because Prague is so fantastic that my attempts to describe it seem futile. I can't emphasize this enough...If you are in the position to travel, come to this city. The sights, sounds, and beer are beyond description. The only issue I'm having at this point is the lack of vegetation. Czech people are particular about their beer, but when it comes to food, they're less diligent. If you enjoy fry-o-lated arts, as Anthony Bourdain calls them, then this city is the place for you. I can't count the number of mornings I've woken up with a brick in my stomach, a tumor of fried cheese or fatty pork lodged deep within in me. So it goes. Do as the Prague-ers do, I suppose. The hilarious part about the cuisine here is that each plate comes with a "salad" which consists of a single leaf of lettuce, two cucumber rounds, two wedges of tomato, and two bell pepper strips. If you need more veggies, you're a pansy!
I apologize in advance for the nature of this post. My brain is a piece of fried schnitzel after the amount of writing and reading I have executed during my course work. Each week, I do triple the grad school load for both my fiction workshop and the Czech lit course. The lit class is particularly tricky because I have been designated the unofficial "leader" of the class. Seriously, it's a conversation between myself, the professor, and one or two other people, should they actually show up. I know what you're thinking, "Katie, you love talking! What are you complaining about!" However, the responsibility weighs on me, particularly on the days when I rise at 6am to complete homework that I fell asleep during the night before. It's a marathon. I've been learning so much, though, both about the art of fiction from Stu Dybek and also in regard to Czech literature, which is inextricably bound to the nation's history. This is such a unique and enriching experience. I am one lucky gal.
This past Friday, I participated in a student reading. My work was well-received. I read a humorous non-fiction story about a slumber party that I went to in middle school. An unnamed individual got Taco Bell Mild Sauce poured in her butt crack. When I read the piece, a few people cried, they were laughing so hard. It was a really cool moment.
This past weekend, John and I went on a group tour of Cesky Krumlov, a nearby village through which the river Vltava runs. It was picturesque and serene, a lovely excursion. We also visited a local brewery. Additionally, we saw some great art from Egon Schiele, as well as a powerful installation piece in the local synagogue. If I weren't a few beers in, having been up since 6:30 this morning, then I would explain. We got some great pictures, and I'll tell you all about the history when we get back...
I'm fading. My apologies. To keep you in the know, though, John is traveling in Northern Bohemia with some wonderful Czech friends, Hana and Robert, who we met through Petra and Honza. They'll be climbing the highest peak in Czech Republic tomorrow! (approx. 6,000 ft.) I'm busy finishing up my school work and spending some quality pub time with our gracious roommates. This is my last week of school, and once I'm finished, we're headed out to Honza's summer cottage for some "vacation." It will be so nice to kick back after the intensity of my school program. In case you don't know, we have opted to skip Berlin in order to spend this time in the country with our Czech friends. We've built some great relationships with some of the locals here and feel it would be a richer experience to spend time with them in their true element, hence the excursion to the cottage. We'll be swimming, grilling meats, and drinking beer. I can't wait. Only one lit analysis paper stands in my way!
I'm sorry I haven't offered more play-by-play detail, but the experiences are blending as of now. All of you will hear more than you want to hear upon our return. Love to everyone! See you soon!