Listening to: My roommate watching a TV show about unsavory British folks
Mood: Satisfied. End-of-semester papers and projects are getting done slowly but surely.
First and foremost, here’s a link to an awkward CEA video blog– it’s a tour of the CEA office in Prague, so it’s not terribly groundbreaking, but there it is. My next CEA blog is due tomorrow so that link will find its way here eventually.
The end of November/ beginning of December ’tis the season…. for little brown wooden huts to pop up in every square. Yes, I’m talking about Christmas markets! Namesti Miru, our cute little square, has a small one that’s been open for about a week, selling everything from zebra-print gloves to hand-knitted scarves to gingerbread cookies to ornaments. Last year was the first time I’d gone to the Christkindlmarket in Chicago, which bills itself as a ‘traditional German-American market’ and I have to say the real thing (well Czech, not German, but whatever) isn’t terribly different. Crowded, cold, over-priced… well, ’tis the season, right?
Here are a few shots from the Namesti Miru market, courtesy of my roommate Bolaji and her amazing camera, so don’t expect such pro shots from me in the future!
The most famous Christmas Market in Prague is the one in Old Town Square. Sometime in the next couple of weeks I need to go back up the clock tower and get a picture from above, but basically the whole square is packed with those cute little wooden houses and more English-speaking people than I heard in an average month here. Oh yes, it’s a bit touristy, or maybe it attracts the expat community and study-abroad students. Either way it’s pretty and festive.
So here’s the tops of some of those cute stalls (decorated with glowing hearts for an unknown reason,) with the massive Christmas tree between them and the Church of Tyn. We went to this market for the tree lighting and it was more crowded than a Metallica mosh pit. That might be a slight exaggeration, but it was QUITE crowded. After a few renditions of Czech Christmas songs, Silent Night in German and English, and Jingle Bells… twice… I was pretty much done with being packed in with all the tourists, expats, and pickpockets. (Coincidentally, I think someone attempted to pickpocket me. They failed to realize that my giant winter coat goes down to my knees and thus covers all my pockets with a layer of protective quilted down.) By the time my patience had worn thin, the tree hadn’t been lit yet, so my friend and I went to the fringes of the crowd for some crepes. So my picture of the lit tree isn’t the glorious, full-tree shot it could have been if I’d braved the crowd a few more minutes.
Homebody that I am, I was glad to get out of there and back to a friend’s apartment for cookies, popcorn, The Grinch Who Stole Christmas, and The Santa Clause. I’m glad we went to the tree lighting and the Old Town Square Christmas Market, but for my gift and souvenir shopping, I’ll stick to the smaller and more local markets!
In other news: LIKE THIS BLOG’S FACEBOOK PAGE. You know you want to! If you’re not a Facebookin’ type, there should be a ‘follow’ button at the top of the page where you can subscribe to e-mail updates. This semester is coming to an end but this blog won’t- updates might be less frequent but there’s always interesting stuff in Chicago and Nashville to cover, and other places to go and people to meet!