Panni Koltai with her son Karcsi and his wife Eva

Panni Koltai with her son Karcsi and his wife Eva
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  • Photo taken in:
    Budapest
    Year when photo was taken:
    1999
    Country name at time of photo:
    Hungary

This photo was taken in 1999 in Budapest when my younger grandson, Robi, graduated from university. We are sitting in some eating-house, you can see the table. I think it was after the graduation ceremony. I'm sitting on the left, my son, Karcsi Koltai is next to me, and next to him is his wife, Eva Koltai, nee Gervai.

Robi graduated from the Department of Informatics of the Technical University. He works as a computer specialist. He worked abroad, in Italy. He lived in a small town close to Rome and worked at the European Space Agency. He loved Italy and the Italian way of life, he even picked it up a little. He hung out with the international crowd, they went hiking together, traveling on the sea. He came home when his contract ended and now he works as an informatics specialist at a subsidiary of the Siemens Company here. He has also been to Israel, just like my other grandson, Andris, but he has been twice. He spent three weeks there with a group in a kibbutz, where they worked during the week and then traveled around on the weekend.

Eva is also Jewish. It did matter to me but I told him that I would accept whoever he chose. Because I had lived in a world where it mattered and I was more attached to these things than Karcsi. Because Karcsi was born into a world where he could be like this or like that, whatever he chose. Eva is a very clever woman, a nice, smart woman. They are the same age. Eva is a chemical engineer by profession but she works in foreign trade. Karcsi's circle of friends is not so mixed. His friends are mostly Jewish. Karcsi is interested in the Jewish religion but not as much as his children. They went much farther than their parents. Karcsi doesn't go to the synagogue.

When my husband Pista died in 1980, everything changed. He died young. I wish he had lived to be a hundred and that I had only lived up to half of it. The children are very nice, Karcsi comes to see me every week, and my grandchildren come, too. There are occasions when the whole family gets together. We celebrate birthdays and everything and we can get together whenever we want. I don't like going out any more, my legs aren't what they used to be. I go out if I have someone to come with me but if I don't, I stay in. I have someone who does the shopping for me and cleans the apartment.

Interview details

Interviewee: Panni Koltai
Interviewer:
Eszter Andor
Month of interview:
January
Year of interview:
2003
Budapest, Hungary

KEY PERSON

Panni Koltai
Year of birth:
1915
City of birth:
Eger
Country name at time of birth:
Hungary
Occupation
before WW II:
Self-employed craftsman in non-elite crafts
after WW II:
Party official
Family names
  • Previous family name: 
    Friedmann Anna
    Year of changing: 
    1937
    Reason for changing: 
    Marriage
  • Previous family name: 
    Greiner
    Year of changing: 
    1946
    Reason for changing: 
    Magyarosítás

Other Person

Karcsi Koltai
Year of birth:
1946
City of birth:
Eger
Country name at time of birth:
Hungary
Occupation
after WW II:
Businessman, Retail merchant
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