(SB, will you talk to me now? Please.)
Prague. Across from the lovely Grand Hotel Europa building on Vaclavske Sq.
"We have to go in here"
"Its a shopping mall"
"We are shopping?"
"Not as far as I know"
"So what are we doing in a shopping arcade?"
"The guidebook says there's some cool stuff in there"
"Wow, you actually read the guidebook?"
"I am not that useless"
"Shh. Here, look"
"Hmm..what is this supposed to mean?"
"David Černý. He doesn't really explain. This particular one is supposed to the current Vaclav dude on an upside-down horse. As opposed to the original Vaclav on his proper horse outside"
"Yeah. There's more stuff by this chap. Like crawling babies on TV tower. And there is one inside the German embassy"
"Inside the German embassy?"
"Yeah. In the gardens. Its a Trabant on four legs signifying the East Germans who took refuge in the embassy in 1989"
"Can we see this thing?"
"I guess we can go there and find out"
"I guess. How far is it?"
"Mala Strana. Far. But walkable"
Obviously, we got sidetracked. A hidden garden and a cubist lampost just off the Sq which no one was interested in, a Japanese restaurant tucked away in a side street, alleys with teeny views of the buildings of Old Town Sq, the very crowded and touristy Old Town Square, the very very crowded Charles Bridge, a quiet cafe with breathtaking views of the bridge and the Castle not to mention the friendly Czech at our adjacent table who gave us restaurant recommendations in Jewish town, the water-wheel, the Lennon wall all happened before we found ourselves climbing up this quiet, hilly road in Mala Strana.
"You sure its here?"
"Yeah, see all the flags. We are in the diplomatic quarter"
"If you say so"
"There, the German flag"
"How do we get to the garden?"
"How do I know?"
"Dude, we are here to see this Trabant"
"I know but wait...hang on. I think we keep climbing"
"But the embassy is here"
"Yeah but the garden is right behind up the hill. Here, see the map. So if we climb up and look down we should be able to see it"
"You sure about this?"
"Do you have a better idea?"
A few minutes later we cross the embassy building and find ourselves next to a childrens' park. We double back through the park to the the hedges that go around the embassy building.
"There, there it is"
"Hang on, let me take a picture"
"You can't take a picture"
"Of course I can"
I drop my backpack, put the camera around my neck and start climbing.
"What are you doing?"
"Trying to take a picture"
"These are hedges. They can't hold your weight and anyway there is no grip"
"You know what? I am short and you are Bong. Unless you can drink up some magic portion and get to what the world considers normal height, this is my best bet. So give me a hand and shut up"
"Whatever you say darling"
"It is working. I got two decent pictures"
"Dude, there's a woman walking towards us"
"She is waving and saying something"
"What is she saying?"
"You are the one who knows German, not me. I think she means no photos"
"Get down now"
"She might just be saying hello"
"She is German for God's sake. How many friendly Germans have you met in your life?"
"Okay I am coming down"
Scramble down. Pick up backpack. Run for five minutes. In rush, forget that we actually have to go downhill and run uphill instead. Which ended up being just as well as we got the most picture perfect view of the city on a hill that we (mostly) had all to ourselves. End of story.
Coming up in this series: Chotu Motu go to see Mayor of Adrspach