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20 Years On November 20, 2009

Posted by Elfi in Life and everything, Music.
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Time flies. It has been 20 years since the Velvet Revolution in the former Czechoslovakia, 20 years since I was a fifth grade grammar school disciple.

Little me in a summer camp with my brother Pavel on the right, Helvíkovice, Czech Republic. Around 1987.

Photo: Jarmila Dobšíčková

The above picture is quite remarkable. On the inner side of the tent canvas you can see a reflection of my mom’s hands, hair and a camera.

Some memories. In 1989, those 20 years ago, we have started with the Russian language at school. We were shown beautiful maps proving that Russian is spoken everywhere around the world, with off course the USA crossed out as a dummy country unwilling to learn and herewith contribute to the world peace. I doubted how much Russian is actually spoken in the South America, but what the heck …. I was kind of looking forward. In two months, we have almost mastered the Cyrillic alphabet but then it changed.

Friday, November 17, 1989, was just an ordinary school day for me and during the weekend merely some scattered news about people ‘shambling’ in Prague reached me. People of Prague, don’t they have better things to do? They should come and help us on the country side. OK, OK:-) , enough sarcasm and making fun from my childish perception of those important days.

To make a long story short, Russian lectures were canceled in few days, being replaced by very bad English lectures or rather good German ones, school was full of leaflets “Havel na hrad” (Havel for president) and not that long afterwards all adults around got puzzled by a voucher privatization.

I have a memory of admiring people around me, particularly my parents. It was very special to witness what Anton Chekhov wonderfully put as

Any idiot can face a crisis, it’s the day to day living that wears you out.

I feel so thankful for what happened, for all the wearing out and the new direction.



Me and my wife, we both celebrated by visiting a punk party. The Eastpak Antidote Tour reached Gothenburg. Good music. And great people around make you almost forget how bad the local beer is 🙂

Source: Wikimedia

I was giving a talk at Chalmers University the next day and I was a little bit behind with preparation of my slides but everything worked out fine at the end.