With Friends Like That …

One of the features on Margaret Island in Budapest is a Music Fountain – the kind that’s programmed to have the water dance in time to music. It’s touristy as hell, but it’s also a beautiful spot, so of course I absolutely love it.

What’s not to love?

There are multiple shows per day and, because Ron and I were staying on the island, we caught portions of several of them on our way to and from the hotel. But the biggest display takes place after dark, where lights are incorporated into a show that’s far longer than those during the day. Since we’d only seen bits and pieces up ’til then, we decided we’d go to the nighttime show and record it for our friends back home to see.

We got there early and set up the tripod and camera back on the grass, behind the chairs and benches so we wouldn’t block anyone’s view, and then we indulged in on of our favourite past times – people watching. There’s a lot of activity around the fountain all the time as spectators come and go.

One gentleman in particular caught my attention. He was around 70 years old, and he sat on a bench that had been placed much further away from the fountain than the others. It was behind even us, nestled between a couple of trees. He was carrying a shopping bag, and once he got settled, he took a small box out of it. It was clearly a new purchase, as he opened the box, took a black plastic something out of it, and started reading the instruction sheet. But it was was too small for me to figure out what it was.

Still watching all the bustle going on around us, I noticed when the man was joined by another man about the same age. They began to talk very animatedly about the first man’s purchase. They both seemed pretty excited about it, with lots of pointing and gesticulating, and I was getting quite curious as to what it was.

I didn’t have to wait much longer to figure it out, as a loud crackling noise suddenly sounded behind us. I was so startled I spun around, and was in time to see the first man press a button on the black plastic something and the electrical spark that caused.

It was a taser.

Before I could even process that, I watched him as he calmly reached out and tased his friend in the leg.

I do not speak Hungarian, but I suspect that the tirade the friend unleashed post-tase included a lot of swear words.

When we downloaded the video Ron had taken of the fountain, we discovered he’d caught the audio of the entire thing. It’s at the beginning of this video. You can hear the taser crackle several times, and the friend’s grunt when he gets hit.

You can’t hear buddy chewing the first guy out, though, because Ron and I are laughing so hard we drown it out.

5 Thoughts

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