Repatriate Games


Czech Republic

Lichtenštenjnské Stezky! A Revisit!

A fairy tale-like cycling route in southern Moravia.

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Bzenecké Vinobraní!

“Czech”-ing out a few harvest festivals in Moravia. And no, the pun never gets old.

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Autumn, Burčák, and Esel-kicking Stairs

Bunches of little obligations have recently kept me from doing the activities I prefer to do, though I have still found time to go in search of autumn.

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Hrad Veveří.

One of Anna Grace’s former AIS friends now posted to Abu Dhabi is visiting this week, couch surfing among friend’s homes (ours included); and our home was declared the Teenage Girl Epicenter for last weekend. Over breakfast this past Thursday I reminded Tony. He simply looked up from his coffee and asked, “So, where are we going this weekend?”

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Birthday Weekend in Prague

The International School of Prague hosted a basketball exchange with AIS this past weekend. If cheering on the Knights is not reason enough to visit one of my favorite cities (and over my birthday, no less), there is always the promise of delicious food and a weekend of shopping (even on Sunday!) to seal the deal.

Along the drive we cross a series of three reservoirs and have always wondered about the church that sits in the middle of one of them. A little research (finally!) revealed the church to be St. Linhart, and the only remnant of the now flooded ancient village of Mušov. The reservoirs were created between 1975 and 1989 to alleviate flooding along the River Dyje. Now we know.


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Burčák. How the Neighbors do Sturm.

With lovely weekend weather recently it was the perfect time to “Czech” out a wine festival across the border, in the town of Mikulov. (No, the “Czech” jokes never get old to me.)  To our surprise, the little festival we had visited two years ago was all grown up!  Thankfully, even with shuttle buses from remote parking areas and an entrance fee, the festival retained its small-town flavor.  Much of that flavor of course coming from Burčák, the Czech equivalent to Sturm.

Queues formed for a glass of the refreshing, still-fermenting wine from private vintners all throughout the town.


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Lichtenštenjnské Stezky!

Two weekends ago our Saturday dawned spectacularly beautiful. The Oldest Teenager and his visiting girlfriend were in Salzburg, and the Youngest Teenager was busy with academic matters, so once again Tony and I were left to our own devices. When we lived in the U.S. bicycle riding was a favorite activity, whenever we could sneak it in between familial obligations and homefront chores. But after our 52 kilometer Mom’s Day ride, we were anxious to get back in the saddle.

Road Trip: The Bohemian Crown Jewels

It takes so little to inspire us to hit the road when Austria is closed (in this case, the double whammy of the regular Sunday closure plus the following Whit Monday). In this instance, the inspiration was the exhibition of the Bohemian Crown Jewels, on rare display for two weeks to mark the 700th anniversary of the coronation of King Charles IV.  So off to Prague we were on Sunday morning.

Visiting the Neighbors: Hodonin, CZ

A UN Holiday for Tony; a school day for Anna Grace; and a jet lagged Jack wanting to catch a few zzz’s.  What to do?  Of course, Tony and I hit the road, to a little village in Moravia from where the first president of Czechoslovakia, Tomáš Masaryk, hailed. Masaryk convinced US President Wilson of the need to abolish the Austro-Hungarian monarchy.
The town was easily visited in a couple of hours, including a stop at the destroyed and now shuttered Jewish Cemetery.

We were surprised to see the Polish Bar Mleczny (“Milk Bar”) in Hodonin. These cafeterias were first created in the late 1800s to offer affordable comfort food to workers whose workplace offered no canteen. Many were closed in the post-war years, but “welfare state nostalgia” has brought about their return.  We have eaten in milk bars in Krakow, and though we were tempted by the aromas wafting through the door, we kept our rumbling tummies “in Czech” until we reached a favorite restaurant at the border.
Anna Grace and I discovered this restaurant about three years ago, part of a wellness hotel along the Iron Curtain Bike Trail at the border between CZ and Austria.  The restaurant is popular with both Austrians and Czech (and hugely popular with cyclists); the staff speak English, Czech, and German; and accept Euros and Koruna in payment. The food is very simple; excellently prepared; and about as costly as a milk bar lunch!  I shared this restaurant only once with a friend, who hated it. Now we share it with no one. 

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