With the events in Rome, I find my self rummaging - amazed when I think of it that I was in eastern Europe so soon after the fall of Communism. I have nothing on Bruce "Hubely", of course, who was on his second stint in Bratislava, later under the Brandenburg Gates on unification, when I flew into Warsaw to spread democracy, the cult of Walkman as well as jokes about President Jarulzelski looking a lot like Roy Orbison to Baltic resort town teens.
We lived well on chelb, pivo and ser but I dreamed of zapjakanky. We bought them in these zapshacks, above. Lody is ice cream, by the way, which is a hell of a lot easier to say than what Brucey had to order in Bratislave, zrma zlina.
Update: Watching the CBC Life and Times episode on the Pope last night, I was surprised how the Vatican was pouring money into Poland as part of the pressure it brought to undermine the wall and it got me wondering if all we twenty somethings brought into eastern Europe by tiny institutions in an oddly organized fashion was backed by Rome to some degree as well. Karol's little army of westerners pushed out into little cities and towns who had little experience of westerners other than as tank drivers. My students thought we all used one brand, "Wash n' Go" shampoo, as it was the first to make the market there. That and "The Final Countdown" by Europe was the height of current pop music as someone had a cassette. To counteract that I passed around the Walkman with Blue Rodeo and "My Definition of a Boombastic (Jazz Style)" by Dream Warriors.