Well, Bonyhád is not very far from a little village called Obánya, upon which I modeled the fictitious village of Oszabad in my novel. I did quite a bit of research into Obánya before I wrote my book, and I know practically everything there is to know about it – its history; its buildings; its church; its current and former residents. But here’s the catch – I have never actually been there. In fact, I have never been within 200 kilometers of it. Nevertheless, the village has lived and breathed within me for the better part of eight or nine years.
Visiting Obánya – a place I have never been but have written about extensively – is bound to be an interesting experience. It will be fascinating to see how my fictitious depiction of the village compares with reality. I anticipate I will see much of I wrote about reflected in the buildings and the surrounding landscape, but I also feel I will encounter many things I failed to take into account or perhaps got wrong. I am also looking forward to visiting the city of Pécs – another place I included in my novel, but have never visited.
So this Christmas will be about being in places I have lived, but never actually been. Should be quite the experience!