EuroTrip2006 – Day 28: Sleepless in the Czech Republic

Highlight: Lying in the park – enjoying the hot sun and the hot ladies.
Lowlight: Falling asleep during an otherwise great classical music concert.
Fun Fact: The Jewish calendar is lunar, which is why their holidays jump around so much with respent to the solar calendar that we use everyday.
Money spent: 1347 Kr.
Pairs of clean underwear left: 6

The train ride into Prague wasn’t quite as restful as I hoped. By the time everyone in my compartment settled in it was almost midnight. The bed wasn’t very comfy and was 12 inches shorter because I kept my bag at my feet. I woke up with some bruised rips and a sore hip on my right side. At 4 am we were woken up at the Germany-Czech border for passport checks. At 6 am the sun woke me up for good.

I shared the compartment with a really cute British girl, a Korean couple, and a couple from Bulgaria that put there massive amounts of luggage on one bed and somehow slept head-to-toe on the other bed.

In Prague train station, I was accosted by the most polite and surprisingly unpushy hotel people. They were so apologetic and cute that it made it easy to turn them all down, but I felt bad about it. Instead, I headed to a hostel mentioned in the Let’s Go book that included free breakfast and internet. The hostel was near the train station and easy to find. I dropped my bags off and went exploring.

I bought a ticket to see a classical music concert at Municipal House tonight for 600 K (a fortune by Czech standards but only about $30 CDN). Then I found this cute little bakery and bought a feast for breakfast: 5 different pastries and a litre of juice. It only cost 50 K (or $2.50).

I walked down to Josefov – the old Jewish ghetto. I bought a ticket to see the Jewish cemetery and the synagogues. In one fell swoop, I upped my synagogue count by 5 and within reach of the church count.

Some of the synagogues were really interesting. One had the names of all the Czech Jews who died in the holocaust written on the walls. The others had museums about Jewish culture and life in Prague.

I spent the afternoon wandering around and lying in the park that used to hold a giant statue of Lenin. The statue is gone now, but in its place is a giant metronome and a lot of skateboarding youth.

I went back to the hostel, took a shower, and grabbed dinner near the concert hall. I tried to eat something local, so I found a restaurant that had sour pancakes wraps and potato dumplings. The wrap I ordered had spinach – lots of salty spinach. More spinach than I could imagine eating without getting an iron overdose. The potato dumplings weren’t too hot either. The meal was so cheap though that I had no problem buying ice cream afterwards to wash the taste from my mouth. In the restaurant I heard our EuroTrip2006 theme song again (the 10th time I had heard it). Love Revolution – by Bob Sinclair; I found out this time what it was called.

The concert was in a smaller hall in the Municipal House – some big concert hall in Prague. The orchestra performed music by Mozart’s Divertimento D and Vivaldi’s 4 seasons – one of my favourite classical music pieces. I was really enjoying the performance – for the first 30 minutes at least. Then I noticed myself drifting off. It was a struggle to stay awake for the 2nd half and I kept pinching myself and biting my arm, but with little luck. I blame a combination of lack of sleep on the train and a Pavlovian reflex that was ingrained in me in Yoga class – we used to have relaxation periods (or as Ben would say “nap time”) at the end of class where Oscar would play classical music and we would close our eyes and relax.

When the concert ended, I left the hall in a daze. Seconds after I left the building, lightning started flashing and it started to pour. That woke me up. Everyone ran for cover under roof overhangs. I waited for 5 minutes until it had died out enough to get home without being drenched within seconds. Even then, I was pretty wet by the time I got back to the hostel.

My lunch  Jewish Cemetary  Crooked Headstones  Getting a Lift  Big Man, Little Bear  Vltava River  Bridge Kings

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