Eighteen hours of continuous travel is not fun. There’s no way around that. But it does make your arrival at your destination all the more joyful.
It took two flights and one drive to get from Vancouver to our first destination in the Czech Republic but I am not sure there was any moment of the trip sweeter than seeing the much beloved front door of the family home. It is where almost all of our European vacations begin. I’ve been visiting here since I was a year and a half old, my mother even younger, but it is one of those magical places that embrace you the moment you arrive, wrapping you in a feeling of safety and warmth. My mom can sit in the upstairs and remember how it was when she was a little girl, when her grandmother and two great-aunts lived in those three small rooms and still somehow managed to find space for visiting grandchildren. She used to sleep on a chaise-longue underneath the window, which I think sounds particularly glamourous. Chaise-longues in general are glamourous.
The area around the town is as beautiful as ever, though, perhaps because it is so familiar, I never end up taking many photos, hence this photo-light post. Long walks in the nearby English-style park are a favoured way to recover from jet lag and this trip we also took a longer walk across the river to the fields on the other side of the little valley. It is such a lovely place. Every time I visit I find something new to love about the area and already I’m looking forward to my next trip back.
(edit: photo removed)
It was my great-uncle’s 90th birthday, so this trip was more eventful than our usual visits. There was lots of family about – both his sons and their wives were there as well as his two granddaughters, his grandson-in-law, and his two beloved great-grandsons – and as always it was very exciting for me to be in that kind of multigenerational setting. I grew up with very few relatives living nearby so I find any family gathering quite novel. My great-uncle is also quite close with the paternal side of my mother’s family – having shared an apartment with one of my grandfather’s siblings and then worked with my grandfather’s brother-in-law – so one of my mother’s first cousins from that side also came to the birthday party. It was wonderful to see everyone and, even though I spent most of the visit in silence while they all caught up in rapid and completely incomprehensible Czech, I had a great time.
Next up: Dresden! (of which I have many, many more photos)