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Excerpt
STEPPING THROUGH

Chapter Three

The Iron Border


.....The monotonous noise of the engines put me to sleep, and I had slept over an hour when the stewardess woke me for dinner. I was sitting by the window on the airplane flying to Moscow. I had left Japan almost twenty-four hours ago, and as I left “The East” behind, I didn’t know where I would end up. Where would my fate lead me?

.....Returning to Europe presented a different challenge in my life. Now that I knew the process of immigration, I knew how I must proceed. Having chosen Austria, at the moment, my destination was Vienna. Being behind the iron curtain again, the question on my mind was: Can I make it without being sent back to Hungary?

.....You know, when you visit a bookstore and see the collections of books with titles that begin ‘The Complete IDIOT’S Guide’ or that end with ‘for Dummies’? If they’d been around then, I would have purchased a copy of ‘The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Immigration’ subtitled: Hungarian version. Without such a guide, I didn’t know how to emigrate the ‘right’ way. The Communist countries don’t teach their citizens how to escape Communism in success, so, I had to do it blindly.

.....The food on the airplane to Moscow was awful. After dinner I had a hard time falling back to sleep. I looked outside through the tiny window, and was absolutely delighted by the harmony of the mackerel-red sky and the golden sun. It always amazes me how beautiful the sunset is. Every time I look at it, I have the same morbid feeling: this may be the last time I see and enjoy its beauty and warmth. At that moment I felt a close connection to the sun. The wonder is, that the twilight always represents a perfect visualization of moments of passing time. When I watch the sunset, I am able to see the moment the sun disappears, with its brightness on the horizon. I only wish I could be sure what tomorrow will bring, after the darkness of the night.