Friday, July 17, 2009

All Pragued out...

Am wondering when Bollywood will discover this visually stunning destination .... and ruin the mystique forever? 'Mission Impossible' was shot here, so was 'Amadeus' ( but of course!), and Dr. Zhivago. The views are spectacular, especially from Charles Bridge. People are milling around. But where are the locals? For a city of just over a million people, one wonders where they are in this vastness? Tourists tourists everywhere not a Czech in sight!! Which is not a bad thing. Think Martina Hingis. Or even the other Martina. See what I mean?
The interesting thing about listening to Don Giovanni at the gloriously exhuberant Estates Theatre is that it premiered there! Apart from that, I was not particularly impressed and wondered what Opera buff, cousin Gautam Rajadhyaksha would have thought of the soprano hitting those high notes so shakily!
'La Provence' at last night's dinner was depressing, what with exceedingly drunk Brit louts puking on the pavement outside. Perhaps tonight will make up for it.... though I have just slurped a gigantic vanilla icecream with warm berries at the magnificent Municipal House cafe - so floridly Art Nouveau, I nearly keeled over and fell trying to photograph the dazzling chandeliers. But the charming band playing Miles Davis made up for the excess , and even the blistering heat.... by the way, the city provides a lovely civic touch with huge water tankers that drive through the squares spraying the streets and passers by to bring down temperatures. For a conducted tour, I was tempted to climb into one of the restored vintage cars that take tourists around in stately splendour, but settled for a coach. I could have picked a horse carriage ( I like the leather 'nappies' strapped at the horses' rears to catch their you-know-what from spoiling the place )..... but our ghoda gaddis in Mumbai are far more charming.
Shopping wise, remember this is the birthplace of BATA shoes. They remain as ugly as I remember them from my school days. This is also the place that invented Pilsner beer. Since I'm not a beer drinker, I shall reserve my comment. I have bought nothing besides a purple t-shirt. Since I have been living in shorts, I have turned the colour of a well- made toast ( with a caramel topping). No complaints. We leave for Krakow tomorrow on a slow train. Since I have been 'pigging out', literally and figuratively, I'm all set to starve in Poland.... before heading home via Frankfurt. Does Prague figure on my 'Must re-visit' list? Naah. The Americans bombed it four times during the war. The country is young. Floods and fires have destroyed it several times through the centuries. But it left me cold. Poor Prague... or poor me??


ms said...

why would you starve in poland? is it to honour the memory of the concentration camp victims? and prague left you cold because of the fire and flood damage. seen mumbai lately?

kala said...

Greatly interesting. Vivid. Post some photographs.

Nandinikakoti said...

Despite everything what is to be cheered about is that you tried to pick out charm in each of your activities. Now this is what I call sporting spirit

cmpershad said...

"Tourists tourists everywhere not a Czech in sight!!"...isn't it a case of ghar ki murgi daal baraabar!:)

Anonymous said...

Bollywood needs original stories before location.

pras said...

Dear Shobha mam,

I have wrriten an original story which is based on HUMAN BRAIN MEMORY ERASER SOFTWARE. I request you to pls go through following Synopsis & let me know your valued comments.

Pls let me know if you could help me in getting a name as i devoted my 3 years in writing this story. I believe you will value this little talent.

Prasun Kulshrestha


The story is about four scientist who gets the opportunity to develop a software for INDIAN NATIONAL SECURITY RESEARCH & CENTRE ( NSRC ) by which The Indian army could trace the communication channel of any country. The four scientists were asked to complete it within the campus of NSRC & that too within 40 days. Also, after those 40 days, their brain memories will be ERASED permanently. During project, scientists come to know that their software development is continuously sent to other country by illegal tracing of their own computer. This was only possible if someone from NSRC is involved with that country .Now they were in a huge problem as if they complain any officer in NSRC, that officer could be the person involved with the other country. Also, they cannot tell police as they are trapped at NSRC for the next 40 days. And if they do not expose, their memories will be erased on day 40.

Finally, they complete the project on day 40, they get their memories erased for ever. But, On day 41 they Expose the scam of NSRC to this world without recovering the memories of those 40 days. Every sequence of proving the scam have potential of intelligence & Tricks.

Moreover, the story uses few very interesting concepts as under:

· Memory erasing software

· Anti Memory erasing software.

· Memory Recycle Bin

· Secondary Memory recycle bin

· Memory recovery software

· Vedic mathematics

The story is all about Use of BRAIN & its power which fools law & order to make a complete scam of 130 Cr. Rupees….Its full of suspense, thrill & intelligence which would leave your Brain to imagination. The other best part is, 130 cr rupees is a scam money & only one scientist out of four gets this money.

numerounity said...

Cool...looks like someone is having all the fun- around the world!!

Pl do not starve...bon appetite!!!

introspection said...

You seem to have started missing Mumbai, Bollywood rather. With Hilary Clinton doing the Taj and rains playing havoc, (AB trying to earn some civilian points by helping stranded women in rain) the action is of course here. But remember you have escaped the muck, dirty roads, and being stranded indoors during these wet wet days. So balance the 2 and you are better off at Prague or Poland.

This last comment on your post has given me memory erasure already. Wonder what will happen when/if this gets published. But interesting nevertheless.

Jogeshwar said...

I liked reading this post. I'm intrigued, Prague does not figure on your 'Must re-vist' list, what could be on your list?? Could you share your 'Must re-visit' list?

green pirate toy said...

LOL..why starve in Poland???
I yearn for a travel trip like the one you are having :)
have Loadsa fun!!!

Poonam said...

Hello ma'm.
Thats interesting.
Just to say a HI!

Theyoginme said...

Prague and Budapest seem to be tourist magnets even in the pre Berlin Wall collapse days. I would be interested in your posts from Poland - to get an Indian view. Have many friends from there. One American friend spent a year in a satellite city of Warsaw in 1987. The whole town ran out of toilet paper and he had to take the train to Warsaw to load up on supplies. Are you planning to visit Auswitz?

milind said...


try and visit seychelles.

Shreya said...

Dear Mrs De

I have conducted a Research on the Social and Commercial acceptability of Eunuchs in India, with special emphasis on how to integrate them into mainstream society and provide them with a respectable livelihood.

You are known for breaking mindsets and pursuing revolutionary ideas with passion.
I would love to discuss this issue with you, perhaps through a small email conversation.

I eagerly look forward to your reply

Shreya Agarwal

numerounity said...

You are missing from the scene!

kala said...

Would you care to write about Sach Ka Samna and Smitha Mathai? I really felt bad for her. Would you like to be on that hot seat?

introspection said...

I am back here after reading Kala's post about Sach ka Samna. I think this is going to be hit TV programme. It already is.
The last episode of 'Yousuf Husain' was obnoxious. The questions were embarassing, but his answers were even worse. The guy was showing off what a filthy and pervert life he led. He unashamedly admitted to having sex with females younger than his own daughter, displayed no shame in saying he had sex with relatives, and prostitutes. All this he said in the presense of his grwon up daughter and son -in - law. tch tch. what a shame. I agree these things do happen in in our society, but India has a legacy of dignity and cutlure. Displaying such episodes does not amount to facing the truth (as the TV channel has us believe). In fact it is a vulgar display of human disgrace, and sends disgusting messages to viwers when YH types proudly show off what an irresponsible man he was who married thrice, but did'nt work to save even one marriage. Shame.

As for smitha. I think she has been wronged by the channel. Star plus should be sued by her. How can a polygraph machine record truth or false in a hypothetical situation. Her question was very subjective and the machine has no way to decipher how she would act in situation that has not even arisen.
Except star plus no one is gaining from this programme.

OSAI Chella said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
OSAI Chella said...

happy to see your Post at and now i can follow you easily with my morning chai! Happy blogging SD!

with warm regards
Osai Chella

Anonymous said...

My first time visiting your blog and you disappointed me by saying that Prague is not on your must re-visit list? You have to share your re-visit list with us now.

lightning strikes said...

I love ur art of narrating the experiences.

Chandni Moudgil said...

Well. Bollywood did passingly showcase the gorgeous city in one the most "pretty as a picture" movies of our times - Minaxi - a tale of 3 cities.
Serene and squeaky clean , cobbled streets , old rustic buildings and an ancient history . The movie did turn out visually stunning . wish it would have had met a better fate - at the box office or perhaps at the production table :)

Shoe said...

Cool!!!... I am going backpacking in Prague and Vienna myself next month. As expected all my friends /family -even umerican co wokers are horrified. Why are you going alone they ask me.

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