Love Your Neighbour | ARTE

A Czech by Joanna the Swede

And you, how do you picture a Czech?

Daisy the Englishwoman

I picture a Czech in his late thirties. He is 5’7” tall. He’s got piercing green eyes, an unshaven beard of a few days, and dark hair. He’s wearing a very well-cut suit, which is black even though it’s Christmas. He’s sitting next to the Christmas tree, surrounded by his family. They can smell the smoked turkey just out of the oven. The respect that the men in the family must show makes the atmosphere a little tense. The man gets up, his nephew enters the room. He gives him an appraising look then greets him. The other members of the family shake his hand, smiling.

Collected in London

Ondrej the Slovak

The Czech guy is wearing an old plaid shirt, knee-length shorts and socks in his sandals. His hair is cut in the “Czech blanket” style, short in front and long in the neck. He is a lorry driver. He has halted on the roadside and set a gas cooker over the engine radiator to cook himself a hotdog with mustard. While it’s on the grill, he’s chewing over his anger at politicians. He drives 16 hours a day, and doesn’t have much time off – which he spends in bars guzzling ten beers in a row with his pals. Occasionally, he goes with a prostitute, but that’s all.

Collected in Bratislava

Kaja the Slovene

I picture a Czech man sitting on a bench, on one of the bridges over the river in the centre of Prague. He has got shaggy hair, a grey beard, and grey-green eyes. There are many little wrinkles around the eyes. Notebook in hand, he is looking at people around him, at tourist stands on the bridge, and writing. He is writing poems about the loss of values, about how people don’t look at what is important in life, but instead focus on their appearance and the pursuit of profit and power. He is nostalgic for the time when social relationships were important.

Collected in Koper

 

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fresco - Love your neighbor

How do you picture your European neighbours?

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