Three years ago, I came to Slovakia and said hello to all of you right here on our Facebook page. Today, it is time for me to bid farewell to all of you who have followed my travels and activities, to the countless Slovak partners and friends I have come to know, and to this beautiful and inspiring country. But before I say goodbye, I want to thank all of you for meeting me, sharing your time and ideas, and for giving me suggestions on places to visit with my family.
I leave Slovakia enriched. I was deeply touched by the hospitality and passion of the many Slovaks I met. I will forever remember and admire the courage of the ordinary citizens I witnessed stand up and unite for a better future.
My family and I will cherish the memories of our hiking adventures through the stunning nature of the Vysoké and Nizke Tatry, the Malá Fatra and Poloniny. We will look back fondly at your rich and vibrant music and arts scene, which made our evenings unforgettable.
I am proud to have written my own contribution to American-Slovak story during my travels to over 70 Slovak towns and cities from Skalica to Nova Sedlica, meeting and talking to hundreds of students and citizens.
Slovakia and the United States have never been closer. This past year alone, your Prime Minister met our President at the White House, and our Secretary of State came here to visit Slovakia. During my time in Slovakia, we have celebrated 100 years of exceptional U.S.-Slovak relations as Friends, Partners, and Allies.
All of this cooperation rests on a foundation of values and experiences that the American and Slovak peoples share. It rests on our shared “Courage to be Free”.
Ďakujem všetkým a dovidenia.