Returning from our holiday I found myself at a crossroads of sorts over the weekend: empty the suitcase and add to the already numerous piles of bed linens and towels from the two teen house guests, who had come over from the US to visit Jack for the two weeks Anna Grace and I were away, or find something else to do.
The town of Strasnice, Czech Republic was hosting its weekend long folk festival. Czech cuisine, beer, wine, music and entertainment but a short 90 minute drive away. The laundry could wait.
Strasnice has an expansive open-air museum where most of the festivities were taking place. We watched a celebration in the old vintner’s complex. Sampling the harvest wine seemed to be a major component of the celebration.
Even for those not part of the official celebration.
On our holiday Anna Grace and I remarked quite a bit on the similarities of the languages in the countries we visited; after all, most of our travels took us through Yugoslavia, land of the “South Slavs.” The words for “coffee” and “tea” were the same as on the Croatian, Bosnian, and Turkish signs we read: “kava” (coffee) and “čaj” (pronounced chai, meaning tea). Serbia’s versions were slightly different, reflecting Cyrillic influences, but pronounced the same: “кафа” (kafa) and “чај” (čaj).
Not surprising, then, to see the Slavic forms for coffee and tea on this cafe sign in Strasnice. And, a final datapoint on this linguistic roadmap, all of the above are forms for the Arabic words for “قهوة” (kawa) and “شاي” (chai).
Finally, in my quest to photo as many border crossings as I can, I submit these two additions for your enjoyment:
Devin, Slovakia. An Iron Curtain remnant at the confluence of the Moravia and Donau rivers.
The Austrian/Slovakian border near Kittsee, Austria.