Lovely Lovely Tortillas!

Not long before I came to live in Slovakia, I spent a couple of months travelling in Mexico, Guatemala and America. There were so many great things about that holiday, but, to those of you who know me, it will come as no surprise that the food was one of the highlights. My memory of those days is pretty impressionistic …

Pasties!

If there’s one thing missing from Slovak cuisine, it’s the combination of pastry and meat, best exemplified by the wonderful Cornish Pasty: I found a couple of packets of ‘Lidl Deluxe’ rump steak in the reduced section (10 euros for a total of 800g). I made steak and chips with the first packet, and couldn’t decide whether the second one …

On Slovak, Bedtime Stories and Audiobooks

You just have to talk about a book you like for a few minutes, she said. Sounds easy enough, I thought. I’m quite used to public speaking in English, and I like to think I’m reasonably articulate. Sadly, it turns out that this is not the case when I speak Slovak. I’ve lived here for nearly twenty years, but I …

Why did you stay?

It was September 1998. I was 24 and had just arrived in Humenné. I was teaching English for the Akadémia Vzdelávania and I spoke hardly a word of Slovak. Everything was new and unfamiliar. Buildings were made of concrete, rather than brick, and people in the street didn’t seem to smile much. Cars definitely didn’t stop at pedestrian crossings, and …

Why are you here?

My students often ask me why I came to Slovakia. And when they learn that I’ve lived here for almost nineteen years, some look a little puzzled – why on earth did I settle here, when so many Slovaks have moved in the exact opposite direction? I’ll try to explain. I was a clever lad at school, but with very …

Fog in Channel: Continent Cut Off

Just under half of those UK citizens who took part in the 2016 referendum voted to remain in the EU. I have no beef with them. I wish the rest of the country a most miserable and isolated future, in which they finally realise that the Empire is long dead, the UK is now nothing more than a small country …

100% Recognition of C1 Advanced (CAE) in UK Universities

UK 100% of UK universities* accept C1 Advanced (CAE) from EU applicants. The majority of these universities will also accept the exam from students from outside the European Union, European Economic Area and Switzerland, studying at undergraduate level or above. (*Based on a survey of all Universities UK members; correct as of July 2017). Ireland 100% of Irish universities accept …