The oldest man in Canada is a 110-year-old Hungarian chess player

The oldest man in Canada is a 110-year-old Hungarian chess player

Facebook Tweet

110 évesen tudja kezelni a számítógépet, sakkozik és kitűnő a memóriája. Mi a titka? 

Decide whether the following statements are true or false.

Zoltán Sárosy was just two months shy of his eighth birthday when Archduke Franz Ferdinand of the Austro-Hungarian Empire was assassinated in Sarajevo, setting in motion the crisis that led to the First World War. The young Hungarian boy was living on a military base on the Adriatic, where his father was a doctor in the army.

“One morning I came out of my room to see my mother packing. She said war is coming, we have to leave within 12 hours,” says Mr. Sárosy. Soon they were on a torpedo boat that took them to a port in Herzegovina and from there to a passenger ship to Trieste and finally to a train to Budapest.

It’s safe to say Mr. Sárosy is the only man in Canada who remembers where he was when the First World War started. He celebrated his 110th birthday on August 23, and while there are no individual Statistics Canada records to point to, that will likely make him the oldest man in Canada.

Today, Mr. Sárosy lives in a seniors’ home. Though he now uses a wheelchair to get around – at 102, he finally conceded he could use some help and got a mobility scooter – his mind is still sharp, perhaps from a lifetime of chess.

“He remembers the past but what amazes me is his short-term memory,” says Elena Yeryomenko, lifestyle program manager at the Chartwell Grenadier Retirement Residence Mr. Sárosy calls home. “It is phenomenal at this age to have such a sharp mind. He remembers his life as a child and he remembers what he had for breakfast.”

Mr. Sárosy is still curious about the new. The interview was being recorded on a smart phone, and he wanted to know how it works as a recorder. “A marvellous little machine,” he called it.

He has a computer he bought in 1999 to play chess. At the time he played correspondence chess where people from around the world would mail each other the next move. Since games could take four or five years, he felt that at 93 he might not be around to finish a game.

Mr. Sárosy was born in 1906 in Budapest, the second capital of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. He started playing chess in public parks at the age of 10.

“I was with my mother and I saw a boy playing chess and I asked, ‘What is that?’ The next day I was back at the park. That boy’s mother wouldn’t let me play with him but I found others,” said Mr. Sárosy.

He continued playing in school and at university in Vienna, where he studied international trade. He graduated in 1928 and returned to Budapest where he continued his chess career. He was soon a grandmaster.

“In 1943, I played in the Hungarian championship and gained the Hungarian [chess] master title,” he says.

Young Zoltán was fluent in Hungarian and German, a skill that probably saved his life in the Second World War. In 1944, he volunteered as a translator when other Hungarian men his age were drafted and sent to the Eastern Front.

At the end of the war he fled Hungary, worried that Russians might have him imprisoned for being a military translator. He left his wife and daughter behind. He later sent for them when he was in Canada, but his wife refused to leave Hungary so they divorced.

Once over the border in Austria, he managed to find a room in Salzburg, then moved to a refugee camp. He then drifted across Europe, ending up in Alsace, the German-speaking province taken back by France after the war. In 1950, he read that Canada was looking for immigrants and he went to Paris to get papers.

He arrived in Halifax on Dec. 27, 1950, and then took the train to Toronto. He soon found a room on Kendall Avenue and work laying tiles on an upper floor at the new Bank of Nova Scotia building at King and Bay in January, 1951.

“I started my career in Toronto at a high level,” he jokes.

He didn’t like working for other people. “I wanted to be independent, so I started selling cosmetics. Eventually I thought it was much better if I imported them myself,” he says.

After several years, he bought a convenience store which he ran until the late 1970s. All the while, he still played chess. He won his first championship in Canada in 1955 and was Canadian Correspondence Champion in 1967, 1972 and 1981. He is a member of the Canadian Chess Hall of Fame.

After divorcing his first wife, he married Heino Mallo, an Estonian immigrant, in Canada. His daughter from Hungary came to visit him in Canada at one stage with the intention of living here. “She didn’t want to stay, silly girl,” says Mr. Sárosy.

He and his wife lived on Royal York Road in Mimico, just west of downtown Toronto, a couple of hundred metres from Lake Ontario. His wife died in 1998 and he sold his house and moved into the Grenadier home in 2000. For the next decade he was completely mobile, did his own shopping and walked everywhere. When he was about 102 he started riding a mobility scooter, and used that until two years ago.

Mr. Sárosy laughs when asked about the secret to his long life.

He has a couple of ideas: He tried smoking when he was a teenager, but he didn’t like it so he quit; he was a light drinker, just the occasional brandy. But he still hasn’t figured it all out quite yet.

“I’m still working on the formula. However, when I get it, I’ll go to the patent office,” he says. “I’m like an old used car with rusty body, wobb ly wheels but a good engine.”

source: theglobeandmail.com

Vocabulary

shy of

valami híján

archduke

főherceg

to be assassinated

orvgyilkosság áldozata lesz

to set in motion

elindítani, mozgásba hozni

military  base

katonai bázis

port

kikötő

seniors’ home

idősek otthona

wheelchair

tolószék

to concede

beleegyezik, elfogad

mobility scooter

mozgást segítő robogó

sharp

éles

short-term memory

rövidtávú memória

correspondence

levelező

trade

kereskedelem

grandmaster

nagymester

to be fluent in

folyékonyan beszélni (egy nyelvet)

to volunteer

önkénteskedni

to be drafted

besorozták, behívták őket

to imprison

bebörtönözni

to refuse

visszautasítani, megtagadni

border

határ

refugee camp

menekülttábor

to drift

sodródni, vándorolni

to lay tiles

kövezni, járólapokat lefektetni

independent

független

convenience store

kisbolt

Estonian

észt

formula

szabály, recept

patent office

szabadalmi hivatal

rusty

rozsdás

wobbly

ingadozó, nyeklő-nyakló

Nehézségi szint:
középfok
Tetszett a lecke? Oszd meg barátaiddal is!
Kapcsolódó anyagok

106-year-old woman dancing with the Obamas

106 évesen valóra vált az álma: találkozhatott Obamával! 
Tovább

Police Cooked Lonely Elderly Couple Pasta After They Were Heard Crying

Jöjjön egy szívmelengető történet Olaszországból - természetesen ezúttal is angolul, szószedettel. 
Tovább
5Perc Angol | 2015. Mar 23.

100 year old Great-Great Grandmother Skydives for Birthday Celebration

Olvasd el, hogyan ünnepelte 100. születésnapját ez a new york-i nagymama! 
Tovább
5Perc Angol | 2015. Jun 05.

This 92-Year-Old Is the Oldest Woman to Ever Run (and Finish) a Marathon

A 92 éves hölgynek sikerült teljesítenie a maratoni távot ... miután felépült a rákból. 
Tovább