Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Day 10:  Murren to Prague

One last shot, from the train

Weather:  Getting hot; THB, DB and SC take a series of trains and trams to the airport so the most important thing is to sit on the shady side of the conveyance; it’s in the 80s in Prague, we dine outside at 9pm with no problem

Our luggage transport on the first train/tram

Amongst the scaffolding


Windows were shakin' all night in my dreams
Everything was exactly the way that it seems
Woke up this mornin' and I looked at the same old page
Same old rat race, life in the same old cage.

A train full of vans

Breakfast at hotel, then check-out. Dinner en suite (alcohol and already purchased snacks) was $40 (hey, alcohol is expensive here and the wine turned out to be something like ¾ of a bottle). The room and breakfast charge was $325 per night and our share of last night’s dinner was $110. THB suspects that N&T picked up the wines served with dinner, very nice of them. Can’t confirm, since they left very early today.

Airport art with a very close attribution

Lunch on one of our train legs: prosciutto and bread purchased in Murren, $12, two bottles of water gifted by the hotel, and SC provides some excellent cherries.

As we’re leaving Bern, THB spies a few Tour de France vans; the stage yesterday finished in Bern (Sagan won by maybe an inch in a sprint finish where they we’re probably going 60K/hr) and today is a rest day. That’s about as close as THB has been to the actual race since 1989 when we were in Pau a day or two after the race came through or on a country road in 2008 near Toulouse, again off by a day or two.
Our plane

Biz class = regular seats with and empty in between

Biz class meal is pretty decent: good cheeses, nice potato salad and a very good dessert (THB only samples)

The three of us depart around 10:30 and we’re at the airport at 2, resting up in the Swiss lounge. It’s very nice except for the woman near us on her cell phone followed by a guy on his phone; at least they weren’t talking in English, so we couldn’t eavesdrop.
Old town from the plane

Hipster Hotel Josef

Street art above the intersection to the right of our hotel

The flight is only a few minutes late, the Hotel Josef has arranged a pickup at the airport. The driver points out the sights along the route: the hotel is in the old part of town.

We ate in the back patio

A gastro pub that doesn't make their own food!

Check in and then head to a famous local spot right down the street, Lokal Dlouhaaa; there’s a 40 minute wait (at 8:20). Back to the hotel and they recommend the Prague Beer Museum Pub. It’s down the street and to the right, just past Lokal.

We share a small beer tasting (Uneticke, Zatec Baronka, Ferdinand, Double IPA, and Matuska), ribs, French fries, and cold wurst with sauerkraut, $28 (yep, things just got a lot cheaper). There’s a note on the menu: the food comes from Fast Food San Nicola; the Museum gastro pub does not have a kitchen.

Get back and unpack and THB’s Dopp kit is missing (the usual stuff: meds, toothbrush, shaving stuff, etc;). Hmmmmm….THB thinks it could still be in the Zurich airport at security. It's a first, THB has always managed to keep his athlete's foot cream and dental floss close at hand.

Welcome to a drug-free Czech Republic!

(actually, it appears that over half the people awake after 9pm smoke; only THB will be forgoing meds for the next few days)

Book Review: Heat and Light, Jennifer Haigh (novel); a great fiction companion to one of THB’s top 2016 books, A Field Philosopher’s Guide to Fracking by Adam Briggle. Both involve small towns infected by fracking: small towns fighting big oil and gas. Lots of local color, plenty of the locals impacted, the fight of instant money versus long-term health, one true and one obviously based on the truth. Recommended, especially if you read Adam’s book as well

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