Sunday, 13 December 2009

In the Potraviny on Charkovská

Potraviny are the equivalent of English corner-shops. The sign in the thumbnail at the end of today's post shows what they sell: 'ovoce' - fruit, 'zelenina' - greens, 'noviny' - news, and 'časopisy' - periodicals.  The shop is open from 'Po - Ne' (Mon - Sun,  i.e. all week) and from 7am till 10pm. Easy!

My local shop is run by a delightful Vietnamese couple who have been here for many years, making their living like many of their fellow-countymen in Prague by running mini-markets like these. In fact on this and the next couple of streets there are least seven such 'Vietnamese shops'.

The entire Vietnam community in Prague numbers 60,000:  many of them are the families of workers who were 'invited' here during communist times to work in exchange for limited privileges and barely any income. Since the fall of the regime, they have become more established, their children often outperforming indigenous Czechs at school (according to this article from national radio station Český Rozhlas), and an increasing number opting to stay in the Czech Republic to improve their education and prospects for work rather than returning to Vietnam.

Prices are reasonable, with most basic goods about 3/4 of the English price, though there are some things that money just can't buy: mature cheddar is hard to find, cheshire an impossibility, and Marmite, while available, is over-priced. On the other hand I'm pleased to say that a refreshing bottle of Czech lager, just being unpacked for me here, costs around 30p - about a fifth of the price back in Blighty.


Antjas said...

I enlarged the picture and was surprised to see the eggs which were sitting on the shelf and not in a cooler. You would never see that in the States. I imagine that they must not sit there for long. Can you pass me some Kozol please?

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