The Trip to Switzerland
The drab greyness of everyday life came back into the activities of Jonathan Fischer. He returned to his usual occupations, which were mainly determined by his job as a consultant in his Volksbank (People’s Bank). His circle of friends in the Munich Chess Club was not at all interested in his supernatural experiences. Yes, they held him for a nutcase and dreamer, who has become one of the brainless victims of one of the American sects. Stupidly he lost a series of games in the chess Bundesliga, prompting the critical team manager to replace him for a while against a substitute player. Understandably his family too didn’t want to share his newly inflamed religious enthusiasm. The parents took the view that once you’re baptised Catholic, you must always remain Catholic. His brother Thomas attacked him sharply, because he himself had in his opinion a crazy and fanatical superior, who tried on several occasions to convert him. He was even more upset when he learned that this Vera Fischer had made herself acquainted with his little brother and even prayed with him. In summer the host Vera made here home available for the athletes for Jesus team and was also present at Christian meetings during the World Championship. So, Jonathan was predicted by his close relatives that his enthusiasm will vanish soon. In a way, they should get right.
Christmas stood in front of the door and the possibility of a fantastic winter holiday opened for Jonathan. He received an invitation to a luxury hotel in St. Moritz, which he had to owe to his best ever achieved chess performance. In the previous year, he triumphed in a tournament with ten international young talents in Lenk in the Bernese Oberland. He won seven times and drew two times, scoring the performance of a Super Grandmaster. An annual Grand Prix Tournament, sponsored by the Swiss Union of Raiffeisen Banks, was held in the Engadine resort, which was highly appreciated by the jet set. The only hurdle that had to be overcome was a ban on taking time off for all Bank staff at the turn of the year. Jonathan knew that his bank director Adolfo, who was fascinated by classical music, always ignored his own holiday ban, to make a pilgrimage to the fairy tale castle Neuschwanstein. A Wagner Festival was held there every year in the Singers’ Hall, in which his gifted wife and six-time mother Anne-Sophie conducted. One of the most successful Bank Board Manager in Germany, which was not only a lover of higher art but also his sponsor, did not let him down.
Jonathan was asked by a friendly family from Kecskemét to accompany a fourteen-year-old prodigy to Switzerland. The lean World Junior Champion Peter Polgar was regarded not only as the most promising candidate to the kings crown, but also played excellent football in his army Club. Jonathan had even witnessed a rough-and-tumble at the Spring Festival in Budapest among greedy, money-grubbing chess trainers, fighting for the right to teach the wonder boy. The following Hungarian national coach and grandmaster Dr. Tamás Bozi was a friend of the Fischer family and occasionally stayed in Stuttgart during his European tours. Jonathan first bought a second-hand personal computer for the duo hosted in Fasanenhof and installed an extensive chess database called ChessBase. The case, the PC and the own alpine ski equipment were packed into the car to go in a threesome to St. Moritz. Jonathan discussed with Tamás on the highway towards Schaffhausen if he could not manage the investments of the emerging top earner Peter in the future. Accordingly, the doctorate lawyer Dr. Bozi made a joke in broken German, that he would like to open a numbered account for his ward Peter in Switzerland, when crossing the border. The humourless investigators dismantled then the Opel Kadett into its individual parts for two hours, searching empty-handed for cash and also, without results and with all possible tricks of decryption, tried to spy on all supposed numbers of bank data on the computer’s hard disk. At a time like this, the three suspects started a mutual blind simultaneous tournament. Everyone played simultaneously against each other without taking a chessboard as help, but rather keeping all moves in mind to pass them on audibly. Jonathan was pleased about winning both memory games and interpreted this as a good omen. Even happier were all three brain athletes, once a service relieving border guard turned out to be a true expert and chess friend, in order that the journey could be continued.
When they arrived with serious delay at the reception of the Grand Palace Hotel in the snow-covered Engadine, the PC and the screen was dismantled again. Intelligence officials feared that a bomb could be hidden inside. Why did they make this huge effort? The world-famous home was booked during the Christmas season as the venue for a conference especially for government and business leaders aiming for a “new world order”. Therefore it was strictly monitored. The three newcomers finally got their room keys and a bar code scan card, enabling to move easier around, in order that they could go wearily to their overnight apartments.
The next morning Lady Fortune returned in Jonathan’s life. The breakfast in the Grand Hall of the posh hotel was accompanied by a harpist and just at that moment two world-famous business women sat at his table. The ripe, contemporary, blonde chicks conversed in English about their marketing and sales strategies. They prided themselves with their Double-Investments in Silicon Hills, who had helped them to achieve capital wealth and splendid prosperity. Staring at their breasts in big cleavages, the devout Christian and banker got into a moral conflict and started to ponder: Was it a coincidence that he had seen both at night on TV in scenes which were prohibited by the Church? Madonna! The One was on shocking scene on MTV with her hit „Like a Prayer“, mocking the cross according to her usual practice of sex. The Other, in another nooky horror film, was riding on the devil, causing bad things to happen in whatever shock of earthquake, showing in “Basic Instinct” her best, bare-naked side, which was leading to a deadly karma.
When Jonathan floated up with the gondola to the snowy mountains of Graubünden, he could see the white towers of the fairytale-like hotel, which was located on a hill, gleaming in a reddish sunlight. Leaving the means of transport, his ski poles interlocked with those of the young, Anglo-Saxon successor to the throne, which he could not capture nor believe. Most humbly, subserviently bowing, he lifted the discarded handkerchief of the snotty-nosed kid, but he only encountered the shielding bodyguards, giving no appreciation for his attempted restitution. The displeased Jonathan put in the sticky souvenir and surpassed the aristocratic family, as he was carving swiftly and skilfully with his Fischer skis down through the black run to the valley. Jonathan could tackle this day with ease for he had agreed in advance with his side kick Tamás Bozi to play a quick, lustless draw variation. Ongoing Jonathan gave his accomplice ski lessons at a beginner lift and was amused of his numerous crashes in the snow.
The next morning buffet had to offer two erected opera singers who musically welcomed the guests. The cantors figured Tamino and Papageno and were harmoniously accompanied by a string orchestra. This time Jonathan was joined at a table with two male business people, welcoming him with a rubbing thumb when shaking hands, always ready for service as apprentices. They were two fellow countrymen who apparently took part in the political forum. One of them wanted to do away with the expensive cash and the other to remove his disturbing works council. The national economist and the mechanical engineer invented a mammon patent. The cash of the credit institution should secretly flow to the Heros of the peoples-works-council, and then be paid by these fortune messengers, to get reconverted into a scriptural money account. Thus, the two Chair Men of the Executive Board believed to be able to control two cylinders with only one valve. Hopefully, the catalyst does not strike then, recognised accounting Jonathan who had shifted his reserves to speculate in investments of the global corporations.
In the candidates tournament the games started at two o’clock in the afternoon. The second encounter with Peter Polgar was serious, because Jonathan was fighting in an endgame with rook, knight and pawn against an overpowering queen for survival. At this instant a risen president, chosen in Yale, and his oil-governor-alumnus came into play. The two kibitzers with their eagle eyes sneaked out of their conference room crowned with a Bilderberg (mountain of paintings) into the Dutch chess hall of the hotel group. They were encircled from peaking out-and-out cameramen who transmuted the confident of victory, hysterical Polgar in elevated buck fever. The young chess god swung elegantly his king through the air for the gallery, until he immediately got in a panic, since he realized his mistake. A move with the white queen would have been more favourable.
However, the beast in Jonathan persisted on the touched-move rule, so that he could save himself maliciously in a repetition of moves through perpetual check. All the more horny, the black player felt, due to the fact that this view of the day was broadcasted in the SF Tagesschau. The admiration and the envy of many friends was dead certain for him.
Fischer lived in a Junior Suite Deluxe where the drinks in the hotel bar were initially free. On the third day, indeed, the refrigerator with the spirituous beverages were eliminated by the femme de chambre. What had happened? His next-door neighbour, the English champion player Harry Bibber got himself drunk and took the emergency fire extinguisher to over spray a ravenous, thrown out of the chamber concubine in the corridor. The powdered floor then looked like after a winter exercise of the youth fire brigade.
Jonathan was pleased about the schedule which arranged just at that day his game with the white colours against the alcoholic. It looked like Jonathan could achieve a combat-less victory, for his opponent overslept the beginning of the round with a hangover. Almost an hour late, the red-haired Bibber still showed up and knocked over accidentally his black queen and his checkmated king. J’adoube – I adjust my pieces, the players generally say at such a unhandily moment. Jonathan choose the Ruy Lopez opening, which Harry, the chess playing wizard and gambler, transformed into the dreaded Marshall Attack. White wins in this gambit a pawn, but on the other hand Black takes over the opening initiative. Drenched in sweat, Jonathan felt very uncomfortable in his skin and came after two hours in big time trouble. Its intuitive, brilliant opponent, who ran to the bathroom constantly, needed only fifteen minutes thinking time. The match was voted later as the game of the year, since Jonathan couldn’t prevent the choking checkmate forced by the black knight, although having a big material advantage.
On the gourmet set dinner the German who had to wear a compulsory jacket conversed with the freckled face underdog, understanding not only why he first sacrificed the cost-intensive peasant woman and then the pawn, but also comprehending that he mastered the Marshall Gambit in the sleep. The corporate analysis with the help of the computer player database in the double room of Tamás and Peter confirmed Harry’s claim on the basis of many successful games. The Hungarians were thereby warned and prepared themselves better on their encounters with the Englishman.
In the endless evening, the wannabe world champion Fischer who hated to memorize long opening variations was comforted in the pay TV with the repeatedly seen Arnold Schwarzenegger science fiction action film “Total Recall” and with other forgetful mind movies.
The next day, Fischer tried as Black to maintain also a pawn advantage in a King’s Gambit against Kasparov. However, he had to admit the superiority of the world-class dictator after 33 moves. During the following game analysis in the Vodka Yeltsin Lounge, a Soviet KGB officer named Vladimir tried to defend the stupid pawn holding strategy vigorously. Indeed, this Germany ally couldn’t stand up with the mass demonstration of Garry. Garry Kasparov silenced his compatriot ultimately, when he recommended with mockery and contempt, to better bring under his rebellious opponents in the judo club or to put in / putting the ball with / in the golf club.
Accidentally, the royal handkerchief sniffing Fischer picked up an influenza infection at the ski runs, which increasingly weakened him and chained him in his spare time to the bed. Also, in the chess arena, an unprecedented loosing streak with four further losses occurred fatally on the following days. Fischer lost to Kramnik in the Russian Game, against Anand in the King’s Indian, against Madl-Sautter in the Queen’s Gambit, and finally against Leko in the controversial opening of Budapest Gambit. Jonathan’s prayers for success seemed to be ignored by God. Also the occasional study in the bedside cabinet Gideon Bible brought him little word of consolation. To cap it all, his VW Turbo Warrants daily lost value and a speculation at the DTB (German Derivatives Exchange, follow-up Eurex) on Deutsche Bank proved to be worthless at the expiration date.
That was the last straw. He decided to punish God by no longer practising the Lord’s prayer before going to sleep. Starting as a communion kid, this had become a holy good night tradition. Instead, Jonathan delighted in the movie 9½ Weeks. Ironically, at one of the culinary gourmet scenes with the sexy Kim, there was an unexpected knock at his door. Viktor Orlowski, the father of his last round opponent wanted to talk to him. He offered him 600 Swiss francs for deliberately losing the next day. Jonathan had won two French games against the very pretty Judith in the past year. So the father was afraid that he might wrest her first place with 6600 dollars in prize money, just like a battered boxer shortly before the final gong. The daughter should learn nothing from the secret immoral offer. When Jonathan himself once was adversely affected by such arrangements, he had sworn never to participate in the business of the chess mafia. Nevertheless, the trade began to please him. Thus, the gentleman would just finish the event with a negative record of only one of nine possible points and in lieu he could start something stimulating with the bribe money. Even so, the following search of the white waxed fun-partner with the empty fire extinguisher did not succeed. The elevator operator said to know that Queen Teresa was gone for an interview at the Canton Health Department. That appeared odd to him, because at the lunch in the Spanish dining hall she had encumbered oneself with an statutory insurance, which she immediately and compulsively must provide at the local tax office.
The following day, Peter Polgar won also an untruly game against his second Tamás Bozi and was appointed the youngest men grand master being only 14 years old. He shared the win with the precocious women player Judith Orlowski who had received the highest chess title in the record-breaking age of 15.
The goat like Peter did not want to invest the prize money at Jonathan’s Sandbank Denkenstadt eG, but followed subsequently the advice of a Swiss Raiffeisen consultant and bought Parmalat shares. What kind of stinker cheese is this?, Jonathan thought. The foreign colleagues had probably still not learned from the Südmilch and Sachsenmilch bankruptcies. Anyway, the defiant child didn’t speak well of him ever since they had a dispute after their touched-move drawn game. Then, on the way back, Peter almost wetted his pants as the digital speedometer passed the two hundreds mark. Quickly had to be reached the last night train from Zurich main station in the direction of Vienna for the Hungarians on their way home. The sports car driver Fischer pursued a Speedster on the Swiss highway with car number plate S-PS 231. The black-gold winged convertible with the logo Porsche 911 had probably twice as much boss mares power than his lowered, purple-metallic Opel GSI, which bottomed out at corrugations, based on the load of the rear luggage. Tamás and Jonathan wouldn’t mind in their comfortable Recaro front seats, but the sour pupil on the back seat was shaken rancid.
A black Ford Scorpio who initially wanted to save fuel in the wake of the Stuttgart-based car turned on a portable blue light and forced Jonathan to stop at the service area of Würenlos. Goat Peter was released to pee, and Jonathan was given the opportunity to explain his tuning modifications to the nice Swiss officials on the basis of his vehicle registration. The new year had begun badly for the flu-weakened Kadett tuner, since he received a prescription costing 600 Swiss francs for driving with an excessive speed. He was even lucky that the police officers let him go further, because the two rear Goodyear low profile tires had scrubbed at the wheel arches glowing purple.
The chess professionals were dismissed as planned at the train station and Jonathan reached with pain and misery his own home in Stuttgart, where his medical condition yet continued to deteriorate. A purulent inflammation in the upper jaw erupted. In the Katharinenhospital the diagnosis was made that a tumour in the head had grown again which had to be surgically removed. Jonathan was devastated. He wept bitterly and was scared to death. He remembered his friend Richy Hammer, who was writing a Bible verse at the farewell last summer which implied that he should be courageous and strong and shouldn’t fear. A large envelope from overseas was delivered at the very morning to Jonathan. Inside was the over-sized photo together with embracing Carl and Leroy. Hammer reminded the hero of this fiction in the attached letter again of the words written down in the first chapter of the sixth book in the Hebrew Bible written by Joshua. Jonathan was shocked when he was reading the lines and was reminded of his promise not to participate again in chess tournaments. The critical operation was performed under local anaesthesia, which didn’t edify Jonathan with his uncomfortable feelings. An oral surgeon named Martin Anrich told his assistant Dr. Christian Finckh of an bygone effective aid mission in Albania and his plans to travel to Macao. Jonathan was afraid that the clever, filigree hands do not remove every tumour growth from its roots during the distracting holiday conversations. He promptly got to hear from the surgeon: “Hopefully I’ve caught everything. I’ll drill now a window into the nasal sinus cavity, so that in future the inflammation does not occur so easily.” Finckh, a junior doctor noticed: “Now I know how to do it. Otherwise I’ll get the rest out just after my full approbation at Easter.”
The disillusioned Jonathan was hospitalized for a week and got a visit from a charming lady. Vera Fischer had learned of his brother from his stay in hospital and started to encourage him with a basket full of fruits. Jonathan felt very flattered and started to become fond of the few years older, qualified engineer. Were the same last names perhaps a sign from the Most High?
The desired healing process by the doctors turned up. Thus, the patient could return in the usual course of everyday life. A short time later a great scandal occurred in his chess club which was founded 160 years ago. The team manager had used the entrusted wages to play poker and lost the game despite having a Royal Flush. The sponsors withdrew and the professional players had to find new clubs because they were without money. The bank specialist Fischer was happy to exercise a monetary trade and saw the event as a last advise of God to abandon tournament chess. The coming fulfilment of his life dream would be a confirmation for this serious decision.