Tuesday, 9 March 2010


Though I've been curious about this station since I first saw it many years ago, I never succumbed enough to check it out over the years. The name has been the main reason. The names of most other stations are self-evident. This one is more impenetrable.

When I leave the station, I feel the icy wind on my face. A few days ago I was fooled into thinking spring would soon be here. The air was warm and fuzzy. A few buds had sprouted on the trees. I was feeling energetic. Now the air is steely.

The Czechs call this type of cold "kosa", which means scythe. Today, it's obvious to see why. The wind is slicing me to the bone. It's also going to trim today's post. I'm not sure how long I can stand to be outside.

On the first block I follow a street called Pod Turnovskou tratí. It's one of the features of Prague toponyms that they reflect some of the geographical or historical features of the area. Of course, the city is not short of streets named in honour of historical figures and famous places - or streets renamed when certain historical figures were no longer in vogue. In other instances, the street names simply describe the street. In this instance the street is under Turnovský's tracks.

Across from me is a basketball court with two large gates, one at each goal end. The gates resemble bared teeth for a post-apocalyptic play set. Moreover, they are completely useless, as the surrounding fence is quite low and would be easily crossed by your typical basketball player.

Through the second exit of the station I find the local branch of the municipal library. It seems a good way to avoid the scythe so I mount the caged stairwell. The library is in a seventies style cement shopping center with an optometrist and a supermarket. Kids' drawing are stuck to the window. Books are displayed invitingly. It's shut. The scythe's got me.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

As always, I learn a new word reading one of your posts - 'toponym'. I'm sure I'll have use for 'scythe wind' this winter too.