Yep, here we go again. Save the date on your calendar, here comes Art Basel Hong Kong right around the corner. Art Basel has a pretty good spread across the globe at this point, of course the annual in Basel Switzerland itself, the somewhat iconic although over rated Art Basel in Miami for all of […]
My visit to Krakow was precipitated by the need to get from Vilnius, Lithuania to Milan, Italy, but a need sans deadline, thus time to explore cool places between the two cities. Krakow made the cut because it was one of the few Polish cities to escape the material ravages of World War II relatively unscathed. My lodgings — Hotel Stary — were perfectly located on a main drag—Florianska—in the Old Town right near the city’s old Medieval main gate, St. Florian’s, and a hop, skip and jump from the railway station. Being on a main drag, though, was noisy, as hordes of pedestrians flowed up and down the street at all times of day and night. Among the hordes that weekend were numerous groups of drunk young men, with the men of each group sporting shawls that displayed a specific insignia according to the shawl’s color, along with neon-style art work (think “velvet Elvis”), usually composed of buxom scantily clad women. I assumed that the men were the equivalent of Polish “frat boys” from the nearby University of Krakow, and marvelled at how they put me and my university friends to shame with regard to how much they could put away during the course of the weekend. They tended to be drunk at all hours of the day and were quite boisterous, but I found them to be generally good natured and quite amusing to observe. On a couple of occasions fights broke out between two different groups, but the fights were spar-like with just a few punches thrown before all the boys would be hugging each other and smiling as they carried on all together towards the next bar or nightclub.