In September 1991 I made a trip to Bratislava to trace my father's family in the place of his birth. Upon arriving by train from Vienna I found I could not change money at the station and needed to find my way to a bank in the city centre. At the Hlavna stanica (main station) two attractive girls gave me some local currency, some coins.
I wandered to the busiest road I could find and asked two teenagers where I could change money. They led me to a bus stop, purchased a ticket for me, explained how many stops I should travel and waited until I boarded the correct bus. (this was in my first half hour in Slovakia!)
Eventually I changed some currency and, carefully following my guide book, searched for the tram to the hotel I was seeking. Again, I was rescued. An elderly lady led me several blocks asking for help along the way as to the best route to take to my destination. Eventually I arrived at the Junior Hotel for 180 Czechoslovak crowns per night!
The next morning a Slovak hotel guest who spoke English rang my Aunt and organised that my Uncle would collect me right away. He did. My life was soon to be changed forever, I am now married to a Slovak girl... and no wonder!
22. Jul 2002 at 0:00