Monday, September 13, 2010

A Bit Of A Hodge Podge

We are now in Prague and have checked in at the Prague Hilton.  We docked yesterday and took the bus a short way to the hotel to drop off our luggage and then got back on the bus to go on a city tour.  The bus dropped us off at the train station and then we went on a bit of a walking tour.  I will cover some of the hi-lites later, but you will be proud to know that Bar Man managed to get seperated from the group at some point.  Quite inadvertent, I assure you.  I popped into a souvenier shop that wasn't on our intinerary and when I popped out the tour group had moved on.

Fortunately I had spotted an interesting sight of my own to see earlier on our little walk.  Here is what everyone else was looking at.

A Church Of Some Historical Importance

I spotted something much more interesting right across the street.

An Australian Pub

Although I couldn't find our tour group, I was able to retrace my steps back to Fat Boy's Pub where, as you can see, I was devastated by being separated from my group and the Mysterious Chinese Woman.

Simply Inconsolable

There was a group of about six people in the place and one young lady was from St. Paul, Minnesota. As many of you know, I am originally from Minneapolis, Minnesota and the two cities are known as the Twin Cities, hence you have the Minnesota Twins baseball team on which Kent (buy me a vowel) Hrbek, of "forward momentum" fame and future Hall Of Fame inductee (if it was up to me) played.

Even I have a hard time understanding that last sentence, and I wrote it.

My Hero, Kent Hrbek

Okay, a bit of back tracking now.  I had mentioned the two Pilsner Urguells that I bought for about three dollars here in the Czech Republic.  You can see that the big beer is, indeed, a big beer.

Bar Man And His Big Beer

And that three dollars also included a little beer for the little lady.

A Petite Beer And The Petite Mysterious Chinese Woman

Bouncing back to Prague, I guess teenagers can be a bit inconsiderate in any country.

Can You Think Of A Better Place To Sit?

After a long day of sight seeing, and longer for me because I had to walk back to the hotel when I couldn't find the tour bus after drinking in Fat Boy's Pub, we figured we would just eat at the hotel.  But, give me a break, travel all the way to Prague for Mexican food.  I don't think so.  And the prixe fix dinner was fifty bucks.  That is more than I would pay in New York even after including a few Margaritas.

Nothing Says Prague Like A Mexican Festival

A couple of new friends that I met on  our boat:

Our Boat

decided to head across the street to a little place.

The Unpronounceable Restaurant And Pub

Here we had large plates of decent food for a much more reasonable twenty bucks, and that included a few beers. I should have taken pictures of the food, but the Mysterious Chinese Woman had a whole roasted duck, I had smoked porkchops and our friends Carol and Dave had a large frying pan of potatoes with pork and some kind of a pork neck dish, I think.  And more dumplings than you could possibly eat.  They love dumplings here.  And, of course, beer.

Carol, Dave and Bar Man And, Of Course, Beer

That wasn't a very good picture of Carol and Dave so here is a nicer one.

Carol And Dave

Dave was a very funny fellow and his jokes really helped stretch out our vacation.  And, in the small world department, my brother and his then wife ued to live in Avoca, a town with a population of about seven in southwestern Minnesota.  Avoca isn't far from the megapolis of Fulda, population of at least fifty.  Dave's brother lived in that area and Dave had been to both of those towns.  What are the odds of that.

Oh yes, mustn't forget the Mysterious Chinese Woman enjoying her beer.

Do I Have Foam On My Face?

They seem to have a nice little trolley system here in Prague so I am going to get a couple of all day passes and just ride them around the city today.  Maybe we will just buy some bread and cheese and have that with our free bottle of Champagne tonight.

Oh, yeah, about the Champagne. We were supposed to have a little party with Carol and Dave last night.  But Dave couldn't wait and he opened his bottle as soon as he checked into his room.  It wasn't even chilled yet so when the cork popped off he managed to hit and break a ceiling light.

Everybody, from the guide books to the hotel to the tour guides warn you about the taxis here.  Apparently they make a practice of ripping of tourists.  When I couldn't find the tour bus at the train station I asked at an information booth how to get back to the hotel.  He said he could call me a cab and it would cost about five dollars.  I asked if I couldn't just take one of them parked in front and he said if they heard me speak English they would probably charge me about twenty-five dollars.  And I thought New York was bad.

I just walked back to the Hotel and, as luck would have it, managed to connect with the tour bus that was dropping off some people who didn't want to continue with the little city tour.  Ah, and you can probably imagine how the Mysteriou Chinese Woman reacted when I showed up.  I can't say it was with overwhelming relief that I was safe and sound.

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