James Thomson

List of authors articles

Nice driveway! An occasional column on life in Slovakia

When feelings count for more than lives

Why are Slovaks still dying in horrific numbers from a preventable disease? 16. apr16. Apr 2021, at 7:00
Nice driveway! An occasional column on life in Slovakia

Hall of mirrors

PM Igor Matovič
What Slovak politicians mean when they say sebareflexia. 24. mar24. Mar 2021, at 19:00
Russel Lunday
A good friend of The Slovak Spectator passed away on Sunday. 16. mar16. Mar 2021, at 10:44
Nice driveway! An occasional column on life in Slovakia

Surviving, so far as we can tell

Banská Bystrica
Does anyone understand Slovakia’s pandemic rules any more? 23. feb23. Feb 2021, at 17:31
Nice driveway! An occasional column on life in Slovakia

It was a long time ago and it never happened anyway

Igor Matovič celebration his election victory on March 1, 2020.
How much of the present will be intelligible through the kaleidoscopic lens of digital media in just a few years – or even months? 26. jan26. Jan 2021, at 16:30
Nice driveway! An occasional column on life in Slovakia

What do you want for Christmas?

A vaccine would be nice. But a state that inspires trust would be the gift that keeps on giving. 20. dec20. Dec 2020, at 6:33
Nice driveway! An occasional column on life in Slovakia

Secret votes and public lies

Dobroslav Trnka (left) and Jozef Čentéš (right), the candidate who was eventually selected by MPs in 2011, never got to take up the post because the then president, Ivan Gašparovič refused to appoint him for reasons that were never clearly explained.
There are uncanny echoes today of Slovakia’s agonies over its choice of chief prosecutor ten years ago. 25. nov25. Nov 2020, at 8:28
Nice driveway! An occasional column on life in Slovakia

Pity the nation

The second US presidential debate.
Americans’ choice of president on November 3 will affect Slovaks too. 26. okt26. Oct 2020, at 10:37
Nice driveway! An occasional column on life in Slovakia

Congratulations, you’ve won a thousand euros!

The switch to the euro has helped upgrade Slovakia's ratings.
Slovakia will get about €7.5 billion – but for what? 23. sep23. Sep 2020, at 7:00
Nice driveway! An occasional column on life in Slovakia

How a marginal part of Bratislava became pilgrimage spot for foreigners

Foreigners’ Police department in Bratislava
Unable or unwilling to travel abroad this summer? Why not enjoy an excursion to the Foreigners’ Police, where a full day (at least) of excitement awaits! 20. aug20. Aug 2020, at 17:02
Nice driveway! An occasional column on life in Slovakia

Selling (out) the future

Speaker of Parliament Boris Kollár holds a press briefing on June 23, 2020, in Bratislava, explaining his plagiarism.
The behaviour on display in the latest plagiarism scandal is mirrored by that of some educational institutions too. 12. júl12. Jul 2020, at 15:35
Nice driveway! An occasional column on life in Slovakia

From lockdown in New Zealand to home quarantine in Slovakia. A COVID-19 odyssey

The deserted Auckland airport, New Zealand's busiest, in May 2020.
In which your correspondent inadvertently circumnavigates the globe in the middle of a pandemic. 10. jún10. Jun 2020, at 8:00
Find out more about region of folklore, national parks and modern attractions.
James Thomson recalls some of the highs and lows of a summer spent on the road researching the 14th edition of Spectacular Slovakia. 24. apr24. Apr 2020, at 7:00
Red Stone Castle (Červený Kameň) in Častá, Bratislava Region, easily accessible by public transport, serves as a furniture museum in the first place.
Audio
The Renaissance fortress, located in Častá in the Bratislava Region, is a well-preserved castle set in the Small Carpathians. 23. apr23. Apr 2020, at 8:00
Nice driveway! An occasional column on life in Slovakia

What Slovakia and New Zealand (don't) have in common

Igor Matovic, the kingmaker who became the king.
We are all struggling with the new reality. Some more than others. 15. apr15. Apr 2020, at 15:09
Nice driveway! An occasional column on life in Slovakia

Men of appetites

Robert Fico celebrates his 2012 victory.
Slovakia’s voters face some unappetising choices on 29 February. 13. feb13. Feb 2020, at 11:25
Nice driveway! An occasional column on life in Slovakia

Once upon a time in the east

In which your correspondent is doused in holy water and discusses the economics of collective farming. 27. jan27. Jan 2020, at 20:10
Nice driveway! An occasional column on life in Slovakia

Onwards and upwards

Andrej Danko
Slovakia is changing, and (whisper it) some things are getting better. 27. dec27. Dec 2019, at 5:32
Nice driveway! An occasional column on life in Slovakia

Strange parallels as Britain and Slovakia go to the polls

The idea of demonstrators waving EU flags in Westminster would have seemed faintly ridiculous before 2016; now it is a common sight at moments of parliamentary drama.
‘Who should I vote for?’ Slovak friends sometimes ask. I am in no position to offer advice any more. 2. dec2. Dec 2019, at 10:42
Nice driveway! An occasional column on life in Slovakia

October is the cruellest month

The long-term unemployed find it harder to return to work.
Trying to get Slovaks to look on the bright side can be tough at the best of times. In October, their tempers shorten with the days. 30. okt30. Oct 2019, at 16:46