Prague and the Czech Republic

Trip Start Feb 08, 2006
Trip End Jul 19, 2006

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Friday, April 14, 2006

We arrived in Prague on Sunday, after a very long flight. Peter picked us up at the airport, and took us to his house. Considering that Prague is 9 hours ahead of California, the jet lag was much less than it was when we reached Peru (although we had only 3 hours time difference, the altitude change was pretty noticeable... almost 12,000 feet). Aside from sleeping late, we all adjusted fairly well.

We spent the first day doing the tourist route with our skilled translator and guide, Peter. Although he knows more than most about his own country's history, our tour narrative went something like this "And here is some very famous building, I don't know why it's famous ... but in this god-forsaken country you never know what they'll make into a big deal." Ok, that's a rough paraphrase, but it hits the high points. :) :) Actually Peter and Suzanne were very concerned that we see what Prague had to offer, although we were perfectly happy to hang out at the apartment with the family. In fact, they gave us quite a hard time about how long it took us to get out each day, and with good reason. We missed the train the first night we were supposed to leave, because we weren't quite as on the ball as we should have been. Fortunately Peter made all of the calls to get it straightened out for us. It was good thing, since the language is difficult to say the least.

We spent some time just us in town messing up and embarrassing ourselves trying to speak czech. And in case you're wondering, that whole thing about "don't worry, in Europe everyone will speak English" is an absolute myth. Thank God someone in this group has a gift with languages (that would be James).

We took a day trip out to Kutna Hora to the bone ossuary. It was all 7 of us and the dog to boot. Ok, a dog around so many bones could have been a problem but they let her in anyway as long as she was carried.

Then we did an overnight to a lovely town called Cesky Krumlov. The weather had been getting warmer and since we were going further south we left much of our cold weather stuff with Petr and Zuska, only to have it snow on us. When we get home ask about the time spent huddled in a handicapped bathroom warming ourselves under a handdryer.

More to come...
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