It is Friday morning, and I’ve got more than 24 hours of weekend under my belt.
Had a really fun night Wednesday; Laura and I met Tina and Mike at a restaurant in Malá Strana, and I had a delicious espresso while they finished eating. The espresso here is so good, sweet and creamy, not bitter or too strong. Then we went to this bar called Klub Újezd, a cool 3-story, storefront artsy-bar. We hung out mostly in the basement, the cavern-like part that all the bars here have, and drank Budvar pints and took shots of Fernet and smoked Lucky Strikes. But the best part was the Czech couple sitting near us that we talked to — they were students, architecture and philosophy. The guy didn’t seem all that excited about talking to us, but his girlfriend was really friendly. It was the first random interaction I have had with Czech people, and they imparted all kinds of wisdom, like “Your pronunciation is very bad,” and “You need to be careful of how much noise you make,” and “Watch what you say in English because everyone can understand you.” Valuable things to know.
Had language class yesterday, then ran a bunch of errands around town, like figuring out the copy machines on campus and copying my Kafka and Kundera coursepack, book-shopping for the remaining books I need for classes, paying my deposit to AIFS so I can go to Krakow in a few weeks, buying some more postcards to send out, etc. Came home and layed in bed for a while and tried to take a nap, but my Serbian suite-mate was listening to Serbian rock really loud, and I am passive-aggressive so I just tried to drown it out with Iron and Wine, and didn’t sleep.
Met up with Tina in the afternoon and we went to Smíchov to shop at the big, new mall there. It was pretty intense. I had forgotten how shopping in that kind of suburban-ish environment can really take it out of you. We went in pretty much every store there, mostly in search of a bright green belt for Tina, but I got some good buys at H&M and Zara — two nice sweaters, a standard, good-fitting long sleeved shirt, and an awesome big beaded necklace. But by the time we left, we were both a little delirious. You really have to be at your best, like well-rested and well-fed and in a good state of mind, to deal with certain parts of this city, especially the pickpocket-ridden, super-ghetto yellow Metro line (that goes to the mall) or being in a place like Smíchov, which is kind of outside the tourist center and a bit more sketchy and frenetic and requires you to keep a close eye on your belongings and yourself. But we made it back, and I made some pasta and veggies for dinner because I was starving.
Just hung out at the Kolej last night; had a dance party in John and Tyler’s room, sang along to some early high school oldies but goodies like Dashboard Confessional and John Mayer’s “Comfortable.” I was going to go out, but decided against it, and ended up just chilling out, listening to music, watching Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas in the lobby on some Czech TV channel with no sound.
I’m going to the Prague Zoo this afternoon, and going on an AIFS day-trip to Hrensko, near the German border, tomorrow for a hike. I really hope it is actually a hike this time; I need the woods! I have a decent amount of work to do this weekend, and I’m going to try to get ahead so that I can hang out with Mom and Dad as much as possible. So I’m going to crawl into bed with Franz Kafka for a bit. . .