Prague Observations

by john on May 22, 2007

Statue on Charles Bridge

Having spent about 10 days in Prague, Czech Republic, I offer the following observations:

The business part of the trip I spent at the Prague Hilton, a very fine hotel and of course quite Americanized. The family vacation part of the trip I spent in a small apartment at the foot of Vysehrad Castle. When I went to bed at the Hilton I heard the sound of the HVAC(Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning) system. When I went to bed at the apartment I had my windows open and heard the sound of people walking across cobblestone. In the former I could have been anywhere in the world. In the latter, I knew I was in Prague.

A day trip to Terezin, a former concentration camp, is a sobering affair but well worth the tri Being a “model” camp, I can only imagine what a visit to a death camp like Auschwitz-Birkenau or Treblinka must be.

I still can’t get over the fact you can get a beer at the movie theatres in Europe. The assigned seating made everything very efficient, although it was easy because the show was sparsely attended.

Smoking is everywhere. I played a little poker in the Hilton Casino and the way they dealt with the smoking issue there was to make half the table non-smoking. Fortunately smoke doesn’t bother me.

This is the last hand I played in Prague. I was on the button in an 8-handed 200/400 limit holdem game (that’s like 10/20 US). All fold to the Swede one off the cutoff and he raises the 200 blind to 400. He’s been very aggressive preflop but has shown little aggression postflop beyond a continuation bet. I am confident I can outplay him postflop.  I have a very tight image as I have only been showing down premium hands. I three bet with 8::c9::d. The small blind, a new player to the game who is drunk and only recently joined the game calls the additional 500 and the BB joins in as well. Flop comes 6::s7::d3::h. Drunk and BB check, Swede bets, I raise. I’m really liking my hand here as I flopped absolute perfect for my hand, with a well disguised OESD(Open End Straight Draw) given my image and action in the hand. The Drunk calls, BB folds, the Swede three bets and I cap it. The drunk calls two more bets and the Swede calls. Turn is the gorgeous 5::d giving me the nut straight. This time the Drunk leads out with a bet. The Swede calls, I raise and both of them call. The river is the K::d, putting 3 diamonds now on the board. The Drunk leads out, the Swede makes a crying call saying “show me your straight or flush” and while I normally don’t put people on runner/runner I just call. The Swede had K::sK::h (and was very surprised to see my hand), and of course the Drunk had 2::d4::d, with the winning flush. 8400 pot down the drain. That was enough poker in Prague.

Graffiti is a real problem in Prague. We saw very few children in the tourist areas. Pilsner Urquell tastes better in Prague. The Tram system works very well. Cobblestones are brutal on the feet.

{ 1 comment }

logtar May 22, 2007 at 10:19 pm

Prague is on my list of must visit places. A little jelous right now.

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