18 October 2015 - Jablonec

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Sunday, 18th October 2015

Phew, these children are real soldiers! As I am typing my teeth are chattering in this ice cold church. It is a huge building, obviously dating from quite a while back, with no heating systems at all. The temperature inside is more or less the same as the 2 degrees outside. The difference is that we usually move around quite a bit when outside and therefore have never really felt the bite in the air as we do this morning. It has taken literally the entire tour for us to REALLY feel the cold, but it is all about new experiences, is it not?

We are participating in the morning mass along with the Latvian choir, resulting in quite a bit of shuffling around on the gallery, but the acoustics are beautiful and more than make up for the technical challenges.

This morning quite a few of the kids were very excited to tell me that their suitcases are packed and ready for the return trip and I am excited along with them. It has been a wonderful tour, but we now need to see our loved ones, eat our mom’s food (although we certainly are not underfed, but you know what I mean) and have an important date with our very own pillows!

But before we do that, we have a visit to the Frydlant Castle after the mass. I hope we will see the inside as well, as it looks beautifully preserved. It is built in beautiful scenic surroundings and although a bit on the thin side, the sun IS actually shining this morning!

This afternoon’s concert will be less formal and then we are all looking forward to the party afterwards! Our plan is to leave here early tomorrow morning and possibly give our inexhaustible shoppers a final opportunity, before heading for the airport. 


So, here we are. It is 19h30 in the evening and we had a wonderful day! 

Even though we were half frozen after the mass this morning, we were SO happy! The choir sang SO well and the full church were so appreciative of our and the Latvian choir’s contribution, that our warmed hearts MORE than made up for our frozen toes!

We quickly warmed up in the bus towards the Frydlant castle, where we had a very interesting tour of the inside of the castle. Iuventus Gaude has an English-speaking member (Emma’s father is from Nieu Zealand), which made the tour interesting. As with most places that I’ve visited with the choir, I would love to go back there one day.

Probably the biggest (and nicest) surprise of the tour was the venue for this afternoon’s concert (you’ve already seen some photos on facebook and whatsapp). Literally in the middle of nowhere, in a tiny little town, is the most astoundingly beautiful cathedral. We cannot find out the exact details, but apparently it was built following a miracle of some sorts. Naturally, the acoustics were equally wonderful.

The three choirs performed a benefit concert for the children of a local home for handicapped children and all the proceeds of the concert were donated to the centre. From what I understand, this was close to R6000.00! What a wonderful gracious way to end the tour.

As I sit here, the children of all three choirs are together in the rehearsal rooms next door and from the music and the noise I know that they are having a wonderful time across language barriers.


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