Prague Castle stretches the length of a long, narrow hilltop above the city that has (archaeology shows) has basically been a fortress since prehistoric times.
Exploring up a forested Napa hillside at dawn, I was surprised to find the remains of a road and (a bit farther on) the foundations of a long-abandoned building. Given how many well-remembered childhood films took place in the forested hills of California, I guess I shouldn’t be surprised.
We were visiting Prague in the off-season—that’s what we heard from every cab driver and waiter. Though gentle spring breezes had been replaced with nascent winter gusts, there were numerous benefits; the relative sparsity of fellow tourists in Old Town made for easy access to the city’s sights. Two of the subtler benefits are captured in this image: (1) the bare branches opened new views of the skyline, and (2) the Smetana hotel (just across the river) where we stayed had a spectacular room overlooking the Vltava open for us.
Buses and streetcars traveling over old cobblestones make a pretty good transportation representation of the nature of Prague’s Old Town: modernity layered atop history.
Evening at the end of November, dinner on the river is charming… But I can only imagine the experience in May.
An early-evening flight into Chicago puts the setting sun behind the skyline along Lake Michigan, reflecting silhouettes from the placid surface.
Prague’s Lennon Wall has been continuously painted over and re-graffiti’ed for more than three decades. This moment in time, November 2019, provided plenty of bright colors to that stood out against the gray sky.
There are so many gulls along the Vltava in Prague that the rectilinear stacks going up the hillside are accompanied, courtesy a long exposure time, by smooth, curving surfaces of bird flight.
Dawn in Napa brings the kinds of landscapes, with layer upon layer of hills and fields and trees, that I associate with prints of impressionist oil paintings scattered around the average home in the late twentieth century.
Visiting Prague’s Jewish Quarter reveals a sobering history of limitations placed upon its residents.
The graves and their stones rise high above the pathways; no additional cemetery space was available, so generations of graves stacked upon each other slowly raised the ground level above its surroundings.
With the trees free of leaves, the orderly arrays of lights along Petřín reveal its nature as a lovely park space in the city.
I associate the Bohemian architecture of Prague so closely with spy movies that I immediately imagine an agent rappelling down the side of every facade I photographed.
In a too-on-the-nose metaphor, here the Oswegatchie River joints the St. Lawrence River, with Canada looking on; this week, a new class (2024!) of Laurentians arrived to St. Lawrence University’s campus.
Even in cold November weather, the spectacle of the horloge on Prague’s Old Town Hall brings an audience. Perhaps they are suitably warmed with trdelník to fight off the cold.
A wet, mild California winter (rather the opposite of what the Bay Area is unfortunately currently experiencing) may make for a lovely view in wine country, but I’m not sure I’d want to stop at that particular seat… It looks like it has captured more than its share of the dampness of its environs.