Hello Travelers, and welcome back! I have failed at maintaining my blog, although my adventures have continued and become more frequent! I am determined to post on some of my my recent trips, which include Italy and Israel. I'm currently working on a post about weekend getaways.
So check back soon and there should be some good stuff to read, cool photos to see, and more tips and tidbits about traveling.
Wednesday, December 5, 2012
Today we toured Prague's Jewish Quarter neighborhood, which has a very interesting collection of Jewish sights all crammed together (for obvious reasons) and easy to explore.
In an upstairs gallery, where photos were forbidden, one of the most devastatingly poignant experiences of my life. A little art gallery of children's drawings and paintings done at Terezín, a concentration camp about an hour outside of Prague. Terezín was used by the Nazis for propaganda, as a "model" community that they could show the rest of the world to hide what was going on in other places. One of the prisoners was Friedl Dicker-Brandeis, a leader in the Bauhaus art movement, who found purpose at Terezín by teaching the children held there to express their emotions about their situation through art. I can't describe the difference of learning about the Holocaust through the eyes of children, in these small and incredibly expressive drawings. Dicker-Brandeis died at Auschwitz in 1944.
Of the 15,000 children who passed through Terezín from 1942 to 1944, fewer than 100 survived.
I stepped out of the gallery into a hall. Snow had begun to fall outside a glass window, with iron bars across, protecting the precious contents, the memories, the records. Not to be forgotten.
Afterwards, Mike and I went and saw the new movie Anna Karenina at a cinema near our hotel. It was wonderful, and I also enjoyed the Czech subtitles, especially when I recognized a word!
Tomorrow is our last day in Prague, so we're going to make it a full one! Off to bed with great gratitude for my comfortable, blessed life.
Today is St. Nicholas Day, or Mikulas! More on this fun festival later.
This morning we headed over to Charles Bridge to have a nice stroll and to checkout the Little Quarter.
This 2009 replica brass relief marks the spot where St. John of Nepomuk was tossed off the bridge into the river. St. John was a 14th century priest to whom the queen confessed all her secrets. According to legend, the king wanted to know these secrets, but of course Father John wouldn't tell! So he was tortured and then thrown off the bridge. When he hit the water, five stars appeared (which is why he usually has five stars floating around his head).
Pilgrims believe that touching the relief of St. John will make a wish come true! So here I am, wishing away...
Tomorrow is another adventure, although the temperature is dropping dramatically, with a high of 26 degrees...I might become the newest statue along the Charles Bridge...