All 27 European Union member states signed a treaty in Lisbon that replaces the rejected yet crucial continental constitution. The approaching Christmas holidays of peace and tranquility unleashed the usual wave of tree thefts in Czech woods. The National Theatre premiered Babička, i.e. The Grandmother. In Ostrava, Premier Mirek Topolánek joined his colleagues from the Visegrad countries for talks on the speedy and inevitable declaration on Kosovo’s independence. Health insurers decided to contribute to the price of medications to help smokers quit their habit. While re-loading a shotgun after a hunt one hunter shot another in the chest in woods near Kočí in the Chrudim region. The organic food market inched upwards. “Such massive mark-ups weren’t expected until next year,” commented Hospodářské noviny on the fact that the surprising price hikes triggered record 5-percent inflation. Economists responded by declaring the era of cheap food products had come to an end. “Family expenditures will increase by up to 4,400 per month,” Právo informed its readers in a front-page headline. “This year was the year of shopping fever, and it seems that next year will be dubbed the ‘year of inflation’ due to the dramatic rise in prices,”Aleš Michl, analyst for Raiffeisenbank, told the media. After 27 years, Led Zepplin rose from the dead. The Nuclear Research Institute in Řež packed up sent to Russia 100 tons of burnt nuclear fuel from its test reactors. Slavia became the fall champion of the football league. “Roughly 90 percent of the populace turned out; and roughly 90 percent voted against it,” said Jaromír Šlechta, mayor of Milíčov, describing the outcome of a local referendum about the possibility of building an underground nuclear storage facility near his village. Newspapers reported that lights in big cities in Germany, Switzerland, and Austria were switched off for five minutes in an attempt to warn of the gravity of global warming. President Václav Klaus presented to a few dozen buyers in Berlin the German edition of his book Blue, Not Green Planet, which purports that everyone who doesn’t deny man’s contribution to global warming is an enemy of human liberty. The legendary “first republic” sweet shop “U Myšáka” re-opened in the center of Prague. The EU allocated 355 billion crowns for assisting Czech regions and their development. A private aircraft with five Czechs on board crashed in Kiev, leaving no survivors. Due to “serious breach of contract by the producer,” in a secret meeting the government decided to cancel a 20-billion-crown contract for the delivery of 199 Pandur armored transport vehicles from the Austrian firm Steyr.
“We didn’t vote like populists, we voted for the principle of raising the family allowance, which couldn’t remain as low as it was but, at the same time, we maintained that paying this benefit for a period of four years was economically unrealistic,” said Social Affairs Minister Petr Nečas (ODS), explaining why his party voted for the socialists’ proposal to raise the family allowance before the elections, and now, after the elections, is taking away from families again. Voluntary patrols set off to the Šumava Mountains to guard the local lynx population from green vest clad poachers. The Interior Ministry’s Inspection started investigating a Sokolov police chief, Radek Neděla, on suspicion that he divulged to local gangsters photos, addresses, and personal information about witnesses who decided to testify against them. The Americans bought the Czech travel agency Čedok. “Women are more flexible, more assiduous, and they understand communication better. We gave it a whirl with men too, but that’s just the way it is,” said businesswoman Linda Vavříková, explaining why her company—which arranges “genuine adrenalin experiences” from digger rides to fighter plane flights—works only with women. Karl-Heinz Stokhausen passed away. Meteorologists published a report that Christmas in the lowlands would probably be “muddy”. A railway audit accused Czech Railways of violating regulations when it let prominent F1 pilot Emerson Fittipald drive the Pendolino high-speed train during his visit to the Czech Republic this summer; according to the audit, the untrained racer handled the levels so ineptly that he could have “put the passengers in danger”; Czech Railways rejected the result of the investigation. Following the National Theatre, the Theatre in Vinohrady also announced that it would probably not be able to stage Václav Havel’s new play, Odcházení or Leaving, “due its technically challenging nature”. The Czech Citibank moved to Ireland.