A trip to Vysoke Myto
Today the sun is shining. I don’t know for certain but I would estimate the high is around 80 F. When you come off the street and enter through the door of these old buildings, thanks to their thick walls, you feel an enjoyable sensation of coolness. An advantage of an old city. Here you don’t find air-conditioning as you do in the USA, in the houses or in the cars. The heat of summer is only a problem for a few weeks out of the year. Anyway in the shade one is comfortable, naturally if one doesn’t exercise much. I promise you I’ll walk slowly.
The last two days have been quite busy. On Wednesday, David, one of our salesmen, took me with him to visit a couple of clients in Prague. We managed to make appointments with only two of our clients. July and August is the traditional time of vacations and many of our clients are out of their offices. Prague was filled with tourist, but few working people. Yesterday, we drove east from Chrudim to a town near by called Vysoke Myto. (I inserted a web page with pictures) http://mesta.obce.cz/vysoke-myto/e_historie.htm . The countryside was beautiful to see. Rich farmlands planted in wheat, swaying in the breeze, and fields of sunflowers. We gradually climbed into the hills, following an ancient trade route from Bohemia to the East. Yesterday was cloudy and somewhat cooler than the day before so the trip in the car was more tolerable. I mention this because David’s Alfa Romero doesn’t have air-conditioning, but worst it has some problem with the radiator so when there is sun it over heats. Therefore not only is there the heat from the sun but inside there is heat from the motor. When the motor gets too hot he turns on the heater to circulate the water in the motor. So we drive with the windows rolled down and the heater blasting hot air onto our feet. In addition during this trip, he started to have some problem with the lock on the driver’s side door. The door would no longer open by key. So we could only open the passenger’s side door. David really needs to give his car some attention before long or he will risk not even being able to enter his car. Actually, he needs a new car, but by what I can see, he spends his money in some other way.
Anyway, yesterday we went about 50 km from Chrudim to Vysoke Myto, which means High Pass, henceforth there was a fortress at the mountain pass in days of old, merchants paid to be allowed to use the pass through the maintains to bring their cargo in or out of Bohemia. Vysoke Myto is a very beautiful historic city. It is a little larger than Chrudim, but less rich. In the center there is an enormous square. The roads through the city has just been paved and most of the facades of the buildings have been repaired and freshly painted. The square is dominated by a huge cathedral that unfortunately was closed so we could not go in to take a look. It would be worth coming back to see it another time. The periphery of the church is still in a bad state from the communist occupation. Around the city there are many houses that evidently were very rich and beautiful at one time, that are now seen with their facade in complete ruin and the houses are nearly abandoned. It is a pity. Although to see the city in this state reminds me a little of a town in Italy near my home, called Lizzanella where my aunt lived when I was a boy shortly after the war. Only this city is like a small labyrinth with small medieval house along small narrow streets, turning this way and that, climbing upward on a hill with a glorious finish to the climb of the beautiful grand square with the houses surrounding the square all painted different shades of pastel.
A short drive from Vysoke Myto, Honza, the uncle to our salesman David has a vacation house in the mountains. It is a lovely house with a large garden. The house is situated on the side of a steep mountain. Honza in his spare time has built terraces along the slope where he has planted an orchard and garden. It was a huge undertaking but the results are outstanding. Unfortunately he does not have much time or need to come to the mountains anymore so the work has been suspended. The nearby village is very old, but doesn’t appear to have ever been very rich. There isn’t any manufacturing or other work in the village therefore the young people who have been raised here are leaving. Now most of the houses in town are only occupied for vacation. What a shame.
On the way back to Chrudim, we stopped on a hill where there is an observation tower 50 meters high, to be climbed by foot. The steps seemed never to finish. At the top there was a spectacular vista of the countryside and the mountains which was worth the hike up the stairs.
The rest of the week I have been working in the office. I looked through our new collection to see what we are selling this year. I worked on our computer program for our invoices and the stock in the warehouse. Our old program was so out of date it didn’t function anymore. One of the clerks in the office had tried to updated it and only made the situation worse. Every time that Remo made out an invoice he had to change a bunch a things by hand to the point that something would always be missed and the wrong items would be sent to a client.
Remo is returning from his long needed vacation tonight. Tomorrow we will to go to the notary and to the customs agent to retrieve some merchandise. We will also go to check on the house with the realtor.
There is not much more news, except that this night I was a bit nervous and I woke up each time the bells in the church sounded.