Alica Arvay

Alica Árvay was born in the region characterised by extreme volatility in power as Churchill noted when he was a war correspondent. She was born on the left side of the Danube in a town in East-Central Europe that has been split by the river and history in Komárno/Komárom. At the time the town was in Czechoslovakia. Things could change even if one does not move anywhere. So ancestors who were born in the same place found themselves Slovak or Hungarian citizens as the tide changed although they had no desire for adventure, history was capricious enough to give them the taste of changing fortunes.

Archaeological findings show that the town could trace back its origins to the Neolithic, Eneolithic period, the Bronze Age. There seems to be evidence that Celts settled in the area towards the end of the 1st Century BC. The town's fortress played a crucial role in protecting the region against the Turks and later in the Hungarian revolution of 1848. Then it was the last remaining bastion of the Hungarian resistance against the Austrians until 1849.

This historically important town, trade route and military centre kept getting affluent and demolished every forty years. Split by a bridge over the Danube, just like its big sister, the Hungarian capital, Budapest, it preserved its traditions and has an interesting readiness to adapt to new influences. Its vital forces and zest have remained intact. It should have been named Phoenix situated in a magical region where unknown forces keep reshaping every single being. A giant is sitting and working on his pottery with furious energy, clay marks cover every surface.

Predominantly the town used to be inhabited by the Hungarian majority, although its culture always has been diverse and most people spoke three-four languages as it helped trade: Hungarian, Slovak, German, and they used Latin—as the language of education has remained Latin for a long time in the region especially when it came to law and contracts.

Living in the knowledge of 'all are one' and not forgetting her temporary origins (was it in Eastern Europe?, it could be any other region and continent in the world, still very small and dear, also is it not true that every reader is a daughter or son of José Arcadio Buendia, trapped in a magical time and magical places of constructed origins?), ultimately, she thinks we are God's children and this globe is meant to be a welcoming home for all of us (it is a shame we are turning in an uninhabitable swamp for all), Alica Arvay found her safe harbour in Sevenoaks and takes pride in being a true Sennockian. It is a perfect 'timeless' place for work where once John Donne, the vicar lived and wrote, 'Death do not be proud...', not to mention Knole House, Vita Sackville and the line that would connect the dots between her and Virginia Woolf. Instead of wanting all, she wanted very little: stability where she can work in peace.

She has been writing from an early age winning national competitions. She authored two books, collections of literary fiction short stories and contributed to three anthologies. She is yet to fulfil the promise of her talent but she continues to justify the faith of some of her ardent believers. One thing is for sure, she is a true Buendia who stands firmly, with both feet—on the clouds.

East Anglia

Dreams in Judea, Tales of the City