Savoring the memories of my trip to Prague

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Savoring the memories of my trip to Prague

by Lauren J. Mapp, Senior Staff Writer

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Traversing across the winding, cobblestone streets from one destination to the next, we toured the beautiful baroque library and Meridian Hall of the Clementinum, and watched the wooden characters stroll by their windows of the Prague Astronomical Clock at the top of each hour.

Overcome with sniffles and shivers, I was running through the streets of Prague, trying my best to see as much as we could during our only full day in the city.

As we had traveled from Budapest to Bratislava by train earlier in the week on the third day of our vacation, time seemed to tick by much more slowly. I was amazed at how much we were able to do and see in each city, and especially amazed at how I savored every subsequent meal even more than the last.

Dumplings stuffed with Slovak sheep cheese topped with sour cream and bacon in Bratislava were some of the most delicious foods I had ever tried, prior to snacking on the spinach spätzle in Vienna the following night.

Each meal and museum tour seemed to last for hours, and even though the excitement of traveling made it hard for me to sleep through the night in each city, I felt as if I had an endless supply of energy.

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But in Prague, it dawned on me that in less than 48 hours, I would be back home beginning my final semester at San Diego State.

Despite feeling rushed toward the end of a seven-day journey between four cities in four countries, I am glad I chose to set aside some time to travel during the break. Traveling is one of my favorite pastimes, and I believe that the adventures I have had throughout my life are even more valuable than the more formal forms of education that I have received.

I could write for pages about everything that we missed: not riding the strange Paternoster elevator or walking through the Jewish cemetery in Prague, that we didn’t have enough time to drive out to the Sedlac Ossuary in Kutna Hora or how I couldn’t taste the second “original” Sachertorte from the Hotel Sacher’s rival in Vienna.

Something that I have always found to be important when traveling is to plan ahead for what you want to do, but to not be upset if you inevitably miss something, especially during short visits to cities.

Instead of remembering what I couldn’t do in each city, I will cherish having my first Michelin star dining experience, photographing the Bratislava Castle from the bar in the UFO observation tower and viewing the works of Gustav Klimt at the Belvedere.

My one week trip through eastern Europe is already beginning to feel like a distant memory, and the sights and smells are fading away as I start studying from the final set of textbooks for my undergraduate career. At least I will always have the pictures and stories to remind myself of the crazy journey I took during my senior year.

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