I was a Peace Corps volunteer from America to Slovakia from 2000 until June this year.
A short time ago I was carrying a suitcase, a cane and two bags full of stuff to the Peace Corps office to donate it to a sale for charitable purposes.
It usually takes me only three minutes to walk from my flat in Bratislava to the tram stop.
But it took me around five that morning, and by then I knew I was going to have a very hard time, as I was already perspiring heavily, and had two more walks of two and two-and-a-half blocks to manage.
As I stepped down from the tram at Nový most, before I knew it, two young Slovak men approached me and one of them asked in perfect English, "Can we help you?"
"Yes, thank you very much," was my reply.
They carried the two heavy things for me to the bus stop under the bridge. We shook hands, with my further thanks.
Getting off the bus near Kremnická Street, I hadn't even taken my fourth step before another young man saw me - he a teenager and I to be 73 soon - and gestured that he would like to carry the heavy load for me, which he did, with my thanks, all the way through the office and even inside through two doors!
In my over two years in Bratislava, where I taught at Comenius University in two departments, countless young people, and also quite a few older, yielded their tram seats to me.
To those kind-hearted ladies and gentlemen of the Slovak Republic I render immense credit and the highest praise. God bless you all.
15. Jul 2002 at 0:00