Monday, July 11, 2011

Life Lessons in Prague

- Never trust street vendors who tell you that their work is original.

- Don't buy the first magnet you see in a tourist shop, even if the price looks good. You may discover that things are cheaper in this country than you expected, and that you can find a cheaper one in the next store over.

- If you do your research, you can do a lot for just a little. I didn't do much research myself, but other people in our group did. We found some fantastic deals, like free walking tours through the city and an hour-long riverboat tour for about 9 euros.

- I liked being in a 12-person group in a foreign city for the weekend without cell phones. No cell phones meant that we had no way of communicating with each other not-in-person, so we had to all stick together all the time, or make very specific plans about when and where to meet. I like having the option to be free to wander on your own, but you really grow together as a group when you're stuck together when you're happy, when you're tired, etc.

- 4.5 hour-long train rides in Hogwarts Express-esque cars are a lot of fun. Especially when you put all the seats together (they could slide out to make the entire compartment into one big bed), share bread, nutella, and other goodies, and have girl talk for hours. Makes for great bonding time.

- Enjoy the simple, beautiful things in life. Like delicious food, pretty clouds, interesting architecture, wonderful people, breezes on a hot day. And savor moments: walking into another cathedral and catching your breath again at the spacious, beautiful interior as your eyes adjust to the darkness, or relaxing on a boat at dusk after a long day as you wander up and down the river which divides the city. It's feeling and being that make life so tangible and sweet.

*Oh, and always bring your camera battery charger. Even if you're just leaving for the weekend, bring it!

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