We plan an exit strategy: Barochov to Prague

From the farm in Barochov, it was only 31 miles to Prague.  Luckily, the rain had stopped but it was a toe-numbingly cool 8 degrees and to make matters worse we’d had no breakfast, which makes for one grumpy Neo.  The road was still super hilly and the downhills particularly bracing in fingerless gloves.  Brrrr.

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It was over 2 hours before we came across a shop to buy breakfast and I’m not sure whether it was the hunger clouding our judgement or the fact that it was so cold we could see our breath in the air, but we decided to officially declare summer at an end and make a proper exit strategy to get back home from Prague.  Without decent cold-weather cycling gear, riding in the wind and rain really isn’t much fun and we’d always said we’d head home when it started getting cold.  What we would have given for cold water in our water bottles back in Spain!

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After a couple of hours, we could see the city in the distance beyond the fields and fields of farmland.

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As we got closer to Prague, the route got more confusing, taking us through strange tracks, side streets and over blocked bridges.

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And then…  I fell off my bike, again! Luckily I was on a pavement and not going particularly fast at the time but it still blinking well hurt and knocked my confidence a bit (I;m now terrified of all cracks and bumps, even the tiny ones).  I landed on the floor in a bit of a heap and was helped up by Nev and a kind passerby.  I felt sure I’d done some major damage to my shoulder or leg but slightly disappointingly (and thankfully) there were no bones jutting out or open wounds to be seen so we got back on our bikes to cycle the last few miles to our hostel.

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That’s when we discovered that Prague is a rubbish city for cycling.  The few cycle lanes that do exist end abruptly at really inappropriate moments and the city itself was so incredibly full of people milling about that we had to get off and push most of the way.

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Our hostel was in an apartment block right in the centre, a couple of minutes walk from Charles Bridge and on the second floor…

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After the most comprehensive check-in ever where they even showed us how to use the keys in the the locks, we went to the train station to sort out train tickets to Berlin (part of our master plan to get home to our winter coats).  On the way, we declined an offer from a giant shark for a Thai massage for 9 EUROS…

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…and went for a potato pizza.  Yummer.

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The next day, we bought Metro tickets and pottered around Prague, visiting the (not particularly inspiring) John Lennon wall…

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…the (more inspiring) 80’s TV tower with babies climbing up it.  Although I have to admit, I was expecting to see massive King-Kong-style  babies clinging to the sides and the actual babies were way more subtle than that…

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We also sat and waited a good 15 mins outside the “dancing building” inspired by Fred and Ginger waiting for a man to do an abseil before we realised he was just the window cleaner.

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As if to confirm we’d made the right decision to get a train to Berlin, it started raining again, so we got supplies and cooked jambalaya in the hostel.  I ate so much jambalaya I had to undo my pants, lie down and rub my belly for a while, which was fine as I got chatting to a lovely Canadian girl called Julia in the next bed who lent us her laptop to watch a movie on.  A cosy end to a rainy day 🙂

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