In its 17th year, the first talk of the series was held for the first time ever at the Perak Academy premise in Jalan Tun Sambantan Ipoh on Tuesday, December 1.
The audience of over 30 was in for a treat as featured speaker Dr Janos Kubassek, a scholar, geographer, scientist, lecturer, historian of science, explorer and a native of Hungary enlightened them on Hungarian natural heritage.
Few can match the 58-year-old Dr Janos who has published 27 books and more than 400 studies as well as visited 103 countries in the last 30 years. He has been the director of the Hungarian Geographical Museum since 1983 and was awarded the honorary citizenship of Pest County in 1996.
Filled with colourful visuals, one of the highlights of his informative presentation was Lake Balaton, a highly recommended to-go place in the summer as it attracts millions of tourists of the world.
“Before, the number of ships on the lake was not more than 700. Now, it is as high as 20,000,” he added. Famous national parks such as Hortobagy and Aggtelek were equally eye-catching.
Having done and achieved so much, what motivates Dr Janos to keep doing what he is doing? “I got a lot of inspiration from my parents, excellent teachers/professors and books. When I was a young boy, my father always brought me to the forest, mountains and explained to me the historical sites. I became a member of a cave exploration group in Hungary when I was 15 years old and spent a lot of time underground in the caves. Hence, history and geography are my life,” he shared with Ipoh Echo, citing Dr Denes Balazs, the renowned geographer who founded the Hungarian Geographical Museum as his role model.
His second time in Ipoh, he first visited the city in 2008 and Malaysia in 1981 when he was a student.
“I’m sure his talk will inspire us in Perak to also develop our caves,” stated Chan Kok Keong, the Acting Chairman of the Perak Academy in his closing remarks.