Saturday, October 29, 2011

So What If The Tram Smells?

Czech's love transparent curtains. They especially love lacy transparent curtains that do nothing to insulate or add attractiveness to a room, but hey, the influence of Mother Russia times are still strong and I guess old habits die hard. 

Enough to get me off the warm tram!
So why did I wake up at 8:00 this morning, when I was well within my rights to have a lovely little sleep in  and simply laze around all day? Lacy, transparent curtains, and the bastard sun shining straight through the many tiny white holes. Oh well, I thought, at least the sun is out!

Because autumn is in full swing now, the sun in a rare commodity, and it is a foreign sun to me. It casts long shadows from the moment it rises, and teases everyone while it sits at an odd angle in the sky. It's saying "I know you want me to get above your head, but no way, Jose, I'm going to hang out down here where you feel like the whole day is late afternoon..." But lazy rising sun is better than no sun at all. 

And she beheld THIS!
I walked down to the restaurant where I'm occasionally lending a hand these days to find out my "shift" had been cancelled - no sweat off my back, because at least I was having a lovely walk, but I suddenly found myself awake and with nothing but time to do whatever I pleased. Ah, Saturday.

A tram roared by, the 22, so I gave a little chase and jumped on. Jeez Louise, it was smelly. I was warned about the cold weather and how it drives Prague's unfortunately homeless population onto the trams and into the metro, because they are delightfully heated. I just hope they are delightfully cleaned too, because it was pretty rank. Even so, I managed to ride about 5 stops until I was across the river in Prague 1 and somewhere I didn't recognize. 

Immediate reward: I look up the street and see the most beautiful fall trees I have come across since fall in Italy two years ago. I walk. Statues, beautiful trees, cobblestones, trees, leaves, it simply doesn't end. How is it that I've been here over two months and haven't visited Petrin Hill? 

Unbelievable leaves, believe it!
(I know why I don't go over to the other side of the river very often - because it just feels so foreign to me! Especially not at night, because heck, I don't want to have to freeze my hiney off waiting 30 minutes for a night tram at 2 in the morning. At least if I'm over the river, I can walk.)

The hill itself is steep, which is no problem for me today but I can imagine it being ridiculously slippery once the snow and sleet start coming in. And up, up, up I climbed, with a huge goofy grin on my face, realizing that I hadn't done this sooner because today was the day I was meant to be awed.
When I climbed high enough, WOOF, the day was clear and bright enough to see the whole city - my far away neighborhood and the spires of Namesti Miru and Zizkov Tower, I could see the National Theatre, and Letna Park, and of course, the castle. Everything was covered in a low lying mist. 

At this point I was hungry so I followed the tram tracks back to a 22 stop and merrily smiled all the way home. If only this story had a gory twist to it, but truly, it was just a beautiful fall day, and it deserves to be published. 

Yours truly, getting my Nordic style on.
Happy Halloween, all. (Except Czechs, who think its hilarious to see all the expats trolloping around in costumes.) 

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