If my strolls around Pardubice have taught me anything, it’s to always keep your eyes peeled for the little things, the details that are so easily missed. I know from walking back through the old square several times since I took the photos for this post that there’s a huge amount of details I missed, carvings, paintings, motifs, signs you name it, they are there, hidden away yet in full view if you take the time to look.
It’s something I never got into the habit of doing at home in Dublin, I grew up there and as happens when you live somewhere long enough, you take it for granted. You walk down the street, eyes straight ahead, or lost in your phone checking your Facebook updates, the world around passes in a blur of familiarity. There’s the G.P.O , or there’s Central Bank or there’s Trinity College….so what? They’re just buildings, nothing interesting about them. But I know if I went home and took the time to look, I’d see things I hadn’t noticed before…..a crack in the masonry, a little carving, high up, away from prying eyes.
It was only a few years ago that I began to notice little details around the city, long defunct company names, beautifully painted onto the highest floors of buildings, advertisements from a bygone era painted on brick walls in a train station, hidden behind modern billboards. These little glimpses of the past I find fascinating as they offer a window into a previous time, long since forgotten by society, but they’re still there, and they still have stories. Alas a lot of these stories are consigned to history books, there’s nobody around to talk about how they got there and why.
So next time you’re walking around your home town or somewhere you’ve never been before, take a few moments to look around you, I mean REALLY look around you, look up into the corners, look places you wouldn’t usually and you might just discover a nice surprise, a little wink from the past.