Stories from the Trafik

14 Jan

This morning, as on every Saturday I’m not teaching, Maylo and I went to the Trafik on our way home from our morning walk. He got his treats and I got mine (newspaper and instant lottery ticket). Then because it wasn’t busy we got into a chat, quite a heavy chat as it turned out.

The Trafikant, nearing 80, was born in Vienna during the Second World War and told how his mother would wrap him in a blanket and carry him down to the air raid shelter in the cellar.

One of his employees then started talking about her experiences during the war in Bosnia before her family fled to Vienna, how she, too, spent time in bomb cellars. From her accent, I could tell that she wasn’t Austrian born, but we had never talked before about where she came from. (I personally am so allergic to the question “Where are you from?” when I have lived here over half my life that I very rarely ask it of others.)

We had gotten onto the topic of how each time we thought it was the last war in Europe and how the whole misery is being repeated now in Ukraine when another customer came in and Maylo and I left.

I think Trafiks are often microcosms of the world around us.


4 Responses to “Stories from the Trafik”

  1. esauboeck January 16, 2023 at 1:39 am #

    I always was fascinated by the institution of the Tabak-Trafik. I was saddened when we were last in Vienna that the Trafik no longer sold stamps! Or was it the streetcar Fahrscheine that they no longer sell?

    • ecbinvienna January 16, 2023 at 11:03 am #

      I think it varies. My Trafik sells some Fahrscheine but at some point stopped carrying stamps but indicated that other Trafiken still did carry them.

      • esauboeck January 16, 2023 at 9:26 pm #

        But they still sell cigs, I presume.

      • ecbinvienna January 23, 2023 at 10:02 am #

        Of course! 😀

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