I was hanging out along the Danube (on the Pest side) when I stumbled on to this memorial.
It consists of 60 pairs of cast-iron shoes, to commemorate the Budapest Jews being executed into the Danube River during the regime of Hungarian Fascists in World War II. Prior to being shot, the victims were forced to take off their shoes (as they were commodities during said World War), left them on the bank, before facing their executioners (Atlas Obscura).
There was a time when humanity lost its head; its heart took a wrong turn; and exposed its dark soul.
I knew of the shoes; was not looking for them in particular. And maybe that was why it hit me a bit hard when I happened upon them. I sat behind them for a time, looking at them juxtaposed against the jagged rock lining the lower bank, and the dark blackish water beyond; and couldn’t help thinking how similar atrocities did–and no doubt will–repeat themselves.
Oh when will they ever learn!
(Footnote: I know this post is a bit dark, but I needed to get it out of my system. This is only the first of many Budapest posts to come. The next ones will be considerably brighter, I promise.)