Blogs from Hradec Králové Region, Czech Republic, Europe

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Searching Broumov for Captain Roland Webster Field Hospital After a month on the Long Walk, in terrible conditions, Captain Webster was near his destination. He went on ahead in a forward party to make arrangements. His diary entries for Braunau (Broumov) continues: ’10.2.45 Went to Hotel Birke, quite nice hotel in a rather dirty medieval town, after seeing Burgomeister (mayor) in his big house, and saw Sheffranek (the German staff physician, a military rank, equivalent of a major or the NATO code OF-3). He gave us beer and told me that Captain Robin Robertson was in Elim Chapel with 60 sick British, and that all Brit., French and Belg. were to go there. And that 400 v.sick Russians were in a factory near station (we had seen from outside). Our Russians to go there. We were ... read more
Inside of Hussite Church. 'Small stage'.
St Wenceslas Church. Still under renovation
VEBA textile mill complex at Broumov.


Uncle Roland’s Long Walk Captain Webster, Marion’s Uncle, the doctor, was constantly making protests about the conditions that the Russians were enduring in Lamsdorf. So much so, Marion believes, that he was given a new assignment to care for largely Russians, but all soldiers from Stalags in the area in a larger hospital at Kozle, 63km from VIIIB. Today we found ourselves in one of the points Kozle’s star shaped defensive moats, constructed after the Silesian Wars of 1740-42 and 1744-45 and finished in 1765. It’s a beautiful spot with signboards for a ‘Citywalk’, trees, birdsong, allotments, an arsenal and more. At the very tip of one star point there is now ‘BSP’s’ builder’s yard, but in 1943 it was the hospital Roland was sent to. It’s fitting that this would become his base, as Berwick, ... read more
Hospital No 3 Kozle
The Outer Castle Garison Hospital
Friendly German speaking gent, Gieraltowice


The boot camp was in full swing the next day. Breakfast was set for 8. After the experience of yesterday getting into the pension, nobody quite knew what to expect of the breakfast fayre. The Other Half had some more bad things to say about the bedsheet, which she described as being exfoliated all night. Who needs Liz Earle? The brekkie spread transpired to be quite amenable, although the hot dog type sausages were not exactly Czech in standard. The TV was showing a rerun of Czech's Got Talent or the equivalent. Fritz and his backing dancers pranced about to a tuneless number. It was a measured success, given that his wig didn't fall off. I suspect looking like a badger worked against him in the scoring. The railway station wasn't exactly round the corner, so ... read more
Hradec Kralove
Hradec Kralove
East Bohemia Museum


Thursday was a national holiday in Poland – Corpus Christi – so most of the shops and businesses were closed. We took this as an R&R day, and traveled south by bus about 3 hours away to the Karkonosze Mountains, which are part of the Czech-Polish border. We found a bobsled roller coaster, and decided to take a quick ride. It was lots of fun! We then took the cable cars/gondolas up from the Czech side to Sněžka, the highest peak in the Czech Republic, at 1600 meters (5250 feet). At the top, we hiked down a bit to a mountaintop restaurant for lunch. After walking down a bit further, we then took a single chair lift all the way to the bottom. Spectacular views! We then stopped at the Wang church, a Norwegian stave church ... read more
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Dvur Kralove Zoo is situated just outside the small town of Dvur Kralove nad Labem in Northern Czech Republic. I stayed in the hotel that is in the zoo which I would recommend since it allows free access to the zoo after opening times. This was helpful for seeing some of the more elusive animals (though even with multiple visits, I missed the African Civet, seen it before in the wild anyway) though the indoor areas couldn’t be accessed after closing time. The main reason I visited the zoo was to see one of the last Northern White Rhinos. This is I’m sure the main thing that this zoo is famous for and I really had no idea what else there was, but there is a lot more nice stuff besides the rhinos. - The zoo ... read more


Adrspach-Teplice Rocks As is it was to be a long journey from Cesky Krumlov to the small town of Teplice we broke the journey in Hradec Kralove, North East of Prague. Another town with an ancient city centre. There was an informative walk around the centre with posts in English so that you knew what you were looking at. A pleasant way to spend a few hours, but not worth a journey in itself. The town was completely dead on a Saturday, no atmosphere at all. Teplice is a small place on the northern Polish border, the reason to go there are the walks through the wonderful sandstone rock formations, the largest single rock formation in Europe. If you imagine Bryce canyon in grey placed in a pine forest you have a picture of it. Huge ... read more
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Via Praha, I make my way northwards, to Trutnov. I arrive after five hours on three different trains, walk to my guesthouse, and learn that the room I booked has been given to someone else. Unfortunately, I don't have any written booking confirmation, as I only called them up and reserved a room using a mixture of English, German and Russian. The lady at the reception nervously makes a lot of phone calls and checks the internet for a place to stay for that sad-looking creature sitting in front of her, who doesn't even understand her language. After maybe half an hour, she finally succeeds in this task and drives me to a place out of town, which actually seems to be closer to the Battlefield, Obscene Extreme's traditional venue. For an acceptable price, I get ... read more
Fuck the Facts
Coldwar singer
Where's the band?


It’s been cold and rainy for the last week. Ava and I both miss hanging out in the park and are hoping for a bit of sunshine soon. We did make it to Prague last weekend for a day. The main purpose of the visit was to locate the Pension David, which is the place we will stay next Sunday. Early Monday morning, we will begin our trip home! We’re both excited about spending 11 weeks on the farm before leaving for Nanchang, China the last week in August. I just sent my signed contract to a university there this morning, and am happy to say that one of my best friends (Lauryn) and her husband (Zac) will be joining us for this adventure. Lauryn will teach at the university as well and we’re hoping Zac ... read more
Close Up!
A pretty balcony in Prague
Cool building


“Let’s drink beer and burn the children!” Monica exclaimed with great enthusiasm. While this may sound a bit alarming, I can promise you it’s all in good fun. 15 minutes outside Hradec Králové, there’s a lovely little village. Jayna was nice enough to bring Ava and me there for Walpurgis Night. If you would like to read more about the history of the festival, you can follow this link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Walpurgis_Night. Though the forecast called for rain, it was only a bit overcast and pretty warm outside. Jayna had told me about her village, so I was really excited to see it for myself. She told me her village was a peaceful place where everyone knew each other and helped each other out. It sounded like my own village on Chandler Hill, and I was excited to ... read more
Jayna instructing the children
Bonfire Time
Enjoying the neighbors


It's seemed like forever since I've seen nice weather! We've traveled 3 countries in the cold, and it's been amazing to finally feel some sunshine. The last two weeks have been warm and Ava's even been able to wear her pretty sundresses from time to time. The flowers, leaves, and blossoms have really added to the natural beauty of Hradec Králové. People are out and about now even more than during the cold weather months. The parks are full of children and Ava enjoys being one of them. She has even learned to ask, "Can I play?" in Czech as well as "I am Ava". She was scared to ask children to play when we first started visiting the park, but she's gaining confidence. I'm so glad that she has two girls at her daycare center ... read more
Ava Cooking Dinner
Building Sandcastles
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