Photo taken in:BudapestYear when photo was taken:2002Country name at time of photo:HungaryCountry name today:Hungary
Me and my former classmates got together in the flat of a friend after the 50th graduation anniversary of the class below ours. We were very close with the boys from the class below us and we often met up with them as well. Usually we meet to have a good talk, as people say, to just hang out together. I?m on the left, next to me is Charles Gati, professor at the Columbia University in New York. Actually his original name is Karcsi Gottlieb. Next to him is Eva Redei, my second wife. Karcsi comes to Budapest quite often and we always meet up to talk, sometimes about actual politics as well. Karcsi Gati knows the Hungarian political elite and he is on good terms with them, and both sides are trying to win him over but he is a committed American and a leftwinger and liberal. The high school I went to from 1943, had more than a third Jewish boys in class. Originally it had a Jewish class, and because of the anti-Jewish laws only Jewish children were taken. During the German invasion, we were in the 1st grade until April 1944, then the Jews dropped out. I still went to school with a yellow star. In the 5th year we were given the choice of learning Russian or Greek. As believers in left-wing ideas we thought that Latin was enough of classical languages, it was anyway taught in the upper years of high school, so of course we chose Russian. The class was split: the majority chose Russian as they thought they didn't need Greek as well as Latin. But there were a proportionally high number of Jews in the class, as Jews chose this language rather, and came over from other classes because of the Russian. In fact there was nothing anti-Semitic, at least not in those days. Before there had been; Mr Monoki, the gym teacher hit the Jewish class mainly, by making the children stand up and bashing their heads together. Apart from rabbi Schmeltzer I can't remember any other Jewish teachers. I didn't have a favorite teacher.