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Reader feedback: Reacting with broad smile

Re: Na Slovensku po slovensky, By Amanda Surbey, December 19 - January 8, 2005

As I read Amanda Surbey's impression of Slovak women's beauty, a broad smile emerged on my face and in my heart.

I am not a "corn-fed, middle-aged housewife from the American Midwest" but a middle-aged professional from Ottawa, Canada, and yet my dilemma since moving to Slovakia in 2004 has also been where to shop and how to attain the fashion and beauty standards of Slovak women. I know now that I am not alone.

Yes, there is no doubt that Slovak women possess a certain flair for fashion and a tremendous tolerance for walking great distances in what to me are shoes designed solely for store window manikins.

However, Slovak women that once intimidated me with their physical beauty and fashion choices have now come to be some of my closest and dearest friends. Their inner beauty far outshines any physical expression of femininity they may project with their clothes and make-up.

As more women from abroad adopt Slovakia as their new home, as I have, a greater exchange of life experiences will take place. My Slovak friends are sometimes surprised at my outgoing and easy communication manner, as intimidating for them as their beauty is for me. Today, instead of judging each woman I pass as I stroll through downtown I make mental notes on what I can learn from them so as to feel more comfortable in my new adopted homeland.

Colette Zaharie-Lukán,
Piešťany, Slovakia

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