Ten years ago, she won the title of Czech Miss. Three years ago, she started to date famous fisherman, Jakub Vágner, exchanged high heels for wellies and vanished for a year from the modelling scene. But now, Eliška Bučková is back in Prague, on front pages of fashion magazines. And despite the fact that this stunning beauty from Moravia has always dreamt of life filled with love, she has to start again from scratch. However, don´t expect any self-pity in her interview with Luxury Prague Life. The model is looking forward to better tomorrows, giving hope to all broken hearts; there is true love out there waiting for everyone.
You have returned to the capital from a beautiful, sunny spot by a pond, where there was peace and quiet. How do you feel about again getting used to Prague mayhem?
It is not exactly a return into the city as such, because we have run two households. One in a country house at a lake in Katlov and then an apartment in the centre of Prague. So I spent working days in Prague and weekends and holidays in the countryside. Now I just spend more time in Prague, and when I have some time off, I go to see my parents in Moravia. But because of the fact that we remained friends with Jakub (she has recently split up with Jakub Vágner, Not of the Editor) I can still escape from the capital.
And will you go back there?
Just now I´ve spent a weekend there with my girlfriend, so I certainly plan to. I like that place and I also organise a fishing camp there.
It had then been such a great surprise when Eliška began to catch fish. Did you really fall for it so much that you also want to do it in your leisure time?
I enjoy fishing very much. I have a huge respect for all fishermen because I catch grass carp. That´s because grass carp get caught when it is over twenty-five degrees Celsius. In such weather I can spend a week on the bank and miss nothing. But when it gets colder the lure of fishing is lost on me. That´s where my respect for fishermen comes from. Even when it´s five degrees, rains and the weather is abominable, they can withstand it; for them that´s the adrenalin. I don´t have that, there´s no adrenaline for me. For me it´s about relaxing by the water, it is active relaxation and I can catch something.
And you can sunbathe when it is over twenty-five...
Exactly, I sunbathe there. I also enjoy cooking on the gas cooker, from my own stock, it is simply something else. In Prague or in the city, when you are at work, you have to keep thinking about something and cannot switch off. At the waterside you have a clear head, there are no e-mails, no work. It is about there and now, as they say, you absolutely enjoy every moment.
And how do men see you now, whether it is your dad, some unknown guy, or some heartthrob who would like to invite you for a date?
I do not know how they are looking at me. But it is true that the public somehow follows what I do; ever since I won the Miss title. That was the moment when I moved to Prague and began to live the Prague "model lifestyle".
But I come from a small town in Moravia, and when our parents went to work, they left us with our grandparents. And they have pigs, cows, a vineyard, fields... My grandfather is a kind of adventurer and he loves mushrooming, nature, hiking. So, I have had a change to try all of that, too. Not really very much of fishing, because in our there is not much of a tradition, but the nature, roasting sausages somewhere over a fire in a meadow. I grew up doing that, I´ve only come back to it now in my adulthood. Because, truth to tell, in Prague, in the centre, one does not experience anything like that.
Moreover, I am very adaptive. I always, when I had a partner, tried to support him and share his activities and hobbies. So when I was with Václav (Noid Bárta, Editor´s Note) I started to sing. I used to sing when I was little, but nobody knew about it. In fact, I developed my skills because of him.
I started to fish quite naturally, because Jakub is a fisherman and he devotes most of his time to it. So, I told myself that I will try that, too, because I wanted to spend my time with him. And I also wanted to find out whether I would fall for it, and at the same time to get to know the magic of this sport. To find out what it is that attracts all the fishermen.
So, you adapt yourself often. But did any guy do what you enjoy doing yourself?
At the beginning they always did, but then they usually returned to their old ways. Simply that Eliška will adjust, they were used to it. I have caused it myself a bit. I have always adapted so much that it was taken for granted.
But I am not complaining, because for example through Jakub I got to know a completely different world, another circle of friends and I climbed back down again a bit. I mean it in the sense that when one gets to go on an expedition, where people live only from what they catch, when you return with that experience home gain, you find out that half of the things you craved you don´t want any longer, because you don´t need them. I realised that we live in a huge luxury, but in fact a man doesn´t need much.
With Jakub you have also experienced many life-threatening situations…
I think that Jakub never really took me to any destination where it would be downright dangerous. For example, about Congo, he said right at the beginning: I won´t take you there, because it is really very dangerous. But the Amazon or Mongolia are destinations where one enjoys more of those happy moments, rather than the torment of overcoming oneself.
But thanks to Jakub but I also got to know my limits. I found out what they are, but I also found out that it is possible to push them ten levels further. I have surpassed them and now it is more difficult for something to break me down completely.
What did you overcome for example?
I have already said that I do not like the cold. When we were in Mongolia, Jakub told me: Take some warmer clothes with you, it may get a little bit colder there. Note that this was in September. The first three days we rode mountain horses, which for me was also the first experience, and we made 150 kilometres. It was 26 degrees, so it was killingly hot. But the moment we set up the camp and were getting to go rafting down the river, I woke up and suddenly it was minus ten and the snow was knee-deep. It was a “little colder”, as Jakub had noted, and I started to cry. Then one desn´t know what to do, because it is so cold. It was raining one moment and snowing the next, and you knew that there are ten days ahead of you and that you cannot call for help and cannot leave.
Then our raft got upturned with all out stuff. So, when you are frozen and desperate, on top of that you have to hold you bag which is soaking and you have nothing dry to get changed into. Those were the moments when I really reached the bottom of my strength.
But I always say that on those expeditions you either get stuck and make it insufferable for yourself as well as the others, or you simply push through with it and try to find something good about the situation anyway. You start to enjoy it. So, in the end I have always started to enjoy it and I must say that Mongolia and the Amazon are places to which I would certainly like to come back to again. Amazon is my heart affair, I have been there three times.
You have experienced amazing things with Jakub. Why did you break up? Although at the beginning I couldn´t believe that you two are dating; now, conversely, I find it regrettable that you are no longer together.
Of course, some of the reasons are just between us. They are rather petty things, due to our differences of character. The main reason was that Jakub´s passion for fishing and the desire to travel and discover new areas, new animal species and tribes, broadly speaking, was so strong, that it eventually divided us. The last three quarters of the year I saw him perhaps six times a month, because he took up so much work. When he was free, he of course wanted to enjoy fishing to the full, so if I wanted to see him, I had to get into the car and go somewhere where he was fishing.
But my nature is that I enjoy when I can take care of someone. I do not need to go to parties and events but be that person. I am not saying that for twenty-four hours a day, but I need to see him. And six times per month is for me too little. If I was twenty I would have told myself: Okay, enjoy travelling for another five years and then we may for example plan a family. But I am twenty-nine now and I feel that I would like to settle down, get married and start a family. To experience that beautiful textbook married life I have dreamt about. But you cannot do that with a man who is away somewhere all the time. When we imagined that we would have a child, he would still be travelling like that and I would be alone at home, we knew that that simply was not possible.
I thought that it is because you want to have a large family. If only because of the example of your parents; you have four siblings. But you will be thirty next year already. Don´t you have the feeling that you have lost three years of your life?
Certainly not, I don´t regret any relationship that I had had. And certainly I don´t regret my relationship with Jakub. He has widened my horizons and indeed thanks to him I realized that some of the things in a relationship which had been important to me before, are really not important any longer.
Oh, these are terribly silly things; like wanted to have a breakfast with my partner every morning. I had previously been dating someone who used to get up later than me. I never used to have a breakfast with him and I considered it to be the greatest problem of our relationship. Nowadays I know that I need half an hour in the morning, or forty minutes to really wake up, to get my thoughts together, calm down, prepare breakfast and then I go to wake up my partner. These are the things I laugh about today, but in the past it used to be the most important thing in the world.
A few years ago it sufficed for the guy to be good-looking, to smell nice, that there was chemistry. Now I view men differently - whether he would be a good husband, father. Or whether he is responsible, whether his job is not very controversial, whether he enjoys his work, and in that I could support him, or whether we have the same hobbies. Such things about which a mature woman would think, who would like to start a family.
Everyone knows that you are single now, so I assume that you are overwhelmed by phone calls. That must be terribly demanding...
I am that type that must meet a man - and it is all simply there. When I see someone, or meet someone, and the spark is not there, as you say, then for me it´s all over.
And are you enjoying a break or are you looking around?
I am 29, I cannot take a break! (Laughter) No, my age is super. And it is not as if I would right now need to have a child. I think that I can wait for another four years. It also takes a little time before you get to know your partner.
Now I am starting from scratch. But I am open to everything and I certainly don´t mind if I meet someone new. But it´s not my character to keep going out in order to hunt somebody down, definitely not. I do believe that the right man is waiting for me somewhere out there and that he will appear at the right moment.
What about work? Where will we see you now and what lies ahead of you?
Nowadays it is about social networking and modelling has changed accordingly. So, I partially make a living out of it, I´m not saying that I don´t. It is work, which is in the end really simple, I enjoy it and I am the master of my time, which is terribly important to me. Modelling as such partly also fulfils me, my feminine side; I can prove to myself that I can still do it, that people are looking forward to meeting me and that they think I am beautiful. So, it is rather a case of my ego. That is why I choose fashion shows where I know there will be a good team of people. Or I go to a show of a designer whom I like, and really enjoy the work. But it is no longer the case where I would accept any work and be dependent on modelling.
But what really warms my heart and gives me satisfaction is work in children's camps, and I would like to continue in my work with children. I think that I inherited this from my parents, because they work with children to this day, organising various events. I have found out about the camps from them. To me it is not just an empty phrase, that work with children fulfils me, I really feel it. A proof of this is the fact that we are now organising a third year of a fishing camp and 99 percent of the children have already been there with us in the past. In three days it was completely sold out! That is such a good feeling that I started to do a project that has a meaning and some added value. Not only the financial aspect, but mainly the fulfilment out of being able to pass on something to those children. Because they then repay you many times over, it is indescribable.