To Litomerice from Decin

Before breakfast today – at Decin, I walked to a small grassy, isolated square and sat on an ancient, low sandstone wall, to practice the Recorder. It was about 6.30 am, I was all alone… Not for long!

After a few minutes a rather unkempt woman appeared, rather Dickensian in appearance, and sat beside me. I had a brief sense of Brazilian deja-vue and automatically went for the crutch – where my iPhone was secreted.

She nodded along as I tongued and fingered my way through “Deck the Halls”… A welsh tune and to some a recognizable Christmas carol. When I had finished with a flourish, she gave a big grin and clapped!!!!

Lest you assume that she then tossed coins, the reverse was true – she asked me for money….. I said of course – if you will listen to another piece? She shook her head violently and scurried off – obviously no appreciation of the finer things in life.

Thoughts on automatic movement or heat sensing lights. Most of us (other than Tony Abbott who still can’t fathom it out) appreciate that these timed lights save power, reduce energy needs. It has dawned upon me that there is a direct relationship between the cost of a hotel room and the duration these lights stay on. Hence in hostel accommodation, a simple fumble with the key and darkness descends. One rapidly learns to have the key out of one’s handbag and orientated the right way pointing to the keyhole.

Any transgression from this path then, as sure as the Liberals will win, the lights go out.

I have found a sort of answer to the problem, I approach the door, key out and orientated and then begin a sort of pirouette routine, delicately jumping up and down to maintain the light. The down side is that whilst the lights stay on, manipulating the key into the keyhole as I pas de deux at the door, seriously impairs my ability to coordinate the bloody key into the keyhole!

The pathway along the Elbe in the Czech Republic is not quite as well maintained as in Germany. To be fair there are occasional dead ends which I suspect are the consequence of floods washing the path away!