Tuesday, 8 June 2010

Goodbyes in Prague 1

Before heading for Budapest, the capital of Hungary, we will be spending three days in Prague. In these three days, we will totally immerse ourselves in the city that we've called home for the past few months... and as we go along with our daily lives, we bid her goodbye a little at a time...

The most exciting plan for the day was to catch a midday classical concert in the Prague Castle at the Lobkowicz Palace. The performance by the Prague Castle Consort begin at 1 p.m. Some of the pieces included works by A. Vivaldi, W/A. Mozart, A.Dvořák and B. Smetana.

I was just brimming with anticipation the moment the musicians took their place in front of us. I wondered to myself if I was going to be bored or enthralled? After all, it was my very first classical concert. The ticket had cost us around 300 korunas... It was a little expensive... and so I had high hopes!

And then they started playing...

I must confess, I fell in love immediately!

I'm not one who listens to classical music but for some reason, the live playing left me breathless! It was beautiful and painful at the same time knowing that I'll never be able to listen to the exact performance again...


It was like being whisked into another world entirely!

I know I'm being silly but it really felt like a scene from Nodame Cantabile (for those of you who watch the anime, you'll know what I mean)!

After the concert, we had a quick lunch at KFC in Anděl. And then we were off to Petřín Hill on a beautiful sunny afternoon.

There it was, the Petřín lookout Tower!

We decided to climb it for a small fee :))
After much huffing and puffing, we climbed half the tower...

Isn't the view wonderful?

And then we took to the steps again! Ouch more steps = firmer butt (haha :P)

I did it! I semi-overcame my fear of heights! I climbed all the way to the top!!! But I was quivering inside from fear ><

But the view was worth every drop of sweat... not that there were many, because it was as windy as it was sunny!

And then I found this souvenir coin machine in a little corner that my sister Kellie is very obsessed with :)) nope, sorry but I still think its a waste of money to indulge in something like this!

I've heard of a dog eat dog world but its my first time seeing a cuddly hippo chow down on a croco! Holy shit!

Haha... don't be too shocked... I didn't head into some unknown wilderness. It was just some photos that I took at the bottom of the observation tower where there was a photo exhibition.

Isn't he cute? Reminds me of Foxy!

You have to take the funicular to get down the hill... or its a long and sweaty hike downhill...

Ice-cream looks mighty tempting on a warm summer's day doesn't it?

View from the inside of the funicular.

We left Petřín...

And went to see the Metronome, a giant functional metronome, overlooking the Vlatava, in the city center. The 23m high piece was erected in 1991 in the exact spot left vacant by the destruction of a monument of the Soviet leader, Josef Stalin. All around the metronome, young people, and plenty of skaters hung out to bask in the summer sun :))

The was a cord linking the metronome to something that I cannot remember... oops... but the funny thing was that the locals had a "tradition" of knoting their shoes, flinging them up on the cord, and leaving them there to rot for all eternity... I wonder what it means? Maybe it was just a little bit of mischief?
The metronome that I was talking about.

I climbed on the the rail and took my first panoramic shot ever! It was only then that I realised that my phone had that kind of function >< baka!

I found an acorn quietly observing the whole of Prague. Was it lonely being up there all alone? I hoped it didn't mind my intrusion on its silent contemplation...

We bid the metronome a fond goodbye.

And headed for the Jewish Quarter, Josefov in Prague. The first thing I saw there was the Old New Synagogue.

"Most of the quarter was demolished between 1893 and 1913 as part of an initiative to model the city on Paris. What was left were only six synagogues, the old cemetery, and the Old Jewish Town Hall (now all part of the Jewish Museum in Prague and described below).

With only six synagogues, the old cemetery, and the Old Jewish Town Hall the Nazi German occupation could have been expected to complete the demolition of the old ghetto. However the area was preserved in order to provide a site for a planned "exotic museum of an extinct race". This meant that the Nazis gathered Jewish artifacts from all over central Europe for display in Josefov."

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