on [Cz-L] Topic, off Topic

Date: Fri, 27 Jun 2008 07:48:02 +0300
To: CZERNOWITZ-L <Czernowitz-L_at_cornell.edu>

Night in Czernowitz.

At 10 o'clock pm was Schluesselzeit. Key time.
  All the big houses with a inside courts ,the Wohnkasernen, had big
gates .
  These gates were shut at 10 o'clock. Key time.
   The Hausmeister came with a lantern,dangling the big key ,and would
lock the gate.
   If you came home after Schlusselzeit , you would pull a handle
connected to a rod.
That would activate the bell and after some time the Hausmeister would
come and open the gate. You had to give him some money for this service.
This was the Schluesselgeld. Key money.
    All Hausmeisters were Ruthenians ,exclusively . A guild.
   But what would you look for on the street after nightfall ?
     First you could fall into an open sewer ,as there was no street
lights .
    Then you could be robbed or even worse.
       But most likely you could meet some bad spirit.
     Can you hear the dogs howling ,or are they wolves ?
        They must have smelled a bad spirit.
              At the far end of our street was Horecea with the
cemeteries full of spirits.
       What were spirits doing on the streets of Czernowitz at night ?
         Looking for company .
            Czernowitz , Eastern Europe, 1938.

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Received on 2008-06-27 04:48:02

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