Today we started our 2 day trip to the southern town of Cesky Krumlov. The day started with a 3 hour bus ride from Prague to Paris. We got lunch after checking into the hotel. The service at the place where we got lunch was really bad, Mr. Tallman and Max did not get their food for an hour. After lunch it was raining a bit so we got tickets for a tour inside the castle in Cesky Krumlov. After exploring through the city in the afternoon we got a free dinner where we chose where we ate and then had free time after.
I learned a lot about the castle in Cesky Krumlov today. I learned that it was only occupied by three families. The latest of those was not forced out of their castle until Soviet occupation in 1947. I learned about a really cool room called the masquerade room. This room was designed so that when it was dark out and you lit the chandeliers the people painted on the wall looked real. This made masquerades much more mysterious. I also learned that all major cities during the plague built huge columns as a superstition that it would make the plague go away.
My favorite part of today was exploring a city in the way I did. Never before have I just been given the freedom to explore the city during my free time before. We got to explore lots of nooks and crannies that if we did not get that free time we never would have discovered.
One thing that surprised me was that the Czech Republic has such a historical past that a minor city like Cesky Krumlov is on the UNESCO list of cities to be preserved. I would not have thought of the Czech Republic would have been this historical before going here. It is great to see how culturally rich other countries are.
One cultural thing I observed was that lots of shops here close at around 6 or 7 PM. Normally in the U.S everything is open until at least 9 so everything closing early was a surprise to me. Especially in a town that has a lot of tourists that will be out late.
One funny thing that happened today was at lunch. The waitress handling us knew very little English so she had trouble knowing what we were ordering. So when some of the food was coming out, a plate of spaghetti came out. The problem was that everybody had ordered pizza. This was especially funny because they had already messed up pizza orders earlier so spaghetti was adding insult to injury.