Globetrotter: Prague

Czech republic, Europe, globetrotter, Prague, story, Travel
Did you know Bata shoes were originally founded in Czech Republic? Yes our very own Bata, which we rarely give a second glance to, because its that ‘cheap local Indian brand’. This was one of the first facts I discovered in Prague. The same Bata, where my mom used to buy me those hawai chappal as a kid (yes I was a 90’s Bata chappal kid), actually had amazing boots in Prague. But more on that later.. we need to start at the beginning.

That’s the view from the balcony of my room, where I almost dropped the camera from the second floor in my eagerness to start clicking photos. First time trip to Europe does that to a girl. If I go visit the same places now? Switzerland..? Phhttt.. I holiday there every summer *makes those annoying hand waves* Seriously though, I think I’d be awestruck even after a million visits and that’s the beauty and charm of Europe. Always leaves you wanting more and more. When we went in September the weather was unusually chilly, even the locals agreed. That translates into unbearably cold for me. I am a complete sunny-beach-side-summer kinda girl, who’ll pile on layers of coats at the tiniest drop in temperature. I can’t stand the cold! 

This baby was parked right outside our hotel

Hotel Villa

After a few touristy photos around the hotel (which was pink in color??) and a rather hurried meal we set out exploring. Best way to explore European cities – walk, walk, walk! I was not into blogging back then (this was in 2010 I think) so I have no proper outfit pics to show, but all I wore on the entire trip was walking shoes. Walk down the cobblestone streets in the center of Prague, and you’ll feel like you are in a different century. The city is made for walking, stopping and admiring. And the weather is so great that you will never tire of walking.

Walk to Prague Castle

See me already donning coats and knits? I even wore gloves inspite of the crazy looks I was attracting. Comfort first, crazy later right? (or is the other way around?)

Now I don’t anything about architecture, least of all about European architecture of churches and palaces but the evident beauty of these buildings is bound to stop even the least interested man in his tracks. Its hard not to be awed by the design, the intricate stone work, the carvings and the sheer majestic-ness of the architecture. If you are someone who appreciates art, of any form, you will appreciate this. That’s the entrance gate of the Prague Castle. Thanks to hundreds of people (out of which 80% were Japanese for some reason) waiting to enter and obstructing the splendid view this was the only pic I could manage.

Entrance to Prague Castle

Street musicians are a common sight, specially on the famous Charles bridge. Its so funny to see them suddenly break into a dance, even more funny when tourists join them, funniest when you find yourself doing the same. The guy in the middle reminds me of a Thom the gleeman (and if you are not an obsessed reader of the ‘Wheel of time’ series forget I mentioned that. You wouldn’t understand the reference)

Photography wasn’t allowed inside . Everyone read the sign and promptly fished out their cameras. Human mentality is something I’ll never understand. Most people were discussing the religious and historical aspect of the paintings and sculptures, but I was plainly admiring it for the artwork. Trust me these photos are nothing compared to what it looked like in reality.

Unfortunately we couldn’t enjoy any sunny weather that day. It was cloudy and there was a heavy rain (according to them) which was a mere drizzle (according to me). I thought European countries have their fair share of rain and wind but apparently none of them have ever seen anything like out tropical monsoons. The walk from the castle to charles bridge is spectacular. If you need a break from all the walking, all you need to do is pop into the first little cafe that you spot and grab a coffee and an authentic french pastry and munch your way forward!

Walking from Prague Castle to Charles Bridge – the touristy spots

Me and mom on Charles bridge!

Charles bridge needs no introduction. ‘Bridge’ is only a technical term for it. Its a link to both the sides of Prague, providing a fairytale view of the city’s skyline and the Vltava river beneath it. Its truly the center of the city. During the day there are throngs of people walking over it, sketch artists (who are pretty good!), souvenir shops and street musicians. If you happen to be there look out in particular for jazz bands who happen to be quite entertaining! It’s also one of those customary photo locations for post-wedding shoots. This couple (below) was the third we spotted that day on the bridge!

What to remember when in Prague:

  • Its ok to drink beer at 11a.m
  • Beer is cheaper than water
  • You can walk across Charles bridge on any evening and find something lovely happening
  • Almost everyday, somewhere in Prague, there’s a random festival happening with food and drink stalls
  • Public transportation is AMAZING!
And that brings us to the end of the first post in the series. Phew! Photo overload much? 

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Not so long ago, a great man with super powers, had a look at my horoscope and made a fabulous discovery and told my parents “You put a steering wheel in her hands, and she won’t return home for hours. She is independent and loves to travel”. Well, turns out its completely true (the great man is in fact a family friend quite adept at chalking out horoscopes and not just those marriage wala kind).


I love being at home but not as much as I love to travel. I hate going to the same place twice simply because there is so much more to cover and see, and so little time. If I had all the money in the world, I would spend it all on travel and even if I was broke, I would beg-borrow-steal and somehow travel. Some of us are born globetrotters (I mean how can you not love it?!). For a while I’ve been wanting to start a travel series on the blog, but was unsure of the kind of response it would have. But the urge to share my love for traveling was too overwhelming to be suppressed any longer.

Since we have all read enough of those what to see, where to eat, what to shop type posts, am only going to share my (mis)adventures! The series will include all the places that I’ve covered in the past and the ones I shall cover in the future. 
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Lazy weekends

Musings, weekend
The only thing on my mind over the past few days has been….
I’ve been cooped up for so long and it seems like my last travel/vacation was forever ago. My travel seems to happen in spurts, either I travel a lot of not at all. I just wish it was distributed a bit more evenly over the entire year, like a vacation every two months 😛 Here’s hoping that dream comes true soon! 
Which reminds me, I think I am going to start my travel series posts soon. If I can’t physically be at my dream vacation destination, let me at least reminisce about my past travels through blog posts. Got to adjust with something!
I’ve taken a little break from outfit posts (last post was on Oct 6) but I’ve been posting my daily outfits on instagram along with all the OctoberWithInFb posts, which have really been super fun. I’ve found so many new bloggers to follow. 
So what else have I got to share?? *thinks hard* Well I guess that’s about it! Outfit posts will be back on from next week (I am kinda starting to miss them now, but I needed a small break)
The Lashkaraa giveaway (click here to enter) is still on, so if haven’t entered it already, do it right now so that you get your goodie bag right in time for diwali! 🙂

I’ve just returned home from a day spent lounging by the pool (which was after a few laps coz I need my dose of exercise/fitness even on a weekend at a resort!) So browse the Lashkaraa collections while I go hit the bed (sore arms and tired muscles – but yay!)

What have you guys been up to? Any travel plans before the year end?

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TheGirlAtFirstAvenue for Lashkaraa Giveaway *Giveaway closed*

giveaway
The last few months of every year are always my favorite, mainly because of two reasons. One, is that we enter the so called ‘winter season’ which in my part of the world is nothing to boast about but definitely gives us some respite from the sweltering heat. Second, is because of all the festivals lined up! You cannot deny that these months are the most exuberant – full of dance, drama and lights! As Indians, festivals are at the heart of our lives, and the best part is all major festivals are celebrated with equal pomp and splendor.

And for the next festival, the biggest, grandest and most bright of all – Diwali, we have a lovely new giveaway with Lashkaraa. It is an online Indian designer wear boutique, offering salwar kameez, anarkalis, exquisite jewelry and all those bollywood inspired sarees that we keep drooling over.

Their newly launched earring collection boasts of a variety of ethnic earrings. Most of them are made of semi precious stones framed with Indian faux pearls and are gold plated and are perfect for pairing with traditional attire in the coming days of festivities! Lashkaraa is giving away a pair of purple polki earrings to one lucky winner.

To enter the giveaway:
1) Follow thegirlatfirstavenue.com on facebook here 
and lashkaraa.com on facebook here
2) Leave a comment below as to how you would pair these earrings
Please leave your name & email id’s too

For additional entries you can share the link of the giveaway post on facebook (and don’t forget to mention it in the comments below!)

Winner shall be announced on my facebook page!
                                      

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How to: Five ways to wear stripes with pants

Fashion, how-to, Remix
I asked the zebra
Are you black with white stripes?
Or white with black stripes?
And the zebra asked me,
Are you good with bad habits?
Or are you bad with good habits?
Are you noisy with quiet times?
Or are you quiet with noisy times?
Are you happy with some sad days?
Or are you sad with some happy days?
Are you neat with some sloppy ways?
Or are you sloppy with some neat ways?
And on and on and on and on
And on and on he went.
I’ll never ask a zebra
About stripes
Again

– Shel Silverstein

So why in the world am I talking about zebras? Because its a silly yet profound poem. Because before this entire fashion blogging scene and before stripes became the most essential casual fashion staple, I associated them with only two things: zebras and jail uniforms. 

Mr. Zebra seems to have been offended by the stripes question back then but if only he could see it now… its not just black and white but every possible color in stripes! Seriously, if it wasn’t for stripes, what would we do on all those monday mornings when are running late or those days when you are totally uninspired to put together a chic outfit? I guess we have our four-legged striped friend to thank for the trend! (hey that rhymed!)
1/2/3/4/5

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Call of the wild

Fashion, Look of the Day, thoughts
That yearning to get off your comfy well cushioned seat, leaving behind the weekend marathon of your favorite tv series, leaving behind the Sunday brunches with your girls, letting go of instagram and whatsapp and twitter, leaving behind those long waits at the traffic signal on your way to the mall, leaving behind the aimless browsing of clothes and shoe racks, shredding away the numerous plans for the future, the constant list-making, the over analyzing, dropping away all plans of going to the movies or gossiping while sipping a cappuccino at your favorite coffee shop, the endless discussions of how you are not satisfied with some or the other remote, insignificant detail of your daily life, the cribbing sessions which inevitably turn from being ‘healthy’ to comparisons and questioning of your self-worth, shrugging away every worry that manages to sneak in and overpower every other emotion,

Just letting go. 
Leaving behind. 
Walking away. 
Stepping out. 
Freeing your mind.
Almost there…
A little further…
Close your eyes.
Breathe.
Lift your head up.
Spread your arms wide.
Smile.
Open your eyes.
And answer it… Answer the call of the wild.

  

Jeans: Levis | Tshirt: Street shopping | Military shirt: F21 | Shoes: Enroute | Arm candy: here&there
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