Go West, You Idiot!

In the last years of the Soviet Union, a government official named Frank escaped from Czechoslovakia into Germany, accompanied by his wife Katarina, their eight-month old baby Mark, and Katarina's brother Michael. Thus began their odyssey through Europe, a journey that would end in Australia. After an attempted kidnapping by Czech operatives, Frank and Katarina realized they must go far from their homeland to find sanctuary, all the way down under.

But Australia didn't prove to be the shangri-la Frank had imagined; after three years the U.S.S.R. fell, and he and Katarina returned home. Home to a Prague rife with unemployment, crime and homeless people. Frank makes the life-changing decision to enter the black market. The following couple of years feature a series of nightmares, including an attack by Russian mobsters that leaves Frank unconscious in the middle of a forest, lying beneath the mangled body of his best friend.

A good score finally takes Frank and Katarina back to Austria, where they buy a small hotel and convert it to a refugee center. Just as he achieves this dream, the Austrian government ejects immigrants, and confiscates his hotel. Katarina's brother Michael remained in Australia when they returned home, and he is now waiting for them when they make yet another attempt at a new life.

This time they are successful. Their story ends when their son Mark is fifteen, playing in a youth concert at the Sydney Opera House. Frank has used his governmental skills to aid the Australian government, and Katarina has embarked on a new career in Marketing. Though it has taken them a long time and often seemed out of reach, they have achieved their dream of freedom.