Well, we arrived back in the drizzly UK around 4 hours ago – and I already miss Prague. Why – well, because it is an inspirational city. It draws on such a rich seam of history that it is impossible to pop out for a coffee without referencing a great scholar / movement / Saint. An example of this is that on our last day we were getting thirsty so we called in to the nearest cafe – the nearest cafe at that time was the Grand Cafe Orient which symbolises the unique Czech contribution to the cubist movement not only in architecture but in furniture, pottery and glass.
We managed to scale the top of a tower and sipped champagne – holding hands and taking in the Prague skyline.
I want to wax on about every minute detail – but I will try and keep it Blog-friendly and write the highlights. I have been told I am in danger of turning in to ‘one of those people’ who print out pamphlets about their holiday to inform their relations – bollocks, maybe this is the digital equivalent?
Well, here goes – My personal highlight was spending time with Kathryn. My biggest down-light was walking everywhere (which is also my second favourite part of Prague – an ongoing Urban Derive through Europe’s tumultuous past). The cultural highlight was seeing original Alfons Muca paintings – he pretty much started the Art Nouveau movement* and there was a wealth of early C20th Czech glassware. There were Architectural Murals, Paintings, Buildings, Statues, Cutlery (you name it) in the art nouveau style – Kathryn was in her element, she loves that period.
I got to finally see the Astronomical Clock!
The Astronomical Clock (Orloj) was started in 1410 and is mounted on the southern wall of Old Town Hall in the Old Town Square. The clock mechanism itself is composed of three main components: the astronomical dial, representing the position of the Sun and Moon in the sky and displaying various astronomical details; “The Walk of the Apostles”, a clockwork hourly show of figures of the Apostles and other moving sculptures—notably a figure of Death (represented by a skeleton) striking the time; and a calendar dial with medallions representing the months.
According to local legend, the city will suffer if the clock is neglected and its good operation is placed in jeopardy and a ghost, mounted on the clock, was supposed to nod his head in confirmation. Based on the legend, the only hope was represented by a boy born in the New Year’s night.
- I may be wrong here – please feel free to correct me in the comments section.