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So you wake up in a communist country...
So you wake up at 5 AM and discover you live in a communist
There is no hot water so you wash yourself with cold water.
You eat breakfast which is hard bread and oats fake coffee.
You take a very crowded smelly bus to work.
At work, you pretend to work. Your colleagues talk nothings
to you because anyone could be a secret police informer and report you if you
make jokes about the party.
At lunch you go to the cafeteria and eat a horrid stew with
maggots in it.
You all work badly and you produce shitty parts that go in
the shitty cars your country produces.
If you want to buy a car, it’s shit and it costs as much as
a 2 bedroom flat. You also have to wait for a year to get one. Petrol is on a
ration card so you can rarely scrounge enough to take your family for a drive.
You return home but there’s no electricity and no water
running so you sit there doing nothing.
Your kid comes home from school. You lit up a petrol lamp so
he can do his homework. You remind him never to tell anyone what you talk at
home because the secret police might come and take you away and put him in an
Your kid needs glasses but you can only get the horrible
thick glass lenses which are very heavy. Your kids has infected wounds behind
his ears because the glasses are too heavy.
Your wife is late because she found a shop that had eggs and
she had to wait 4 hours in a queue to get 10 eggs.
She eventually comes home. She is tired and since she was at
work there is no cooked dinner.
Electricity comes back on at 8 PM.
You want to watch TV but there’s nothing on TV only
political news about the party.
The central heating is cold and there’s warm water only once
a week for 2 hours.
You go to bed but you can’t have sex because you can’t
afford another child and there’s no birth control.
If she gets pregnant and tries to have an abortion, she
faces jail so does the person who helped her.
If she gets an infection and goes to the hospital she will
be refused care and be left to die unless she snitches on the person who helped
The hospital staff would help her but there’s police
officers in the hospital and if they get caught they’d go to jail.
Every few months all women are given gynaecological probes
to check if they’re pregnant. The party needs more kids.
Education is free if you can pass the exams but you might
get sent to work at the other side of the country.
Healthcare is free but there are no proper medical utensils and
AIDS runs rampant because of infected blood.
Food can be bought in rations but you have to queue for
hours for it. There’s no guarantee you’ll get any.
If someone who doesn’t like you reports that you listen to
western radio stations, the secret police will come and pick you up. You may
never come home.
You can’t travel abroad. Even in other communist countries,
you need permission to go. If you are lucky enough to have a passport, it will
be kept for you by the police.
If you argue with your wife and want a divorce the party activist
will call you to a party meeting and force you to tell everything about your
marital problems. Then they call her and your marriage is a public issue the
party has to resolve.
You will not be allowed to divorce.
If you don’t have aa job or aren’t in school the police will
pick you up and take you to the nearest factory where you will be given a job.
Nobody cares if you don’t like it and you can never quit. At best you can
request a transfer. They’re never approved.
People get arrested for trivial reasons or no reason, they just
disappear. You never ask.
Your kid only gets oranges once a year. He has a very vague
idea as to what chocolate is. You have to buy it from the black market.
Everybody wears the same clothes because that’s’ what it is
in the shops. A pair of black market jeans costs as much as half your monthly
Everybody around you can be an informer, even your wife. You
live in cold, fear and hunger.
Welcome to my childhood.
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