So today apparently marks the first year anniversary of this blog, and of me living and working in Liberec. I am pretty happy about both of these accomplishments as neither of them have been all that easy.
Writing a blog every day is difficult. First, you have to find something to talk about, and it has to be something that you really want to talk about. Sure, a blog can be used as a venue for senseless babbling (and goodness knows I have used this space for that on more than one occasion), but that should not really be the point of it. If that were the point, then I would just use my “what’s on your mind” portion on Facebook or whatever the hell Twitter calls it (I don’t use twitter and I don’t ever plan to). So, not only does it have to be something that one really wants to talk about, it also has to be something people might be interested in reading. Again, they do not have to be interested in it, but it surely helps to believe that at least a few people care what you have to say. If this isn’t the case then there is no point in maintaining a blog, and a would be blogger should just keep a journal under the bed where all those silly and babbling thoughts can be stored and not shared. My point, I guess, is that I don’t feel people should blog unless they have something interesting to say in a passionate manner.
This blog, I think, has only been somewhat successful this far into its existence. Despite wanting to post every day, there have been weeks at a time where no new post has shown up here, and despite some of the words in the preceeding paragraph I often do not feel that what I am talking about is very interesting, and that leads to a dispassionate disconnect between me and the words I am posting. I am going to try and worker harder at these two issues. I will attempt to post more so that I will have 365 posts for the September 23rd, 2009-September 22nd, 2010 period. It will be difficult and I do not know how likely I am to reach this goal, but it is something to strive for and when I succeed I will be able to say that I set this goal and met it. Of course, this means that a lot of those posts will probably end up being silly fillers to help me reach my goal, but I will try not to pull that trick too many times. I want to have and say things of substance, and I will focus my energies on doing just that.
Life in Liberec has also been difficult at times. It is a nice small city (100,000 people) surrounded by mountains and with an excellent public transportation system. It has all the modern accouterments of most modern day cities–cinema, shopping centers (lots of these), swimming pools, strip clubs, dance clubs, bars (lots of these too), a museum, a zoo, botanical gardens–and is surrounded by mountain, making it a nice multi-purpose city. You can be in downtown Liberec at 13:00 and then by 14:30 you can be at the top of Jested, near the circular tv station turned restaurant/hotel looking out on the Czech landscape. It is quite amazing.
However, life is not all supermarkets and mountains here. Not being able to speak the language (and really having no one but myself to blame because I have not made any effort to try) gets to me sometimes. Sure, I can communicate well enough to order food and beer at pubs, and to go grocery shopping, but that is really it. When I want to have a conversation I have to hang out with my English speaking co-workers (or go to Prague, or wait until my sister or my father calls me from America). Now don’t get me wrong, I like my colleagues. They are fine people and we get along well enough, but they are really the only people I have to hang out with and that just gets old. I mean it is not as if our respective lives are so interesting that they can propel us through 2-3 hour long conversations three or four times a week. Also, they’re all dudes, so I rarely get a chance to hang out with ladies, which is lame because in most cases I prefer being surrounded by the lassies more than I do the lads. But as I am fond of saying–everyday in Liberec is a challenge and an adventure. And I really wouldn’t have it any other way.
Because of this I often feel alone (even when I am surrounded by people that I can talk to and be friends with). It has been over a year since I came to the Czech Republic and in that time I have had some fun and not so fun adventures, but I am glad that I came here and I am glad that I decided to stay for another year. And what about next year? I don’t know yet; it is too early to start thinking about that right now. After all, school hasn’t even started yet, and I need to base my decision of whether or not to stay on this year’s work experience (at least in part), plus when school starts again I will be taking Czech lessons here at the university, and if I can actually learn some stuff then I might be further encouraged to stay here longer.
That is all for now, and thanks to those that read this messy blog.