the bedrooms as a baby’s nursery, cooing and doting over their little one dressed in clothes from a by-gone era. Then another thought entered my mind, perhaps it was indeed a young couple, perhaps that couple was József and his wife. Perhaps the main room had a small piano in the corner that his wife liked to play. Next to the piano, perhaps there was an old but well-loved violin, something that was passed down from father to son. Perhaps József dreamed of one day passing this treasured instrument on to his own child, teaching them to love music as he did. Then it struck me, I was well and truly back in touch with The Writer Within and it happened without consciously trying to do so. That night I went to sleep happy and content, knowing that whatever worries and problems would come next, that something in my life was now right again.

And now I must leave, because despite being back in touch with The Writer Within, I still have that last pesky assignment to get out of the way.

So until next week, enjoy,

-KK

© Katherine A. Kovács and The Writer Within, (2013-2015). Unauthorised use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Katherine A. Kovács and The Writer Within with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

In it for the Long Haul

Hello Lovelies,

Well it has been quite a while since my mashed up words have been on your screens, but now we have begun to settle here in our little apartment in Budapest, you’ll hopefully be seeing more and more of my writing here on The Writer Within. Even though I still have one last assignment to do before I complete my Master of Education degree, I’ve decided it would be best to use these few minutes of peace to procrastinate from said assignment and update you all with what been happening the last few weeks.

We have been in Budapest for almost a week now, but to travel here with three young children was one of the most difficult things I have done with my children. Firstly packing up our entire house was quite an ordeal in itself, then packing five large suitcases, five carry-on bags, two backpacks, two laptop bags and a handbag with all the important things like passports and tickets and so on was quite a feat. Especially considering I didn’t really start packing until two days before our departure from Sydney.

Waiting to board our first flight.
Waiting to board our first flight.                       Image Copyright The Writer Within 2015

The came the fun part (can you sense the sarcasm?), checking-in at the airport, while trying not to lose a bag or a child (thank goodness my parents tagged along for this part). Once this vital part was over with, we had to go through customs in Sydney. This meant taking the laptops out of the laptop bags, placing all bags (five carry-on, two backpacks, a handbag and a couple of plush toys) up to be screened and making sure we didn’t lose any children as we went through the metal detector one person at a time, always interesting to get a two-year old to walk through that one by himself without him wandering off.

Farewell Sydney. Image Copyright The Writer Within
Farewell Sydney.
Image Copyright The Writer Within
A little in-flight entertainment.
A little in-flight entertainment.

This ordeal was carried out several times over the next 30 hours as we traveled from Sydney to Singapore, then on to Zurich and finally to Budapest. The good news is that we survived the traveling with all children and bags present and accounted for.

So, now here we are in the mild autumn weather of Budapest and here I sit coming to the realisation that we did it, we actually did it. I’ve always been the kind of person that when I set my mind to something, I will get there, I will do it, no matter how long it takes. So when we decided to pack up the house and travel to the other side of the world, with three young children, I knew it would come to fruition. It wasn’t just a pipe-dream or an idea, it was something we would do. We were in it for the long haul, even the long haul flights, although I wish there was a better way to travel long distances.

The same sentiment also applies to my writing, I will finish the many novels and novellas I have started and planned, no matter how long it takes. For when it comes to being a writer, you need to be in it for the long haul. Writing a novel is not something that happens overnight, it is something that takes a significant amount of time to shape and mold, to perfectly form the characters and to tell their story. Once I have my final assignment out of the way (if I can stop procrastinating long enough), my attention for writing will be focused on telling József’s story. Hopefully being surrounded by the history and culture of the city that once was the home of this character, will provide me with a source of inspiration. I only hope that I can do his story justice and convey the difficulties of the time in which he lived.

One of the many views from our apartment. Image Copyright The Writer Within.
One of the many views from our apartment. Image Copyright The Writer Within.

So, stay tuned over the coming weeks for updates and little snippets of what I’ll working on.

Enjoy,

KK

© Katherine A. Kovács and The Writer Within, (2013-2015). Unauthorised use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Katherine A. Kovács and The Writer Within with appropriate and specific direction to the original content