The phrase “since the communist era” is an overworked one when discussing the weather; it’s as if the weather patterns were affected somehow by the Velvet Revolution. My first winter here was the coldest winter since communist times. There was a period of almost a month where the temperature never got above freezing. Not even once. The mercury never so much as poked its head above the zero line, groundhog-like; it stayed in the cellar. That winter, it was a notable event when I stepped in mud one day, simply because there was mud to step in.

Last winter was the snowiest since the communist era. Memories of the flooding a few years ago had locals looking pensively at the deep snow in the mountains, and when spring rains accelerated the melting process there was a feeling of held breath. I expect there was as much water this time as last, but the powers that be managed the potential disaster much better this time. (Thanks, Austria, for not screwing us over this time!)

This winter is only two days old, so it’s hard to characterize. The temperature is finally below freezing, and I pulled out my winter coat (thanks, Mom!) last night for the first time. Somewhere in Ireland my gloves, my beloved hunters gloves lie, and I miss them right now. (They are fingerless, but with a mitten flap that can be folded over the digits when they’re not typing. MaK dethumbed them for me, making them the only harsh-weather typing gloves on the planet.) Although I am ill-equipped this year, I welcome the cold. It’s one of the things that has forged the national character of the Czechs, an active character in the story of life here.

6 thoughts on “Zima!

  1. On an idle note, how many winters like this one before the real estate panic sends the value of land in Florida and other low-lying coastal areas to zero? Justified or not, I’d really think twice about owning land in an area like that.

  2. Haven’t heard from you regarding the international-headline-making, high winds of last week, that killed some people in Czech.

  3. YEah, the wind was awesome! I had a good time just walking around…and worrying about what was going to blow over and kill me (construction crane, roof tiles, etc). No worries, as far as I know, I lived through it.

  4. So this is it; the space/place where you sit, muddle and ramble. I bet you could even dance to that, with a hat, a coat and a cane. You and C.C.; but he’s dead. We all are, and sooner (for most) or later for a few, we all tip our hats and dance out the door. Your brother said I should look for you here. So I dropped in, read a few things. I’ll come back again.I’m off to the movies again. Its the EU Film Fest. I’ve got tickets for the whole thing. I thought it would be sold out, but its almost empty every night. No one goes to the moving pictures anymore. Well, a few, but not like it use to be when I was a boy, but then was then, and I still believed in Dragons and Unicorns. Got to go. Here’s a poem:

    “Going and coming,
    we’re always here,
    and then nowhere;
    sitting on a log,
    waiting for Gog,
    Magog and Godot,
    on a winter’s day”

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