Verwitterte Steinmauern im Abendlicht

Stories & anecdotes

Kirgistan and back

Georg Almásy was a real adventurer. He started as an ornithologist and was looking for new species east of Hungary. During his journeys he started to become more and more interested in the people and tribes that he met and their traditions. He consciously refused to lead a life in luxury at the castle and spent his time exploren the Kirgis valleys and mountains using donkeys and camels.
How strange the comforts of our modern age must have appeared to him. In one of his diaries he complains about how there are no more true adventures to be found, how travelling became less than thrilling since the trains always are on time and it takes you only a few weeks with the stagecoach to get from Bernstein to Taschkent (capital of Usbekistan).
On one of his journeys he met a young Kirgis boy from a noble family and together with his parents they agreed that he will take the boy with him to the castle to spend a year there as an "exchange student". At the castle he taught Georg´s son János and László his native language (which proved to be essential later) and he should help Georg translate the legend of Manas, which is the most important tale of the Kirgis culture, comparable to what Ulysses is for Eurpe.
There are some pictures of that boy with the two brothers in the courtyard of the castle. After he returned to his own family there the boys still sent letters to each other, until there was a severe earthquake in Kirgistan. The letters suddenly stopped and there is no clue what happened to him and his family after that.