A long time ago I lived here in Prague. I celebrated the turning of the millennium in Old Town Square in the heart of Prague; in all I spend 1-1/2 years here. Most importantly, my oldest son was born here. He has a Czech birth certificate, of which I can only decipher about 50%. He learned to walk on the uneven cobblestones of 700 year old squares. In a sense, this vacation was my son’s big “homecoming”; returning to the city of his birth for the first time in his memory.
Prague is a one of those eternally beautiful cities. The architecture of the town center has changed little since I lived here. Prague served as the capital of the Holy Roman Empire beginning in 1355, and later became tied to the Hapsburgs.
When I lived here I was newly married to my now ex-wife. Now, as I walked around Prague re-telling stories to my two sons; 16 and 14; all the memories were happy. Riding our bikes to a nearby Chateau, the bar across the street from our old apartment that sold beer for 15-cents, the walled gardens hidden behind storefronts. I enjoyed, again, struggling to put together enough Czech words to be (somewhat) understood.
While the main tourist areas; Wensenslaus Square, Old town Square, and Charles Bridge are more overrun than ever by tourists, we did find that stepping away from the main tourist thoroughfare revealed the delightful city that I remembered.