It took us a day to get from the Austrian border to the Hotel Zamecek in the west of the Czech Republic. We had to catch two trains and a bus to reach the town of Kaplice, from where we walked to the hotel. We followed a road out town. The traffic wasn’t too bad but our rucksacks were heavy and it was a warm day.
Late in the afternoon, tired and jaded, we saw it: the Hotel Zamecek.
Our spirits lifted.
It was beautiful, like a small castle.
It was surrounded open grassy fields and pine forests.
Our room was on the third floor. Whilst ascending a wide, stone staircase with a high stone balustrade we noticed that the original decorations on the ceiling and walls had been freshly repainted. The hotel, obviously old, had been beautifully restored.
In a large open area at the top of the stairs, there was a polished wooden bookcase with books left behind by departing guests. After putting our rucksacks down and showering and putting on fresh clothes, I went to the bookcase. Anya loves maps and I love books; whilst I was perusing the books, she was in the room pouring over a map of Bohemia; we planned to do some walking in the area.
I found a few books in English. There was one which caught my attention.
‘The Metamorphosis’ written by Franz Kafka.
I grabbed it and put it in our room.
Then we went downstairs to order a meal. We were famished.