Alcippe (alcippe) wrote,
Alcippe
alcippe

Prague

The trees are all golden and everything is full of color. Last night I had dinner with Jeff and Eve, two people living here who KNOW good food. Jeff met up with me at the horse statue in St. Wenselaus (sp?) square in front of the big museum and took me to a tiny bar filled with old men and great beer. It was nothing I would have been able to find on my own, deffinately a local place and very memorable. Then we went to dinner and met up with his wife Eve and I had the best food I have ever had in Europe, maybe ever. I had cauliflower soup, roe deer, and then finished off the meal with creme brulee (which I had never had before. It was as thick and creamy as ice cream but warm, and utterly fantastic). Great conversation, and everything was perfect, I couldn't have asked for better. Afterwards we went for a walk and crossed Saint Charles' Bridge which during the day is packed with tourists, but at midnight it was deserted. Everything was completely fabulous, and the city was lit up beautifully. We wandered around a bit in the old town area, passed the old astronomical clock and through the old town square. I got back to the hostel at 2am and immediately fell into a deep sleep in the softest most comfortable bed ever, waking up at ten the next morning. 

I had breakfast at the hostel, just making it before it closed at 11, and then took the tram to the modern art museum where I spent a few hours taking in all the great art they have. I love the work of Jan Swankmeijer (he is from Prague and directed the (strange!) films "Little Otik" and "Alice" as well as many wonderful short films, many involving puppets) and there was a bunch of stuff from the surreal movemnt of which he is a part on display, so of course I loved it. 

After that I decided to walk up to the castle. I went through a park that looked down on the river and the old town and the view was out of this world. Prague was at my feet. I stopped for a beer at the beer garden that was in the center of the park to admire the scenery and rest my feet, and then wandered up to the castle. It's a big place! The walk up to it was gorgeous, but once up there it was packed solid with tourists, and I decided to forgo the tours and crowds and just admire the place from the outside. Every doorway seemed to have a price to get inside (not much, but still annoying), so I just walked down and made my way back down into the old city center. 

It was dark by then and I was beat, so I had a beer on the old town center - just in time to see the old astronomical clock strick seven. The wooden shutters opened and medieval statues came out and did their little show from the face of the clock and a rooster sort of noise sounded out when they were done, after which the bells rang. It was very cute and made me laugh. 

I had dinner at a traditional Czech restaruant in the Jewish area, beef goulash with dumplings. Dried flowers hung from the exposed ceiling beams and antlers adorned the brick walls. The food was good and hearty and the beer helped it all go down. 

I walked around a bit after that but it was getting late, so I wandered back in the direction of the tram stop, going this way and that, not really getting the hang of the medieval streets just yet, but somehow knowing enough to make my way (eventually) back to the tram. Once onboard, I validated my ticket in the little yellow machine and let it glide me home. 

On my way back to the hostel I stopped at a little neighborhood bar and enjoyed a beer in a grittier setting. Nothing like the touristy old city center, this place had a rougher, more honest clientele - very friendly and good beer to boot. No dried flowers or antlers on the walls, just old paint and some marble topped tables strewn about the place. It was very basic but came as a bit of a relief to be in a more genuine setting.

Tomorrow is my last day here and I'm hoping to take a trip out to see the bone church. My night train to Wroclaw leaves at 11pm, but I'm hoping I can fit it in. 

And now? BED TIME.
Tags: europe
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