I needed money back then. And what is better than earning money with something one very much enjoys doing. When I saw the advertisement at university that the agricultural school was looking for a prospective PE teacher, who gives once a week fitness training, I thought that this was my chance.
I did not lie but I did not tell the entire truth either. As a future economist I was pretty far from a PE teacher diploma. My fortune was that the agricultural school was located in the middle of nowhere. Far away from a train station and hard to reach in the evening. And I lived only 3km away from there.
There was only one applicant to the advertisement and that was me!! I was asked to prepare and hold a gym lesson. I spent one weekend with studying the literature, another with selecting and putting together the music and a third one with rehearsing the lesson up to the last detail. It was good fun.
My students were future farmers and stablehands. At the beginning they were 10 years younger than me, over the years 20 years younger. I gave my lessons for countless years. With enthusiasm I put together new lessons, new music and new games. I was demanding a lot from myself, my lesson and our common goals. If I saw that not all t-shirts were wet from sweating, I increased the pace and included a fast game.
Every year again I became fond of the guys, because there were hardly ever girls and hardly longer than a few weeks per year. I knew their weaknesses with abdominal muscles, with coordination. I loved to listen to their problems. It was a completely different world than the one I knew. The world smelling of stable, of hard physical work but also a world with high self-confidence and pride. A world where loyalty and a handshake were not empty words but lived reality. I enjoyed putting them through the mill with the aim to get the best out of them. And it was amazing to see how the endurance of the individual muscle areas improved in the course of the school year.
At Christmas I invited them to my home for a simple dinner and storytelling. Unforgettable is the evening, when a few of them feasted on my supply of hard liquor and drank the liquor Borovicka from Slovakia (pine needle liquor). Only just I managed to get them home and the next day the surroundings of their accommodation bore witness of the fact that not even young farmer’s stomachs tolerate everything, in particular if they drink large amounts of it!!
Today I miss the farmer guys, their down-to-earth ways, their cleverness and their touch with reality. But as I am still friends with some of them, we can talk about the old days at the agricultural school when I gave PE lessons there. With the aim that no one was allowed to leave the gym without his t-shirt wet from sweating!!