Sunday, November 4, 2012

The Astronomical Clock

That was crazy — I had to look-up the date!!!  Not sure what it is telling me . . . . so, I am in Prague.  Started out a bit rough, but improves daily!  I had the fuzzy’s Friday.  I went out to seek ‘n search my way around and didn’t do so well.  I thought for sure I had it down the second time, but that was a delusion!  BUT, everyone I have asked for help has been great & has spoken some English!  Life is good.  But it was discouraging.  I knew I was tired, but I did not realize I was THAT tired.  I took a nap and early to bed.  I found my courage, and tried again Saturday.

BUT, first let me tell you about my lodgings.  I am staying with a young woman, Veronika, through an Airbnb.com listing.  Better than a hostel and cheaper than a hotel, but with hotel+ accomodations.  The flat we are in is part of a 16 flat building.  This building was owned by Veronika’s grandparents at the onset of WWII.  They were sitting in their flat when a bomb dropped on an adjacent building.  The  windows blew-out and dust & dirt everywhere.  The Communists took over the building until the wars end.  At that point, Veronikas family had to petition the government to get it back.  They said yes — but no raising rents and you cannot kick anyone out!  Fast forward — Veronika’s grandmother lives in the building, her sister & brother, and it was just about a year ago that Veronika got her flat here.  Talk about bringing history home.  I look out my window at the ‘newer’ building from where the bomb dropped, and I just get an eerie feeling.  Prague, I have learned, somehow avoided all heavy bombing, thus, the beauty of the city has stayed in tack.  Who was looking out for who?

Move up to Saturday.  I was really nervous about going out — I knew what I had done wrong, but I was tired.  I did quite a bit of homework on Friday evening, but my nerves were still quite rattled.  Sooo, I headed out to find the train station and I made!  Then I needed to get to the New Town, Wenceslas Square.  I found it!!  I got some confidence back on this one!  I enjoyed my time going through the square, finding some gifts (I couldn’t control myself!), the post office and then to my surprise — a market!  I was really excited — this is the stuff I am looking for.  All homemade, Czech food & goods.  How awesome is that?  It gave me enough excitement that I went on to St. Charles Bridge and viewed the sights.

Then I had to come back.  And to my relief, I made it home with minor trouble.  I even stopped and gave myself a pastry as a reward!  On Sunday, I went out again, with even greater confidence, moving on to the Old Town & the Jewish Quarter.

I am not sure if being alone is good or bad with all of this.  I make all my own decisions — and when there correct, WOOOWHOOOO!!!.  But then, what do you do when they are not correct?

And so I’ve learned, you really do not have ‘not correct’.  You aren’t in a position to do anything, but run trials until you succeed.  Your senses are taxed heavily being alone — listening, watching and feeling for everything around you.  But it is worth it!  I have managed through 3 days here and an evening ride from the airport.  What a way to start — in the dark!!  I have the rest of my days packed and am grateful for all that I will get to do.

I can remember before leaving Africa thinking that when I land in California, the first thing I want to do is find the earth and kiss it.  I still want to, but not in the same way.  The world is so big & beautiful.  And for me, right now, being in Prague, where my family is from, I have sense of being that I have never had before.  Finding your roots makes a difference.  And hopefully I will learn more on Tuesday & Wednesday about mine.

The area is beautiful.  A testimony to what is good.  People that have worked hard.  I have learned alot about the culture here by reading, listening & seeing.  That’s a story for the next time.  I think my chicken is burning!!

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