HOW TO GET AHEAD: WORKING ABROAD ... BUDAPEST - Steer clear of imbibing too much palinka during the buzzing bulis of Budapest

Tim Scott-Hunter, group media director of Zenith International, worked for Lintas and Initiative in Budapest between 1992 and 1998.

Tim Scott-Hunter, group media director of Zenith International,

worked for Lintas and Initiative in Budapest between 1992 and 1998.



’I don’t think you could pick a decade of greater change in Hungary than

when I worked there,’ says Scott-Hunter. ’Communism was disappearing and

people were adapting to a completely different way of life.



’On the day I arrived, I kept wondering when they were going to turn on

the lights. It was so dark it was like a black-and-white film; I kept

expecting Humphrey Bogart to appear out of the shadows.



’In 1991 they were just introducing Western retailing. When the Adidas

shop opened the queue stretched for a mile - before that you’d go into a

shoe shop and your choice was white or black.



’Language-wise, living in Hungary was like living on Mars - even things

you’d think have universal names, like police, are called something

completely different. Apparently, Hungarian is the second-hardest

language to learn after Mandarin.



’Hungarians are very passionate, emotional people with a real lust for

life. They love a buli - which means party - where you’ll probably be

plied with lots of beer and a plum brandy called palinka.



’Hungary also has the most beautiful women in the world. I met my wife

in Budapest, although she’s an American. She is, of course, completely

gorgeous, I hasten to add.’



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