Life Update

Hello readers! It’s been a while since I’ve updated you on life in Europe.  The reason is because life in Europe is just that.  Life.  And with all things, they start to become routine, but my life lately has been something I daren’t take for granted.  I have this amazing opportunity and I really want to savor each moment.

Since my last update, a lot has happened.  I will just give some brief antidotes about each event.

Vienna

Vienna was remarkable because of the two palaces that the city houses.  We had so much fun walking around the palace grounds and seeing the beautiful gardens.  We also ate huge wienerschnitzel at Figelmüller, one of the most famous and longest-standing restaurants in Vienna.

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Divoka Sarka

We found one of our new favorite parks in Prague, Divoka Sarka, where there are many interesting rock formations to climb around on, a nice pond for swimming, and beautiful walking paths near a small stream.  It is only about 25 minutes from our house by metro.

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Hockey World Cup

Next, we attended one of the Hockey World Cup games since it was being held in Prague this year.  We saw Latvia crush Austria, and became instant Latvia fans when we realized where the hearts of our seat-neighbors were.  The energy in the 02 Arena was amazing!  Later in the tournament, we also watched the game for 3rd place – USA vs Czech – in Old Town Square.  We weren’t quite sure who to root for… But USA won.

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Brno

Next, we took a weekend trip to Brno and to Moravsky Kars.  We spent a day exploring Brno, the second largest city in the Czech Republic, and the rest of our time exploring the nature which lies 30 minutes outside of Brno.  There were some incredible caves we got to explore, as well as great hiking trails.  We also had some delicious traditional Czech food, which I proudly ordered in Czech. (My Czech class is paying off!)

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Cesky Krumlov

We headed back to Cesky Krumlov again while Jordan’s friends Paul and Steve were visiting.  It was great to see the city in the summer; last time we were there the festive atmosphere was dampened by dreary temperatures.  This time, we got to play in the river, hang out in the sun, and rent scooters to ride down Mount Klet.  It wasn’t covered in snow this time, so I think we made much better time climbing up it!

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Ireland

Amazing, amazing Ireland.  This weekend trip was one of my highlights of Europe so far!!  We got to see Dublin, as well as some of the beautiful nature that surrounds Galway.  I loved the Temple Bar neighborhood of Dublin where there are many trendy bars and restaurants.  We got to eat some delicious traditional Irish food like Coddle, an Irish stew, and Boxty (potato pancakes).  Then we sampled some Irish beers.

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The next morning we headed to Galway and explored South Park, an area with beach and a large green area.  I had an amazing goat cheese salad for lunch.  We also did some shopping.  I loved this store called Pennys, where everything was so cheap.  I bought a ballerina sundress for 5 euros.  That night, we found Blue Moon in the local connivence store so obviously we bought the four pack and drank that with oranges.

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 The next morning we left early for our tour to the Cliffs of Moher and one of the Aran Islands.  We started with a twisty and turny bus ride to the ferry dock that would take us to the island.  Feeling a bit green, we finally made it to the ferry landing.  Like the hardcore people we are, we stood outside on the ferry with the misty rain collecting so much on our faces that we could drink the water drops coming off of our lips and could hardly see out of our glasses.  But it was beautiful – we were out on the open sea.  We made it to the island and decided to rent bikes to get around and see the sights.  It was the best transport decision we have ever made.  I loved soaring across the bumpy stone paths between stone pile fences, seeing a real life ship wreck, a light house that seemed to be in the middle of nowhere, and flying down a huge hill with the sea right beside me.  I will never forget this day.  Next, we boarded the ferry again and got a water-level view of the Cliffs of Moher.  They were stunning.  Even better was our next stop, where we saw the cliffs from above.  We had some time to explore the park where you can walk right up to the edge of the cliffs and feel like you are on the edge of the earth.  We headed back to Galway after that and found a traditional cafe for dinner.  They served us so many different kinds of potatoes, and the most amazing soup and bread.  It was a cream of vegetable soup with soda bread.  I think that was my favorite thing I ate while in Ireland.

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Although the weather was quite rainy (it seemed as per usual to the locals), I found the parts of Ireland that I saw to be absolutely breathtaking.  I hope to spend more than just a weekend there someday.

Life In Prague

My four-month long Czech class has ended and I feel like I have a lot of studying to do before the next level starts in September.  But I did learn a lot and had a good (sometimes torturous) time learning (trying to learn).  On our last class, we all went out for beers and food.  Our class had representatives from Taiwan, USA, Sweden, China, Italy, Turkey, Bulgaria, and Austria.

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I bought a bicycle to ride for fun! Not to get around for any practical purposes, but so far it’s been great riding it in the sunshine.

IMG_5097Most classes are winding down for the summer, but I am working on filling up my schedule for the month of July.  For the next little while, I will be holding off on the trips, so as to save up for our HUGE SUMMER EUROTRIP!! In August, I took a month off of teaching, and we are going to travel to Greece, the South of France, Spain, Paris, and Iceland.  I’m ramping up my hours for July to get some extra spending money.  It will be work work work for joy joy joy.

Thanks for sharing in my adventures with me! 🙂

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