An afternoon to explore

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With much of the day still ahead of us after our tour with Alexandra, we sought to see a few more gems of Prague.

We started our tour with the bell tower of St. Nicolas’s Church, known for being the most beautiful Baroque church in Prague. We climbed the steep flights of stairs to come across this expansive view:

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Furthermore, the placards in the bell tower explained the function and casting of bells. Many such bells contained Latin couplets announcing their purpose: “I praise the real God, I summon the people, I assemble the priests / I cry for the dead, I drive away plagues, I celebrate holidays.”  We were told that bells formed part of the universal language, all inhabitants of the city knew their meaning and significance. During the 15th and 16th centuries Prague was known throughout Europe for producing exquisite bells. That being said, with its abundance of quality metals, it was often seized during war. On September 27, 1916 all 267 Prague bells sounded for the last time in honor of the eve of Saint Wenceslas.  IMG_3550

The boys then went into the church of the building while Mom and I waited outside. The following photos were taken by my Dad, whom I am sure would love to give the commentary on them!

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We hopped onto a bus with the intention of visiting Prague Castle. The grounds are open until midnight, but all of the buildings close at 5 pm. Which meant that we poked around the complex, but saved the tour for the following morning.

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These are the photos of the cathedral peeking out of the walls of the surrounding complex. IMG_3565 IMG_3563

Inside the main gates lie austere beige buildings. If you are lucky you can even see the guard change!!

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These next two photos are of the facade of the cathedral.

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I found a box with a crimson H on it, clearly Harvard is everywhere. Furthermore, it is not all that easy to make a human “H”.

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These are backside photos of the cathedral.

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The complex is based upon the top of the hill, which produces this expansive view of the city. There is a gray wall that we found troubling because from afar it looks as if they are representations of bodies. Upon googling later, I learned that in fact it is part of a mannerist garden built in a private palace and the stalagmite formations are what give the effects we were seeing.

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Above is one of my favorite photos of the trip featuring Andrew and my Mom, Marcy. Below, is something I am more traditionally known for, photos of people’s backsides…

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As we were walking down the path we came across a statue of a woman holding a bird, while a live bird sat on her head. Below are the images of our discovery.

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From here we kept heading towards Charles Bridge, since I was dying to cross on foot and came across a small garden, Vojanovy Sady. According to its poster it was once an orchard built for the pontifical establishment built in 1248. In 1653 it became the convent for Discalced Carmelites. There were promises of a cave and other such wonders which we could not find; however, Andrew did get a magic wand.

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Below is an image of a streetlamp that as we passed by caught my eye.

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Each city has a special pastry treat. In Prague one of them is Trdelník, which is made from rolled dough wrapped around a long wooden stick and then grilled and topped with a sugary walnut mix. The end result looks something like the large pastry hanging off the hook. For reference, Andrew said that it tasted something like having a sugary pretzel.

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The Charles Bridge is lined with many statues. From the base of the bridge you can see some of them. The second photo depicts Saint Michael guarding the bridge.

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As you can tell it is a very crowded bridge, with a lot of food traffic. Upon reaching the other side of the river we were greeted with live music from the trumpet players and a street performer blowing some of the largest bubbles I have ever seen.

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We walked back past the Royal Theater and to a nearby brewery for a quick drink.

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Later that evening we stopped for sushi, not your typical czech food, but after all of the heavy meats and potatoes from our previous meals, we were in the mood for something lighter.

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