Rode the afternoon train out of Prague a lucky man, for I was getting out of that hell bent city of cheap beer and friends who love to drink it. Too much fun makes my head heavy and my senses weak, but it keeps my heart high and my memories bright. I will remember Prague. But the great royal Road leads eastward . . . Always eastward.
So farewell, Chip, I am going East. Have fun in Russia; I hope they do not pull out all of your fuzzy black man hair (it is considered good luck in Russia to rub the heads of black men like treasure trolls).
When the $20 three and a half hour train ride ended in Olomouc, I jumped out of the carriage and ran up into the town. It was old; the air was sharp and fresh; the streets made of stone and the buildings ornately carved. I got off of the train and walked into a Central European fairy land. I smiled. I liked the town immediately. I asked a bewildered 15 year old Czech girl the way to the town center, and she just looked at me with big bewildered eyes. Oh well, I said, and just followed the tram tracks into the town center.
I had previously arranged a Hobohideout deal with the Poets’ Corner Hostel, and I was off to find Greg, the hostel’s owner. I had to do a little leg work to make this deal, as Greg is a wise man and made sure that I proved the hobo hideout site worthy before he would offered me a bed for an entire week. But Greg is also an ol’ road dogging backpacker from the old school, and just the sort of fellow that a vagabond dreams of meeting in his travels (read his very good Czech travel blog at, The Journeys of Captain Oddsocks). Olomouc: A good town.
I followed the trams into the center of Olomouc, and I found the Poets’ Corner Hostel with little difficulty. I had picked up their brochure, which contained a really great map of Olomouc, when I was in Prague, and all I had to do was follow the step by step directions as they were written, and I was knocking at the Poets’ Corner Hostel with neither hassle nor hindrance.
I was let into the Poets’ Corner by a pretty young blonde haired girl with an odd sounding Australian accent. I told her that I was the vagabond website maker, and, to my astonishment, she was expecting me. I took her for a Czech girl who picked up an Australian accent somewhere, and asked her if this was true.
“No, dummy,” she may as well have said, “I am from Australia.”
She was from Perth, and had one of those half and half Perth accents. That explained it.
I must go to this Perth place. It seems as if it is a land of mass exodus, and there seems to be so many Perth people scattered all over this world that I can scarcely believe that there is anyone still left there. I like ghost towns. But I am highly skeptical that Perth even exists. I simply do not believe that such a puny little place on the lee side of Australia could birth so many travelers. It must really be a crappy place. I imagine that it would have to be to drive so many of its native children so far, far overseas.
But whatever was the case, the “Perth” girl invited me to sit down in the common area of the Poets’ Corner Hostel, and proceeded to give me the intro wrap to Olomouc. She spoke of churches, huge astronomical clocks, ancient this, ancient that, the old town center, good bars, tea houses, supermarkets, hiking paths, bike riding trails, lakes to swim in, and everything else that a traveler could want to hear. Olomouc sounded like music to my Prague soaked ears. I knew then that I was in a good town.
Once the Olomouc intro wrap was finished, the “Perth” girl and I then began matching each other one for one with very bad jokes. For a surprisingly long time she kept up with me stride for stride, joke for joke. She proved to be a very worthy adversary. I decided that I had better call it a draw before our off tract humor turned ugly. We had smiles on our faces.
This was my formal introduction to the Poets’ Corner Hostel and Olomouc: talk of old stuff, a girl from an imaginary place, and bad jokes. I liked this hostel immediately. I have been living in such places for many years, and my initial impression of what was going on at the Poets’ Corner was very appeasing to put it mildly. It is one of those “like home” kind of hostels, but they pull it off with incredible energy. It is a good place.
Olomouc is a place to hang my hat.
For more information on Olomouc or the Poets’ Corner Hostel please visit their official site at, or the Hobohideout pages that I made for them at, http://www.hobohideout.com/czech-republic/olomouc/poets-corner-hostel