... that 20 storks which had recovered from their injuries were released from the Hortobágyi Madárkórház (Hortobágy Bird Hospital) on March 15th? They joined their friends who had just returned from Africa (Chad and Sudan) on their annual spring migration.
Length of the trip is over 7,500 miles (or 12,000 km), which they ususally cover in about 49 days. The return trip takes less time, only about 26 days, on account of favorable winds and the scarcity of food and water.
... that in Hajdudorog (southeast of Miskolc) a troop of young men called ”Krisztus-katonaság” (Christ’s Troops) stand guard in the Greek Catholic church from Good Friday until Easter Sunday? They wear traditional garb handed down from generation to generation, and hold old swords, many of them dating from the time of Kossuth.
This tradition was recently added to the national list of Spiritual Cultural Heritage (Szellemi Kulturális Örökség Nemzeti Jegyzéke).
... that Hungarian-born gymnast Keleti Ágnes, at 96, is now the oldest living Olympic champion? She had won the Hungarian national championship in gymnastics ten times, and was considered to have great prospects for the 1940 Olympics, but those games, as well as the following one, were cancelled on account of World War II. An injury prevented her from participating in the 1948 games.
When she finally did make it to the Olympics in 1952, at age 31, she garnered four medals in gymnastics, including a gold, and 3 more gold at the Melbourne Olympics in 1956. She remained in Australia after the games, and in 1957 emigrated to Israel where she worked as a physical education instructor at Tel Aviv University, and coached Israel’s national gymnastics team.
She was inducted into the International Jewish Sports Hall of Fame in 1981, the Hungarian Sports Hall of Fame in 1991, and the International Gymnastics Hall of Fame in 2002.
...that a movie loosely based on the legendary racehorse Kincsem has just been released in Hungary? At a production cost of ten million dollars, it is the most expensive Hungarian film ever made. (But if you are interested in the real story of Kincsem, see Éva Wajda’s article in the September 2015 issue of Magyar News Online.)
...that Hungarians never clink their beer glasses? Why? Because it is said that when the Austrians executed the 13 generals after the defeat of the Hungarian Freedom Fight of 1848-49, they clinked their beer glasses after each execution. Hungarians vowed not to do so for 150 years. Although time has passed, Magyars have long memories, and they still won't follow suit. They reserve clinking glasses for wine, one of their chief products of which they are proud.