Sunday, July 11, 2010


Yesterday I ventured to Bratislava, Slovakia. It is 55km from Vienna which meant an hours train ride. My fellow explorers included Blake, Markus, Aapo and Alma. We arrived at 9.30 AM, and decided to have a stroll around the town before meeting the bicycle group for lunch at noon. Cue failed communication take 1.

I took my role as "Minister of War" very seriously and led the group through the guided walk in my guidebook. We managed to see practically all the sights listed by lunch...

Some of the memorable sights are a few whimsical statues of a Napoleonic officer peering over a bench in the Main square (with the French embassy right behind him). The Schoner Naci greets visitors to Kaffee Mayer with a smile and a top hat.

Cumil or "the Peeper" grins at the tourists from an open manhole. There is even a Man at Work sign just in case you had failed to notice him.
The last statue caused much hilarity as a Paparazzi peers around the corner of a building. Pictures of the photographers taking pictures of the paparazzi.

The other strange sight was a cannonball lodged in the wall above the chocolate shop (wonderful chocolate truffles...they were yummy).

Eagerly stepping into the traditional Slovak pub for lunch we thought the bikers would be impatiently waiting for us but alas no. No sooner had we sat down that Jack planks down with a sigh. The first question that springs to mind is where are all the others? Well he left them early on into the ride and they would probably stumble in in about an hour. Oh well, we'll have lunch an wait. Tick tock, tick tock and 1pm arrives and no bikers. Cue first sms, they'll be there at 3.

We took off the Castle we'd reserved to see after lunch and had a look around. The view encompasses Old Town, the Danube and the part of Bratislava you'd rather not see, the Communist built prefab housing.

After our climb we rewarded ourselves with afternoon tea and some more sightseeing. We bumped into the Jakaranda Children's Choir from Pretoria, they told me I don't sound South African...

Since we'd seen all the sights we did them again and then tried some off the beaten track streets and ended up on a grassy patch next to the Danube. Why hello Mr killer mosquito, I would love to be eaten alive. Suddenly the shady patch didn't look so great.

Moving on to the UFO (I'm not kidding, its called the UFO) we suddenly meet the Team Bicycle, at 4.30 PM. We rose into the UFO to take in the famed 360 degree view offered by the observation deck. After a drink and some dessert we parted ways to the park or the pool and met up for drinks before dinner.

We rushed through Old Town to a restaurant (and hence the touristy sights for the third time) before catching the Twin City Liner (Catamaran) home at 10.30 PM.

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