Onwards Ho to Medieval Cesky Krumlov

Trip Start Apr 12, 2006
Trip End Ongoing

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Friday, June 30, 2006

Cesky Krumlov was always on my top five list of places to go and check out right from the very outset of the conception of this trip. I look back now and wonder why exactly this was so - Prague, certainly, had been raved about endlessly, an inevitable 'must see', but i'm buggered if i can recall the impetus for me wanting to check Krumlov out as well. Regardless, Cesky would exceed pretty much every expectation i had of the place, a glorious medieval haven of cobblestoned streets, warm mead, castles and a vibe of chivalry, a magical place to pad the trip out and continue to chill out in.

Checked out of the Travellers Hostel bootcamp at around 9am after somehow locking my key inside the metallic squeaky locker. Though i set the alarm on my mobile phone, the bloke/jungle animal down in the other corner of the dorm who snored like a moose all night pretty much rendered it unnecessary. It wasn't the easiest of nights sleeps. The open window on my neck of the dorm room was more or less adjacent to a bustling pub right next door, which pumped forgettable songs such as 'the Macarena' and 'Mambo number 5' at excruciatingly high decibel. Perhaps if it was a more palattable playlist i probably wouldn't be complaining. The moose guy was just the icing on the cake. So i trundled out of the hostel in a thick sleety downpour of rain, onwards to the metro and eventually the nearby bus station. Sorted the route down to Cesky and made my way to the platform. With half worried expressions of confusion, a chick who sounded fairly Aussie questioned whether i spoke any English, and began to discuss with her whether or not this was the right bus. Its always good to meet people who are heading the same way as you, making it more somewhat fun if you all end up in completely the wrong city. So i once again met up with a group of Aussie chicks, Queenslanders Tiff, Therese, Lizzy and Renee, and rode together in the gloomy nastiness of this overcast Czech day.

Later in the arvo we arrived in Cesky Krumlov, a magical little medieval village, with windy cobbled roads, pointy, pitched medieval-era structures, a sense of 'bohemian' about it, the Vltava river snaking right through the guts of the place. I knew from that instant, trundling through the old streets that the choice to hang here for another five nights was a good move. Found my hostel the long way after getting a bit lost, the sensational 'Krumlov House', a little cottagey joint on the hill that resembled more that of your mate's kitchy holiday house than a travellers' hostel. Set up for artists and world travellers, with considerable attention to creating a 'homely' and cosy vibe, Krumlov House was a great choice. Plus, they had two acoustic guitars, tuned up with all strings in tact. A rarity.

Settled in to the hostel, then shuffled down to the main core of town where the chicks were staying, meeting up with their equally Aussie mates Mel and Mel, aka Mel Squared. We hit up a nearby 'restaurace' for some tucker, i had the Lumberjack pork served on a large chopping block, and proceeded to knock back the pints a a few different locations. Being the only bloke amongst a group of six chicks, i felt considerably pimp with my new harem. The conversation flowed seamlessly, as we eventually frequented a fairly fraud place called 'Music Bar', becoming an honorary woman for the night and knocking back about 8 cocktails called 'Fuzzy Kangaroo'. The milk content of these bastards led me to clutch my guts and wince on the walk home some hours later. We drank, danced to bad 80's hits and partied on, and as the place filled up with an assortment of total randoms, i found myself in a near incomprehensible conversation with the Head Road Captain of an Austrian biker gang, decked out in leather and silver biker-bling. It was my cocktails talking to his Jack Daniels, pretty much. He couldnt speak English and my Austrian is about as good as my Arabic.

So it was yet another great night, a nice change to drink with 6 chicks as opposed to 6 blokes.

I walked home with a gut full of milky kangaroo drink through the eerie mist of the chilly Krumlov night, envisaging times of yore when galant knights and townsfolk traipsed these same cobblestones with stomachs full of mead. Ahh you could smell the chivalry.

An excellent first night in this wonderful medieval haven, and four more to come.
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