First Post in PRAGUE

31 Jul

So they say it’s not about the destination, it’s about the journey. Well whoever said that didn’t just have the past 2days that I did!

My adventures began with Mama G & my dad waking me up at 6am, so my dad could say bye. My alarm was set for 7:30, and I was unable to fall back asleep afterwards. So it was rough. Especially because, true to Mama G form, we did everything the night before. I was allowed to check 2 suitcases on the plane & bring 2 carry-ons and a purse. Sounds good, right? wrong.

Monday night I ended up going to sleep at 2am after almost having a mental breakdown packing. My big suitcases weighed 52lbs when it needed to weigh “at most” 48lbs. But I didn’t want to leave anything behind! So for about 2hrs we continuously packed, weighed the suitcase, unpacked & re-packed. It felt like one of those impossible puzzles from MTV’s Real World/Road Rules Challenge! I wanted to cry.

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(Above: If this whole teaching thing doesn’t work out…hmu Mtv)

Finally, I somehow managed to make it work! Little did I know though, that I would be regretting my packing choices the very next day…

The next 24+hrs would be a blur. But here are some of the things I figured I’d share…

1.) Shame on you, Logan Airport, for charging $5 for those stupid wheely cart things to carry luggage on. Because I guess watching me struggle to wheel one suitcase that was half my size + one with a broken wheel is more entertaining.

2.) If you ever want to people watch…go to an airport. It’s like an international version of http://www.peopleofwalmart.com/ esp European male footwear. Just ew.

3.) Shame on you Icelandair for having me sit on a flight that left at 230pm Eastern Time  & land at 1130pm Iceland time (aka: 730pm), & not feed me once nor offer me drink. Everything costs ridiculous amounts of money, which you only accepted via credit card. No takks.

4.) Iceland & Sweden have some of the most beautiful people. Everyone has my desired shade of blonde hair, perfect tan (yet never wrinkly) skin, & over 6ft tall…even like 15yr old girls! 

5.) That being said, being mistaken as Icelandic/Swedish was one of the most flattering experiences. And it happened several times 😉 

6.) Free wifi, normal showers, clean water, cold beverages are all things Americans take wayyyy too much for granted.

7.) 5h20min layovers should be non-existant

8.) That’s why fate sent me friends to pass the time with. While struggling to connect to Stockholm Airport’s wifi in a cafe, I suddenly heard two boys my age speaking ENGLISH. I stopped what I was doing & asked them if my ears were playing tricks on me, they assured me they weren’t. 2hrs later after discussing everything from politics to fashion, I now have two new friends 🙂 Not to mention invites to Sweden/Switzerland! Thanks again, Jonas & Alazar!

9.) After saying goodbye to the boys who insisted on giving me a ‘Swedish Goodbye’ aka: a hug (something not many Europeans seem to be fond of), I thought: great, wtf will I do for 3 HOURS?! But then, all of a sudden a girl comes up to me & asks ‘Are you Jessi Graves?’. Courtney, a girl in my program, had her flight changed last minute & we would be heading to Prague together! Fate.

10.) Prague taxi drivers, aka: the Russian mafia, aka: scammers, aka: potentialTaken 3 characters…also seem to think they’re NASCAR drivers as well! Made me feel like I was back in Boston 🙂 all the cutting off, last minute lane switches & lack of blinkers!

11.) Czech people speak Czech. I do not. They are not very patient with this. After finally getting to the apartment a sweaty, dirty, exhausted, starving mess, I went to the grocery store alone to get food. I bought water & toothpaste at a CVS-place. I got past the ‘dobry den’ (good morning) & nodding…but then my American-ness showed. She asked me if I knew the plastic bag costs money (I did). All I could do was blank stare, shake my head & say ‘I don’t speak Czech’ in Czech as the line of people rolled their eyes. The second grocery store was better. I bought pasta, bread, drinks & apples. Apples that you need to apparently weigh on the scale & get a sticker for. I didn’t get the sticker. She told me this. Once again, I felt hopeless. 😦

12.) This made me wonder: is it better to be recognized as a tourist & then treated like one, or to be assumed a local & then surprise them when you’re not? I’d rather have the first. Something I hate! In Paris, I knew the language & could really try, so far, here I am a pathetic tourist getting on everyone’s nerves.

13.) I thought it was A SICK JOKE when my apartment was in the attic of a building. With four floors of winding staircases & of course, typical Europe, NO ELEVATORS. Thank God the man at the front saw me hyperventilating and helped. I had badddd flashbacks to when I left Paris & decided to lug everything on the metro home to save money. BAD IDEA. Winding staircases, jet lag, no sleep, no food, no AC, & a combined total of 90+lbs of luggage is an awful mix.

13.) Naps & good food cure all. I napped for 3hrs then had a glass of wine, and a Czech specialty of meat, potato dumplings, gravy, cranberry sauce & whipped cream. IT WAS AMAZING.

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(Above: it sounds so weird, but it was so good!)

That’s all for now! I am passing out because I want to shake this jet lag by tomorrow. But stay tuned for more of my adventures in Praha!

-JG 🙂 

 

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2 Responses to “First Post in PRAGUE”

  1. lafemmet August 1, 2013 at 7:19 am #

    It will get better and you are in an Amazing city!! you will make wonderful friends. I look forward to reading your adventures. 🙂 Get some rest then go out and have a great time and take lots of pics!

  2. Courtney Russo! August 1, 2013 at 1:08 pm #

    Obvi #9’s name was Courtney! 😀 miss you bestie, keep your chin up-you’ll adapt in no time!

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