Istvan Koltai on a 1st May celebration

This photo was taken in Tiszanana, you can see my husband, Istvan or Pista Koltai, on it. I think it was taken in 1947. My husband was regularly sent on lecture and agitation tours by the Communist Party of Eger because he worked there when we lived in Eger between 1945 and 1948. I guess he was sent around to different places within Heves County. His job in the Party consisted of organizational work. He jumped on his motorbike and went to the countryside to agitate. Pista joined the Communist Party right after the liberation. Pista already had an apartment there [in Eger], which the Party gave him. And we had lunch at the canteen of the Party - we got bread there but they were quarrelling with me because I got an extra slice as I was pregnant with Karcsi. And they were quarrelling with me because of this; those were such bad times back then. Pista worked in the Party and I also worked there. He was the head of some department but I can't remember now what department it was. He went around the countryside on a motorbike. I was the leader of the MNDSZ in Eger. This stands for the Democratic Union of Hungarian Women. We organized many things. We went around the countryside on a dray or on any other kind of transportation that we could lay hands on. We did many things. We opened a nursery in the garden of the Archbishop of Eger for peasant women so that they could go and work in the fields in the summer. And there was a nursery for their children in the garden of the archbishop as well. All work was done by the same few people until all of them managed to find good positions later on. We finally moved to Budapest in 1948. My son Karcsi was already two years old by then; he was born in Eger in 1946. The Party Headquarters allocated us this apartment. It worked like this back then: if someone was transferred from the countryside to Budapest, he was allocated an apartment. I've been living here ever since. I couldn't leave my son to anyone in Eger, there was no nursery school, so I had to take care of him. When we came to Budapest, Karcsi went to the kindergarten of the Party. My husband was departmental head [of the party membership department] in the Party Headquarters. He traveled around the country; he accompanied these big bosses. He was very much involved in all this. He never talked about his work. And I never asked. I saw it and I agreed with them completely and that was it.

Photos from this interviewee