Friday, June 4, 2010

Mikes (Pronounced Mick-esh)

Cesky Krumlov is the second most visited site in the Czech Republic, after Prague. It's a Renaissance town with an imposing castle surrounded by winding, narrow, cobblestone streets. After falling into ruin during the years of Communist rule, they've been restoring it since about 1990 and their efforts are impressive. The Baroque and Renaissance buildings are beautiful and often extravagently painted on the exterior. The streets are lined with shops, restaurants, and pubs. And the Czechs certainly know how to make beer.

Mikes Milan owns a flower shop near where we're staying. I was stricken by this large, sturdy man surrounded by the delicate offerings of his business. The fact that he spoke no English and I spoke no Czech was a bit of a problem, but after he called a friend on his cell phone to translate and explain what I wanted, he was happy to let me photograph.

Thursday, June 3, 2010


Jan is about to graduate from high school in Cesky Krumlov, The Czech Republic. He's traveled a fair bit for someone from such a small town. His trips have included the south of France and Toronto. He plans to study biology at a nearby university in the fall.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Hermann & Franz

Andrea and I ended up in the tiny town of Wesenufer on the Danube River in the north west corner of Austria near Germany. We're headed for the Czech Republic and the pouring rain finally got to us, so we stopped. The Gasthof zum Schiffmeister was the first place we went into looking for a room. There was a long table with a few folks drinking beer and they seemed friendly in spite of the fact they spoke almost no English and we speak no German. After we had checked into our room, we went back down and sat at a table near them, drinking beer and playing gin rummy. I asked if I could take some pictures and they agreed after I assured them I wasn't the papparazzi. Over the next several hours, we noticed that people came and left, but that table was always busy. The cast of characters changed continually. Sometimes it was more boisterous and sometimes less, but it was always occupied and always lively.  Several times we accepted schnapz from people sitting there and they eventually invited us to join them. 

Franz and Hermann were two of the regulars.