For any of you that don't know, I love postcards.
I've decided that this is probably the best way to document my time in Prague: a blog based on photographs and postcards.
I'll post more often this way (hopefully), and there will just be a small amount of text--a postcard's worth. And this way I'll be able to send "postcards" to everyone.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Prague Beer Festival

The last of the K-State visitors have come through Prague in the past week. The Italian programs ended a week or so ago. One of the best things we took them to was the Beer Festival that's going on the entire second half of this month. They have typical Czech food and beers, so I tried apple pie (?!) and I had two amazing dark beers... something that I haven't found in the Czech Republic so much. Maybe I just haven't been looking in the right places? Mom, Dad and Emily are set to arrive soon... maybe they'll want to see the beer festival. : )

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Letna Park & Prague Marathon

This weekend we went to see the metronome sculpture in Letna Park. It replaced the largest sculpture of Stalin in the world. (Stalin was Czech). From that point you can see out over Prague. We heard music & saw crowds from the marathon that was going on just across the river. We walked down to Old Town Square. On the way we saw the eventual winner of the marathon pass us, he was ~5min from his finish at that point.
It is amazing to me how Old Town Square can completely change for all of these events. It is a completely different space depending on the day you see it.

Liberation Day

This last Saturday was V-Day, and it is one of the few national holidays we'll be here for. I tried to find events or parades online, and there was nothing. Pilsen, a town to the West, has big events--but I think they're celebration is a lot more Americanized (they were liberated by Patton). I couldn't find anything.
So that morning I went out & looked. Headed towards the castle, since the government stuff is all around there. Ran into a military memorial ceremony a few blocks from my dorm. Later I came across an even bigger ceremony. Everything they said was in Czech, I could just catch a few names, the years, it seemed like they were reading the sequence of major events from before & during the war.
The tone was really somber, very official, but somehow low key-- pretty small events. I saw buses for military personnel going toward Letna park, but wasn't able to get up there in time to see anything. That must have been bigger. I have tried to find photos, and will continue to try to find photos, because I once again didn't have my camera...

Sunday, May 9, 2010


We went to Orvieto, a hill town a little over an hour outside of Rome where a lot of K-State kids are studying this semester. I don't have many pictures from here at all. I felt like I didn't want to repeat all the pictures that they've been taking all semester, but now I see where they could come in handy! Lesson learned.
The pictures I took are looking out from the top & then on the Rupe (cliff) route that Chuck took me on. The rocks are incredible... it's obvious why the town was developed. They didn't even need to build fortification, it was already there. The town has Etruscan ruins everywhere... that's older than the Romans. Unbelievable to think about.


We went to Siena on St. Catherine's day--the feast day for their patron saint. It is one of their biggest festivals/events of the year. Siena is a really unique city that is "split" into 17 neighborhoods or more like families called contradas. They maintain a lot of the traditions and have an obvious pride in their individual contrada. The festivities for St. Catherine's day included Mass celebrated by a Cardinal where a lot of the Siennese wore traditional costumes from their contradas. It was the most impressive thing we saw with respect to the festival, I think the rain may have caused there to be less celebration/costume-wearing.
Also dampened by the rain: the Campo! : (
oh well, there were people taking wedding pictures on the Campo in the rain, so my day seemed a lot less dreary then.

Friday, May 7, 2010


When we went to Florence it was one of the two biggest festival days of the year for them. The first night was the "White Night". A huge celebration for the night before May 1st. I knew that Prague & the CZ had big celebrations, it just never occurred to me that Italy would too. People of all ages--from those in strollers to their grandmas--were out in the streets until well past midnight. There were concerts and markets and events set up in every square. I ate the best artichokes & sun-dried tomatoes I may ever have in my life from an antipasti stand. And later that night we saw the Vienna Vegetable Orchestra Performing. At first we heard squeaks and honks and siren-like noises, didn't understand why everyone was so excited by this act. Thought it was awful music actually. Once we realized they were playing everything with vegetables we were quite impressed. Watch their video here:


Spent a whirlwind 24 hours in Rome last week. John and I arrived in Rome and saw as much as we could see as fast as we could. Our hostel was by the Termini train station & that first evening we walked all the way over to the Vatican, Piazza del Popolo and back to the ruins & Colosseum. The next day we did it all again, saw everything at night & during the day. My favorite things were the Colosseum at night... there was even a full moon. That and the other ruins were incredible, too old for me to really comprehend. St. Peter's was by far the most spectacular church I've ever been in. It took the cake the next day. Chuck came to meet us in Rome, went to the Vatican with us, showed us some of the stuff the K-Staters walked through when they visited Rome.
Had some amazing pizza & gelato... all in all, a great start to my trip to Italy.