Aptly called frogs with all beautiful things and people surrounding us. We can easily get lost in this city, literally and figuratively.
Let's begin from, well, the beginning!
*please bear with the photos and typos.. I am writing my updates via iPhone and let's just say I am all thumbs!
I'll fix the photo collage and typos when I come back to home base.
It was hard, a definite challenge but it's needed. This is a 10-day trip to 2 cities, essentially. In August we will be touring 8-10 cities and so it's good to practice now and not be stressed out later on.
Granted I and hubby still carry the boys' bags now and again, I still say it's a must to stick to the one bag each. No check-in luggage, no wheels to worry on cobbled streets. Rick Steves is correct when he said, "everytime you travel, do you say, I should pack heavier next time? It's always I should pack lighter, right?."
Really, you don't wear all of your clothes you brought for "just in case". The best strategy is to have a mix and match of attire for different occassions. I actually found out, 6 of the items I brought, I didn't use and 2 of the items I bought were used once.
For ladies, the pack is longer but we can still trim down.
I was supposed to only bring 2 footwear but the weather is confused at the moment so I gotta prepare for yes, the "what ifs".
I got my blue suede heels for a dressy dinner we have booked tonight. I got my Timberland boots for those rainy days. Got my Keds for the sunny occassions and got my rubber slippers for the bathroom. However, I can count that slippers for my oldest boy, his feet is the same size as mine. I didn't bring him house slippers so we share it.
I only need it when I'm in the cold floor bathroom. All around the house is wooden flooring or carpet so I'm good.
My footwear then is a total of 3.
With the big plane, from Dubai to Amsterdam, everyone was happy. Then we had to do the transfer.
But first, my loving hubby went to the women's washroom at Schipol airport. He dashed across to the men's side so quickly, I wasn't able to capture the Mr Bean moment :) "I was wondering, why are there women all powdering their faces?.. yikes!"
It was a nice small plane, used specifically for short distances. KLM calls them City Hopper.
Jason got scared while Alex loved it. It was a lovely cloudy day.
Of course my boys asked, if it is possible to stand on them?
The plan was to take the public bus to the train station and then take the metro to Namesti Republiky and walk.
It's true.. altitude makes you bloat! My face before boarding in Dubai was starved.. landing in Prague? Like I was fed really mercillesly!
It cost Koruna 600 for the 4 of us, which is practically AED 30 each. Darn cheap compare to their European counterparts.
Shuttle bus was actually a saving grace because when we get off Namesti Republiky station and started walking, we got lost... for about 30 minutes.
Yup that was a loooong time searching for a small street. We were armed with 2 maps, but we were so disoriented, the map just didn't make any sense.
After the jet lag wore off, we found the street then the house, then the bed and we all collapsed!
Honestly getting lost at the start and walking in streets we are not familiar of, I was a little disappointed when we finally found the house street.
It was hidden. There were few grafittis on the street's wall, the main door looks old, we were tired and hungry and apparently I was dehydrated (from Dubai, I had a few sip of water, bad move!). I didn't fully appreciate how lucky we are to have this place.
We went up the stairs and were greeted by soft beds. It's clean and has all modern amenities and of really good brands. Coffee machine, washing machine, full size fridge and freezer, hot plate cookers, electric blinds, security camera, dishwasher, got my point, everything we will ever need while staying in Prague.
So one by one, we slept until 2 PM. We have to go out and buy groceries and have lunch.
There are graffitis everywhere in the city! It is their own way of saying, "we are a progressive and liberated society". Coming from WWII and going through communist era, the habit of writing their messages on the wall is ingrained in their souls.
We ended up going to Palladium, which is a 5 minute walk to our house.
Unfortunately we have a tradition of having the first few meals in a good old fashion junkfood chain. It was a toss between MickeyD's or KFC... we went for KFC and enjoyed a different way of frying chicken.It was tasty.
I know it's bad and a sad thing to do in such a beautiful country, but it was so tasty. We discovered that chicken wings are a big thing here. They sell wings in buckets! And we witnessed buckets per person as a meal, everyone nibbling on them, no utensils, just finger licking meal. The way some people build pyramid using pizza crust, I saw in Czech were wing bones.
We will have to do it too, tomorrow. Probably SHARE a bucket.
For our groceries, we got them from Alberts. It's connected to another mall opposite Palladium and it's in the basement. It looks like it used to be a train station or something, I will find out in the next few days!
We are fed, we have supplies and so we head back home to wait for our tour Riksha.
We had them pick us up from the house which is really great as getting lost again on still tired body was not ideal. And they dropped us off to the restaurant where we have a booking for dinner. Perfect!
The owner is a half Sudanese, half Czech entrepreneur who personally lead our tour. His name is Arman.
Riksha cost 850 per bike, 200 per drop off or pick up so it cost us 2500 Koruna in total.
1 and a half hour of light tour with a few bits of history and introduction. So ideal for first timers in Prague. Not diluted with facts we can get from books and frankly speaking, we weren't ready for information overload.
We went to important places to get oriented to. We even went further across the bridge and got some tips of more things-to-do in Kampa Island.
I was the supercool mom who researched and booked it.. my kids love me!
On our way, a light drizzle accompany us until we reached home. As I drifted to a supposed to be light nap... apparently the rain became heavy.
The plan was we'll rest a bit and then hubby and I will hit the streets at night. I fell totally asleep, missed night altogether and woke up past 5 in the morning with make-up still on, unbrushed teeth, unshowered me and contact lens sticking to my eyes!
That's first day for you! Knackered but totally happy.
I hope to write a food review of Vytopna . Their food deserves a full post, if only I can find the photos!