Spectator on facebook

Spectator on facebook

Reader feedback: Where's the self-love?

Re: Slovakia no "dream country", Flash news, August 22, 2005

Being born in the USA and having visited Slovakia about 25 times as a tourist and visitor with my wife's relatives; and having the perspective of one who has travelled extensively to other nations as well as having lived abroad; I am so disappointed that the majority of Slovaks feel inferior or bad about being Slovak.

I am not Slovak, but let me remind you of the many things Slovaks may take for granted or not realize about themselves:

1. You have a country not only filled with great natural beauty but one in which each area has distinct ancient dialects, customs, kroj (folk costumes) and music. Western, Central and Eastern Slovaks, for example, each add to the cultural diversity of Slovakia and this diversity is original, it is rooted in, and able to be traced to, the earliest Slavs.

2. You have a culture that developed a beautiful language with so many distinct and exact words and ways of saying things.

3. You have a culture that historically developed a distinct identity and preserved that identity despite invasions and almost 1,000 years of Magyarization (Hungarian rule). Nations who have suffered less have lost more than Slovaks ever did!

4. You have beautiful customs and folk music that are diverse and hauntingly beautiful that no one can surpass, considering the small size and history of the country.

5. Historically, Slovak hospitality and regard for family unity is distinct in that strangers can easily find help even when they don't speak Slovak - I have seen it over and over.

6. I have never seen so many naturally beautiful men, women and children as in Slovakia: balanced features, large eyes, attractive builds. Most have a genuine curiosity about others and willingness to learn about others.

7. Slovak craftsmanship and cultural "sikovnost" still exists and is valued; this is so refreshing.

In closing, let me say that Slovaks don't realize the treasure they have. Slovaks need to wake up!

Chuck Hipp,
Ohio, USA

Top stories

LGBTI people in the regions: We change people’s minds

Bratislava will dress up in rainbow colours this August again, for the seventh time. This will be for the Bratislava Dúhový Pride diversity festival. But the colours of the rainbow are less bright in the regions,…

Slovakia’s LGBTI community seeks to expand their rights.

Things that make us different also make us stronger

On August 19, a rainbow flag will fly over the US Embassy in Bratislava to represent the firm commitment of the United States to defending the human rights of LGBTI people, writes Ambassador Sterling.

The rainbow flag flew over the US Embassy in Bratislava in 2016.

Blog: 5 things you should do on your visit to the north of Slovakia Photo

Here is a list of tips by an experienced tour guide - including things you have probably not tried before.

Bratislava growing high Photo

High-rise buildings sprouting up in Bratislava

Visualisation of the future skyline of Bratislava