Czech artist Viktor Oliva’s “The Absinthe Drinker” (Buveur d’absinthe) which hangs in Prague’s famous Cafe Slavia on Narodni Street.
Accompanied by Czech President Vaclav Havel and his wife, Dagmar, first lady Hillary Rodham Clinton stopped briefly Tuesday in the Slavia Kavarna, Havel’s favorite hangout in his dissident years, for a glass of absinthe. Young people watching the presidential motorcade in the street were largely indifferent to Clinton’s visit, but others inside the cafe were appreciative. “She is a very intelligent lady and she has a lot to say to the world.’
–Published on October 14, 1998, Page 4A, St. Paul Pioneer Press (MN)
Bill Clinton also visited the U zlatého tygra (At the Golden Tiger), a typical Bohemian pub, and played the saxophone at the wonderfully atmospheric Reduta Jazz Club.
A short distance from the Reduta is an important place in Czech and world history but sadly many tourists seem to walk by without noticing. This is the spot where riot police attacked a peaceful student demonstration on Narodni trida in 1989; the brutal police attack was the event that started the Velvet Revolution. Here is the moving memorial to the bravery shown during the end of those dark days: