Looking at our history

By Chuck Kajer

Last year gave residents of New Prague a good opportunity to look at the city's history. The 150th anniversary of New Prague's first white settlers was a cause for celebration and reflection. The Times did its part, publishing Portraits of Our Past, a sesquicentennial journal that highlighted some of the events and people from New Prague's 150-year history. (By the way, these journals are still available at The Times office.)

Other organizations and individuals did their share of reflecting on New Prague's history as well, most notably the sesquicentennial committee and the New Prague Area Historical Society.

In addition to our sesquicentennial journal, The Times also has been publishing photos from the city's history. Some of these photos came from the historical society's archives, while others were submitted to us by individuals in the community. We still have some of those photos remaining and hope to publish them in the coming weeks. This popular feature will continue running in our paper, even though our sesquicentennial year is over. If you have any photos to submit, contact me at 952-758-4435 or email news@newpraguetimes.com, or stop by The Times office and we can have them scanned.

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One of the disadvantages of having my usual auto mechanic (my son) away at school is that when the car stops working for me, I'm lost as to how to get it going again.

That was the case Sunday when I went to start the car to pick up Robert from hockey practice. I got in, turned the key and... nothing. I realized there was not a sound of the radio, the fan, no dome light, no lights of any sort and no sound of the engine turning over.

Andy and I tried jumping the car from the van, but that didn't work. We finally got some power to the battery, but the car wouldn't start.

I called Josh at school and asked him what could be wrong. I described my dilemma and he told me to check some fuses.

Remember, Josh is the one going to school to be an auto technician. I'm only the one paying the bills. I had to ask him how to do that.

I could just sense an attitude of superiority coming over the phone, as Josh wondered what kind of fool he had for a father.

He told me to get the battery checked, so I took it to the shop and found it was dead. I figured that the problem was solved, and I got a new battery. After installing it, I got the engine to crank, but it wouldn't catch. I was told to check some more fuses, but found nothing.

We ended up calling AAA to tow the car to the shop. They figured that somehow, in jumping the car, I had burned out one of the main fuses. So I was not only out $80 for the battery, but also another $120 for parts and labor.

Josh graduates this spring and has been threatening to move home. I've been a little hesitant about it, but may have to reconsider, since I forgot how nice it is to have a personal auto technician under the same roof.

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