Last day in Prague: Jewish Quarter and a looong trip back

Prague Travel Blog

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Looots of graves
    Today was my last day in Prague :( BUT, since I didn’t have to fly back until the evening, the girls and I went to go see all the Jewish stuff in Prague. Not exactly a great note to leave on (cemeteries et al), but it was something we knew we had to see.
    Travelers note: There are different versions of tickets you can buy to allow you into different parts of the Jewish Quarter, so be sure to think about what you want to see before you get to the front of the line!
    Fortunately Jenn and Emily and I were on the same schedule because we were leaving at the same time. Weird coincidence. So we got up early together, and packed and dressed together, and slipped out of the hostel together oh so quietly so as not to wake all the hungover people.

    We made our way to the Jewish quarter, and were hungry before we even got in line to get in. We stopped at Cafe Franz Kafka and had strudel.
    Once inside the fenced-off section of the city, most of the things we saw were (as expected) very painful. The first thing we walked through were stacks upon stacks of graves, with people being buried on top of others. Then we visited some temples, one of which was extraordinarily beautiful.
    While we were holding our breaths through facing so many Holocaust realities, I saw a postcard in a gift shop that a child from the war had made with butterflies drawn on it. This struck me, because I had done a play called I Never Saw Another Butterfly that was about how a group of children lived during the Holocaust.
In one scene we (I was was of the children) drew pictures of happy things to take our minds off of what was going on outside our ghetto. It made my heart stop. What a connection! I bought the postcard.
    I would say that if you are going to Prague that you should visit this area, even though it is upsetting. It’s such an encompassing view of traditional Jewish lifestyle throughout a dark history.

    As the girls and I made our way out to the airport together, we learned that we were booked on the same flight! I couldn’t believe the chances that we were not only leaving the same day, at the same time, from the same airport, to the same city, but that we were all on the same FLIGHT. How random is that??? I was glad they were there for aide with traveling confusion.
We got on the metro and took the right lines, and sorted out finding our way to the airport to check in. Things started to get awkward because while waiting in super long lines at the airport, the girls were arguing a bit (traveling can be super stressful!), but I pretty much stayed out of it.
    Once finally on the plane, I felt such a relief to be returning to the UK. There was even something about getting on the British-owned airline company and hearing English-accented voices over the intercom that made me think to myself with relief, “I’m going home.” Buuuut, I’m not, really, though. Yes, England has been my home for the past year, but in three days I would abandon it and return to my life in California. Was I allowed these feelings of misplaced comfort? I pondered this on the flight back.

    After the three of us met up off the plane, about to go our separate ways, we realized that we would be with each other for a bit longer. To make our coincidence even more ridiculous, we were also on the same bus into central. So we sat on the bus together, too. I finally said goodbye and wished them well when they got off the bus. It was night time already. It took a long time to get back to my room in Gubbay. It was then that I finally had to unpack, only to then repack for good, and to face the fact that I really WAS going home.  

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Looots of graves
Looots of graves
Down the streets of the Jewish Qua…
Down the streets of the Jewish Qu…
Kafka. Clearly.
Kafka. Clearly.
photo by: vulindlela