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Velvet Revolution Tag

   

Pavel Zuštiak

I remember activists who came from Prague right after the revolution, right after the demonstration in Prague, with video documentation. It was both at school and I know that through any underground Christian groups, they would be very present there. So all of us would watch the footage from the demonstration and at that point I really felt like there’s no way that this could turn backwards.

Tomas Votocek

Everybody had a big vision to work for themselves, because before everybody worked for the company, the state was the owner, and now everybody wants to be free and work for themselves and make a profit for myself. But nothing was too easy, everything was hard.

Ludmila Sujanova

Yes, we did have a chata, or summer home, or záhrada [garden] and we pretty much spend almost the entire summer there. There was always something to do. My dad was very much an avid gardener and we grew everything. I didn’t know such a thing as to go to a store and purchase potatoes or carrots or even things like jam or ketchup or anything.

Richard Stilicha

My grandpa, the communists were threatening and trying to get him to join the Party. They said ‘Look, you are a showcase of Slovak culture. You composed the first national opera. It’s appropriate for you to be in the Party.’ And he always refused.

Vlado Šolc

I was kind of oblivious to what was going on in politics. I think I started paying attention to it when I was 14, 15, 16. I remember sitting in a pub in Domaša, drinking beer and having a discussion with friends. My older friends, three years older were saying ‘Communism is going to fall. I am telling you guys, it will end.’

Stan Pechan

We talked about communism, even during communism. You know, in groups you talked, sometimes alcohol was involved, and then you started to talk, you know. People did talk. Sometimes you were unlucky and somebody maybe turned you in, you know? But this did not happen too much, it did not happen too much.

Lubos Pastor

It was just a few kilobytes of memory, but I was able to do a little coding in Basic. I even programmed my own little game – this little ghost moving around and collecting some goodies. Similar to one of the games at the time. But computing was certainly in its diapers. It’s come a long ways since then.

Tomas Opatril

Every young man and every young woman in the Czech Republic had to join dance lessons. It’s a Czech tradition, and every young man or young lady who’s the age of 15 must join and must visit the lesson of classical dance, which means polka, valčík [waltz] and other dancing in formal wear.

Lubomir Ondrasek

The teachers were, in my opinion and in the opinion of many, excessively authoritarian. Education served as a powerful instrument of oppression in the hands of those who, through the process of social engineering, wanted to bring ‘heaven to earth.’

Igor Mikolaska

Once you grow up somewhere else and you basically go live somewhere else, I think you’ll be kind of living on both sides of the fence for the rest of your life, so it’s kind of difficult to decide where to jump. Sometimes I feel I am home only when I am on the airplane or the ocean; that way I am nowhere.