Photo: CTK

A Czech prisoner is allowed to go back home to his wife after getting a permanent erection! A freak accident - dying under 8 tons of manure. And -the robber who fell asleep in the apartment he had robbed. Find out more in Magazine with Daniela Lazarova.

A Czech tractor driver died under 8 tons of manure in a freak accident that has baffled his employers, the local media reported. The 34 year old man suffocated after the load fell on him while he was dumping it in a field near the western city of Karlovy Vary. "It beats me how this could happen" his employer told the media. "The truck is operated from the cabin. He had no business being behind it, but its tough to blame him now that he's dead," the man said. Police are investigating the freak accident.

A Czech prisoner, serving time for theft, has been freed and allowed to go back home to his wife after getting a permanent erection! The 37 year old man was serving a six months sentence in a Pilsen jail and he woke wardens in the early hours of the morning complaining that he had an erection that would not go away. The man said he was in pain and after prison doctors examined him and were unable to help he was taken to a specialist hospital in Prague where surgeons were forced to operate to treat the problem. They said the man had been suffering from a rare condition in which blood becomes trapped in the penis. After surgery the man was allowed to go home, where medical experts said he would be better off being cared for by his wife.

A 68 year old Czech pensioner is on trial for selling "titles" to gullible Czechs and foreigners. "You now have a unique opportunity - to become a prince " he said on his web page. An unnamed German national who craved to be a Hungarian count paid 34 thousand euros for the fake title. A teacher from Vienna paid 1,700 euros for club membership in the Knights' Order and complained that she'd only received a few old medals and a red vest by post. One of the witnesses at the trial was a real Hungarian count whose title the pensioner had tried to sell.

Sometimes the post really does take ages to arrive. A pensioner living in Cesky Tesin, in the northern Czech Republic, has just received a postcard he sent 60 years ago from a prisoner of war camp in France. Karol Brozda, aged 79, sent the postcard to his parents as a soldier in a US army prison camp in France in February of 1945 to let them know he was alive. Brozda says the card was forwarded by a family in Poland but he has no idea through which countries it passed on its travels or why it took so long to arrive. He was not especially happy to get it. It brought back a lot of bad memories of the war, he said. Brozda, who is Polish, was forced to join the German army in 1944 when the Nazis occupied the region. He was shot in the arm in France but soon returned to the battlefield, deciding to go over to the other side and fight against the Germans. After a short stay in the prison of war camp, Brozda joined Polish forces in Britain. He returned home after the war.

If you are going out to rob an apartment - make sure you've had plenty of food sleep before you set out. A 46 year old robber climbed onto a balcony and broke into a Prague flat collecting all the valuables he could find : gold jewellery, watches and credit cards. Unfortunately he also discovered a feast in the fridge and so he sat down and ate his fill. After the sumptuous meal he promptly fell asleep and slept for several hours failing to wake up even when the owner of the place came home. The young man was amazed to discover a complete stranger sleeping on his couch with the remains of his dinner scattered on the coffee table, but not as amazed as the police officers who were called to the case to come and collect a sleeping thief.

Spring is here and with it the annual migration of frogs to ponds and swamps. In many cases the migration route cuts across a busy road and hundreds of frogs are killed in the process. For some years now environmentalists are engaged in a Help Save the Frogs operation during which they build barriers alongside roads, collect the frogs and carry them across safely in buckets. This is happening in many parts of the Czech Republic these days and you can even come across "Caution frogs!" road signs for drivers. Volunteers are welcome and will find all the information they need on the web pages of their local town or city hall. Every year several thousand frogs are saved in this manner.

Karel Ligocki spent Easter setting a new Czech record in long distance ice-skating. In twelve hours of non-stop skating he covered 209 kilometres and 336 metres - roughly the distance from Prague to Brno. The record was set at the ice rink in Novy Jicin which the 49 year old skater circled 1,528 times. He was cheered on by friends, some of whom played live music to pep him up and every now and then he drank tea laced with brandy or chicken soup from a bottle. Ligocki says his dream is to take part in the ice-skating marathon in the Austrian Alps.

The tradition of whipping girls with a special Easter whip braided from willow branches is an old one and this custom is supposed to bring good health and happiness throughout the year. The whips are decorated with brightly coloured ribbons and you can buy them in shops and open air markets. However in the countryside people make their own and naturally they always try to have something special. North Bohemia set the record for the Biggest Easter Whip ever made. It measures 33 metres and it took a whole week to braid.