Well Teddy and I woke up to do the happy dance on Monday morning (something to the effect of jumping up and down looking incredibly goofy) because our good friends Matt and Alana were coming to visit us! They arrived in cold and rainy Prague around 6pm Monday night and we went to our dorm to cook a Czech meal: Gulash, bread, potatoes, and beer. It was quite delicious and we spent the time catching up and talking about our travels for the past few weeks. Matt and Alana are big outdoors people, so we have many shared passions to appreciate. . After dinner we took an evening stroll through a park that over looks the city, then we hit the town and had drinks on the river… so much fun! We tried to order to most exotic drinks we could find, and their names will go unmentioned for now. We took turns trying all of them and just had a really great time being adventurous.
Tuesday was an extra exciting day and we affectionately titled the day “fantastic food day…” We woke up and immediately went to Prague Castle to spend about an hour being tourists. The architecture is incredible in Prague, and the stain glass windows inside the Castle’s church were absolutely exquisite. After an extremely long walk from the castle to Old Town Square, Christie and I showed Matt and Alana our favorite cafe to eat breakfast and enjoy coffee (the same cafe we watched the thunderstorm from, and the same cafe I will return to today!). Our breakfast was great, the environment surreal, and the conversation even better. Christie and I had class right afterwards so we walked for another hour until we found our school (I thought I knew my way around…). Matt and Alana left to explore and Christie and I struggled to keep our eyes open as we learned about WWI . Interestingly enough, Czechs view the war differently than most of the West, and generally doesn’t percieve the Versailles Treaty to be unjust toward the Germans. A new perspective and I was eager to listen… Well naturally we were quite hungry after class so we took our dear friends to another favorite, the Globe Bookstore Cafe (also written about earlier). Matt was on a mission to find the most Czech item on the menu, so he ordered glog- a hot rum with water, lime, and sugar. A bit strong for me, but Teddy and Matt liked it! Anyhow, lunch was great and we browsed the bookstore for some classics. I bought Jane Eyre because I need to read it according to Alana and Teddy :). Ok so after lunch, we hit up a library from the 11th century. Wow. Ancient texts on display, and a room full of stories, heritage, and history lined the shelves of the most beautiful library I have ever seen. Alana is an english major, and I know this was a highlight for her… so worth it to see. After the library, we went to change for mass. Grandma Roper, you will be proud! We went to 6:00 mass at a monastery built in the 11th Century. We’ve seen quite a few churches, but attending the service adds a whole new dynamic. Though mass was in Czech, we all thoroughly enjoyd the service. God is so big and so universal and so ancient. Incredible to know that mass is the same worldwide and has been practiced identically day in and day out for centuries. Mass ended and our we were again hungry so we decided to go all out for dinner. This meant a real Czech restaurant where the beer is cheaper than water, dumplings and fried potatoe croquettes were ordered, and we got screwed on our tab. The dinner was amazing, but we definately didn’t pay the price on the menu. Boo. It didn’t bother us for long, however, because the evening was young, and we, being our adventurous selves, went for a rowboat ride on the Vtalva River at dusk (which is quite late in Prague). We each had a turn rowing with the most ridiculous oars in the world. When it came to be my turn, well… hahaha…. yeah. So there was this red buoy (sp?) and my goal was to get us past it. Matt, however, kept making me laugh so hard that my stomach hurt and we managed to hit the buoy, drift away from it, let the buoy pass us, and eventually get past it. Teddy almost peed her pants and Alana was crying. I was paralyzed because I was laughing too hard and we kept drifting further and further from the buoy… in the wrong direction. Nevertheless, I let Teddy take the oars and we managed to get away from the red buoy :). Mom and dad, you will be happy to know that I redeemed myself with another chance at the oars and I did a much better job! Our boatride ended and we went for ice cream at Cream and Dream, the best Italian ice cream EVER. Soooo good. We were actually quite tired after ice cream and we ended the night early….
This morning (Wed) Teddy and I made American banana, strawberry, plain, and chocolate chip pancakes for our friends with orange juice and yogurt. A complete meal. Before our friends left, Matt… having witnessed my haircutting skills in action… decided it would be great to have a trim so I gave him a haircut in our 3×3 feet shower. Wait til you see the pictures. Though it wasn’t a mohawk or mullet or transformation haircut, it was a decent trim and all were pleased with the outcome. (hmmm… my future calling?… jk). After the haircut and a parting gift of Czech wine, Alana and Matt were on their way to Vienna and then Venice. Sad to see them go, but it was great to have such good friends visit us in a foreign country. Mom, you’re next ;).
Well that’s the very very very thorough update on the past few days… I am now off to a cafe to read and write and do what I love to do. Miss you all and love you much. Bye bye (I actually don’t know how to say that in Czech. That’s terrible).