February 16th, 2014

There have been too many times this week when I have to stop myself and ask, “Am I really living in Prague right now”? I cannot believe that I’m on my 4th week of living in the Czech Republic! My daily living seems so normal to me at this point yet I still find myself constantly making new observations about this city, the people, and this experience.

This week was my second and final week of my intensive Czech language class! It really is nice to be able to atleast order food in Czech and say a few fun phrases. My favorites so far are “Nazdravi” which means cheers and “Na Shledanou” which means goodbye! While sitting in a classroom for almost 5 hours a day learning a difficult language doesn’t sound like the most fun time, I grew to appreciate the ample amount of time that I was given to adapt to the culture.

It’s now Sunday at 10:20 p.m. and it’s safe to say I’m exhausted from a fun-filled weekend. From being shoved around in a mosh-pit (I didn’t last too long, let’s be real) to celebrating the end of winter Czech style, I definetly celebrated the “orientation” portion of the program being over.

While my entire weekend was kickin’, I have to admit that my favorite parts of the week were the small moments. While I acknowledge the fact that I’m annoying for saying cheesy things, the little moments truly are the best. From walking home alone along the Charles Bridge to wearing groutfits and running to catch a tram with my friends, I want to make sure I’m remembering the small moments that made this experience that much better.

Classes officially start tomorrow, and I can’t decide whether I’m excited, terrified, or sad.

^^^I really have nothing else to say about that.

Good new is, I found my first “spot”. It’s a bagel place…….(judge me).

Na Shledanou,

Lizzie

P.S. Enjoy some pictures below!

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^Home sweet home!!

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^This is the gorgeous Estates Theatre in which we had our own box to see Don Giovanni!!

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^Some weird people with weird masks at a weird traditional Czech festival. Awesome.

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February 9th, 2014

Time files when you’re studying abroad in Prague. I cannot believe that today marks the second week that I’ve been living in this beautiful city! Although I’m pretty much settled in at this point, it still feels like a vacation. This may be due to the fact that I have yet to start any classes besides my Intensive Czech class. If you’re wondering what it’s like to speak Czech, don’t because it’s a ridiculously difficult language. Czech people amaze me with their ability to make an insane language sound so fluid and beautiful. Besides that, my Czech teacher’s name is Ludek and is the most bouncy male adult I’ve ever had the pleasure of knowing. I take the class with my small communications program, and he deals with our loudness and inability to stop talking.

Besides my Czech language class, this week I started to run errands and prepare to actually make a home for myself. While doing so, I’ve begun to notice some very interesting things about this country and its people.

Observations

1) Dogs. They are everywhere. People take them on the trams, in grocery stores, and on their daily walks. They’re usually not on leashes, yet somehow never stray from their owner. As Ludek says, “They’re not dogs, they’re people”.

2) Grocery stores are small and scarce. You have to pay five korunas to use a cart instead of just using a basket. I’m still trying to figure out what people really eat here…

3) No one likes to talk on public transportation. If you want to fit in, don’t talk on the trams. Czech people are very warm and friendly but are very quiet compared to Americans.

4) Sweatpants are not an option. I have yet to see a single person look slightly casual. Czechs look very put together while I tend to wear groutfits on a daily basis.

I’m obviously still getting used to the Czech way of life, but I’m feeling more and more comfortable everyday. I’ve used the trams by myself several times and I now know how to order my favorite beer in Czech. I’ll add a few of my favorite pictures so far to the bottom of the post!

Na Shledanou (Bye!)

-Lizzie

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Me in front of the John Lennon Wall!

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Just a quick selfie in Old Town Square!

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A gorgeous view of my side of the city and the Charles bridge!

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The Prague castle!

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The view from a rooftop restaurant in Praha!

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The most beautiful place in the world.

February 2, 2014

Well, I guess I’ve been traveling for a week now. I don’t really remember a more insane week than this, so it’s safe to say I’m loving every second of it.

After missing my first plane and every consecutive flight after, my luggage got lost. While normally I would have probably had a screaming/crying/panic attack about the luggage, I picked myself up and tried not to let it affect me. I know it seems like I’m writing a lot about lost luggage, but it’s a really big deal (also they found it and delivered it to my dorm so yay!!) My first day consisted of a long nap, walking around my dorm, and eating. Solid.

The rest of the week pretty much went as follows:

-Orientation at the CIEE study center from about 8 am- 2 pm

-Czech Buddies taking us around the city to familiarize ourselves

-Dinner somewhere bomb

-“Czeching”out some local clubs

The CIEE study center which is where I’ll be taking most of my classes is about a 5 minute walk from my sweet, sweet dorm room. My wonderful Czech buddy Tereza has been so helpful from helping us with the metro to showing us the best beer in town.

The only exception to this was on Saturday when I toured around with two friends for the first time. Even though we didn’t have a Czech buddy with us, we were able to maneuver around the city by ourselves without getting lost (a first).

I realize how lucky I am to be in my position. The people in my program are fantastic, and I am so in love with Prague already. Even though I’ve been running on little to no sleep this entire week, I wouldn’t have skipped any moment.

Tomorrow, my intensive Czech classes begin so maybe I’ll be able to say more then Dobry Den (Hello) and Dekuji (Thank you!)