Archive for the ‘Czech Republic’ Category

Prague Prattle

Thursday, November 13th, 2014

DSC03136I enjoyed Prague!

It intimidated me at first, especially the report of there being so many pick pockets and it being a ‘dark’ city.’ I think I saw two as they scoped out different crowds…their shifty eyes always moving.

We saw a lot of history, ate some unique food, and appreciated that this is a country that has only been under their own rule since 1989. If it wasn’t the Hapsburgs, it was the Communists. They are exploring and venturing out in this freedom to explore their identity.

And what a musical city! Every night there are a dozen concerts to chose from. Mozart made Prague his home away from home.It has a beautiful castle on a hill overlooking a river that runs through the middle of town and a bridge that spans it for strolling and listening to street musicians.

The Old town is the center of everything including a 600 year old clock that tells you everything from the time, to tides, to phases of the moon. Multitudes gather there every approaching hour to watch it come alive.

The language is missing a lot of vowels but has dots, dashes, and squiggles to make up for it. Sign language is spoken here!

‘Dem Bones

Tuesday, November 11th, 2014

DSC03178Well you won’t find this in Martha Stewart, or Better Homes and Gardens! This is Kunta Hora, Czech.

Back in the middle ages everyone wanted to be buried here because someone brought some dirt back from the Holy Land and spread it about. It then was considered a holy place, so much so that multiple levels of people were buried in the cemetery. Whole families were stacked in a single grave site. But what happens when you want to build a church on some of this holy land? Well you throw the skeletons in the basement.

But eventually they just pile up.

So why not do something artistic?

These are the bones of over 40,000 people! (plague and wars).

The chandelier contains every bone in the human body, and the coat of arms on the wall is actually made up of arms.

It’s eerie but it did help to fathom the sheer volume of people who could loose there lives in an epidemic.

And that ‘holy’ dirt that started it all, well it came from Golgotha, the word that means “the place of the skull.”

Beer

Monday, November 10th, 2014

What would you do if you found that ordering the beer on the menu was cheaper than ordering the water?

Yep that’s my latest dilemma here in Prague, Cz.

Where as Belgium makes the most types of beer, and Germany makes the most quantity of beer, it’s the Czechs that consume the most beer. Each Czech (of all ages) consumes 1.5 liter of beer per day!

And it all started in the neighborhood of Plzen, where making the yellow fizzy stuff spread worldwide. A popular brand here is Budweiser. The Czechs say they had the name first. Many lawyers later, the Czech brand can be sold in Europe, China, and Africa, but in America it’s sold as “Czechvar”.

Only one brand is sold at any one pub, and it’s not common to bar hope. They relate it to being faithful to one woman.

And I’m too cheap, I drink the beer!

DSC03142

King Wenceslaus I

Friday, November 7th, 2014

Well, Wenceslaus was really only a duke, but he is the patron saint of Prague and much revered today. Back in the early 10th century the Duke ruled Bohemia with strength and kindness. Frequently he snuck out in the dark of night to deliver food, wood, alms to the least in his kingdom. Upon his murder by his brother, Boleslav the Cruel (that should have been a clue), the Holy Roman Emperor promoted him posthumously to saint and ┬áking. If you review the Christmas hymn about him, you’ll hear a little of his good deeds.

But to digress, Bohemia, like Tirol and Bavaria were countries that made a lot more sense geographically than current country borders. Their tribal background, culture, and ancient history give them a common ground in each of those distinct regions.

Prague is a city that is very proud of it’s ancient past, has emerged from the mantle of communism, and loves it’s beer and goulash. Oh, and my new favorite: hot mulled wine!

young boy in center is Wenceslaus with Grandmother Ludmilla

Young boy in center is Wenceslaus looking to the future, with Grandmother Ludmilla who raised him.

Where Next???

Wednesday, October 29th, 2014

We have 3 days to figure out where to spend the next 3 weeks,and we need suggestions!

We drop off our car in Munich next week and are footloose until we have to be in Basel, Switzerland on the 27th of nov.

We were mulling over Prague, Budapest, Vienna, Mittenwald????

We will be on trains and toting our bags.

Any and all suggestions would be appreciated. Tell us YOUR experiences!