Monday, July 31, 2006

Max's Weekend

I have been busy and that is the only reason I did not manage to write this past weekend. Abby V was here from the London and Free & Easy was here from Bucharest.

Cocktails and Politics

Friday night was mostly about cocktails and discussions of current events and politics. Abby V is a political journalist. The Belgian was out with us too, and he is one of the most well-informed people I know.

We had the kind of discussion that I love. Three people, three different backgrounds, three different sets of opinions, but all three well-informed, all three able to express ourselves, all three able to listen to each other, question each other and to agree and disagree calmly.

(Only three because Free & Easy was off in her own world dreaming about the rugby.)

We also had a very nice dinner and finished off with a nightcap at a bar that specialises in single malt whiskies – I had a non-chill filtered Clynelish, which made me happy.

Day of Culture

Abby V and I were determined to get some culture into our weekend. After a lovely brunch at Fraktal, we walked down to the Old Town to see the Jan Šibík photography exhibition entitled Stories. Jan Šibík is a photo journalist and Stories contains some of his most harrowing photos - Sri Lanka after the tsunami; Afghanistan, Iraq and Liberia at war; an AIDS hospice in Ukraine; Angola, Palestine and more. Amazing, beautiful, poignant photographs. You can see many of them here:

After our second coffee break, Abby V and I headed to the Mucha Museum. I had never been before and, to be honest, I wasn’t expecting much. Alfons Mucha is arguably the most famous art nouveau artist and his work is pleasing to look at, but I find that it all looks the same after a while. The redeeming feature of the museum was a film about Mucha’s life and work. Now Abby V and I are obsessed with making a trek to Moravský Krumlov to see Mucha’s defining work, the Slavonic Epic.

We then had a beer and snack break and I introduced Abby V to pivní sýr – beer cheese. Beer cheese is a soft, smelly cheese that you mix with mustard, chopped onions and beer, and then eat on bread while you are drinking more beer. Abby V liked it.

In the evening we changed our cultural focus from the visual arts to music. Abby V and I went to a jazz club to hear the Matej Benko Trio. They were fantastic and I would definitely go to see them again.

(Free & Easy was at a wedding.)


Our day of rest, of course.

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