Tatjana left her Czech Republic homeland for America. Now she waxes nostalgic (and humorous — kind of) for the life she left behind.

1. Quality of bread

You know the bread is bad when visiting relatives have three loaves in their suitcase. The conventional pre-sliced ‘loaf’ is a joke. You can squish it into a ball that is 1 inch in diameter in a matter of seconds. With one hand. I tried it – I know!!



2. Daily exercise consists of more than just pressing your foot on a gas pedal

A person who does not go to the gym here is pretty much predestined to die from obesity. That is why Americans pay for the gym memberships. Except I always wonder why don’t they hook up all these bikes/treadmills/steppers to some kind of a generator to make electricity or something. That alone should pay for our memberships!

3. Architecture has much more personality

When I got my driver’s license and could drive around all by myself, I kept getting lost for months. All the streets look the same! Give me some variety, please! Why don’t they build a fountain in the middle of one of these parking lots? Now we are talking!

4. Public transportation is not used just by homeless people and ex-cons

My daughter is 6 years old and she still has not ridden in a bus here. Why? Because it is downright dangerous.

5. Fruit and vegetables taste REAL

When you grab an apple in a US grocery stores like Albertson’s or Vans, you see this beautifully colored, shiny and BIG apple. “Is it real?” , you wonder. The apples I was used to eating (usually right off the trees) were smaller, not shiny at all and uglier looking. So you buy it with excitement, you bring it home, you cut it up and you take a bite. Lo and behold, it tastes blah!  It is a waxed…tasteless…nothing…

6. NO all-you-can-eat buffets

That’s right, most Americans not only drive everywhere, but they drive to all-you-can-eat buffets. That is why a triple bypass heart surgery here is like getting a tooth filling in the Czech Republic — quite common.

7. Not everyone is suing everyone for everything

The problem with the American judicial system is that when someone sues someone they do not pay the other person’s fees if they lose the case. That is why people don’t think twice if they want to sue their neighbor because he gave them a dirty look for not cleaning up their Styrofoam coffee cup in the driveway. If the judge decides in the defendant neighbor’s favor — oh well — the money-thirsty neighbor will just try again next time. It didn’t cost him anything.

8. Burty ( type of kielbasa that you can’t get here)

I swear sometimes I feel like I am  a dog. I have dreams about burty.

9. Universal public acceptance of beauty of Svickova and Vepro, Knedlo, Zelo

The preparation of these meals takes days. It is a ceremony. To serve it serve it up should also be ceremonial. People should talk about every single bite they take and praise it every 30 seconds. Do you think that’s going to happen here? NO! Dumplings are a side dish from Mars, the same with sauerkraut. And it’s not gluten free!

10. Visiting another country doesn’t actually take 10 hours of flying

It’s a bummer. What else can I say?


Tatjana left her Czech Republic homeland for America. Now she waxes nostalgic (and humorous -- kind of) for the life she left behind.