We live in Switzerland

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...SOME YEARS AGO we traveled a lot, however nowadays, due to our age, we are glad to see Prague or some of the close by foreign countries { at the end of November we went to Istanbul. It was really nice, we went on our own and therefore we could see a bit more than we saw during the organized trip in springtime. To us Turkey is a holiday resort, where we have traveled with our Czech group every year to enjoy the sea close to the town called Side. We had sunshine and surf and it was rather an economical holiday.} For health reasons we would not dare to travel larger distances.

Our countrymen used to say , we will leave those trips, till after we retire. Now we ought to earn money , But how many of them lived to fulfill the expectations? They are passing away one by one, and only a few remain, I mean from our generation. In a few years only our grandchildren will be here. Our grandchildren are 30 and 28 years old. We speak in the family always Czech, provided we are alone, but whenever they come with their partners the conversation goes on in Swiss. They present to us the Czech language as proof of belonging to the family. Our younger daughter {43 years old} has two small boys {3 and 1and half years}. She's got a Czech nanny, and she takes care to speak with them only in Czech. But on weekends, during papa's visits the kids switch to Swiss.

We have here good friends, a family member of the Sokol has a PhD and teaches English and German at the High School in Locarno. His wife is Swiss. They have two children {9 and 7 years old}. Both talk to the grandma and the granddad in Czech, as well as to their father. To their mother they speak German. In the school they learn Italian and also French. This is proof, that to children it does not matter if they learn Czech, and they have no problem in the school. Rather they will learn later on other languages even more easily.

You should research this subject in your Czech Dialog. I would try to convince Mr. Marti Hak in Locarno to participate in it. (He is organizing for his students tours to Prague and he is showing them there a rich historic heritage of this city, from the Middle Age period.)

Jaroslav Hájek, Winterthur
Translated by Jerry Zahrádka

Vydavatelem Českého dialogu je Mezinárodní český klub

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