] port was examined and my luggage
searched, and I was sent on my way toward the Austrian frontier with two
policemen and a uniformed customs officer. |
Suddenly the two policemen
stopped without saying a word. There were a few lights along the road for a
short distance; beyond them, pitch darkness. The customs officer gave me to
understand he could go no farther. Slipping and sliding in the snow, I trudged
toward Austria, somewhat relieved but also unpleasantly aware that I had been
abandoned in the depths of a forest and that behind me were definitely
I hurried toward a tiny light I could just make out
in the distance. It came from a one-room frontier post. When I entered, two
Austrian customs officers stared at me as if I were a ghost.
come by car?"
"No, on foot."
"Well, where did you come from?"
"I have just been expelled from Czechoslovakia."
You're lucky they didn't make you stay."
It occurred to me that they
might be fairly sympathetic, and that I could tell them everything. They could
not understand my motives, but they were distinctly anti-communist and
consequently willing to help me find a room.
"Listen, Madame," said one
of them, "in fifteen minutes t hat is, at 12:30 my shift will be
over, and I can drive you to the next village. First I'll phone and see if
there's a room available at a boardinghouse I know of."
arranged by the time his relief showed up at about 12:25. After my presence was
explained to him, he picked up my passport, which was still on the desk, and
began to raise objections:
"She can't be given an entrance visa without
authorization from the Vienna police."
He then took the others aside,
and I heard him mention Kiesinger's name several times. Obviously he did not
approve of my having slapped the Chancellor.
There was, of course, no
chance of getting a reply from Vienna until the next day. The customs officer
who had offered to drive me to the village could wait no longer. I insisted
that they put in an emergency call to Vienna, for I certainly did not want to
spend the rest of the night in that hut.
"Why do you need authorization
from Vienna?" I asked. "You