Sunday, September 1, 2013

Czech it Out, Agog in Prague, Czecking Out for Now

I stole AGOG IN PRAGUE from Laura's blog AGOG IN PRAGUE. She is my brother's friend and former roomie.

So I went to Prauge! After a false start: 28 hour delay in NJ and courtesy of United I stayed at a lovely hotel that was a few blocks from some former Frat houses that I spent many a night in during my college days in the heart of NEWARK, NJ.  When a fellow passenger asked me if the neighborhood was safe I just said not to leave the hotel. So my first night of vacay was spent in Newark, NJ.  Silver lining? Got to see my mom and my sister and went to the outlet mall in Elizabeth, NJ. So not a bad day... It just wasn't PRAGUE.


It looks like we are outside.
In reality we are in the safe haven known to 
all Jersey Girls as the mall.

So after lunch I set of for PRAGUE (PRAHA). I landed in Brussels and got to Prague around 1pm Czech time. PJ was there to greet me and after a very harrowing cab ride (the driver didn't even acknowledge lights or posted speed limits) we got to his apartment and I got to meet Shannon. Whom I now adore.
Shannon and I at the bus stop.

PJ and I on the bus.

We went to lunch where I naturally had some pasta. It was pretty good. Then we went back to the apartment for a little nap time then we went out for the night where I did have traditional Goulash. It was fantastic. Not a fan of the dumplings with bacon. I know, bacon is supposed to make everything better, but not this time.
Goulash.
I won't chronicle the entire trip but I will post the pics. I used the Fujifilm X20 exclusively during the day and for the first night. Excellent camera. Love it. I used my Canon 60D for all of my night shots (not the first night) in conjunction with my MeFoto Backpacker  tripod. I ADORE THIS TRIPOD. Run, do not walk, to your nearest dealer or order online (I got mine through Amazon as I had a free Prime Membership to try out and got 2 day free shipping). For $139 you will not find a better travel tripod. Or hell, better tripod at all. It is very light. PJ carried it for me all night (the first night shoot we went to see RENT, a musical about Bohemia in Bohemia?! Natch), and he said he could barely feel it. Then the set up was super easy. And its my first ball head tripod. I thought I could't afford one and had a Sunpack panhead that cost just as much. I looked at Manfrotto and SLIK and for the price and the reviews, chose MeFoto Backpacker. And I am so glad that I did. The Roadtripper is a bit heavier and I almost went with that model. But MeFoto assured me (via their FB page) that it would hold my 60D. And it did. I wasn't nervous at all. It was spectacular. 
My brother outside his office.

On the way to the clock.

Selfie.

Next to Mucha's work.

View from the Mucha exhibit.

X20 no tripod. Not bad.

Heading to the clock. X20.

X20. On the way to the clock.

Center of Praha. X20.

Astronomical Clock.
X20.

X20.

Apparently it was a blue moon that night.
X20.

My brother leading the way.
X20.

Some famous building. X20.

Bridge and Palace. X20.

View from the bridge. X20.


Close up. X20.

Heading towards the train.
A church.
Outside the palace.
D60 

D60.

D60.

Heading towards the Charles Bridge. Waterwheel.
D60.

Outside the stairs by Charles Bridge.
D60.

The Charles Bridge.
D60.
(Across from the wood gate and the location of the opening
scene of Mission Impossible movie).

Charles Bridge. For about 4 minutes the lights by the
statues were on. Then they turned off.
D60.

Other end of the bridge.
D60.

D60.

I cranked up the ISO to 1000 so my brother
wouldn't have to stand still for minutes.
D60.

Self-portrait. But my brother hit the remote :)



I could post a lot more photos. But I will end it here. With these pics from the 2nd night shoot at VyŇ°ehrad. All shot with the D60.