Friday, December 23, 2005

As I was walking down the street, I came upon a bunch of high school students in costumes begging for money. What gives?

In the week before their school-leaving exams – the so-called holy week (svatý týden) – high school seniors dress up in the craziest costumes they can find and go out begging for contributions to fund their graduation party in a ritual known as poslední zvonění (the last ringing). Until recently, one could also see young men who had just completed their mandatory military service parading down the streets. Typically drunk, they wore clothes that had been signed or decorated by their fellow soldiers and every few minutes chanted, “Ten, nine, eight, seven, six, five, four, three, two, one, CIVIL!”


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