Fishing on Orfű, Day 4: “Mi lenne, ha örökre itt maradnánk?”

The subtitle of this post, “Mi lenne, ha örökre itt maradnánk?” (“What would happen if we stayed here forever?”) is a quote from the Galaxisok song “Janó és Dzsó” (“Janó and Joe”) on their album Történetek mások életéből (Stories from Others’ Lives). They played it last night, to our joy. And yes, I had flashes of wondering, what would it like to be here forever? But I was also glad that the Galaxisok concert marked the ending for me, because it was such a good ending.

Before that, I fell in love with Elefánt. I had never heard them before, but I instantly understood what is special about this band, or part of it. There’s much more to understand and love over time. I also understood why people compare them sometimes with Platon Karataev. They are quite different, but I hear an adventure in the music of both, a willingness to go to unknown places. Here they are playing “Én.”

Before Elefánt, I took a walk around the lake for a mundane reason: to find an ATM. I had realized that I needed cash to take the bus back to Pécs after the Galaxisok concert. The walk had its own good, as walks often do.

Before that, I heard Csaknekedkislány (absolutely great, my second time hearing them); a wonderful a cappella group called Napfonat; and, at the ”A tűzhöz közel” stage, a tuneful, rangeful band called Laiho.

During the festival, I saw many ways that different musicians and bands relate to their audience: sometimes overtly, with call-and-response or questions like ”How are you all doing?”, sometimes intuitively and subtly. But the relation was always important: not only with the audience, but with the stage and surroundings.

I have many thoughts about the four days but need to let it all sit and sink in. It is good to be on the train to Budapest-Keleti, where I will transfer to the train to Szolnok. ”What would happen if we stayed here forever?” asks Janó. But what he adds to the question is even better: ““Van borunk és sárgadinnyénk /
és Szokol rádiónk és napfény és egy ismeretlen évtized.” (“We have wine and honeydew melons / and a Szokol radio and sunshine and an unknown decade.”) [Sokol was a Soviet radio brand; the song’s story takes place at the end of the 1970s—DS] And then:

És nevetnek
és aludni mennek,
mert holnap is nap lesz,
és még előttük az egész élet.

(And they laugh
and go to sleep,
because tomorrow will also be a day [or: there will also be sun]
and their whole life is still ahead of them.)

I added to this piece after posting it.

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  1. Announcements, Dreams, and Travels/Travails | Take Away the Takeaway

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    Diana Senechal is the author of Republic of Noise: The Loss of Solitude in Schools and Culture and the 2011 winner of the Hiett Prize in the Humanities, awarded by the Dallas Institute of Humanities and Culture. Her second book, Mind over Memes: Passive Listening, Toxic Talk, and Other Modern Language Follies, was published by Rowman & Littlefield in October 2018. In April 2022, Deep Vellum published her translation of Gyula Jenei's 2018 poetry collection Mindig Más.

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