Touchdown Prague

IN GRADE TWO I prided myself for being able to spell “Czechoslovakia” without batting an eyelash. I liked the sound of it and picked it for a school project in celebration of the United Nations. Its flag was a lot like the Philippines’, sans the sun and stars. I looked down on my classmates who picked Japan (too easy to spell, and the flag was too simple) or France (for the same reasons), but couldn’t quite feel superior towards a classmate (I forget who) who picked USA. Cutting up fifty or so stars from a piece of art paper impressed me.

Many years have passed, and now I’m here—my side trip in Central Europe—after a comfortable three-hour train ride from Vienna. It goes without saying that the country has split into the Czech Republic and Slovakia; so I don’t have reason for boasting anymore. It’s much easier to spell.

I arrived at 3 PM, checked in at my hostel in Národní Street, and took a nap. At 5 PM, I walked around the city. I had wanted to get lost, the best preliminary way to imbibe the city, and found Charles Bridge. For dinner I ate at a burger stand near the Old Town. I had mulled wine—quite sweet, but its warmth was soothing—and trdelník with chocolate for dessert.

Tomorrow I’m joining a walking tour.

Bubbly welcome

Prague Metro

View from my room

Swans

Mulled wine

Kafka

City center

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