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.

    Since November 2017, she has been teaching English, American civilization, and British civilization at the Varga Katalin Gimnázium in Szolnok, Hungary. From 2011 to 2016, she helped shape and teach the philosophy program at Columbia Secondary School for Math, Science & Engineering in New York City. In 2014, she and her students founded the philosophy journal CONTRARIWISE, which now has international participation and readership. In 2020, at the Varga Katalin Gimnázium, she and her students released the first issue of the online literary journal Folyosó.


    On April 26, 2016, Diana Senechal delivered her talk "Take Away the Takeaway (Including This One)" at TEDx Upper West Side.

    Here is a video from the Dallas Institute's 2015 Education Forum.  Also see the video "Hiett Prize Winners Discuss the Future of the Humanities." 

    On April 19–21, 2014, Diana Senechal took part in a discussion of solitude on BBC World Service's programme The Forum.  

    On February 22, 2013, Diana Senechal was interviewed by Leah Wescott, editor-in-chief of The Cronk of Higher Education. Here is the podcast.


    All blog contents are copyright © Diana Senechal. Anything on this blog may be quoted with proper attribution. Comments are welcome.

    On this blog, Take Away the Takeaway, I discuss literature, music, education, and other things. Some of the pieces are satirical and assigned (for clarity) to the satire category.

    When I revise a piece substantially after posting it, I note this at the end. Minor corrections (e.g., of punctuation and spelling) may go unannounced.

    Speaking of imperfection, my other blog, Megfogalmazások, abounds with imperfect Hungarian.

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