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  • Writer's pictureNeil Roberts

Welcome to Czechia

So here we are. After living my whole life in the UK, I'm now living in a village in the Czech mountains without a Pret a Manger in sight. Was it an easy decision to move here? No, it was massive decision for both of us and a big change to our way of life. Was it the right decision? Absolutely, seeing the improvements in Kat's dad since we've moved here has made all the fear and doubts disappear. Plus, it's not like everything was new to me as I've visited this area many times since Kat and I have been together but this time felt completely different. I was a lot more emotional than I expected leaving London, living and working in the capital is all I've known so moving to the other side of Europe to a country I barely spoke the language was very intimidating.

The cellar flat is part of the family home in Bystrice and it's over 100 years old. Kat's grandad has lived here all is life, he'll be 98 this month :O . He lives on the middle floor, with Kat's uncle living in the top floor. Family houses in Czech are very traditional. They generally consist of three floors with a different generation living on each floor. The eldest generation taking the middle floor, the middle generation taking the top floor and the youngest living in the cellar level. Obviously it all depends on the family house you grow up in and the wealth each generation has. So I'm not saying this is how every family in Czech grow up but in my experience it's still quite common, certainly in Bystrice. The first few weeks living here were very busy. The flat had barely been touched for 20/40 years. It still had grandad's original furniture which was at least 100 years old so there was a lot to clear out including all the spiders who had lived here peacefully all this time. But it was essential for us to make this flat as comfortable and homely as possible if we were going to settle here. Luckily Ikea has everything you need so after a few weeks of graft our new home was ready. Living in the cellar flat will never be our forever home but it was the easiest option to get us going in our new Czech life. Now to embrace my new life and surroundings :)

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