Sunday, September 7, 2014

The shortest possible "travel day", washing, an appalling concert and a near disaster!!!

Saturday in Prague was the shortest possible travel day as we bade farewell to Scenic Tours and moved from the Marriott to our little AirBnB flat in Liliova (about 100 m from the Charles bridge and unbelievably central!). After a leisurely start and a conveniently late Marriott breakfast, we packed and intended to walk when Martina, the Tour Director, told us that we were welcome to catch a lift with another couple who had a transfer to another inner-city hotel - this would cut our small journey in half!! So after doing the complete tourist thing and dragging our bags through the Old Town Square and along Karlova we arrived at a truly lovely apartment - very modern, Ikea chic and with a great washing machine with a short cycle!!
Domestic chores and the stringing of temporary clotheslines behind us we headed to the Klementium, a large collection of buildings - formerly a Jesuit College several centuries ago - for a tour and a concert which we had booked from Australia. The tour was OK - it included a climb up a rather tall tower but the views across the city were well worth it - but the concert was very, very ordinary!! It was an hour of a chamber group with organ. They trotted out all the usual traveller's delights but it was not very good at all!! Ah well! You can't win them all - that was our first dud!!!
Needing a beer we walked home - all of 80 metres! - took off some of our glad rags, and decamped to a recommended pub across the Charles Bridge in Mala Strana.
While we were attempting to read the menu Mick using the Calendar app for illumination, saw "Turandot" on today's date. Horrified we realised that we had mixed up the dates for our dud concert and the Opera which had already started!!!!!!! (See, not even the most organized are beyond making a mistake!) We bolted across the Charles Bridge to home for the tickets, snaffled a taxi (who must have thought if was Christmas as we are sure we overpaid him significantly in our haste) and made it just as they went in after Interval!!! Having "bumped" the young couple who had been enjoying our front loggia seats for the first half we breathlessly sat down and went straight into "Nessun Dorma"!!!! Aaaaahhhh!

Certainly we felt foolish, annoyed with ourselves and a trifle agitated but to be in such real quality again so quickly (especially after the "dud") was soothing for the anxious soul. The music was lovely, the singing very, very good, the theatre amazing and the whole experience, albeit foreshortened, was great. Wandering out with the other concertgoers, we walked through Wenceslas Square - sort of like Kings Cross on a Saturday night - had a tourist beer (it had been a rather hot day as well) and watched the crowds before heading home! At least we now have our last night in Prague free tomorrow night and the moon will be full ...........

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