I decided to try and adjust my schedule before I left so that I was waking up earlier and earlier until I was on Czech time or at least close to it. So the 4 a.m. days began and the extremely early to workdays with them. So far this does not seem to have helped. I didn’t think about how the initial 36 hour trip would pretty much erase any attempt that I made at trying to adjust my sleep schedule before I left. Hence the 3 a.m. blogging session. Anyways to the good stuff.Here are the notes of the trip to meet my beloved wife.
Wake up at 4 am EST.
I left straight from work at around 1 pm and arrived at the airport at about 3 hours early.
Flight leaves at 5:45.
Arrive in Frankfurt at 6:45am(12:45am EST)
Wander around looking for my gate. Find the gate but I wasn’t leaving until 9:40. Voice on the intercom says there is a gate change for the flight to Prague so I walk down to that gate only to find out that that’s not my gate and that they are boarding that flight now. I asked the lady at the desk if I can hop on that flight and turns out that I can. She hands me the ticket and I scan my ticket and proceed down the jetbridge. So convenient that I’m worried I’m doing something wrong. After the longest airport bus taxi to the airplane I’ve ever been on, in on my way to Prague at about 7:30. Sweet, I’ll be two hours earlier to meet Mel. Just have to find an earlier bus from Prague to Cesky Krumlov. Arrive in Prague at around 8:45 or something and exchange some money and I’m off to find the bus office to try and change my ticket. It is important to note that I’m using whatever WiFi I can get on so I can Google chat with Mel to tell her the current status of my journey. This is a great way to keep your wife on edge worried about you all day, by the way, as your messages are short and with little information and long time gaps between. I’ll post each part as I progress with the story.
Tyghe@7:10: The Motherland
Tyghe@7:43: So I just switched to earlier flight
Tyghe@9:15: Here in Prague
I’m feeling pretty confident at this point that I can get an earlier bus with no problem. I find the office for the bus company and talk to the attendant there and she says there is one seat left on an earlier bus. Do I want to cancel my later bus seat and reserve the earlier one? I say yes, in my I’m really excited but don’t want you to know voice. She cancels the reservation and proceeds to reserve the earlier seat. This is when she says, “uhh ohh. The seat is no longer available.”
Tyghe@9:44: No earlier bus
Mel@9:44: …tells me about some fun things to do while waiting until my bus at 3pm
Later she tells me there was never an open seat, and that she had accidentally looked at the wrong date initially. I’m not too upset. Just rebook my old seat on the later bus and I’ll locate some tasty beverage vendor and take in some sights while I wait. Then she throws out that uhh ohh again. This time I already know what happened. High demand seats and my old seat is now going to be occupied by somebody quick on the internet. Not sure if I’m super tired or what, but I’m not really worried or upset at all. She is very apologetic and says that there is a bus at 11:15 from the same location that I would have had to go to anyways but I will have to transfer someplace. She draws some diagrams and puts what looks to me like random words on the diagram and explains it to me. Here is said diagram
So the in instructions are too take the 100 bus just outside from where I am to the Zliciln metro. Then take metro B to Andel station. The arrows in the picture were her saying turn right. She explained it but due to excitement and lack of sleep I took it as exit the train and go right…
But first walk to the right of this booth and purchase my metro ticket for the bus and the metro train.
I get up to the counter and point to the name of my destination on my ticket like this
He gives me the look of “I don’t know where that is” so I assume he can’t read the writing. I try pointing to the ticket which is printed
That seems to do the trick. He yanks out the huge metro map and draws some circles and lines and stresses that to get where I want I must stay still in the tube before I get to the surface. Ok. Stay in the tube before I get to the surface. Alright gotcha.
Later I realize he had written Kostelecka which is just the end of the line for whatever the purple metro line is on the map.
Tyghe@10:04: Ya… Stuff happened kinda on a different path now
Tyghe@10:04: I’ll figure it out
No idea how long the bus+metro will take to get to my bus to somewhere where I have to transfer to Cesky Krumlov, but I know it leaves at 11:15.
Better get going now.
No time to get a SIM card for my phone like I had planned. Out the doors and, hey look, there is the 100 bus. Prefect…. It drives off. Another 100 bus parks down the bus platform a bit so I walk towards… It drives off. Just like our days taking buses to work. So I find a posted bus time table and play match up the key words and extrapolate meaning of numbers. Looks like next bus should arrive at 10:10. OK will message Mel my current status while outside where there is no internet and I don’t notice. Basically queue up some messages in Google hangouts and get irritated that she isn’t responding.
Bus pulls up on time. Get out my handy piece of paper and find next destination hop for when I get off the bus. Says Andel. Ok. Bus arrives at destination. Go down steps. Standard tracks on both sides. I make the mistake of not realizing I’m at the end of the line and that I can only get on one of the trains. Train pulls up on the right side. I’m frantically trying to figure out if I should get on this train or if it will be going the wrong way.. It leaves. Great. Now a train arrives on both sides.. Decision time… Ohh wait nobody is getting on the train on the left only the train on the right. The realization that I’m an idiot sinks in and I get on the train. 9 stops to Andel then need to find Na Knizeci which I repeat in my head as Na Knot-going-to-remember-this.
As I’m fumbling around with all of these papers and remembering that the lady at the bus office had the diagram that says go right and the metro guy said stay in the tube a drunk Czech lady came on and stumbled around until somebody finally assisted her to her seat by pushing her in a way that allowed her to sit down. I needed a laugh at this point.
Arrive at the Andel station and look for signs that say Na whatever. Can’t find any. Ok, then we go right like the lady said and stay in the tube like the guy said… Wait here is a sign that says Na whatever and the word bus and points to behind me which would actually be left not right like she said. Guess I’ll try that? I’m getting that feeling that I’m screwed either way so why not. So now I’m headed in the opposite direction as the lady said and up towards the surface out of the tube against what the guy stressed. I’m living life on the edge. Actually I’ve learned that most life situations when compared to all situations that can happen are pretty insignificant so what the heck. Maybe there is good Czech beer up there. I do see light at the end of the tunnel. Nope just a confusing hallway. I finally just ask a guy that I’m pretty sure cannot speak English but whatever let’s play charades and see what happens. “One! Points down the hall then up. Two! Points down the hall then up. Then bus.” Ok, got it. Down the hall and second stairs. You and I my friend could win some charades. Yay there are busses here. Lots of them… Now we play the match words on the ticket with words on the bus game. Turns out the first bus I walk up too matches quite a few words on my ticket. With a little assistance from some random person I’m in the correct seat. At least I can only assume so since the driver found my name on a piece of paper he had and crossed it off. Hopefully that isn’t the, “rob stupid tourist list.”
I’m off to
this place then to transfer to my next bus somehow.
Tyghe@11:15: So I’m on a different bus company now. Going to some place. Then transfer there to another buys that takes me to CK… probably
All I know is that I will eventually pay the bus driver 50 units of local currency and that the bus needs to go to Cesky Krumlov. I eventually figure out after a few stops that the bus I’m on is going to terminate at the destination I need, so I stop worrying about if I should get off the bus or not at every stop.
We finally arrive at the place I pointed to in the above picture and there are quite a few busses and stops. I take two, Let’s call them victory laps, around the terminal without locating a sign that says Cesky Krumlov only to realize there is a huge display inside the terminal that lists all the bus destinations with the time they leave and what bus stop number. Cesky Krumlov, 2:20, 2
Alright another victory lap to locate stop two. No bus there. It is only 1:50. Must not be here yet. The bus terminal is also a mall? So time to get a SIM card for my phone. Find the shop and walk in. Greeted via Czech language so I reply hello. The guy immediately says no no cannot. So I say no English? And he shakes his head yes. So I just say SIM internet no English. Then the guy directly behind him says you want to buy a Sim card? His English is enough to get us through some laughter and charades and finally me having a SIM card… Crap it is 2:10 now. I take the Sim card and shove it in my pocket and head to the stop. The bus is there and a decent line and the bus looks fullish. People get on pretty quick. I say, “Cesky Krumov?”, to the driver and he makes the head gesture of yes. So I give him currency and board. I get pretty much the last seat, then about 20 more people get on. Bus is completely full with people standing right next to each other. Good thing the drive is only like 25 minutes. Get off at what I can only assume is the Cesky Krumlov stop only to realize I have not made a conscience effort to know where I’m supposed to go once here. First thing first. More clothes because it is cold. While putting on my jacket I see pretty much everybody that got off the bus heads toward a path at the end of the bus stop. Also a sign that says centurum that points the same way. Let’s walk that way. It probably means center. I remember Mel saying something about a long walk after the bus and very down hill. The path soon starts a very down hill journey. I then realize I still have all of our chat message cached on my phone and stop and read them until I find the name of the place, Zanty Andel.. or something. Still hoping I’m going the right way I eventually end up in a town square. Ohh look there is the motel.
Tyghe@3:23: OK. I’m here in the room..adventure was out there and I found it
Mel@3:24: K be there soon
Meet a very excited wife that has just ran a 1/4 mile and all the way up a large amount of steps and then head to the last talk of her workshop where I meet a bunch of people that are running the workshop.
Afterwards we nom’d at the infamous Meat Dungeon. Later had dinner with the entire populous of the workshop. I make it to about 9pm and then I start to go in and out of losing focus on things so decide it is bed time.
I unlocked this upgrade by finishing today’s quest. Tomorrow is slated to be an adventure of walking around Cesky Krumlov and visiting the local castle.