Monday, June 4, 2012

Day 27 - Prague

So, I am not exactly sure why we do not call cities by their actual names. For instance, Florence is actually Firenzie. Venice is Venezia. And now we are in Prague which is actually Praha. Did Americans come up with these names that are obviously not what the locals call these cities? I have no doubt that we did.

To clarify where exactly I am... I am in Prague which is in the Czech Republic. Czechoslovakia split in 1993 to the Czech Republic and Slovakia.  I was a little confused on this as we were arriving so I figured a few of you might not be as up to date on geography either.

We made it Prague with not problems this afternoon. We left Vienna around 9:30am and arrived in Prague around 2:30pm. Our train was really nice but of course there was very little air conditioning. I am convinced Anoop bought us "non air conditioning" train tickets for kicks and giggles. The train ride really wasn't that bad and pretty smooth the entire way. I experienced my first dining car meal. I had a fried chicken salad that was delicious!

We went straight to our four star hotel once we got to Prague. It is also really nice and also has terrible air conditioning. It is really starting to be a theme of the trip. The oddest thing about our hotel is that there is a shower head but no shower curtain. I know none of you have seen me take a shower, but my dad drilled in my head for 23 years the "soap up, rinse off, and get out" method. So, it is like a rainy tornado when I shower and water gets everywhere even with the tightest sealed tubs. I haven't showered thus far but it is bound to be disastrous and I am certain we do not have enough towels to clean it up. Lack of shower curtain will definitely be one European trend I leave in Europe.

We didn't have to meet Anoop until 6:30pm so I got to do a little reading and napping this afternoon. I am currently reading The City of Fallen Angels; a book on the people of Venice by John Berendt. It is really good and full of great quotes about Venice from Venetians.

Tonight, we took a stroll around Prague. This is another unique town with unique architecture. To save you all from my banter on design, I will just show you the pictures.

The National Museum:

Some of the buildings we walked pass:

Frank Ghery's Fred and Ginger Building; another one of those buildings that looks so unreal in person even though it has flooded my textbooks over the years:

This is definitely a testament to the Gothic style architecture; all fountains up to this point have been much different than this:

The Charles Bridge:

A few pics up close:

The Jewish Cemetery in the Jewish Quarter:

The Astronomical Clock in Old Town Square:

Yes, we did see it go off and hear the rooster crow! The Czech Czar at the time searched all over to find the best clock maker in the world. After the clock was completed, the Czar had the maker's eyes burned out so he could not make a better clock for anyone else. I mean, it is a cool clock but not worth someone's eyeballs.

Apparently they make a Duff Grape...

This town is very pretty at night..

All of us headed to a bar called Chepeua Rouge after sight seeing. The group is really taking to collecting coasters everywhere we go. Yes dad, I am bringing some home for you! Still no luck on the long island ice tea.. bummer.

We are taking another bike tour tomorrow morning so I am headed to bed early! Catch you jabronis later!

1 comment:

  1. Comparing our “Americanized” names of the cities we have visited to the locals’ spelling of the cities has certainly been interesting as we have traveled across Europe. I actually did not realize prior to our trip that such places as Florence and Prague had alternate spellings of their names. This made it slightly hard to navigate at first because I wasn’t looking for Firenzie or Praha. My guess is that Americans, and other cultures alike, likely changed the spelling of these cities to make their names greater reflect their pronunciation. As we have learned on this trip, there are some very different languages in the places we have visited, so that’s my guess.