Tuesday, October 13, 2009


The adjustment to Prague has been more difficult than I was expecting, I think. I actually had a hard time walking away from the hostel this morning and setting off. For some reason, checking the maps ahead of time had me on edge. The street names and place names are unpronounceable for me.

I finally just decided that this is how it's going to be sometimes and the only way around it is to just start walking. So I did. My first priority was to find something to wear under my skirt because it's still pretty cold here. (Although the rain that greeted me yesterday has mostly moved on, the sun is still only so warm.) Well, actually, the first priority was a bank so I could get some Czech crowns; then the warmer clothes.

I ended up at the Charles Bridge which is the destination in Prague, probably the place people are most familiar with. I wandered around some more and ended up at a church - but I still don't know what church it was. I only really went in to get out of the cold, but it was pretty amazing in there. After awhile I decided I should probably head back because I wasn't sure how long of a walk it was and I was getting pretty hungry. I didn't consult the map once, I just kind of walked in the direction that I thought I'd come from. It's not too hard to do that in Prague because there are a good number of distinctive landmarks, the castle being the one that I knew I wanted to walk away from to get back near the hostel.

For food I wanted something warming, filling, and traditional. I picked a place and ordered roast pork with bacon dumplings and spinach. And a beer, of course. It was yummy good. But it brings up for me the other reasons why adjustment has been a little harder.

For one, currency conversion isn't as easy to do in your head. With euros, you multiple by one and a half and you get dollars. With crowns, you divide by 17 to get dollars. So my lunch was 133 crowns, which might sound like a lot, but that's less than $10. (As an aside, I had to buy contact lens solution that cost more than my lunch - 250 crowns - which when converted to dollars makes it the most expensive contact solution I've ever bought!)

The other adjustment difficulty is language which makes sense since Czech doesn't seem to have an abundance of vowels laying around. On top of that, how many times do you think I've started to speak Spanish before realizing that I'm not in Barcelona anymore? I'll tell you. A lot. Grrr. I know that dobry den means hello, prosim (pronounced pro-seem) means please, and dekuji (pronounced kind of like ya-key) means thank you. And I kind of surprised myself when I told the waiter ucet ('oo' like in zoo chet) prosim and he knew exactly what I meant. On the other hand, I think that more people speak English here than they did in Barcelona and that's quite the relief.

In case you were wondering, I do have pictures to share, but it will have to wait. There are eight computers for internet use at the hostel (5 working), but the two that I've tried so far today don't seem to want to download my pictures from my camera.


  1. Can't wait to see the pictures!
    Stay warm,

  2. Hope you found something warm to wear. Anxious to see your pictures. Was great seeing you!!We had a fun weekend. Love

  3. I found tights to wear underneath my clothes. It's a lot better than before, but 6C is only about 43 degrees, so it's still chilly.

    And I'm still working on those pics!

  4. Tights were a good choice because they'll be easy enough to pack and they won't take up a lot of space. (although I'm sure you knew that when you bought them :-)

  5. Exactly! And yes, that is precisely why I bought them. Who knows? Maybe they´ll come in handy at some other point during the trip...