“Anyone who takes himself too seriously always runs the risk of looking ridiculous; anyone who can consistently laugh at himself does not.” ~ Václav Havel
Václav Havel was a humble man. He was witty and wore a grin, frequently joking and then sharing his words of philosophy and politics. When he was only 20, he met his first wife Olga Šplíchalová, and they would meet almost daily in Prague's Café Slavia. They came from completely different worlds: she was from a working-class family while he was the son of millionaires. However, they remained unified in their beliefs. Both had a common enemy - communism. They also both had a love for the arts and theater. According to one account of Havel’s first sighting of Olga, she was getting ready to debut in the role of Cinderella and was taking acting lessons. Throughout their marriage, until her death from cancer in 1996, she was always the person who read Havel's writings first and supported him and the dissident movement. Later, she grudgingly became the First Lady and served as Havel’s “indispensable source of support” for much of his life.
Photo © Oldřich Škácha
1978 – Václav Havel with his wife Olga, Sázava