Puzzle Without Rulebook or Guide

Lídia Szabó

In our world one of the greatest puzzles and mysteries will always be ourselves, human beings.

Ever since I was a little kid, I’ve always enjoyed observing people and their behaviors (and I’m certain I’m not the only one, obviously). Imagining how they would think in different situations or how I would act if I were in their position. Just for starters, humans are so complex and there are so many different sides to observe when we get to know someone. Which emotions are dominant when they talk in different situations, what kind of opinions they have in certain matters, if they can express their thoughts very intensively and profoundly or are better at showcasing their judgment and viewpoint through action. I also enjoy surrounding myself with people who are very different from me but who have an attribute or a thought that has made me want to learn from them. Usually people think that certain happenings determine and guide our lives and get us to places where we have to be. But in my opinion, that could never happen without other people being involved, and if the action stood by itself, without other people getting involved in your life, it wouldn’t make much of a change. Every single person entering our lives is there to teach us something, whether it’s about the world, human behavior, or even ourselves.

It gives us joy (at least to most people) to be around others, and just one smile from another could make us thrive with happiness as well. We love to listen and talk to each other, learn about each other’s behavior, get to know what we love and what we dislike and why.

I think human beings are one of the most complex puzzles in the world, because they don’t have an ultimate solution and they’re always changing. There is no guideline or rule book for a human brain, heart and soul. And that is why I find it one of the most exciting and entertaining puzzles of all time.

The Pointlessness of Puzzles

Gergely Sülye

I don’t like solving puzzles. They aren’t really a game as much as just an assignment that has been thought up, already solved by its inventor and only serving as a test for others. Because eventually anybody can solve it, but those who have already done so can feel a sense of superiority, albeit one that doesn’t last long because the solution will either be revealed or others will solve it by themselves in just a matter of time. And is reaching the truth even worth it? A puzzle can reveal a picture or a hidden meaning, which most of the time isn’t anything serious, just a plaything. One real application of puzzle-solving is perhaps uncovering the secret clues left behind by a particularly playful criminal, which doesn’t happen frequently but of which there are examples. Or deciphering messages sent by an enemy in times of war. In any case, despite the relative frequency of these cases, they don’t happen often. Outside of the cases where the solution serves an actual and important purpose, I think solving puzzles is not rewarding enough to be worthwhile.

Almost Completed

Eszter Klára Szabó

When I think of a perfect puzzle, our class comes into my mind immediately. Every member is a single piece that, when coming together, can complete a beautiful picture. In ninth grade we didn’t know what the picture would look like yet. We’re all different colors and shapes; some of us may have thought that we would never fit together. But eventually, as time flew by, we all found our pairs.

Or did we? These things can be pretty tricky if you ponder them long enough. Sometimes you think you have found your people – your matching pieces if you will – but then you get into an argument or just simply lose interest in each other. When these things happen, do not panic! It all happened for a reason. In time everyone will need to find their own group, the one that fits both their color palette and their figure. Some pieces are closer to each other, others are further apart, but they are all equally important in order to see the breathtaking end results.

I believe that during our three years together we have our story, our own puzzle almost completed. It may have some minor changes in the future that we can not see yet, but I am not worried about it. I am certain that in the very end it will look even better than it does at the moment.

Puzzle Piece

Nóra Katona

A few years ago, it was my mother’s birthday. When I got home, I gave her the flowers and chocolate that I had bought the previous day. She seemed happy and really appreciated my gift. Later on during the day, I realised that something seemed off. She wasn’t really talking much, but I knew she wasn’t just having a “bad day.” My father was out in the garden, doing his things, having a good time. When I put the pieces together, I realized that my father had forgotten my mum’s birthday. She knows very well that he always forgets literally everything, but of course she felt sad, because it was supposed to be a special day for her. I quickly ran and informed my dad. He bought some presents and said sorry to my mum. It definitely wasn’t her best birthday, but nowadays we just laugh about it.

Your Imaginary Puzzle of Life

Eszter Aletta Hevesi

Finding logic in everything that happens in your life is a very complicated thing to do. At each moment you have plenty of pieces to put in your giant puzzle, but there are special pieces that do not have places just yet. But will they ever have a place? Will it be one giant puzzle that represents your whole sequence of life?

If you think about it, you are basically always in the moment, and there are two cases when you are at your final moment. Either you realise that that is it for you and you die with that type of consciousness, or you don’t even recognize the second of your passing because it happened so quickly. Will you have time to finish your imaginary puzzle of life? Will you carefully choose a designated place for each piece of the puzzle?

Will your lifelong series of butterfly effects have a grand final outcome? Yes, they will. Your passing. At that place, time and state of mind that you will be in. Will you have time to figure out why everything happened? Probably not. You don’t need to. You don’t need to know about your purpose because you are not here for only one purpose. You have dozens of purposes in life, and they cannot be put in one overall puzzle.

I think everybody is a series of finished puzzles. Some people have only one finished puzzle, but others may have hundreds of thousands. It depends on you. Let life guide you to new pieces of puzzles in your life. Leave a beautiful series of puzzles behind you at the end of it all.

All You Need

Zsófia Szabina Gávris

I firmly believe that every person has been told the sentence “All you need is…” in their lives at least once. The missing essential can be money, love, a partner, a job, a car and infinitely many other factors. But what exactly is that we need?

Let me bring situations of human life parallelly with a puzzle. During the different phases of a person’s life the missing piece of the puzzle changes. At a young age humans are not conscious about their actions, preferences and needs. The objects children identify as their needs are usually toys, food and other materialistic values. However, at an older age people tend to stand for intellectual values and needs.

In my opinion, the great change starts at around age twenty. By that age most people discover the importance of the effort put into themselves. After people realize they only have themselves throughout their whole life, and start to prioritise and invest in themselves, a lot of things change.

The way I see it, in order to improve and grow, we have to find the missing piece which is nothing else but ourselves. Being on good terms with ourselves can lead to success and further development as well. Finding ourselves can mean several different things. It can mean the acceptance of our features, abilities, talents, in one word: who we are. Moreover, finding ourselves can mean changes our hobbies, everyday life, circumstances and career path too. Also, finding ourselves consists of returning to our past-self after a harsh period of our life. Of course it can have many-many other perspectives, differing from person to person and story to story.

In conclusion, sometimes the missing piece of the puzzle we are/have been looking for is right there, in front of our eyes. It is myself, yourself, himself, herself, themselves … just in a phase that it has not grown into yet.

The Mysterious Carrot-Thief

Lili Forgács

10 December, Wednesday
I can’t believe it. Snow is falling in Florida! It hasn’t snowed for about three years. Thus not a surprise that, when I arrived home from school, I built an enormous snowman in the backyard. It became really pretty with its long, orange carrot-nose and black pot-hat. I even put a striped scarf around its neck. I can see it out of my window, standing in the middle of the garden with a friendly smile made of walnuts. I hope it won’t melt away tomorrow.

11 December, Thursday
Thank God, the snowman is still alive! However, it lost its nose. In the morning, I went down looking for it, but unfortunately, I couldn’t find it, and due to the new layer of snow, I couldn’t see footsteps either. As there was no other solution, I asked for a new carrot from Mom. Anyway, I named the snowman Shawn, as its pronounciation is really similar to snow.

12 December, Friday
The case is getting more and more interesting and mysterious! Shawn had no nose in the morning, and I still can’t figure out where the carrots are. Mom gave me another, but she said it is the last one. I decided to stay up during the night and check on the snowman with my telescope.

13 December, Saturday
The plan failed as I fell asleep after 11 p.m. It seems Shawn remains noseless for the rest of his life.

14 December, Sunday
The mystery has been solved!  Tomorrow in P.E. lesson we will sledge in the yard of the school, and we were asked to bring sledges. My sledge is kept in the carport. I was looking for it, when I heard a fumbling noise. I thought it was nothing, but when I told Dad, he became really scared. “What if a mumbler lives there, and destroys the cables of the car?” he said. This is why we went back and followed the sounds. It came from a box full of clothes. Fighting off all my fears, I looked into that box, and found the culprit. The carrot-thief was nothing other than a little cutie hedgehog. It was so cold inside the carport, I couldn’t let that little guy just stay there during the winter. With Mom’s permission, I created a home for it in my room in a cage, and according to our arrangement I will set it free when the weather becomes warmer. (I hope it will never happen.)

A Missing Piece

Mercédesz Gerda Einwag

Once, when I was seven years old, I got a puzzle for Christmas  with barbies on it; of course at that time it was a priority for me that everything have to do with barbies and girly things. On that day I opened it and started to solve it, but I found something else that was more interesting, so I left it in the middle of the living room.

The next day, I woke up and started to solve it again. It was an easy one with thirty pieces in total. I was getting close to finishing it, when I realized that one was missing. Of course the whole family started looking for it, but we couldn’t find it. I started crying, because it wasn’t done. Later my mom put it away, because I forgot it existed. A few weeks later my mom found an article on the internet saying that the manufacturer of this company had sold some puzzles with missing pieces, so they replaced them.

It was a puzzle in itself, that I got it but there was a missing piece that we had to find; it was complete chaos.

The Silence Before the Storm

Áron Antal

I arrived at the construction site at 6 a.m. We (and by “we” I only mean Jack and Walt) were working on this mechanic station, where we were given the task to renew buildings with the crew. My uncle Jack said that he would appreciate my help because I had worked here before, and the crew was severely understaffed because most of them had got the flu.

—Today we will dig the ditch—said Jack before taking a huge bite out of his sandwich.

I just nodded and Walt lit a cigarette, as usual, while he started to walk towards the trencher.

As he walked, my uncle was staring at the old gas pipe peeking out of the wall of hangar 2, which was to be left alone, even though no equipment in the building will work with gas.

—What do you think, how deep does it run?— I asked Jack.

—Deep enough that we shouldn’t disturb it—he replied.

—Won’t there be any problems with it? Have you called the authorities about this?—I asked.

—Don’t worry about it. This is not some sort of puzzle or problem that you have to crack. This isn’t school. It will be fine. When we dug there you see, we didn’t see any sign of it, and then we dug deeper than we will now, this will turn out to be just a sewage pipe, for God’s sake.

When he replied, the trencher, although hesitantly, started up and began to approach us.

—We will be done with this by 11 a.m.—Jack said. We have to. See the clouds gathering? Hey Walt!

—What now!—said Walt with a freshly lit cigarette in his mouth.

—Start here, right at the edge of the building, and we will move towards the pit there, you see!

—Right—said Walt and enabled the stabilizer hydraulics on the trencher.

—Now go get the loader—said Walt to me. —We will put all the dirt we dig up in the grab bucket, and you will take it to the heap, okay?

—Okay—I said. I walked to the loader and climbed into it. The terrible smell of the smoke-soaked cabin invaded my nose. I started the engine and rolled next to the trencher. I put down the grab bucket next to the trencher, and got out of the cabin to see how the trencher was doing. The bucket bit into the ground, and took out a huge chunk of the ground. And from the ground, a pipe became visible.

—Stop the trencher you moron!—shouted my uncle to Walt.

—Why?—and while he was asking that, he pushed down the button of his lighter.

At that instance, a fireball started expanding from the open window of the trencher. It engulfed Walt, whose face just blankly stared at the end of his cigarette. The fireball continued to expand, like the Universe when it was born, in an astonishing yet devastating way. The screaming of the gas became quiet as the sound of the flames dominated the air.

—It wasn’t as deep as you thought it would be, Jack. It wasn’t nearly as deep as you thought it would be. If you would have just let me investigate a bit…— I thought to myself as I closed my eyes and put my arms in front of my head, thinking that it would protect me from the rapid gas explosion four meters away from me.

Letter from the Editor (Spring 2022)

This letter, like the spring itself, gavottes swiftly by; we’re almost at the end of the year, and this calls for crisp words. This second anniversary issue of Folyosó has two special features: a section of pieces on puzzles (pieces about puzzles, pieces involving puzzles, pieces that are puzzles). There’s even a piece by someone who doesn’t like puzzles! So give these puzzles and anti-puzzles a whirl.

Then comes a section that will seem peculiar at first until (a) you get used to them, (b) you read Richard Brautigan’s Trout Fishing in America, or (c) the disbelief evaporates on its own. Each of the pieces uses the phrase “trout fishing in America” in whatever way it pleases. The phrase can function as a noun, a verb, an adjective, or anything else.

The “trout fishing” pieces are a little bit strange. But that is part of the point. When you allow yourself to do unusual things with language, you hear it in new ways. Stories emerge that never would have existed otherwise.

We also include two utopia projects by students from Class 12.C, interesting in both their content and their presentation. We hope that they will stimulate discussion of the ideas!

In honor of this year’s Shakespeare Festival, which took place on April 22 and kicked off a wonderful new tradition, we are republishing a Shakespeare-inspired section from Issue 1:3 (Winter 2020–2021). Here are just a few pictures of the festival itself.

Lilla Kassai painted two portraits for the Hamlet scene in this festival; they appear here on the Folyosó cover and on their own page, along with two more of her pieces. We are honored to feature her art again.

The next issue, featuring our next international contest, will come out in October. Contest details will be posted by the end of June. We wish you a fruitful, restful, pliable, not-too-short summer!


Diana Senechal
Founder and Editor of Folyosó

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