Day 9 & 10 - Prague Zoo, goodbye's, REST

Trip Start Jul 21, 2010
Trip End Aug 26, 2010

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Flag of Czech Republic  , Hlavní Mesto Praha,
Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Day 9 in Prague ....
Its our last day with the Styrsky clan of Al, Idamay, Alina, Aunt Lou, and Tracy ... and today we opt for the Prague Zoo. After several changes of itinerary due to the weather forecast, today we just ignore the warnings for impending "Heavy Showers". The last three times they've predicted that, it hasn't rained more than a couple of drops. ... until, now. of course.


So, our group of me, Janice, Salmonella, and Simon sleep in till eleven or so. We phone the others and find that they've taken the 45 minute boat ride around the river to the zoo ... we opt to the metro / bus route and meet up with them for lunch in the middle of the large, award winning zoo. So here is the thing about the Prague Zoo. Some of the animal exhibits ... the animals could totally escape if they really wanted to! ... It was BIZARRE! ... ... the winner of the day was the bat exhibit, ... basically you go through those hangydown things used in meat freezers and stuff to keep bugs out, ... you know, they keep the cool air in (ish) and unwanteds out ... ... and in to this dark tunnel where you can see some nocturnal creatures. Sure, there are noises around your head, ... but ... those are OBVIOUSLY from speakers, right? RIGHT??! ... Those bat noises aren't actual ... HOLY SH&*& !!!! ... zoom! (bat shadow) ... .... Dude! .... I think there was just a >>>>>  !!!!!  HOly !!!! .... yeah, ... BATS ARE JUST CRUISING ALONG IN THE OPEN IN THE EXHIBIT!!!! ... and the tunnel isn't big at all. If I were to jump, I'd hit my head (which is saying something for those of you who have seen me jump!) ... ... about midway through the tunnel is the official bat area, but there is no glass or net keeping them in. only food to lure them there and little bat hangy places ... ... little mice scurry about for their lives, bugs crawling and getting snatched up ... a big ol' kangaroo rat thing unafraid of the bats ... ... it is BIZARRE ... we ended up going through twice, the first time seriously scared me bad.

Dumping rain from time to time, but its tollerable. Not too humid. Muggy, but not too bad.

On the way back, we all opt for the metro / bus route to save time and dough ... and Al takes us to the worst, most danger ridden station in all of Prague just to save a few blocks. (jokes)

We end the night as a family at Lokal ... a very popular, reasonably priced modern Czech restaurant. Good times, laughs, tears ... a great day and night. ... ... Back at the apartment, we agree that other than Skutec, ... this was our favorite day with everybody. I think everyone was more rested and comfortable with traveling ... or maybe just excited to be headed home ! :) Either way, a great time.

A couple of interesting tidbits ...
We Styrskys have a tradition of singing this old bar song with lots of "Nohaleta nohaleta nohaleta chivio!"'s in it ... ... we had heard it was a Czech song and so we made it our tradition ... a nod to the old country if you will. ... Well, in Skutec, one of our relatives assured us it was not Czech at all, but likely Polish or Russian. So. ... When I imagined our time together here in Prague, I was sure we'd belt it out at one time or another, ... but it just didn't seem as um, necessary?, once I learned its true origin. ... Don't get me wrong, I'm still excited to sing it as a family to remember our heritage, but ... yeah.

Also, ... we didn't plan on having a bathroom stop budget here! It costs us about 50cents each to use the bathroom each time when we aren't at a restaurant. Can add up with a family of four!!!


Back to the apartment ... and we sleep.

Day 10
Janice stayed in bed till almost 1pm. Feeling sick with a sore throat. I kept her company until just about noon, then took Simon and the kids to our favorite local cafe. And that is precisely all that Simon did for the whole day!!! ... after the cafe, he headed back to the apartment and did nadda. Sam, me, Ella went to the Paladium (mall) and bought him the SECOND Harry Potter book (he cruised through the entire first one already!!!). ...
Back home, an hour's rest, and me and the kids and Janice walk in search of a local park I read about for kids. We never find it, but we do stumble upon a local's only hangout place with roller hockey, about 20 skateboarders, a small group practicing tight rope walking, and a capuella group. ... the long walk takes us through Letna Park and over to um, I don't know what its called ... a big beatiful museum / fountain thing ... ahh... this  ... really really beautiful sunset, view, and gardens. ... It basically took us around to the side of the castle opposite the side that we approached in from when we came the first time from Petrin Tower ... Just GORGEOUS.
It was a great time of night as all the places were closing down, so virtually no other tourists ... but unlike lots of cities where security guards close down the surrounding areas, here we were allowed to meander a bit. I think they secure it about an hour after close or something ... so this left us with a perfect, quiet walk ... even if we were kept to the exteriors of the buildings.

Back down to the apartment. That was a serious walk. PHEW. We are putting in some serious miles. Kids to bed. Janice and I out for food and a drink on our own.
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