Prague’s Jewish Quarter

Last week I visited the old Jewish Cemetery and the Spanish Synagogue.. Also other things but these two stood out the most for me!

I wanted to be there at 9 am because it was Sunday and it sure would be crowded during the day, so I got up early at 7 and guess what? No water and no light! 😀

So I ate breakfast with the little water I still had from yesterday, but at 8 am we still didn’t have water. In the end I went out without having brushed my teeth or taken a shower. 😀 Later I heard from Penny that it took until 10 before we had water again XD

Well, for 185 euros rent a month you can’t be picky, haha!

Elective Courses

Last week was the final week to make a choice when it comes to the elective courses. In the end I settled on Figure Drawing, Czech Language, Genius Loci of Prague, Very Anxious Meetings, Clay Modeling and Czech Modern and Contemporary Art and Architecture. This is more than I have to, but there is just too much fun things to choose from! Also if it turns out to be too much I can drop one or two, I still need only 30 ECS and with this I will be having 34.

But let me tell you what these courses are all about! Well, Figure Drawing, Czech Language and Clay Modeling are self-explanatory, but what is this Genius Loci of Prague? It’s basically a weekly tour through Prague with the teacher talking about modern architecture, think first half of 20th century. It’s fun, I get to know architectural styles and periods I didn’t know about and maybe I’ll be able to tell from which period buildings are from their looks in the end! 😀 And the teacher is really enthusiastic about architecture, especially Functionalism and Rondocubism, which is something typically Czech, it seems. Czech Modern and Contemporary Art and Architecture is similar, but we will visit museums, galleries and monuments instead. So I go twice a week visiting places in the city!

Last Friday we visited the Vítkov Monument:

This building is kinda strange because it had so many different functions during it’s history… It was build as a memorial for Czechoslovakia in the thirties, then the Nazis used it for storage, during Communism it was the place to display the body of the first Communist president of Czechoslovakia, Klement Gottwald. After 1989 it was left unused for years and now it is a museum. And a memorial. And there is a ceremonial hall which is sometimes still in use.

The view from the roof is amazing, though! We visited the TV tower the day before with Genius Loci of Prague. 🙂

On the very last moment I decided to take the Anxious Meetings course as well. :/ It’s a quite varied course with discussions, guest speakers and sometimes even excursions. Last semester the course concluded with an exhibition. It’s called Anxious Meetings because no topic is too weird or personal to not speak about during the discussions. I kind of missed some theory in the other courses, and the exhibition looked promising, so I decided to follow this one too. So far it’s been fun.

Exchange Student Dinner

From left to right: Eleni from Cyprus (she studies Sculpture in Greece, but is doing Textiles in Prague), Miguel’s roommate from France, which studies Finance (I forgot his name, sorry!), the crazy person who writes all this, my roommate Pan-Ni (we’re allowed to say Penny) from Taiwan, Shiori from Japan who is doing Intermedia (don’t ask me what that is XD), Juan from Spain, studies Photography, and his sister, who will be leaving for Lyon soon…

On the other side of the table: Naama from Israel, Stein from Iceland, Manja from Slovenia (Fashion), Miguel from the US (Ceramics) and Eve from Dublin. She’s the only one who is doing a theoretical course! And this is not even everybody, mind you!

Manja and Miguel discussing how awesome the food will be…
My dish! 😀
Pan-Ni enjoying her soup, Stein looks jealously at my plate.. Just kidding! XD

Tours and food

Last Wednesday we had our first meeting at school, which was great! So many people from all over the world! <3 We got a tour through the school building, but I haven’t made any photographs (yet).

Thursday and yesterday we’ve been on a guided tour through the historical center of Prague, Thursday around Malá Straná (west bank of Vltava) and Friday through Staré Město (old town) and the Jewish quarter. All organized by the school, so great!

What’s also great is that we can eat in the canteen from the Charles University with our UMPRUM student card. It was a bit of a hassle to set up, but in the end it works! UMPRUM has it’s own tiny school canteen all down in the basement, but it’s really cramped and there’s not much to choose from. At the Charles University we can choose from a whopping 8 menu’s, all about 2 euros!

I first thought this bread-vanilla sauce thing was a savory dish, but it is indeed sweet. It’s very nice though, and you get good value for your money!

Monday will be my first school day, exciting!

First Round of Sightseeing

So it turned out my roommate is doing ceramics and will not be my classmate when I’m having studio classes.  ¯\_(ツ)_/¯  We might have elective classes together, though!

Her name is Pan-Ni, by the way, and she looks like this:

The past two days have we spend sightseeing … What else do do in such a beautiful city? We’ve been to the Mucha museum, it was amazing though we weren’t allowed to take any photos. I think I have a favorite Czech artist now! 😀

What I didn’t know was that he was so engaged with his homeland, Moravia (which is now eastern-Czech republic, but when he was born in 1866 it was still part of the Austrian Empire) He really did his best to make the people feel proud of there slavic heritage and you could say his dream came true when Czechoslovakia became independent in 1918. He designed banknotes, post stamps and medaillons for the new country, as well as a series of 20 giant paintings known as the Slav Epic… Those weren’t part of this exhibition, but are in another museum in Prague. You bet I’m going to see those too!

Tomorrow we’ll have our first meeting at the school, I’m excited! 😀