< In Place of Conclusion >
a pilgrim's rest.
A letter from Prague, September 24, 1922!
by Anton Krupicka.
When Anton Krupicka left Bohemia for the United States 34 years ago his homeland was still a part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. Bohemia was now a part of idependent Czechoslovakia. I am citing from a letter published in Hospodar, which Krupicka wrote during his visit in his homeland.
"V Praze jsem se zdrűel tŗden a pak jsme jel do vísky Pďkné OleŻné u Horovic. Jména nádraűí jsou pozmďnďna a já dle polohy vĚbec nic nepoznal, musel jsem se prĚvodŹího ptáti, kde uű jsme, kde űe mám vystoupit. Sestoupil jsem z vlaku a rozhlíűel se, ale neupamatoval jsem se na nic. Po zeptání kudy se mám ubírat k mé rodné dďdinď, pokraŹoval jsem pďsky, neb na nďjakou pŅíleűitost ku svezení nebylo ani pomyŻlení. Kdyű jsem spatŅil první stavení, musel jsem se zastavit, abych se trochu vzpamatoval z pocitu, jaky se ve mnď vzmáhal. Musím se vám pochlubiti, űe jsem si upŅímnď zaplakal. Kdyű jsem se trochu uklidnil, vstoupil jsem do vsi a zamíŅil k hostinci, kterému Ņíkavali "U kupcĚ". Nenechal jsem se poznat űádnému, nikdo mď neznal a já téű nikoho a tak po 34 letech jsem se ocitl v mém rodiŻti, kde jsme byl úplnď cizím. VŻichni mi byli neznámí. Kdyű jsem Ņekl kdo jsem, ti staŅí ovŻem se hned na mne upamatovali, ale jaké bylo jejich udivení a vyptávání, nemohu vypsat. Abych se pŅiznal, velkŗ dojem na mne uŹinilo, kdyű jsem se ptal, kde jsou ty kapliŹky s obrazy podél cest a kŅíűe. Byla to vűdy památka, na tom místď se vűdy nďco stalo. Bylo mi ŅeŹeno, űe po pŅevratu to dav rozbil a tím si pomohl. Ba, pŅihnal prŗ se i zástup na kláŻter a chtďl vŻe rozbít. Nemohu ten dav pochopit, jak jsou vŻichni rozzlobeni a rozháráni. Oni asi myslili, jak budou mít republiku, űe budou mit vŻeho dosti, ale to nevďdí, űe musí jeden kaűdŗ pracovat, aby jim republika mohla dáti, co od ní űádají."
"I stayed a week in Prague and then I continued to my small village Pekne Olesne near Horovice. The names of the train stations have been changed and I could not orient myself according to the location, I kept asking the ticket agent where are we, where do I have to get off. When I left the train and was looking around but I couldn't remember anything. After I asked which way to my native village I continued on foot, because there the idea of getting a ride was unthinkable. When I noticed the first building, I had to stop to get hold of my emotions which overcame me. I have to boast a bit that I had an honest cry. When I calmed down a little I walked into the village directly to the pub which used to be called "at merchant's". At first I did not tell anybody who I was, nobody recognized me, and I did not recognized anybody either, so after 34 years I found myself in my native village as a complete foreigner. They all were foreigners to me. When I told them who I was the older ones of course remember me immediately. I cannot describe their surprise and their questioning. I was deeply impressed when I asked about all the pilgrims' rests with the images along the roads, or the crosses. They were placed there in a memory of something which happened there. I was told that after the coup d'etat the people broke them and that's how they helped themselves. THere even was a mob of people wanted to destroy the monastery. I cannot understand those people, how they are all so angry and ready to fight. They were under the impression that as soon as they have a republic they will have a plenty of everything but they do not know that each one of them has to work, so that the republic can give them what they are demanding from it."
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