I was traveling with a Polish lady to drink coffee at the home of an English lady who was reaching out to new arrivals in Prague. However it was at the end of the Metro line and then a rural bus ride to get to her place. You get the level of desperation I had to meet people to undertake this adventure, having only been in Prague a couple of weeks.
The Polish lady and I were speaking English as our mutual language, she spoke French and I speak German, so English was the way forward. The bus journey required us to ‘request’ the bus stop, so we were concentrating on the bus stop before the one we needed in order to press the button and alert the driver. Neither of us knew really where we were, her pronunciation of Czech was much better than mine so when she read them out, I was still confused. Eventually an elderly couple behind us could no longer put up with our conversation.
It is unusual to find elder Czechs that speak English, most speak German and some Russian. On a rural bus ride I did not expect to find someone who not only spoke good English but three weeks previously had holidayed in Stratford-Upon-Avon, the home of William Shakespeare. He let us know the stop we needed to press the button, told us about his ‘chips and fish’ he had eaten but how the English beer and cider were disgusting. He went on to elaborate.
Several months ago this gentleman was in hospital with terrible stomach trouble. It was enough to put him in the clinic for two weeks. After many tests and analysis they could not find out what was causing the problem, so he doctor gave him sound advice. Only drink Pilzn beer, Budvar or Urquell Pilsner, then at the end of a meal drink Becherovka. You will be fine. He told us that he had followed that formula and his tummy troubles had gone. So the tip-top advice from the old man on the bus, is to drink Czech Pilzner beer and finish off with the liquor made of alcohol and herbs and your tummy will be delighted, it is a formula I plan to follow perhaps even beyond my time in the Czech Republic. I can inform you with great confidence that so far it seems to be working very well!!
Becherovka – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Becherovka
Pilzn beer – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pilsner