It was still sprinkling a bit when I awoke. This time I wasn’t alone in my room.
Seems my Italian friend had been successful in landing a bird.
Very awkward to awaken to the sounds of smooching…man I sure hoped they were just kissing, I mean, I am less than 5 feet from them. They wouldn’t…nah, they are just kissing.
She was very cute and made me wonder what his girlfriend back home would think about this encounter.
I guess things don’t count if you’re in another country. Perhaps the girl was with someone else, too. Who knows their arrangement.
I had found a small coffee shop right outside the large wooden door of the hostel/restaurant and procured a coffee.
As it was still raining and the restaurant was closed, I sat at one of the long tables and finished my coffee.
I had packed a raincoat and I must say, always pack a rain jacket for any trips you may go on because it really sucks without one if you need it.
Today I decided to walk east, see what was in that direction.
I passed by a famous US wing chain known for tight, skimpy clothes that was full of English chaps, their tables full of large liters of beer and bowls of wings.
If only I could talk to them and explain this wasn’t really the US, but yet it sort of was ubiquitous. Most every city I went to had one, it just wasn’t my thing.
Just up ahead was a walking tour so I stop just within earshot to catch a bit of the tour.
The group was learning about the Estates Theatre, where many symphonies had been performed for centuries, including the debut of Mozart’s Don Giovanni.
Ah so it was no coincidence that there was a private space that was dedicated solely to this opera at a fairly hefty cost considering how inexpensive everything else was in Prague.
Suddenly it really began to really rain so I ducked into a brewpub I’d passed by before ‘joining’ the tour.
I sat at the bar but the chair was too short to really eat at.
After ordering goulash I was escorted to a table.
The goulash was served in a bread bowl and was a lot bigger than I anticipated.
It was delicious, peppery soup, the best part was scraping the bottom to get a bit of soup/bread bite.
Main dish was rabbit and dumplings, a local staple from the description.
It was delicious and made me wish more places in the US served rabbit.
I lingered as it was still raining, not to mention I’d just had one of the largest meals on my trip and yet it was still around 10$!
Taking a long cut to the bridge I passed by a sign for a live, rock venue.
The whole trip I missed several bands I’ve always wanted to see live by days or weeks. It was a goal to see a concert whilst I was on the road.
Hmm what is this now: Už jsme doma, a band name I recognize from my college days.
They were playing in a couple of days, cover was 6$, so why not?
I soon passed by a small grocery store with a lot of beer so I picked up a couple and followed the road to catch another river sunset on the bridge.
After walking the bridge to the other side and back I continued back to the area around my hostel.
Thing about this area was some places closed early during the week, but were open late on the weekends.
I found a small pub with a few people out seated at wooden barrel tables.
After procuring a beer I spied a long padded bench not occupied and slid in.
My seat afforded me a view of the street traffic to my left as well as the bar to my right.
Large beer walking tour groups passed by a few times. By large, I mean these groups had over 20 people, most of which were already in the barely able to walk phase.
The vast majority of tours advertised ‘all you can drink for an hour,’ a veritable beverage buffet. Nah, that’s a horrible idea.
All the hostels had pub crawls and for sure if the right group hit up a club, it totally made that spot’s evening.
There was one club across the street and it was a bass thumping, dance club, a place I tend to avoid as it’s not a real local experience.
Plus I felt that’s where all the pickpockets would likely be, scheming to get a drunkard’s wallet.
The restroom at this spot was downstairs, where I encountered a couple aggressively making out.
The female had one arm in the air in a cast, her back to me, so all I saw before passing by was a girl’s blonde hair with a raised arm, then you see what she was up to as the guy came into view. Hilarious!
My initial concern was not bumping her arm soon turned into interrupting a make-out sesh.
After returning upstairs, I tried to talk to a table of guys, who shook their heads, no English.
I sauntered down the street which was extremely packed, shoulder to shoulder.
Great people watching awaited and I wanted to compare pub vs store prices for beer.
To my great pleasure, I was saving a bit at the store.
To my annoyance, the cashier was involved in a heated argument with a guy about the amount of change he gave.
It came down to the denomination of the bill the guy had paid with,
“I gave you a 20$! I need more change back”
“No you gave me a 10$, get out!”
Luckily there was a camera zoomed in on the register and the cashier’s hands so reluctantly he rewound the camera to the transaction.
Haha wow, the guy was right, he had been shortchanged!
“Baahhhhhaaaaa, here get out!” said the cashier as he pulled out bills and coins handing them to the satisfied customer.
A guy tapped me on the shoulder, as I’d been waiting in line for about 5 minutes while this back and forth continued.
“Hey, here’s some koruna, can you buy a litre and we split, yes? It cheaper, have cup, see.” said a near toothless man behind me.
Hey someone who spoke English, let’s do it, I thought as I selected a large plastic bottle from the cooler.
We leaned against a metal fence surrounding a tree in front of the store, across from my hostel on a busy street.
My new friend was Romanian and worked construction albeit not entirely legally he mentioned.
“No job at home, so I stay here. No visa, is ok, haha, both are EU,” he said after he gulped some beer. “Besides, I help here, yes, they get my koruna, yes, so all fair to me.”
He missed home, but he had to do what he could to live.
Prague was pretty inexpensive but that was through my American lens. I didn’t know how much per hour or year was normal. I wondered how much a construction job paid.
We told stories about various countries we visited, his construction career certainly had taken him around the countries.
Many large groups passed us by, easy to identify the stag or hen parties as they were always dressed up ridiculously: either dudes in dresses or only speedos always with one guy toting an inflatable sex doll!?
The women always matched clothing either a themed outfits or customized shirts.
A few ladies dashed into an alley behind us, one standing guard out front. Soon the concrete was running with uh fluids. Ha now that’s classy, I thought as I shook my head.
When you got to go, you got to go!
It was late, my friend was rather incoherent by this point, sort of raving in what I presumed was Romanian. I felt it best to let him keep the rest of the bottle and split.
Another successful outing!
Beer: Zlatý Bažant
Song: Symphony No. 38 in D major (Prague) Mozart