My home base for the next four weeks, Prague

Trip Start Sep 18, 2009
Trip End Dec 20, 2012

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Flag of Czech Republic  , Bohemia,
Sunday, October 11, 2009

So it's been about 10 or 11 days since I've been in Europe.  First time across the Atlantic Ocean, having crossed the Pacific Ocean to teach English in South Korea.  I was there for a year, and then traveled around China and Southeast Asia for another 5 months.
I flew from Lima, where I lived for the past year and a half or so, to New York, where I spent 10 days between NYC and Washington DC.  The weather there overall was excellent, and I had an excellent time visiting friends and seeing the sights.  Then, on the 29th of September (10 days after leaving Lima), I took my Air Berlin flight to Düsseldorf, Germany.
I couchsurfed there and in Köln, meeting some great people along the way, and marveling at the fantastic European architecture and doing some great people watching, watching native Germans in their native context for the first time.
After Köln, I took a train to Freiburg, in Southwestern Germany, where I met up with my good friend, Sebastian.  I met him last year while traveling in Arequipa, doing a tour to the Colca Canyon.  After telling him of my plans to fly to Germany and then take a course in Prague, he immediately suggested he take some days off and drive around Germany a bit for me, which I'm extremely glad I did.
The past week or so I spent with him was excellent, meeting lots of great new friends, and driving around Germany and Switzerland.  We visited Zürich, Luzern (both in Switzerland), München (Munich), Ulm, his hometown Cottbus, and finally Berlin.  The past couple of days I stayed at his sister´s apartment in Eastern Berlin and had a blast (albeit a bit cold) walking around the beautiful communist era buildings and soaking up the history of the city.
Now I'm sitting on a 5 hour train ride on DB (Deutsch Bahn, I believe - German Trains (?) ) from Berlin to Prague.  An odd side note is that, although I've always been told (and had that experience most of the time so far) that German trains are on time to the minute (which they actually usually are), this train was a whole hour late;  my second late train so far.  But other than that, fantastic.
The views out my window are beautiful, from the German side, and now in the beautiful Czech country side as well.  Fantastic fall colors abound in the forests all around me.  My seat actually faces towads the back (as many others do), so it's a bit weird to ride into Prague "backwards".  I'm very excited to arrive and contact my Couchsurfing host.  It's also exciting to be in a new country and to begin my 4 week TESOL course tomorrow morning.
That's about it for now... I'm glad I actually took the time to write something with a bit m ore substance than my usual travelpod posts, which I do hurredly as to not take too much time from spending time with my friends or uploading pictures or what have you.  This time I actually took a few minutes to reflect upon the past couple of weeks and try to capture the feelings and emotions I have.
It's a gray, fall day in the Czech Republic, and I should be arriving into Prague main station in about an hour or two.  At least it's not raining... yet.
Till' next time!

Quick update... I made it into Prague ok.  The first 20 or 30 minutes in town were a bit stressful as almost nobody spoke English and the information office was closed (Sunday).  Then, I couldn't get in touch with my host because the phones didn't want to work.

So I just took the tram my host, Tono, had told me to take, and was able to get off at the right station.  Then, another phone ate some more of my money, and I finally was able to find a phone that worked... and here I am!  

Tomorrow I'll definitely get a sim card for the european cell phone Sebastian gave me (an old extra he had in his apartment).  He was so amazingly nice and helped me so much.  I hope I can repay him one day.

Tomorrow off to class.. :)
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