While a large part of Asia and indeed some parts of Europe shut down their cities and sporting events, M and I travelled across to the Czech Republic to attend a ball. We were invited by the scout troupe that I once used to belong to (looong time ago), to their annual dance, this year themed as Hippies. So we gathered all our batik, all my beads, a few bits of peace sign jewellery and the much needed Lennon glasses and of we went.
There were only a few people at the airport with face masks, I would say probably not more than the usual smattering of Asian tourists, who are known for them. As we left our (‘stag do’ service – there were only about four women on board) plane in Prague and a group of young men put theirs on, a few other passengers took to coughing rather loudly. Oh the good old British humour!
Prague. One of the cities that I cant get enough of. It’s not that I am a Czech. It’s because the city is incredibly pretty and compact. The historical part is one huge museum of architecture. You can walk to all the famous landmarks and you won’t spot a crane or a building site like you do in London.
In the train on the way to Karvina, where our ball was being prepared we noticed for the first time that people were more vigilant about the fun that is Corona virus. Mostly thanks to the smell of hand sanitizer. I later found out that supermarkets in Prague were being emptied of rice, flour, oil and soap. The Czech currency Koruna was used to fight Corona.
Saturday came. I started it by dipping in a lake with water temperature at balmy 3 Degrees (well, I had to, as a Bluetit! – see previous blogs) and later we went to the ball. No fear of disease there. We gathered, we danced, we shook hands and hugged people that I hadn’t seen for almost twenty years, we ate, we drank. I was assured that with all those pickled bodies at that ball (and there were two more happening in the town that night), the virus has no chance. Karvina would be fine.
We spent five days in a country in the middle of Europe. And I can honestly say that I didn’t hear a cough or a sneeze the whole time. Though there is a particular lack of flour and salt in my mum’s closest supermarket. So I suspect, the keep the lurgy away, the Czechs are planning to dip their homemade bread in their bottomless stash of hard spirits. Na zdraví!