Day 19 - Prague

Last night was spent having a few Pilsner Urquells in a bar near the hostel. My roomie Chris from Toowoomba and I were speaking to some Finnish girls who were waiting to get an overnight train. Their names were unpronounceable for us dumb Aussies but they were cool and I learnt a lot about Finland. Woke up on Thursday morning feeling ok and I headed out to the west side of the river. I walked around the streets on the hill and up to the castle and had a wander around, it was pretty hot so I didn't move too fast or for very long. I didn't go into the castle, I've heard it's ok but not really worth going in. About 1:30 I decided to walk up the hill to the Strahov Monastery, I think it's still in use but there's also 2-3 restaurants there. And of course where there are Monasteries there are beers. On the way there was an old ad-hoc orchard of apple and pear trees, with views right over the city. I sat for about 30 mins in the shade, was pretty quiet up there apart from the odd tourist.

Had goulash and weiss (wheat) beer for lunch at the monastery which was really good. The place had that sour smell of brewing beer, which is nice when they actually make it there. The waitress was as sour as the smell though, I wondered if she was Polish.

Headed back to the hostel after a short walk around the river. When John Lennon died someone graffiti'd a wall and people are still writing on it today, an unofficial shrine in a park in west Prague, of all places.

I haven't really figured out Prague, the narrow streets and nice buildings are all really cool but I think it's missing something. Sometimes it can feel very sterile, kind of like Zurich. I haven't found the people to be terribly interesting either, Europeans are just Europeans. Or maybe I'm just on a Japan hangover still. There are a lot of people wearing metal tshirts though, so they're obviously a smart bunch. Not to say I don't like it, it's probably better with a local or maybe it's different out of the city centre.

At night we went on a pub crawl which is organised through a bunch of hostels. It was ok. Spent most of the night talking to Chris, Ravi (a little Indian guy from the UK) and Roel from the Netherlands. There were heaps of Americans on holidays paid for by their parents. They couldn't have been any more cliche if they tried. Playing frat drinking games, being loud, being general American douches.

Got to bed about 3:30ish after a visit to Ronald. Hungover as I'm writing this so that's why it's a little 'to the point' and there's probably a hint of regret in there as well.

Looking forward to the weekend though: Catching up very quickly with Goodway and Jussy in Rome and meeting Dave on Sunday morning. The first part of the trip's gone quickly!