Prague Dispatch – 10/09/11

Yesterday, we took the tram (I LOVE riding the tram!) to Expat Expo. We were lucky enough to meet two expats who shared personal info on how they made their transition to Czech life, and we attended a Q&A with a rep from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, so the whole visa process seems less Byzantine. At least for today, the “live in Prague for a few years” adventure seems within reach.

Here’s Dave, on the tram.

The Expo was held at the Vystaviste Exhibition Grounds — built in 1891 for the Jubilee Exhibition which was a celebration of Czech business and heritage. (Beautiful postcards and stamps of the Jubilee here.) This is theΒ  Industrial Palace and clock tower. Look at the gorgeous, worn beauty of that Art Nouveau architecture.

Here’s the facade of the Lapidarium Narodniho Muzea (Lapidary of the National Museum). I just learned that lapidary means “of or pertaining to stones,” so it totally makes sense now that this museum houses 400 of the more than 2000 stone sculptures in the national collection.

Adjacent to the exhibition halls and museums, there’s a collection of candy-colored carnival rides. The juxtaposition of the bright colors against the historical background — spanning both Czech pride and Communist oppression (info here) — is another example of the contrasts that I find so interesting in this city.

Then we met Keri and Zdenek from CrossFit Praha in a neighborhood pub and drank a whole lot of beer. Like, a LOT of beer. And Becherovka. And beer.

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