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Northern neighbours

For half a century, the border between Austria and then-Czechoslovakia marked the dividing line between the world`s competing ideologies: communist and capitalism. Czechs barely knew anything about what happened on the other side of the border, and the same was true for the Austrians. The gradual disappearance of the Iron Curtain has allowed Austrians to freely travel into Czech Republic, but how much of that opportunity are they actually using? And how much do they know about their northern neighbour from whom they were separated for so long?

Posted by Bruno

Österreich am Ball

European football fans are counting down towards the beginning of June, when Switzerland and Czech Republic kick off for the first match of the European Football Championships 2008. Sixteen countries will compete for the title. For Austria, it will be the first time they even join this stage of the competition. Along with co-host Switzerland, Austria is automatically qualified this time. Expectations for the overall tournament are high; expectations for the Austrian team seem to be modest to fatalistic.

Posted by Bruno

Working life

Austria can pride itself in having one of the lowest unemployment rates in Europe. The current figure is as low as 5%, although that figure doesn`t mean that everybody is happy about what they are doing, or about how the Austrian system works. Here`s some quick insights on working life in Austria:

Posted by Bruno

European love story

Spending a study semester abroad is a perfect way to get to know a new country, new customs and new people. The European student program `Erasmus` was set up to facilitate exchanges between European universities. The experience of living in another country for one or two semesters is refreshing, confronting and intense. Because of this, `Erasmus` students tend to spend a lot of time together and create strong bonds between each other. Most of those turn out to be of temporary nature ? explaining the nickname `Orgasmus`, but there`s always a few that stretch beyond the exchange period.

Posted by Bruno

Today is the last day of my stay in Slovenia. I am reporting from Nova Gorica, a small city right next to the former separation between the worlds of communism and capitalism. Nova Gorica was built shortly after World War II. It served as a compensation for the Yugoslavian loss of territory to Italy, decided upon by the allied forces.

Posted by Bruno

Like, don`t like

Rainy days, the alarm clock ringing in the morning, bumping into somebody you just did not feel like meeting.. Some annoyances are universal. So are many of the things we all like: music, food, one or several places to call home. Today, I am asking people in Slovenia about what they like and what annoys them, hoping to get some culture specific answers.

Posted by Bruno

Dreams and ambitions

Dreams and reality are two separate things, and directing one towards the other is yet another discipline. Then, there`s the difference between childhood dreams, grown-up dreams and illusions. Today, I am asking some people in the centre of Ljubljana: what did you want to become when you were a child, what have you become and what do you hope to become in the future?

Posted by Bruno