Interview with Katherine Mayer /teacher at Srobarka/

I have chosen Ms Katarine Mayer for my interview because I have always wanted to discover the origins of her perfect English accent and I confess that sometimes I believed that she is an Englishwoman, indeed. However I've always had the feeling that I've known her for a long time.On the other hand, I had no doubt that so friendly and even-tempered person would help me to make it easier, because it's my first interview. Let's see what I've found out.

- Tell me something about your life. Where were you born? What sort of child have u been?

- I was born in Kosice.I grew up here, I attended Puskinova Primary school and then Postova Gymnazium. I was contented as a child, we lived in a big house but then we moved to a flat and it wasn't so comfortable. - And then you studied at a university. - Yes. I studied English in Bratislava and I managed to get a couple of times to Enland as a student. Three days after graduation I eventually left to England with my English friend.

- When was it? Did u have any difficulties to get there?

- It happened in mid 70's. At that time it was impossible to get abroad legally, but I managed to trick the customs - officers and I passed the border of Yugoslavia with a passport of my friend, the English could have one passport for man and his wife.

- Where did you live? What have u been doing there?

- I lived in Leigh near Manchester for 5 years and then I moved to London. I worked in translation bureau at first and then in London as a correspondent for a health insurance company.

- I see u haven't been teaching yet?

- U are right. I was glad to do something else,not to teach. In 1984 I got the job in a record company A+M Records. I work out the royalties for singers and groups. - Another office work for you. We are talking about records .

Have u met any famous popstar ?

- I remember Sting.

- When did u return to Kosice? - In 1989 I moved to Nuremberg, in Germany where my sister lived with her husband and then in 1993 I had a chance to visit Canada. Finally, in autumn 1993 I came back to Slovakia and started teaching at Srobarova

- How long have u been teaching at our school?

- This is my second year 'cause I spent another couple of years in England , from 94 to 96.

- What about your first years of teaching ? Did u have any discipline problems?

- No, I think that here the discipline is o.k. I remember my first day at school. I was very frightened. I couldn't write into the classbook. - Let's forget the school.

What do u like doing in your spare time?

- I have very little of it,I don't watch Tv but I like listening to BBC to keep in touch with England and sometimes I read books.

- Do u want to tell something more about yourself?

- Perhaps that I've written a book for children,and I love taking photographs.

- What about your relationship with children? - I love children. I'm not married but I've helped my sister to take care of her daughter after her divorce. She has no father but instead she has three mothers. - Where do u like to go on holidays? - My favourite places to spend my Holidays are first of all. England, Canada where I've made many f riends,and then the countries like Italy or Spain.

- Did any of your dreams from youth come true?

- Travelling became my fullfilled dream . - Many people in your position would use your contacts to settle in one of the western European countries but you prefer to stay in Slovakia.

Could u tell me the reason of your decision?

- I prefer to live with my family, with my sister and my mother who needs permanent care. - That is admirable. Thank u for the interview very much

I hope u enjoyed the interview but now it is midnight and that is a work shift for somebody else, isnt it?

Good night and sweet dreams.

Magda Vilhanova