Czeching the Republic

Even though my family and I spent only a day in the Czech Republic, it was an experience that still is often mentioned at our family dinners.

Back in Germany, my family was unsure of what to cross off our traveling list. We could either visit the Alps, explore the small town of Erding more, or go out and travel to a country nearby. Early in the morning, moments before we left, we reached a decision to visit Prague, Czech Republic, a city adorned with history and famous for its Charles Bridge.

The car ride, despite its uncomfortable duration of four hours, was worth it. Crossing the border, which was actually nonexistent, probably caught my attention the most. Growing up where each state had “Welcome to” signs as we entered, it was really interesting seeing how there was no such thing in Europe. In fact, I didn’t know we entered the Czech Republic until I saw the change in flags.

After crossing the large terrain of corn fields, we finally got to Prague. As we drove further into the city’s boundaries, the more the intricate designs of the buildings drew my attention. The Dancing House, another famous site in Prague, was easy to notice as it was the odd one out from the other carefully grooved buildings.

We finally found a parking space in the crowded streets and then proceeded by following the groups of tourists who lead us to the bridge. This sounds artificial, but I can’t even explain the almost fairy tale-like feeling I got. It was as of all of the Disney stories were thought up of right where I was standing. Everything was calming with no stress in the environment. At that moment, I felt like I could accomplish things other than homework, like my mind was free to think about my happiness rather than my GPA. It was the first time ever since elementary school where I felt content with myself, light.

The bridge not only created a sense of tranquility, but also hosted special moments of a person’s life. Along the bridge I witnessed how the bridge magnified the magic of marriage proposals, strengthened family bonding which weathered away due to the distractions of technology and created an aura of security.

Apart from experiencing the life on the bridge, one of my favorite parts was our walk through the main street near the bridge and viewing all the forms of art Prague had to offer: pendants carved from stone, paintings of the bridge and the best of all the activities they provided the tourists.

Under the bridge there were two big bubbles where people could go inside and walk on the water. There were also a lot of street performers: artists painting tourists into the Charles Bridge background, a saxophone quartet playing in the plaza, snake owners allowing people to take pictures, locals blowing bubbles for fun. It even had a Museum of Medieval Torture (which we didn’t have time to go through). This place really had it all.
As it reached sunset, even though we weren’t ready to, it was time to go back. Even though I spent more time on the plane than in Prague, it felt like I spent my childhood there.