martedì 26 novembre 2013

Where I feel at home (dove mi sento a casa)

2013-11-08 13.14.35 It might sound weird but the city where I feel at home is Brno. Why weird? well, because I'm italian, actually, not even italian I'm from Napoli therefore I'm southern! :)
However I first visited Brno almost 10 years ago, since that time I can ensure you that the city changed a lot, both in good and in bad ways. 10 years ago it was my first time in the former eastern Europe and I could really feel a huge difference with the west part.
My mind was western and I considered the lack of sport and expensive cars, the lack of fashion brand clothes and fancy houses as poverty and sadness. Today I've learnt that to BE is more important that to HAVE (and show up). I've learnt it thanks to Brno and the people I've met here. In total I lived almost 4 years (in 2 different times) in the city which is the reason I consider myself at home every time I go back!
The trip from Wroclaw was a bit complicated, via blablacar to Katowice (poland), where I was supposed to catch a train at around 1pm and meet a friend in Ostrava (a city in Czech rep close to the polish border). Eventually I missed the train for 2, two minutes...!

So I had to spend 2 hours more in Katowice to wait the next train and this city is not properly an interesting one... :) Once in the train, after the border the first stop was Bohumin, a small czech town where I had to wait a local train to Brno. In total 10 hours journey for 400km...not bad! :)
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2013-11-07 20.36.36 Once in town I went to Hostel Mitte, in a historical building in the very centre of the city, the staff is friendly and a generous breakfast is included in the price.

It was time to have a deserved dinner, if you want to eat something good, restaurants like Pegas – where you can try their own brewed beer; Starobrno (brand of the local beer) restaurant and Zelena Kocka are most probably the best, despite being now very touristic.
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After the dinner I wanted to deeply breathe 'my city' so I took a walk all around the centre and up the Spilberk hill, the historical castle where many political prisoners were incarcerated during the Austro-Hungarian empire. A beautiful walk in the garden around this castle offer the best view of the city, in the night the only noise you can hear is the trams' clatter. My suggestion? If the weather is nice, bring a bottle of wine and drink it there with friends and/or the person you like...
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The next day I visited the city park of Luzanky and the city hill called 'kravi hora' (cow's hill) with its fancy neighborhood, the colorful vegetable market
The S. Peter and Paul church, with its bells that ring at 11 o'clock in the morning instead of 12 noon...the reason for it is that during the swedish invasion attempt, they promised that they would call off their attack in case they weren't able to conquer the city by midday on the next day.
Brno was the only city that survived the Swedes during this war cause some citizens decided to ring the bells an hour early on this date, fooling the Swedesh...

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2013-11-08 13.21.04 Another tip: Check out for the daily menu (‘denni menu ) and go for it during every weekday between 11am and 2pm, almost every restaurant has it, is displayed at the entrance, with price as well, generally around 90 czk – less than 4 € with a very good beer you are happy to pay 5€ in total