Late start at 8, staggering from the upheaval in hours and, it must be said, my own foolishness. After nearly falling asleep the night before at 7, I decided to stay up until 10, and then kept myself awake until after 1:30 to finish the book I was reading.
Opened the window and made a sound tape of a Prague morning. Zipped up the stairs to Terasa U Zlaté studnē – the top floor restaurant with lush views and a lavish buffet. My breakfast was porridge made with cream, cinnamon sugar (my request) and ripe fruit, beautifully arranged. Shortly after I arrived the room filled up with older couples, lady foursomes, a family trio, and scowling, no nonsense businessmen. I chose a table in the farthest corner by the window and had a wonderful view of the lively April weather rolling in and out over the domes and spires of Prague. I spellchecked my blog entry and ate my gorgeous breakfast, while slugging back a double shot cappuccino.
I scampered down the hill, following Google to the Agnes Monastery and soon discovered that indeed, this city is made for walking. I crossed the Vltava River and saw the Charles Bridge across the way, packed out with a shuffling horde of tourists. I may continue to admire the bridge from afar, or get up very early to walk across it. Dawn, perhaps.
The convent art was mainly variations on the Madonna, with a few saints and disciples thrown in. Interesting for the individual artist’s interpretation of the maternal virgin:
I bought a six-palace pass. I forgot to ask for my senior discount. Dang.
By now my daughter Robin had landed and we were Whatsapp-ing. We decided to meet for lunch at Lokal. I wandered towards it, stopping in an optical shop – more tempting frames from Barcelona and Paris.
I took a card – I’ll be back. For a while I sat on a bench and sketched a statue of a winsome woman in a swirling gown holding a cornucopia on the street corner. I arrived at Lokal and sat across from this imposing fellow.
I wolfed down my sausage appetizers; three large hotdogs with mustard, rye bread and whipped cream and horseradish sauce in a gravy boat. A gracious plenty for lunch, along with a tart lemon and sparkling water drink. Robin arrived and told me the saga of her journey ( her plane was delayed, two hours sitting on the runway in Paris. Ma pauvre petite). She tucked into her own order of sausages and chicken.
Afterwards she went exploring, and I limped back to the hotel, happy as two clams. After a bit of a rest, I rallied for the 6pm oboe concert at the St Nicholas church. As urged by the fine print on the ticket we were early to claim our seats, but the church was nearly empty. The interior of the church was a visual feast.
Robin spotted a woman with a chicken by her side above the altar. The presence of a hen was puzzling, but it made a change from the plethora of putti fluttering around. The sacred decor more than enough to hold my interest, and the oboe solo was spectacular with phenomenal acoustics. Alas, more than half of the program was lugubrious and morose organ music. I was disappointed in the amount of oboe, plus the church was freezing – we could see our breaths. The evening’s concert was titled Oboe Encounters, Robin pointed out, not Basking in Oboes. I wrapped my scarf around my shoulders, pulled on my mittens and shivered. By the time the organeer played the opening notes of the closing piece, Handel’s Alleluia chorus, we were praising God we could leave and warm our numbed extremities.
More gorgeous doors on the way back, a photo op we could not resist.
Up to the room, did a bit of downloading iPhone photos via cable since the way the iCloud is doing it is slow, spotty and baffling. Robin conked out at 9 and I listened to Ludovico and wrote up today’s adventure. Tomorrow, my tour with Nina in the morning.