Hilary and Geoffy in Prague!
Trip Start May 25, 2005
19Trip End Jul 28, 2005
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Where I stayed
Prague (Praha to the natives) was the most spectacular, amazing, fun place we went. Favorite of both me and Geoff. We stayed at the hostel Elf (which made me think of an angry elf) which may be the coolest hostel anywhere. It has amazing grafitti murals all over the outside and a lovely courtyard outside with a garden. Inside there is a comfy common area where people all over hangout and drink and smoke and have a great time
We did get to go see the White Stripes play; pretty awesome (our 6 month anniversery present).
The best thing about Prague is that the whole city is just visually astounding. It is a 10th century town, so there are some of the best examples of architecture you will find anywhere that span the ages. It is also the birthplace of Alphonse Mucha, the "founder" of Art Nouveau (I always spell that wrong), one of my favorite art forms. A fair amount of the architecture is in that style. All of the buildings are works of art, with mosaics and carvings and statues and pillars. Gorgeous! You don't have to do anything, just wander around and enjoy. The subway gets you everywhere for cheap and fast. The Charles bridge and Pragu castle are the main touristy sites and worth a visit for sure, but my fovorite place was what used to be the main castle but is a ways away from the center of things now (I think it was called St. Sophia's?) Inside the chapel there are beautiful portraits done in the art nouveau style of all of the saints. But the interesting part of that was that Mary Magdeline was included in these. Go Praha! Outside there is a cemetary with the most beautiful graves and tombs I've ever seen. Statues and scuptures. I hope my grave is so beautiful when I die.
Another favorite place I stumbled upon right by the Charles bridge was a little hole in the wall art gallery that had stacks and stacks of the coolest original prints (intaglio, litho, woodblock) by artists from Praha and Russia. It was called the Godot art Gallery.Click here to jump to the gallery's page I bought a little print of a woman's torso with a hole in it with an owl nesting in it
Geoff and I made some really wonderful friends at the hostel elf: Marco, Leroy, Joao and Diogo. Marco particularly enjoyed the way I said "fucking aweful" and mimicked me in his Italian accent. Everyone spoke english in Praha, so we didn't really learn the language at all. Geoff had done amazingly well at picking up the language everywhere we went, even learning to read cyrillic in Russia pretty well so we could navigate the subway. He has a real gift for it. But we didn't have to in Praha, which I think made it that much more of a welcoming, comfortable place.
I can't end this without mentioning Steve, the German tour guide that worked at the hostel elf. He was a very, shall we say, opinionated and forceful charcter. He either loved or hated you. Fortunatly, he liked us a lot (I still feel guilty that we didn't manage to drag our asses out of bed to do his tour). He knew a lot about everything and told you all about it. It was fun to listen to him tear the snotty British boys down when they tried to defend Bush (that's right, WTF? They were definitely the minority in the rest of the world in they're love of Bush).
I love you Praha! I will come back to you someday.