The Transnistria parliament building with a statue of Lenin out front. In the city of Tiraspol, Transnistria. Photo taken December 9, 2016.
Where are Kevin and Ruth right now? Tiraspol, Transnistria...the country that doesn't exist.

Where are they going next? Northern Moldova. Arrive December 11th.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

We made it to Prague!

I am typing this at 7:30am on a beautiful morning watching the sun rise over the landscape on the outskirts of Prague, Czech Republic. We are in a new country! This is the first new country we have visited since Portugal in 2007.

In fact, it's such a nice morning, I think we'll start off with a view out the window that I'm sitting beside...

View out our window in Horoměřice.

We are actually in the village of  Horoměřice, about 15 kms (9 miles) northwest of the center of Prague. 

Yesterday afternoon, Helen and Tony drove us to Bristol airport, about 45 minutes from their place. We were flying with easyJet, one of the many discount airlines that zip their way around Europe for a reasonably cheap price. We had booked about 3 weeks ago, and we paid £125.00 ($203.00) for the two, one way tickets from Bristol to Prague.

These European discount airlines are great if you can book in advance and only bring carry on luggage, because they charge you extra for every little thing. Sort of like "Insert £1.00 if you want your oxygen mask to drop down"!

So we were a little worried about the size of our Heys ePac17 Roller backpacks. easyJet has a strict carry on allowance and we specifically wanted these backpacks because they are listed as exactly the right size. However, when you put your stuff in them, they tend to expand. We were fine on the height and width, but the thickness was over by about 3 cms! Doesn't sound like much, but when the penalty at the gate is an extra £40 ($65) per bag, you want to be sure it's going to pass!

The Canadian answer to everything? Duct tape!

We duct taped our Heys ePac17 Roller luggage!

We said our goodbyes to Helen and Tony, knowing that it won't be long before we see them again when they visit us at our housesitting assignment near the Welsh border in September. Went inside the terminal and saw the huge lineup at the easyJet counter. But easyJet is a ticketless airline and we already had printed our boarding passes and didn't need to check luggage. We hoped.

Despite the airport being busy, we went very quickly through security. Had to unwrap the duct tape to get the laptops out. That was a bit of a pain, but we had planned on that and they wrapped up again pretty easily. When they announced our boarding gate, we were quick to walk to the gate and beat everyone else...we were first in line to get on the plane! And the flight was full, so we were very surprised at that. The girl taking our boarding passes hardly even glanced at our luggage, simply telling me to make sure my small camera bag was inside the luggage when we board the plane. And that was it, we were on the plane!

They did allow a few people to board ahead of us, those that had paid extra for "speedy boarding" and a few families with small children. There is no assigned seating, so you just sit wherever you like. The extra legroom seating at the emergency exits was quickly scooped up, but we found the legroom adequate anyhow.

Us, heading for Prague!

Just after we took off.

It was a beautiful clear sky the whole two hour flight! We flew over the English Channel, France, Belgium and Germany to get to Czech Republic.

Our first view of the outskirts of Prague.

We landed right at sunset. This was the view when we stepped off the plane.

We were about 15 minutes ahead of schedule, and we went through the passport and customs inspection without any issue. We are legally allowed to spend three months in the EU zone without a visa.

Our couchsurfing host Maria had offered to pick us up at the airport because she lives only about 15 minutes away by car. She says it would have taken over an hour to get to her place by bus! She lives on the fourth floor of a fairly new apartment building. No elevator, but we don't mind the stairs. Maria and Ruth made some dinner, and we spent a couple of hours learning some new Czech words and proper pronunciation, as well as talking about what to do in Prague. Before we knew it, it was 12:30am!

Slept well, and now we're off to visit the city!

9 comments:

  1. The proper pronunciation of Czech words is the one thing that tends to be the most daunting part of any visit there for me. You have an edge.
    Have fun today.

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  2. Have a great day. Missing you already. Thanks for the great time we had together here. Chester says have fun hiking!
    Looks like you are in for a great visit to Czech, the weather looks perfect for exploring and for great photos. Helen and Tony xx

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  3. Prague.. there is an exotic building called dancing building. its very interesting... see it.

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  4. Glad your luggage went with you. So looking forward to seeing Czech. This is so fun for me.

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  5. Enjoy your stay. Maybe you will see the place the tires on our new motorhome were made:)

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  6. enjoy your two ...you bring new meaning to the word 'globe trotters' :)

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  7. Another of the 1001 uses for duct tape. I guess that makes 1002. :c)

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  8. Prague was a a bit of an anomaly for me. I loved the Old Town but couldn't really appreciate it due to the sheer number of people who were visiting it. I would have loved to have seen it say 25 years ago. I reckon it would have been awesome then.

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