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Have you ever been in a Turkish prison? Top 15 most rediculous questions Slovene people asked me

Sorry_what_was_your_question

Have you ever been to a Turkish prison? Do you own a gun? Ok, it is not that bad, no one asked me these two. I think I’ve heard them in an old American movie and I found them so amusing that they kind of stayed in my head until now. But, all expat people living in another country, regardless from where they are from and where they moved to, need to handle a certain amount of absurd questions and comments from local people associated with the generally known stereotypes of their home country.

Similarly, as British people get asked if they know the Queen and Australians get asked if they have a kangaroo at home, here is a list of what questions needs a Slovak girl answer in Slovenia 🙂

  1. Oh, you are from Slovakia? I’ve been to Ostrava in 1985.

This is a typical statement from people in the age category of 50+.Because they’ve been to Ostrava (which is not even in Slovakia but in the Czech republic) 30 years ago, they TOTALLY know how it is in Slovakia and warn everyone around to better not go to that country.

  1. Aha, you are from Slovakia! I am going to Poland now.

Nice. Good for you. What should I say? Although Poland is our neighbouring country, I didn’t live any close to its borders, I’ve been there only twice and don’t really know much about it (but I do know some cool Polish people though 🙂 ).

  1. Have you ever been to the cinema?

Whaaaaaaaaaaaat? Ehm, what!? Are you seriously asking me this?

  1. If you take a bus, there is a Wi-Fi onboard.

Wow! Bang, this is the 21st century!

  1. So how is Slovakia? Is the socialism still so bad?

And how are the current relations among the Yugoslavian autonomies? This would probably be equally ridiculous question which I could possibly ask. Oh common, please wake up from the past and improve your knowledge of the current political situation in Europe.

  1. Ehh, you are from Slovakia………silence……open mouth……silence…surprise…unsaid questions hanging in the air…what, why, how…?

This is my favorite one. Slovenes are not used to meet foreigners who just moved to their country (ok, not all, don’t kill me). The best situations comes when they found out that you are foreign after they’ve been talking to you for half an hour. Their face expression is then the best.

7. You are from Partyslavaaaa?

Well, the Slovakia’s capital Bratislava (where I lived the past few years of my life)is quite popular because of its bars and pubs and many visitors from all over Europe who come there to party, celebrate a New Year’s eve and so on. Surprisingly for me, quite many Slovenes have experienced a party weekend in Bratislava, therefore some of they think that we just sit in clubs all day.

  1. Do you drink Absinthe?

No. Not sure if I ever drank it. Should I?

  1. A zastopaš? Ha, see, she understands us!

An illustration of a common reaction of people after they realized that you actually understand their language.

  1. Is it expensive for you here?

I have always found the rivalry between countries of Central and Eastern Europe kind of amusing. They compete with each other, compare their living standards and are endlessly happy when they see that they are better from some other country. This doesn’t apply to Slovenia and Slovakia only, but the other Central and Eastern European countries as well. And yes, Slovene people are so pleased to hear that it actually is a little more expensive here that in my home country 🙂

  1. I come from Ljubljana. That is the capital.

An additional explanatory statement of Slovenes after I’ve just asked them where in Slovenia they come from. Some people clearly underestimate my orientation abilities and geographical knowledge of this country.

  1. Do you also eat pizza in Slovakia?

No, when we are hungry, we go to hunt. We kill an animal, bake it on a fire and eat it.

And, these do not need a commentary:

  1. Do you have highways?
  2. Do you drive a Russian car?
  3. Do you speak Russian?

Of course, I am not saying that aaall Slovenes are like this (don’t want to create any more stereotypes), and actually I have come across similar questions also from people from other countries I have visited before.  I need to add that I have actually met here also people who know a lot of stuff about my country and other countries, who have a good general overview, have been to Slovakia recently and so on. But anyway, stereotypes and prejudice are still a part of the beliefs of society. Well, at least we have something to make fun of 😉

So, what about you? Have you ever been in a Turkish prison? What was the most absurd question you got about your home country? I will be happy for your experiences and comment below the article or on my social media:

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Happy travelling!

Petra

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14 thoughts on “Have you ever been in a Turkish prison? Top 15 most rediculous questions Slovene people asked me

  1. Hi, Im from Poland living in Slovenia for 10 years and I agree with all the comments above …unfortunately with the questions too- I came across all of them almost. And the funny thing is when I meet a new Slovene they guess where Im from and there is always the same pattern: 1- Russia, 2- Czech Rep., 3- ammmm…ammmm…hmmmmm… silence…. Great blog!!! Pozdravcke, Kasia

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    1. Hi Kasia! Thanks. Well, being an expat has a lot of CONS but there are always a lot PROS that’s why we are all doing it. From my experience with guessing – people usually try Croatia at first. And one of my funniest experiences is that many of them keep talking to me Croatian although they know that I am from Slovakia. They kind of assume that I understand it or what… 😀

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  2. As a Trinidadian living in Slovenia, I get slammed with- Trinidad!? What are you doing here?! What do you do here?!… I always feel like saying I ride on a unicycle and bang on cymbals! People can want a change you know guys. I’m glad I followed my heart 5 years ago and won’t change a thing about my experience here, however daunting might be the questions.

    Keep up the great work Petra! Love it!

    Nadira

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Funny, I recognise some and I’m a Slovenian living in the Netherlands. It’s getting better now as many people know Slovenia for tourism but I still get the occasional: “So do you speak Russian?” or: “Was Slovenia a part of Czechoslovakia?” (no, because it was never called Czechoslovakovenia). But as you can see even Slovenians don’t know much about Slovakia so imagine what the rest of Europe and the world is thinking 🙂

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    1. I know what you are talking about.. in general, regardless from country you are currently in, you must be lucky to meet people whose general overview about world doesn’t date back to 1980s or is not full of stereotypes… 🙂

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  4. One thing I have noticed is that Slovenians are kind of obsessed with statistics. Now I do roughly know the population of the UK but I really don’t know the population of the town I come from (Gateshead) – this seems to shock and disappoint Slovenians,

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    1. Agree 🙂 I assume that this is because the country is so small – as there is only two million of them, numbers are important. Unlike when you come form a larger country where these kinds of things are not so important for you. Just saying, nothing wrong with that though.

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  5. I agree, that is what I tell myself. Do you find that if you ask ten Slovenians the same question you will get ten different answers and each person believes the others are completely wrong 🙂

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    1. Oh yes…personally I heard various answers to my question how many people live in the town of Kranj (where I am based now). And then I had a look on wikipedia to find out which one is close to the truth 🙂

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  6. The most shocking question given by my american friend to me was (on 4th of July, watching firework show): “Have you ever seen a firework before?” (me, looking at him speachless, with an open mouth) he:”,,,i mean in Slovakia!” (me still quiet with the WTF look) he:”…on 4th of July, of course”… Although he tried to save the situation and quite normalize his question…nope. too late. U burried our friendship forever (JK) 😀

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    1. This is not a pleasant situation. On the other hand, I can imagine that nationas who are geographically and culturally very far away, do not know much about each other. We all know about America because it belong to the worlds ruling countries but how much do we know about Asian or African countries wthout visiting them…So this gives a small amount of apology. But for Slovakia and Slovenia it’s prettey weird as they share so many similarities!
      Thanks for your comment and sharing your experience!

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  7. It’s hilarious, you gave me a good laugh! I’m from Poland, so I’m used to hear a similar set of questions. At the beginning I found it offensive, but I now I’m trying to appreciate the effort people take to ask those questions and keep the conversation going. But to be honest, I don’t even want to think how often I asked a stupid questions like that. 😉

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