Friday, October 14, 2011

The Early Bird Gets the Sweet Roll

Totally out of focus, but this was the scene this morning.
It's amazing how much bike traffic goes by Batthyány tér at rush hour.
So this morning, as part of my ongoing effort to instill the values of sustainable, community-friendly transport in my son, I suggested during breakfast that we stop by the cyclists' tent for a kakaós csiga (sweet roll). Lance normally sulks through breakfast and has to be prodded and kicked and threatened to get out the door on time. But at the mention of the words kakaós csiga, he sat up like a bolt, devoured his muesli, and got on his shoes and coat faster than he's done in recent memory.

I don't know how many new cyclists the bicikli reggeli (bike breakfast) brought out of the woodwork today. But the promise of sweet rolls had a magical effect on Lance. He was so enthused to get out the door that you could have mistaken him for a morning person.

Lance tucking into csiga number one.
When we got down to Batthyány tér, one of several sites for this morning's breakfast in Budapest, a cheerful volunteer from the Hungarian Cyclists Club flagged us down and asked us to stop for breakfast  (not that we were about to pass them by). She presented us with a very attractive pyramid of sweet rolls, each with a heavy dusting of white powdered sugar. We each took one, along with boxes of orange juice. Before Lance had taken two bites of his, he asked if he could also have mine -- to save for after school. Yes, he's a bit of a pig. But it was fine with me, seeing as I'm a diabetic.

The bike breakfast is a promotion for the fall Bike to Work contest (Bringázz a Munkaba). The contest started on September 22 and goes until October 26. Even though it's half over, you can still register and take part. In fact, if you do it before Monday, you can still ride the required eight times to be eligible for prize drawings.

The contest is a little more low key than usual, as it no longer has financial backing from the EU. The Cyclists Club is carrying on with a smaller budget and appealing to private sponsors to make it come off. Lance can testify that the bike breakfast was up to the usual high standards. So far, so good.

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