Thursday, November 8, 2012

Part o the Cesky Krumlov castle

Part of the Cesky Krumlov castle

I cannot believe it is already Thursday!  I leave Saturday morning, but I have been very, very busy so I have no complaints.  Prague, Czech Republic is a beautiful place.  Along with the fact that this is the place where my paternal family came from.  I am lucky to be and see & experience what I have.

I have read and experienced a bit of the ‘culture’ here and find it very pleasant.  It is from here that the word “bohemian” comes from.  The southern part of Czech is still referred to as Southern Bohemia.  People here have been very kind and helpful.  One book uses the word ‘reserved’ to define Czech people.  That may be true, but I don’t think that word works when you look at the history of Czech and how hard they fought for  independence from the Communists.  November 17th will mark the 23rd anniversary of the Velvet Revolution.  Quickly put, Czechoslovakia is only 23 years young.  And then in 1993, the country split making current day Slovakia and Czech Republic.  I saw a movie about the demonstration that became the Revolution.  Afterwards, I walked out to Wenceslas Square where it occurred.    It became a bit of a mind warp, not sure what words to use.

Czecks are very much into the arts, especially music.  Did you know that Budweiser was actually a Czeck product?? BEER is very important here.  They created lager and have there pilsner.  One beer company has a few converted ambulances for those late-night beer emergencies — you call and they will deliver!  The food is a bit heavy, lots of pork!  With potatoes & beer!  The country is currently in the process of renovation on their two main museums.  Due to all the mining from Communist era, things are quiet dirty.  And I remember hearing about Radio Free Europe.  Remember anything about that?  Well, the building that America broadcast from is right there at Wenceslas Square.  This history lesson I’m traveling is  better than anything we teach!

I have traveled to the Old Town, the Astronomical Clock, St. Charles Bridge, The Jewish Quarter, the Museum of Communism and to Cesky Krumlov.  Today I will be going to the Castle and tonight on a river cruise.  Tomorrow holds Kutna Hora, a mining town with a bone church!  And then it is time to prepare to leave.

Prague is beautiful.  I have seen a lot, but could easily come back.  It is like stepping back in time.  Just a really good atmosphere, especially once I got my bearings!  The pastry’s are great and I learned why!  There are different flours here in Europe than in America.  Basically, soft/medium/regular where I think our comparison is regular.  I guess now I don’t have to eat everything I see!  Sorry, Marli.

The adventure I thought I would find on this trip has turned out to be sooooo much more than I could have imagined.  I learn history, but I learn about me.  I have reconciled myself with the shortening of the trip, actually pleased.  I will arrive in Utah at the end of December to see the end of Christmas.  That I am grateful for.  Here in Czeck, Christmas trees were not put up till Dec. 21, but that tradition has been lost due to commercialization.  There are trees & decorations already up!  And the traditional Christmas eve is to fast for the day and have a meal in the evening with the main entree being carp.  Carp fisheries are still very prominent here with the tradition still in place.  As I move around, Christmas is ‘coming’ to Prague, to the chagrin of middle age people who were born into Communism.  Now, its commercialism & economy, like everywhere in the world.

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