Changes to the constitution here in Hungary have resulted in a series of anti government protests. Happily those which took place yesterday passed off relatively peacefully, the police out in full force but not, as is often the case, in full riot gear. Nor did we detect, as on previous occasions, that acrid, sinister smell of tear gas.
In evidence, of course, were the distinctive green vans, nicknamed 'saláta kocsi' [salad bus], utilised to remove from the streets those who the authorities deem to be offending against the law.
All of this, together with a visit by Éva B who recounted tales of sheltering in cellars during the 1956 Uprising, put us in mind to turn out the War Drawer.
Memorabilia! Can one ever have enough or, indeed, too much? Among an assortment of Ration Books, photographs of wartime weddings, and an unused, boxed gas mask, we came across the Victory number of 'Blighty', the erstwhile weekly magazine produced for the Forces. Published within its pages a poem, 'The Lamps are Lit', written by my father in 1945. Quelle surprise!
|some of the contents of the War Drawer|
To all of this may be added a recent aquisition of a small, Bakelite plaque originally intended to be screwed to a door: Air Raid Warden. At the moment it sits propped against a letter rack on a side table in the Morning Room, an item of information now turned conversation piece.
|in the Morning Room|
|detail of Bakelite sign|
A proposed trip to Pécs this coming Thursday, to see an exhibition of Hungarian Impressionists, must be postponed with the unexpected arrival that day of friends from England.