Brigid Pasulka, the descendant of Polish immigrants, first arrived in Kraków in the early nineties, with no contacts, no knowledge of the language, and only a vague idea of Polish culture. She quickly fell in love with the place, learned Polish, and decided to live there for one year. She now teaches English at a Chicago high school.
This biography was last updated on 09/14/2009.
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Why I Wrote A Long, Long Time Ago and Essentially True by Brigid Pasulka
In the Spring of 1994, I ignored every practical impulse and decided to spend the
year after college living somewhere abroad. I did a TEFL (Teaching English
as a Foreign Language) course in Hastings, in the South of England, that summer and afterwards spent a week at a bonsai nursery in East Grinstead
with two of my coursemates, sorting through my vast options. Somehow I ended up
alone on a train platform in Krakow with a pile of luggage, no job, no place to
stay, no contacts and about ten words of Polish. I decided to stay the year.
Incredibly, that year turned out to be all I'd hoped forliberating,
gut-wrenching and mystical, set against the primordial dawn of capitalism in
Eastern Europe and the waning dusk of the pre-Internet world. Every lost Gen-X
I returned to Chicago and couldn't stop telling stories about Krakow. When I sensed my family and friends were growing weary of me, I began to inflict my stories on my computer. I had never written any fiction outside of class assignments. I certainly did not set out to write a novel. I only meant to ...
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