The capital of the Czech Republic. The land of the British Piss Up. The headquarters of the defunct Holy Roman Empire. History drips from every eave, rooftop and drain pipe, along with the light rain. This is the land which invented the term "defenestration" as a method of regime change. (it means to throw someone out of a window. No, really, it really does!"
Fortunately, we were met at the airport by D. who has been remarkably kind to us during our time here. Particularly since I am slowed down so much by the blisters brought on by marching in wet feet through Rome. She is wondering why it is that the weather only turns bad when people visit her! Hey, what can I say...it wouldn't be a vacation without a little rain! I don't have to shovel it, so it is just fine! And I really don't miss slathering on the spf 30. The weather here has been hovering around 18 degrees (that would be aprox. 65 Farenheit) so as far as I am concerned, the weather is perfect!
The first day, Brenda and D. had the signature Czech dish, an unpronouncable meal of roast beef, with cranberries, rich gravy, and bread dumplings. I had a Czech version of Chicken Kiev which was marvelously spiced. I think I am hooked. Of course, I had to walk that huge meal off, and D. had just the route for me. Through the city square, over the Charles Bridge, and back across the river to catch the tram. It was all new and exciting, and D. was quite enjoying watching our reactions to what to her is now quite common sights and happenings.
Happenings...well, the less said about the drunken British tourist dressed in a wedding dress, angel wings, moustache and cigar who was waving his private parts about in the town square, the better. But it seems that Prague is a favorite destination for rowdy British tourists here to drink the cheap beer.
The ancient clock in the town hall is quite famous, and right on schedule, just as it has done for twelve hundred years, the little doors open, the (statues of the) apostles show their faces, and St. Peter looks out over the crowd as the clock chimes the hour. I remember seeing a picture of this clock in National Geographic way back in, oh, 1967 I suppose, and thinking "someday I gotta see this!" And now I have. Yay!
The Charles Bridge was just as pretty as the pictures make it out to be. A Renaissance era bridge, spaced with huge statues of apostles, and famous people from Czech history. Today, I hope to see it in the daylight.
Yesterday, we visited the Mucha museum. I LOVE that guy's artwork! A contemporary of Talouse Latrec, he was one of the people who was responsible for what we now call "art nouveau". Though he protested to his last breath that he had nothing to do with it, it is clear that he was a leader in the field. Coffee in a room designed by him...I was expecting to see Rita Hayworth come around the corner! The rich coffee, the rich visuals, the rich music of Mozart nearly sent this old blacksmith into sensory overload! Way back when I was in the military, I had four of his posters, long thin ones which fit beautifully on the locker doors. So, I have been a fan for LONG time!
A walk up the 2oo steps of the winding spiral staircase of the powder tower to stunning views of Prauge.
Then mulled wine on the Wenseslas Square, and chatting with a blacksmith set up on the bricks, clanging away, showing off his (rather limited) skills. A brief tour past the Sex Machine Museum (famous I understand, but I got better uses for my money), and the market. (chocolate nougat! joy joy)
And of course Chinese Food and a video back at D.'s apartment topped off a very comfortable day! (I finally saw "Borat". OM F G! How the heck did this guy get away with all this!)
Regards from Prague.