Compact archive February 2006

Fifth Workshop on Treebanks (TLT 2006)

Institute of Formal and Applied Linguistics is organizing a two-week series of workshops and invited lectures which include the Fifth Workshop on Treebanks and Linguistic Theories (TLT 2006), the Vilem Mathesius Courses (VMC 2006), and the Partnerships for International Research and Education (PIRE) group meeting.

The proposed TAPA 2006 workshop should open this series of events on November 30, 2006. More info here.


Great laundry adventure

Most of all Czech families has own washing machine and using laundry is rare. But I hadn’t idea, how foreigners solve this dirty problem. Until now.

Trial #1: How do I get all my clothes to the laundry mat?
Did I bring a laundry bag? Of course… not. Would it fit in my backpack? Maybe my socks alone… Okay then… bust out my suitcase. Now this isn’t as easy as it sounds – my suitcase also plays the role of my dresser since I have none. So I had to empty out everything inside to fill it with dirty clothes.
Trial #2: Which one says bleach?


Plastic surgery in Prague

Travelling because of plastic surgery is nothing new. But I didn’t know even Prague is one of the places where people come when they want a new look. You can read more about this unsual tripping here.

“The surgeon was fantastic,” she said. “She explained everything and the hospital was absolutely spotless. It was better than any private hospital I have been in in London.”
Jaromir Beranek, of Mag Consulting, a Prague-based tourism consultancy, said that health tourism was especially lucrative for the city as some people visited two or three times to check out the facilities.

Largest equestrian statue in the world

On the top of Vitkov hill, a place where battle in medieval was fought stands largest equestrian statue in the world. The rider is Jan Zizka, winner of this battle and one of greatest Czech tacticians and commanders. This blog can say you more.

Vitkov Hill was the site of a battle during the Hussite Wars in the 1400s and currently is home to the world’s largest equestrian statue. That’s right… a huge horse! The horse is about 9 meters high (about 30 feet) and 9 meters long.

Prague "Eiffel Tower"

On Petrin hill stands a lookout-tower very similar to Eiffel Tower in Paris. This tower is a small replica of her bigger French sister. Both of them has one another similarity: Their tips of tower are in the same elevation above sea-level.
See picture of Petrin tower.

Anywho, across the street is the funicular (yes that’s the word, shut up) entrance up Petrin Hill. What’s up there, you ask? Well, there’s a lovely little park area, with statues and benches, just like back in the states. There’s also this little mirror maze, which I’ve yet to go in, costs 40kc, I think. Best of all is the Eiffel Tower.

Some review of Petrin hill and Petrin Tower you can read here.

Distateful food

Here I found a two stories about food what appeared on a table. I will appreciate any comment.

I can only describe it as a very large piece of meat, accompanied by one lonely broccoli floweret. I’m pretty sure it was pig, although I am not sure exactly what part of the pig it was. I am thinking either the ass or thigh. I became pretty grossed out by the fact that I was eating meat off a bone that had the circumference of my femur.


What can I say, the wrong starter came initially, we ordered Mozzarella but were served with a bowl of greesy brown water with what cameron described as 4 testicles at the bottom with a couple of twigs. Needless to say we sent that away and got our mozzarella. Main Course (or as you will find out on Thursday what turned out to be a Curse) was Trout with potatoes, which wasn’t nice but I decided to eat it anyway seen as I was hungry. Cameron refused to eat his (what looked like) Chicken feet on a stick and had a few bread rolls.



Keys to Prague

I never realized that keeping more than three keys is something unusual in another countries. My key case contains seven keys and four of them helps me to get to my home. After reading this article I started to think about the whole key problem.

Many people in this city have the habit of looping all of their keys – home, office, country home (common for Praguers) – into one scary, chaotic tangle.What sells pretty well here are the colored little plastic covers that go over the heads of the keys. These really aren’t an option – after all, no one wants to spend an hour a day testing the hundreds of choices on a jailhouse ring just to get into the apartment.

Prague attracts more tourists

Prague is still a magnet for tourists. Prague’s architecture with most known Prague Castle, Charles Bridge or Old Town Square is only one thing which draw foreigners. Now it is also Czech cultural life, quality of service and cheap buying. It makes that whole one third of tourists visit Prague more than once.

You can stay here for a weekend, a week or more. Prague has a lot of thing to offer. Museums, exhibitions, theatres, opera, as well as restaurants, pubs, discos, music or movie festivals. Combination of cheap accommodation, food and drink and service at European standards makes Prague ideal place to visit.

That’s why Prague is one of six most visited places in Europe.
Most visitors are British (25 per cent), most spending are Japanese. Most effective advertisement is the Internet, the second one is personal recommendation from friends.


James Bond news

Everyone have seen at least one movie with legendary agent 007. A newest movie called Casino Royale is shooted at Prague Barandov studios right now. We are bringing you news from Sneek and peek.

Also at today’s late afternoon press conference at the Czech Republic’s Barrandov Studios, Campbell said the new Bond girl casting is down to “two or three” and “you’ll just have to wait to find out.” Actresses Eva Green and Olivia Wilde are considered finalists.


Living in Prague/Visiting Prague

This article offers a comparation between two aspects for foreigners: How different is to visit Prague for short period of time as tourist and to live here and work here.

Living here is relatively easy since it is far more Westernised than most places in Eastern Europe. Walk the main streets and you will be hard pressed to find anyone speaking Czech. It is because of this influx of people that Prague suffers from a benefit and a problem

Read more here.

Boring Don Giovanni

And now some cultural rewiew. Jessica descibes her bad experience with an opera at Stavovské divadlo. I have no comparation, so YOU can add here your comment.

The opera itself… boring. The beginning was slow, and I forgot how much theu repeat themselves in operas.Second verse same as the first. It was three hours long with a twenty minute intermission.

Jessica pages with her story is also waiting for you.


Kafka's Epigrammatic Mutilation Memos

Franc Kafka as you probably do not know him.

Franz Kafka began his career in the Prague head office of the Worker’s Accident Insurance Bureau of the Kingdom of Bohemia on 30 July 1908. During the next decades, Kafka published various rather idiosyncratic “literary” works that have gained some attention in specialist circles. His contribution to the development of the Bohemian insurance industry has, however, been neglected.

Until now. S. Fischer publishers, as part of their Critical Edition of Kafka, has issued a a carefully-edited 1,024-page volume entitled Official Writings. The volume will be of interest primarily to the millions worldwide who, like me, have found themselves captivated by the story of Central European insurance during this time of upheaval and innovation.

All article here.


How expensive is Prague?

Prague is also known for a cheap beer and meals. But what about the other things? More you can read here.

What I’ve actually found to be fairly expensive here are electronics. You won’t save money buying CDs here. Another prime example: in my quest to get my camera working, I looked into what the Sony store charges for a new AC adapter cable for my camera. Answer: a whopping Kc 1800, or 2300 for a charger alone!

You can also compare how expensive is accommodation in Prague for tourist – cheap Prague hostels versus expensive Prague hotels.


Prague Castle photos

Do you like Prague castle? I wish you do. These photos are not taken from well-known places. Enjoy!

Prague castle is situated on the hill overlooking the whole city, you might get several picturesque views of it from many sites in Prague. There is a beautiful gothical cathedral standing in one of the courtyards, with its colorful mosaic which had been restored not long ago.

How dangerous is Prague?

Did you heard something about dangerousness of Prague? Unfortunately Prague is in this area most known for it’s pickpocketers. And still is yet better to be careful than sorry. Erin is writing about her experience.

There are some concerns here with pickpockets on public transportation at night , and the streets do clear out pretty early . But still, I’m walking through the streets here every evening on my way home from the office feeling pretty comfortable being alone, and that’s saying something.



Prague in black and white

Prague is beautiful. It’s a mix of every architectural style I know how to spell, mixed with cool graffiti and pre-Communist churches that have been converted into hotels, bakeries, and just about anything else. And I do mean anything.
But some days, Prague was just cold, dark and quiet, and black and white photos felt right.

Another pack of photos but these are colourless.

Does everyone speak English in Prague?

There is an article how many Czechs speaks English in Prague. Look at Erins Prague blog.

Basically, if you come for a short visit and stay in main touristy areas, you won’t have any problems not knowing any of the language. The problem comes in if you need to do some shopping outside a souvenier shop, need directions from an obscure corner of the city, or travel outside Prague at all.


Benedictine monastery and much more

I’ve found great pictures of Benedictine monastery, Prague churches and towers, Vltava river and beautiful panoramas.

Prague is really beautiful, its historical center is very compact and most of the interesting places are within walking distance from each other. Prague is also being called the city of hundred towers referring to its immense number of churches and chapels, do you feel like counting?

You can see them at Quilting in Prague blog.