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Dr. Dave's Journal DG takes you along as he shows up in random places around the world.

The grand finale

CZECH REPUBLIC | Sunday, 4 October 2009 | Views [814]

The hotel room was great, the view from my window onto the town square was perfect, but the wi-fi connection was horrible. I ended up having to use a public network out on the square, and even that was occasionally dodgy. I must have looked rather odd walking in circles around the square holding out my laptop, trying to get a connection to the internet. This is why I stopped posting entries to this journal midweek......

In any event, the concerts went off without a hitch except for the fact that, during the Saturday afternoon concert for the conservatory alumni, the members of the orchestra who weren't playing during my concerto apparently didn't realize that while they were offstage in the lobby warming up, we could hear every note, especially during the quiet parts. Robert Kozanek's father, the conductor, actually had to dispatch one of the back bench 2nd violins to tell them to shut up. I wonder how much of that we'll see/hear on the DVD that's being produced.....

There were many Esperanto speakers in the area, all of whom were friendly and helpful. In fact, as was the case in Bulgaria and most parts of Brazil, Esperanto was much more useful to me than English. Few people around Kroměříž speak English, and the ones I ran into who do only speak it passingly. The one exception was the son (Petr Kuznik) of the man who interviewed me for the local paper (Antonin Kuznik). He became my de facto translator when no Esperantists were about and really enjoyed the role, seeing as how he had never had the experience of putting his school English to use translating in real time for an American before. The story of how Petr and I ended up at a Kroměříž nightclub until 6:00 on Saturday morning is perhaps best left untold. I will say that it involved glasses of absinthe that neither of us cared for.

There is a short review of the Friday concert and an interview with me in the 9/29/09 edition of their local weekly paper. You can see both the Czech originals (with color photos) and English translations in the Articles and Interviews sections of my website.

If you like quiet, inexpensive, out of the way places with great architectural and cultural history, and can find your way around a Czech phrasebook or learn Esperanto, or both (I would recommend the latter!), I recommend Moravia (the eastern half of Czech Republic) in general and Kroměříž in particular. I could see living there. It is the quietest place I've been in since our honeymoon in the middle of nowhere in Maine.

Tags: czech republic, kromeríž



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