A Cultural Review Of Prague

So it was 1993 when I was last in Prague and here we are Prague II The Return. This time instead of gegging in on a school trip even though I has left school by that point the return was with some lads I play footy with on a Wednesday. Yes I know any excuse for a trip away. Sadly 6 became 4 before we even left and things didn’t start of to plan as I turned up at The Rocket and we were meeting in The Fiveways ! Schoolboy errors before I had even had a drink. A swift pint and a taxi later and we were in the bar in Manchester Airport sharing a jug of Estrella. Before we knew it we had landed in Prague and were en route to our apartment. The taxi driver took us down some very narrow streets only to have us at the wrong gaff. Lucky enough the real apartment wasn’t too long away and a quick spray of Lynx and we were out in the chilly Prague night for some reason wearing t-shirts only ? The was a bar in the basement of our apartment so why not get the real night going. It was a small but busy local establishment but we were refused a drink because there was nowhere to sit for a bevy. Strange rules but hey ho and off into the Old Town of Prague we headed. So when abroad what do most Brits gravitate to. Yes you know an Irish Pub. A very busy Irish pub and a smokey Irish Pub. Old Skool cigarette rules in Prague. Deciding the main room full of boozed up brits aboard including a gang of St George’s we sat in the quieter back room. Next up a more local bar and a stop afterwards at a Pizza Shop (Eating is cheating) we stumbled across a nice bar called the “Follow Me” bar. With some chilled out dance choons and a good DJ we ended up hitting the cocktails and Sex On The Beach followed by a Cosmopolitan was the choice for me. Cracking bar but again a bit smokey but we were going to have to get used to it. A couple more bars including yes you guessed it another Irish Pub and we grabbed some ale for the apartment whilst the lads again had pizza and I treated myself to some Slovakian chips. 3am and time for bed. I had nabbed a nice double bed in a separate room but the downside was the wifi didn’t reach. I pulled up the duvet to cover my body and my legs appeared at the bottom. Alas a single duvet on its side was the conclusion after a bit of fumbling in the dark I finally sussed the out !

So Saturday morning and not feeling too bad I headed out on a walk by myself to shake the cobwebs off ready to get back on the ale again. I ended up walking over the beautiful Charles Bridge. It was 1993 the last time I was on this bridge as an innocent 19 year old. Thinking about it could not remember a thing. Indeed it was just over 24 years since I had stood on this bridge. No selfie sticks back then polluting your view. But I did have a moment and thought that 24 years is a very long time. I was last on this bridge as a child really and now I am back a fully grown (A bit too much grown in places) man. I thought of the people who in them 24 years are no longer here but the glass then being half full looked at how my life has changed for the better with getting married, kids and my first iPod etc but I am still waiting for Liverpool to win the league. I decided that I must revisit this bridge in 24 years time if I am still here. How 24 years will look so far away then and being 43 would be boss as apposed to being 67. The 19 year old me would be a lifetime away then and it will most probably be my last visit to Charles Bridge to have a moment in another 24 years age 91 is not going to happen.

Back to the apartment and my “moment” on the bridge now in the past we headed off to hit the grog again and breakfast was a pint and a plate of fries. A walk around the main shopping area and a spot of a C&A which was the shop of choice in getting my school uniform before I had to follow trends as was asking for Farah pants and a Fred Perry jumper.

A few more beers around Prague Old Town and we jumped in a cab as we had decided to go and see a footy match and Bohemians 1905 at their Dolicek home. The taxi rocked up right outside the gate with 5 mins to go and through the turnstiles we sat in the main stand to watch this top flight game. Sadly there was a lower flight goalie on show as an error lead to the home team going behind against FC Fastav Zlin. The goalie was that shite that he got subbed at half time. I have never seen that at a match before though back in 1986 I was playing for a kids team APH (Aigburth Peoples Hall) and I was a sub and we took our goalie off at 1-0 down and muggins went in goal. We won 2-1 and that remains the only thing I have ever won in footy. It was chilly sitting in the main stand so we had to warm ourselves up with a beer and left before the end (Missing the second away goal) and got a cab right outside the ground and we were back in the old town before we knew it in a sports bar.

So as with my last trip way the soccer dice were out and our four man league was coming to a boil. To cut a long story short I was leading the league and Ste needed a win to claim the Prague Premiership. With the last roll of the season Dave equalised thus giving the league and a nice £15 profit to me. I couldn’t wait to get off the plane at Speke Airport to see the crowds and then straight onto an open top bus around South Liverpool. As the night got hazier we went to our fave Follow Me bar for some more cocktails and we stopped off for a scran somewhere. Final stop of the night was an Irish Bar with a fancy dress Power Ranger and Scary Spice from Bo Selecta the highlight and we rounded the trip off with a Bailey’s each. Into my wifi less bedroom and I then spotted an wifi extender plug in my bedroom and a quick shuffle and back in me bills to the living room and back and I was back on the grid.

Sunday morning I had the lads on role call as we tried for Glastonbury tickets. Mrs Fay had bagged hers and we were trying for my mate Alan. One of the lads got in but frustratingly  we never got the page to dept the payment. So close yet so far and mixed resale day result. Expect more Glastonbury blogs nearer the time and of course the world famous daily blogs live from the farm. As my eldest Elizabeth is 12 (You have to pay full whack at 13 for Glastonbury) she will be coming down at some point to join me at the festival and ensuring my best behaviour ha ha.

So a pleasant enough flight home and another great European trip away I was soon back on the couch watching Liverpool get beat. Ended up just the four of us but we had a laugh and an adventure. I look forward to 2041 and my next visit to Prague and moment on the bridge. Just the last picture of a beautiful city that when I was 19 bypassed me. Dont get me wrong this was a boozed up weekend but I now appreciate whats around me more and always know to look up and check the local architecture out.


Fay x x x x x x x x x


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