The GoGlobal Blog

Author: Abigail Bigelow

Ahoj! My name is Abby from Denver, Colorado. I am currently a junior majoring in English and Psychology with a minor in Theology. I will be studying in the beautiful city of Prague, and am excited to have many adventures in the Czech Republic! I look forward to sharing my experiences with you!
Everything Is Really Old

Everything Is Really Old

Ahoj, Friends!

This is my first blog post! It would’ve come earlier, but as always, I have an unfortunate internet connection. Also, I’ve been rather busy in the beautiful city of Prague!

I have been here a little over two weeks now and have already fallen in love. There’s always something to do, whether it’s grabbing one of the many delicious pastries from a vendor or walking around Old Town. I think my favorite part of Prague, thus far, is Vysehrad (which I’m still not a hundred percent on how to pronounce). It is a little further outside the realm of “tourism,” although I did find out about it through my guide book (thanks, Rick Steves). Vsyehrad is a fortress that has been around since before Prague was Prague. It contains the infamous Basilica of St. Peter and St. Paul, which—with its ornate wall paintings, devotion to Mary, and saint relics—was everything a theology nerd like myself could want. Even the cemetery that runs alongside the church was extravagant, acting more like a secret garden than a place for mourning. I managed to make it out of the church just after sunset, and had an excellent view of Prague lighting up, and the Vltava River.

View of the Vltava River from Vysehrad

I’ve also managed to spend some time outside of Prague. The past couple weekends, USAC has coordinated several hikes in the surrounding towns. Our first one led us to a 1000 year old town which contained a cave that housed the hermit, St. Ivan. As the legend goes, St. Ivan lived in the caves with the physical representation of Satan, and battled him with a cross. We got to see the blood-stained wall from the fight, along with the town’s original church. We then proceeded to hike up a snowy mountain and essentially skied our way back down it.

I’ve definitely noticed that the Czech’s version of “safety” is not the same as American’s.

The original church, set into the cave where St. Ivan lived

This past weekend, we also went up near the German border and hiked up to the ruins of a 14th century castle, which for some reason, they allowed us to climb on. It amazes me, first that anyone can walk all over ruins, but also how incredibly old everything is here. Just the other day, we visited the “New” Jerusalem Cemetery for class, which is older than my country. One day, we ate dinner at a restaurant that is housed in a building that has been around for several centuries. I go to church in a Cathedral that is over 600 years old (FYI, St. Vitus Cathedral does NOT have heating). Everything here has a long past; it is so different from home, where new buildings pop up everyday and old buildings are constantly being torn down. I have to say, I kind of like knowing that generations have looked upon the same sights that I have, and we’ve all been amazed by it.

However, it hasn’t all been fun and games and there have already been several mishaps, ranging from me…misplacing…my coat for a day (don’t worry, Mom and Dad, I have it back) to us accidently leaving a student at a train station while he was in the bathroom. But, everything has managed to turn out all right in the end. It’s hard to let the bad stuff get us down when we have bellies full of goulash and are watching the sunset from the Charles Bridge.

I think, for the moment, that will be all. All I can really say is, I’ve been in Prague for two weeks and I don’t really ever want to leave.