8 days in the Czech Republic, angry peasants, 3 hours and 20 mins of Bruce Springsteen and a hunt for an elusive chip butty… holiday memories don’t often get better than this!
I have been lucky enough to have visited Czech many times and each time I bring back new memories. My first visit was to a Prague with few hotel rooms, staying in rooms in ancient buildings or panalak high rises alongside the families who were renting them to us. There were no Golden Arches in Wencelas Square let alone a Debenhams or H and M.
On this visit I spent time in fabulous sunshine at my brothers house in a small Moravian village where they recently celebrated the anniversary of a peasant revolt (sadly as is often the case unsuccessful). I missed what was a great day of celebrations and reenactments but was able to view the permanent memorial in the shape of a magnificent wood sculpture of The Angry Peasant.
Its great to get out of Prague if you can, and we spent 3 days down on the Austrian Border exploring Mikuluv and Znojmo where the vineyards, sunflower fields and architecture rivals anywhere in Italy or France. A hotel with a pool and lavender filled garden provided the perfect antidote to scorching temperatures.
Especially welcome after a cycle trip where just as in the UK I screamed at the hills… my only complaint re the hotel staff… they lied about the hills!!! Though in a country where cycling is a national pastime perhaps they really do think that something resembling the north face of the Eiger is a gentle slope!
Our hotel had a full compliment of nationalities, German, Austrian, Spanish but nothing can compare to the international melting pot of Prague. Hordes of Japanese school parties decked out in bright uniforms, Americans, Russians, a huge number of visitors from the middle east all add to the pleasure of being in such a fabulous city. My brother and I were there for another highlight of my trip. Following a late lunch at the Imperial Hotel – Art Deco to die for
we headed out on the tram to the Slavia Prague Arena where Bruce Springsteen spat anger and venom at corporate greed, played just about all our favourites and worked the crowd like no other leaving us and the other 20,000 on a spectacular high… and they didn’t turn the sound off either!
The evening was complete as we discussed our choice of late night snack on the tram back to the centre, an unmistakable Mancunian accent joined our conversation with the immortal words… You mean a chip butty? Yes were in the midst of the Failsworth contingent of the Bruce fan club… and we did spot them a short while later enjoying a late night walk home chomping on a kebab… an action we wholeheartedly copied.
A late night kebab with a group of fellow Mancunians after a Springsteen concert would have been unthinkable on my first visit to Czech…how things have changed, but not my love of the place, the people and what it has become.
I’ll be back again.