Tuesday, 30 April 2013

An oddity...co-incidence...a question

An injured woman tends to her wounds after the explosion.
One of the more than 40 injured
in the Prague blast.
(Picture David W. Cerney, Reuters)
     It truly seems odd.   In the Prague, Czecha Republic a huge downtown explosion, supposedly of an ignition of a natural gas leakage.   That explosion occurs on 29 April 2013 in the gentrified, very elegant part of the city.   It is the part that fills the tourists' cameras, the Czech visitors and foreign as well.

     While it is the official, and probably the truthful, line, it seems really, really eerie that such an event would occur in a place where correct handling of such plumbing has long been second nature to the populace. Of course, we even have such problems here in Texas where we use natural gas to brush our teeth and to make sticky note.

     The double-down on the eerie part is that in another Czech capital....in Texas...there was an explosion in this same April, on the 17th to be precise.   Almost 20 people were killed and almost 200 were injured to lesser or greater degree.   And yes, Virginia, it occurred in another Czech Capital....the Czech Capital of Texas.    A little place named West, Texas.

     The AMTRAK Texas Eagle goes almost through the due middle of the little town, which is situated more or less midway twixt Austin and Dallas.   It is little north of Waco....in pleasant country, rolling hills, farms, thickets, and small villages.  The northbound Eagle, heading for Fort Worth and Dallas, Texarkana, St. Louis, and Chicago went through a little the fire had started at a fertiliser plant.  The southbound Texas Eagle would have gone through a couple of hours before the fertiliser plant finally exploded...and shook seismographs throughout the entire Republic of Texas.   The folks sitting on the right side of the train would have clearly seen the fire, and certainly commented upon the event.

     And why is West, Texas the Czech Capital of Texas?   Well, Texas is everything the lore has it to be, and it is also a composition of things that might astound a lot of folks.  For instance, the entire area of Central Texas has a rural population (the last generations are substantially urbanised) that is drawn from Germans of different sorts, Polish, Czech, Bohemian, Alsatian, Wends, and Ukrainian/Russian in that descending order.   The area to the east of Interstate 35, that connects Laredo, San Antonio, Austin, Waco, Temple, Ft.Worth/Dallas, is involved with immigrations of Polish and Czech and Bohemian folks  shortly before the War Between the States and continuing on through the earliest 1900s.   There were probably 300,000 of such folks who arrived in the descending order above.  They stayed west of Houston and East of Austin in the land purchases and settlement.   The different types of Germans settled to the West of that line that is now marked by Interstate 35.

     These ethnic groups are still identifiable by their surnames, their numerous Roman Catholic or Lutheran churches  (some quite elegant....look up on Google - Painted Churches of Central Texas).   These groups are very traditional, very typically Texian, agrarian in personal outlook, usually well educated and/or trained, very patriotic to Texas and also loyal to their ethnic past...conservative, primarily Republican voting;    Also clean, productive, communitarian, and anti-socialist.

     This town, West, Texas holds a huge Czech Cultural Celebration every year at Memorial Day with polkas, beer, kolaches, sausages and other barbeque, fancy native costumery, lots of accordions...and really good times.   And above it all are banners, placards, and other types of notice reminding one and all that West is the Czech Capital of Texas.   Simply Google that term and see....West, Texas, the Czech Capital of Texas.

Very Strange.   Two Czech capitals with severe explosions a few days apart.
El Gringo Viejo