The Welcome Party – a short story from Slovakia.


In September 2002 I rocked up in Bratislava with a couple of bags and just enough cash to last until my first paycheck. And so unfolded one of the great years of my life…


‘‘You see! Bratislava can be beautiful!!!’’ growled our guide, wagging her finger as she shot the group an admonishing look.

It was just my second day in Bratislava and I was enjoying a walking tour of Staré Mesto, the city’s pretty albeit tiny Old Town. Organized by my new employer, my colleagues and I were certainly being kept on our toes by the informative if slightly intimidating guide.

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