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Us Europeans - 1989 testimonials

Mission completed

The Hague, NL (View on map)
Posted 1 Aug 2008:

After one year of seemingly endless travelling, I am proud to be able to say just that: mission completed. I am happy about how I have been able to put this project together, excited about how I made it come true and grateful to the people and circumstances that allowed me to fulfill this dream. What else is there to say, looking back on one entire year of travelling?... Read more

Why travel?

Cologne, DE (View on map)
Posted 31 Jul 2008:

Cynics might argue that if you leave somewhere and take an entire year to get back to the very same place again, you might as well have stayed there for a whole year in the first place. The funny thing about travelling is that is doesn`t work that way. For today`s article ? the one but last of all (!) ? I am asking people in Cologne: what was your biggest ever travel so far and how did you experience it?... Read more


Arhus, DK (View on map)
Posted 18 Jul 2008:

When I was asking Danes about happiness a few days ago, some responded that Denmark offers a lot of safety to its inhabitants. Opportunities would be plentiful but what effect does all that on people`s ambitions? They just might get lazy if there is nothing to win or loose. Today`s question: How ambitious are young Danes?... Read more

Dreams and ambitions

Czestochowa, PL (View on map)
Posted 22 Jun 2008:

Back in the Czech Republic, I was disappointed to find out that the word `ambition` seemed to be looked down on. Thinking about the future in other terms than making money and raising a family almost seemed `not done`. Hoping that Poles will have more elaborate answers to the ambition question, I am asking them today what they would like to achieve in the near future.... Read more

Study and work ethics

Brno, CZ (View on map)
Posted 29 May 2008:

In most countries across Europe, it would be advisable for secondary school pupils to think about continuing their educational career for another four years or so. In Finland and Sweden, it would be hard to find a job without a third-level education diploma. Young Slovenians will utterly disappoint their parents if they choose not to go to university. The situation in the Czech Republic is a bit different. Here`s an overview of the Czech school system, which partly explains why so many start working right after finishing secondary school.... Read more

Superficial ambitions?

Karlovy Vary, CZ (View on map)
Posted 21 May 2008:

Being a traveling photo journalist isn`t always an easy job. Beside the work it generates, it takes quite some effort to find a way around language barriers and to interpret people`s answers correctly. How much are people`s answers limited by foreign language skills? What do they think about me as an inquisitive stranger? How can I know they are not just bullshitting, taking the piss or making me write something completely ridiculous? How can I know I am asking questions to people who are at least to some extent representative for the entire country?... Read more

Working life

Linz, AT (View on map)
Posted 12 May 2008:

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:... Read more

Dreams and ambitions

Ljubljana, SI (View on map)
Posted 22 Apr 2008:

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?... Read more


Maribor, SI (View on map)
Posted 19 Apr 2008:

In communist times, the link between effort and wealth was a rather faint one. Until 20 years ago, any Slovenian would be almost equally rich as his neighbour. No matter what profession either of them had and no matter how much effort either of them put into their jobs. Times have changed. Converting effort into money is now one of the driving forces under the Slovenian society. Slovenes are hard-working, ambitious and talented, but can they cope with the pressure of always having to exceed expectations?... Read more

Hungarians and change

Szeged, HU (View on map)
Posted 8 Apr 2008:

As I wrote in earlier articles, Hungarians are not very happy about the situation their country is in. The economy is declining, politicians are unable to change the tide and the people have little hope for improvement. All of that is leading toward`s today`s question: what changes does Hungary need?... Read more

Six months abroad

Budapest, HU (View on map)
Posted 7 Apr 2008:

Since the integration in the European Union, Hungarians have not flooded Western Europe in the way the Poles and the Romanians have. As I found out during previous day, the delayed interest in foreign languages forms an important barrier. Added to that, Hungarians seem to be very fond of their own country and region. Moving from one city to another can already represent quite a challenge. Still, many young citizens are tempted to visit the outside world. Temporarily moving abroad used to be luxury, but for Budapestian students and graduates, it`s already becoming business as usual. Today`s question: which European destination would you choose if you were to study or work abroad for 6 months?... Read more

Low on energy

Debrecen, HU (View on map)
Posted 3 Apr 2008:

As I learnt yesterday, enjoying is not something that comes natural to Hungarians. Smiling without an obvious reason risks to be seen as something suspect, while openly displaying happiness is likely to cause confusion. Few events can spark a feeling of community and belonging. Still, I refuse to believe that all Hungarians are depressed all of the time. I am tracing down some English-speaking Hungarians today to ask what they do to cheer themselves up from everyday sorrow.... Read more

Planning ahead

Sibiu, RO (View on map)
Posted 20 Mar 2008:

The communist regime in Romania used to impose five-year plans on its industries and citizens. Most of what is happening in Romania today is based on a day-by-day rhythm. Romanians are said to take the best decisions when they have to improvise rather than plan. That still keeps me wondering about how Romanians think about the five years ahead of them.... Read more

Dreams and objectives

Hydra, GR (View on map)
Posted 27 Feb 2008:

When I asked young people in Manchester about their ambitions for the future, almost every single one of them wanted to leave for an exotic location at the other end of the world. Greeks of the same age have other priorities, especially those who live on the island of Hydra, two hours away from Athens.... Read more

Through European eyes

Manchester, UK (View on map)
Posted 16 Jan 2008:

Manchester is the second largest city in the United Kingdom. Starting out as the capital of the industrial revolution, Manchester has since then transformed itself into a modern British city, home to many different nationalities. The largest population of immigrants in the UK is of Indian descent, but I am limiting today`s research to three temporary European immigrants and ask them which differences with their own country struck them most.... Read more

Ambitions and choices

Manchester, UK (View on map)
Posted 15 Jan 2008:

-- Please note -- Postings may be severely delayed over the coming 10 days -- Seeing book shelves full of Self Help books could easily make visitors think that British people don`t know how to make something out of their lives. Gossip magazines are not much of a good example either: they show that even people considered role models hardly have a clue. In the meantime, young and well-educated British youngsters dream of traveling to far-away places or find alternative ways to avoid the scariest phenomenon among current day British youth: commitment.... Read more

A month off work

London, UK (View on map)
Posted 9 Jan 2008:

What would people do if they had a month of work? I initially planned to ask people what they would do if they only had one more month left to live but decided to change that in order not to scare people or have people tell me about somebody who had recently had the very same experience. So today`s question to people in London became: what if you were told today that you can have a month paid leave, starting tomorrow?... Read more

Looking back

The Hague, NL (View on map)
Posted 31 Dec 2007:

31 December 2007, another year gone by. While newspapers and TV summarise last year`s wars, disasters and scandals, I prefer to spend my time finding out about people`s positive memories of 2007.... Read more

Career choices

Ghent, BE (View on map)
Posted 19 Dec 2007:

`Man bijt hond` (`Man bites dog`) is a typical Flemish TV program that brings a mixture of social documentaries and `non-news`. It sends out reporters to ordinary people, to see what they eat for dinner, how they spend the day and what kind of, sometimes strange, hobbies they have. It is no surprise that many people in Belgium like to compare what I do to `Man bijt hond`. Enough a reason to ask people a question in the `Man bites dog` style: What did you want to become when you were younger?... Read more

Planning the future

Logro?o, ES (View on map)
Posted 22 Nov 2007:

In a country of traditions and family values, making plans for the future is not necessarily something people like to spend a lot of time on. Previous generations of Spaniards often saw the church and the family decide their life path for them. Increasing individualisation and diminishing attachment to catholic values now force young people to make more choices than ever. A good reason to ask people what they think they will do in five years from now.... Read more

El Camino

Santiago, ES (View on map)
Posted 11 Nov 2007:

Year after year, thousands of pilgrims from all over the world arrive in Santiago de Compostela. Many of them fly in or come by car nowadays, but the traditional Camino de Santiago is to be completed on foot, by bike or on a horse. Signposted pathways stretching as far as Istanbul and Helsinki indicate the way to Santiago. Question of the day: why Santiago and why walk such a long way at all?... Read more

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