• Introduction by Eva Dusil • Editing by Gabriel Dusil • 2014 October
• Our family struggled financially throughout my youth. My father was paid very poorly as an appraiser of antique books – somewhere around 800 Czechoslovakian korunas per month (equivalent to 33 US$ at today’s exchange rate). My mother earned around 1200 korunas (49 US$) per month as a clerk. As a child I didn’t feel our financial struggle. I even managed to have a happy childhood. Looking back, even though the entire country was poor (in Western terms), I think we were poorer than the average. We lived from salary to salary and frequently my parents fell behind. I remember one day my mother didn’t receive her salary on time and we had nothing to eat. She scraped together some old leftover cottage cheese and mixed it with flour to make dumplings. It was very good.
• Growing up, my parents were very strict. My mom kept an eye on me and punished me if I didn’t do well in school. She consulted with the teachers when I misbehaved, and that kept me in line. I was repeatedly told that I would do better if I applied myself. Throughout high school I was an average student. I really came to my senses once I decided to attend university, and study veterinary medicine. Finally I was studying what I enjoyed. In my first year I met Vašek Dusil, who was in his fifth year of veterinary studies at the time. When we started dating he insisted that I regularly go to lectures, even though they weren’t compulsory. Out of 120 students in the class, less than 10% attended lectures. I came to realize it was good to be seen by the professors who later tested us, since all the exams were verbal. I was among the first in my class to complete and pass my exams. I finished four years of university in Košice before we emigrated to Canada. Once there I completed my veterinary studies at the Ontario Veterinary College at the University of Guelph.
If you missed the previous Dusil posts, then click on these links:
• Digital Photo Restoration
• 6 minutes 36 seconds