Monday, February 13, 2012

A day of culture

It was a national holiday last Wednesday and I spent the day with my parents. In the morning I went with my dad to one of the galleries in Ljubljana where he told a few stories from his youth into a camera. Later he also appeared in the afternoon news on TV. I think that he liked that. He is losing his memory quickly and his brain doesn’t function as it should anymore. I understand my mum when she keeps telling me with tears in her eyes that it is not easy to live with him anymore. Later we visited my aunt and I learned so many new things about my ancestors that I could be really grateful that she shared her time with us. The afternoon was reserved for my mum. I took her to an exhibition about Slovenian women who lived around 100 years ago. They were amazing women, I can’t stop admiring them. They fought for women’s rights, like voting and studying at the universities, two things that we take for granted today.

So, 8th February is a cultural day in Slovenia. Most museums and galleries offer free entrance that day. On that day in 1849 our poet France Prešeren died. Funny, isn’t it, that we are celebrating the death of a man? It is well known that he was a drunkard, he liked juvenile girls, he didn’t take care of his children and he didn’t want to marry their mother. One of his famous poems is our national anthem – although, I would prefer that it wasn’t because too many times I see families destroyed because of the alcohol, I meet too many children with blank and serious looks because their fathers are drunkards.

I found out that on the same day in 1868 an exceptional woman was born. Franja Tavčar was a wife of Slovenian writer Ivan Tavčar. When I read their biographies I realized that he wouldn’t have been as famous as he was if he wasn’t married to her. It is interesting that when there was a voting for women’s rights to vote, he voted No. I can very well imagine that he was afraid of the power of women.

My grand-grandfather Matija worked in Ivan Tavčar's office when he was young. My aunt told me the other day that on their walks he liked to explain her about the buildings in the city center. Well, obviously this is another thing that Matija and I have in common.


Feronia said...

Wow - thanks for this, Pina. I'm really interested to read about the history of your country :)

Pina said...

It is fun to "discover" things about our history all over again. Actually we learned about all this in the school but I think that we were too young then to understand it.

Kačja pastirica said...

Zanimivo, ko bom imela kaj več časa se vsekakor lotim branja.