Photo taken in:Hostimice u PrahyYear when photo was taken:1948Country name at time of photo:Czechoslovakia, 1945-1989Country name today:Czech Republic
This photograph was taken in the summer of 1948 on a farm in Hostimice near Prague, where I was spending summer holidays with my friend Jiri Vidensky, who is with me in the picture.
When I returned home after the war, I basically didn't have anyone here, none of my pre-war friends.
So I hung around a lot with a friend of my brother's, his name was Josef Engst and we spent almost every day together, we played chess and so on... Josef introduced me to his other friends, we used to go out together, to social events, on various trips.
After the war I was in very poor health. I spent a long time in various sanatoriums and health resorts and tried to overcome it. It wasn't really until 1948 that I was able to return to normal daily life.
I started work, for about two years I worked as a clerk in one gramophone firm.
In the meantime I got an offer, that people that wanted to study and actively participate in society, can apply, and if they didn't have their high school diploma, that they have to finish it.
For a few months after that I attended some sort of course, at its end I had an exam that substituted for a high school finals, and after that I could register at university.
The time following the year 1948, when the Communist regime took power, was a time of the harshest persecutions and of that whole strained atmosphere, when really anyone could be a potential enemy and everyone could be arrested.
But I was apart from all that, I didn't participate in any political activity. I still had to recuperate from the effects of the war and so had lots of other worries.