Today, after language school and a BSM welcome session (I’m not a BSM student, but I’ll be using the Fulbright’s tuition stipend to take one BSM course), I went to the Immigration office to submit my application for a residence permit. The application itself was boring—I waited two hours, got my number called, handed a bunch of documents and copies to a bureaucrat one by one, and left.

What was interesting was the trip there: from basically the center of town to the immigration office on its outskirts took half an hour. In fact, I’ve noticed that basically every trip here using transit seems to take half an hour, no matter how close or far the destination, and whether I know exactly how I’ll get there in advance or not. Accordingly, I hypothesize that the Budapest transit network induces a discrete topology on Budapest:

-If I hop on a tram for just a stop, it should take half an hour to get where I’m going. Maybe the transit network detects when someone’s taking a short trip and arranges to break down if so. (I haven’t seen any breakdowns, of course, but I haven’t seen anyone testing it either.)

-There’s a countable basis around me, that is, a countable amount of stuff to see. That’s ok, since I only have countably many days.

-There shouldn’t be any accumulation points. This seems odd, since it seems like people accumulate quite a bit on the busses, trams, and subway; this requires further study.

Maybe the transit network was designed that way because some politician said they wanted everyone’s trips on the transit system to be continuous, and a mathematician heard it and took it literally.

🙂

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