Czech Republic Humour

Unable to pay energy bills, Russian embassy in Prague relocates to 2-bedroom flat in Kladno


Because humour is a fitting tool to discuss a world gone topsy-turvy, Kafkadesk is happy to present its new Satire column.

Prague, Czech Republic – No one is safe from sky-rocketing energy prices.

Not your average single mother struggling to make ends meet. Not your average business owner or penniless student. Nor, as it turns out, your average Russian spy.

In a shocking new development that has sent tremors to the Kremlin, the Russian Embassy in Prague was forced to close its doors and search for new lodgings in a competitive real-estate market.

“We simply can’t afford to pay our energy bills anymore,” an embassy staff said on condition of anonymity. “It’s so sudden and unexpected. No one saw it coming. We’re simply gutted”, he added, uncomfortably shifting on his seat with visible signs of an inner struggle to make sense of it all.

His tears, stoically contained during our first encounter, burst out uncontrollably when we met a second time, a few hours after his bosses had revealed the location of their new quarters.

Amidst his quivering sobs, our team could only make out one ominous word: Kladno. He then abruptly cut off the interview and unsteadily walked away towards an uncertain diplomatic future.

Further investigation by our network revealed that the entire Russian embassy indeed vacated, last Tuesday, their ginormous mansion-fortress on the slopes of Stromovka, and relocated to a 45-square-meter, two-bedroom flat in Kladno, north-west of Prague.

About half of the 250-strong staff was immediately sent packing. Igor V., an embassy advisor for political affairs, minimised the layoffs, however, putting them in the grand scheme of things.

“This has nothing to do with the relocation,” he assured. “Many of our staff had until now been assigned to various personal duties for the former president – bodyguards, speechwriters, drinking buddies, and so on. Obviously, they simply aren’t needed anymore,” he candidly explained.

Due to the humble size of their new lodgings, many more Russian diplomats and embassy staffers will have to leave in the coming days, Igor V. revealed, “including social media managers, telephone operators and various people from our IT support department.”

Only days after the move, the former embassy building, located on the Ukrainian Heroes Square in the Bubeneč district, was turned into a shelter, kindergarten and welcome centre for Ukrainian children and their families who have settled in Prague over the past year.

They were greeted, upon arrival, by the now familiar sight of Russian material and equipment left behind in their hasty departure.

A senior Czech official has described the vacating of the Russian embassy building as “the single biggest donation in favour of the refugee integration effort since the beginning of the war”.

Approached by our team as she appeared deep in thought in front of the repurposed building, a passer-by philosophically reflected: “At the same spot where overgrown Russian children used to play an obsolete game of warfare and espionage, prematurely grown Ukrainian boys and girls are now reclaiming their right to innocence and happiness. I just think that’s beautiful.”

Reminder: all the events, quotes and situations mentioned in this article are fictitious. Check out our Humour section for more.

Headed by Kafkadesk's chief-editor Jules Eisenchteter, our Prague office gathers over half a dozen reporters, editors and contributors, as well as our social media team. It covers everything Czech and Slovak-related, and oversees operations from our other Central European desks in Krakow and Budapest.