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Adventures in Writing, Reading & Book Culture

Manic Depression (a la Hendrix) …

I’m vowing to get out of the house and explore Prague, the nature preserves outside the city, and CASTLES of the Czech Republic.

prague castle 1Winter is pretty much done for me, as in I WANT THIS SEASON TO END. This isn’t applecanyon2007-08. This is cold no-snow no-sun sucksucksuck winter. Besides that, I’m holed up in my Suchdol loft finishing my novel and that’s going to be finished by the end of March. So in celebration of that little milestone, I’m vowing to get out of the house and out of Prague come springtime to visit a different castle every weekend.

karlstein castleThis pledge is pretty easy to accomplish. CR has the most castles of any European country. I’m not talking dilapidated stone foundations that require imagination to see how life might have been “back then.” Czech’s castles are mostly intact and largely useful (if not still used for some purposes). Just outside of Prague there stand dozens of castles in small towns. Larger castles are only an hour’s train ride.

One of the oldest and undoubtedly the prettiestis Karlstejn Castle, 18 miles SW of Prague. “Charles IV built this medieval castle from 1348 to 1357 to safeguard the crown jewels of the Holy Roman Empire. Although the castle had been changed over the years, with such additions as late Gothic staircases and bridges, renovators have removed these additions, restoring the castle to its original medieval state.”

Apparently, the walk up to the castle takes 20-30 mins. This calls for picnic potential (see definition for “wino”), photos, stopping to smell the wildflowers, and feeling the sun on your face. Springtime is for the outdoors, renewal, guvenation, new wine, blooming flowers, travel, bright colors, women in halter tops, walks in the park, beer gardens and BBQ sausage, sick days and canceled classes, outdoor festivals … and castle roaming.

czech castle 2

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