Kicsi a világ!
Nowdays, in the twenty-first century, it’s a lot easier to meet fellow Hungarians in different parts of the world. A lot of people from all over the world travel all over the world. It was not quite so only fifty years ago.
But it still happened.
In the sixties, New York City had a population of about eight million and of them about forty thousand were Hungarians. Those are high numbers. But if you break it down, about one in two hundred may have been Hungarian.
Walking on the street, not in the Hungarian section, it was not likely that you’d bump into one. It still happened.
On a nice spring day in 1964, as I was walking through a park in Queens, I saw a young mother trying to make her 3 – 4 year old son listen to and obey her mom, but he just wouldn’t. As I was coming closer, I heard her tell the little rascal in perfect Hungarian: ”Vigyázz, viselkedj rendesen, mert elvisz a bácsi!” (Be careful, behave, otherwise this man will take you away!) They both were surprised when the ”bácsi” (myself) told him, in perfect Hungarian: ”Hallgass anyukádra, mert elvisz a bácsi!” (Listen to your mother, else this man will take you away!)
It worked. As I walked on, there was quiet behind me...because – all together now! – It’s a small wold!
László Oroszlány was born in Hungary and left the country in 1956. He came to the United States in 1959, and established a firm producing precision parts as a manufacturing subcontractor for the aerospace industry. He retired from there after 42 years. He had been President of the Lay Committee of St. Stephen of Hungary Church in New York.