After waiting and waiting, my dreams were finally fulfilled: it snowed in Prague! On Monday afternoon I was leaving a cafe after coffee with friends and found out that it was a lovely -2 degrees and quite dark outside at 4pm. It had started raining by the time I got home, and a quick weather search online alluded to possible snow. Needless to say, I was looking out my window every ten minutes to see if it had started, but I eventually gave up and went to bed.
But then I woke up to this out my window on Tuesday morning!
I promptly lost my mind with excitement, but didn’t run outside as it was far too dark and cold. When I did eventually emerge I thought the scenery around me was beautiful. Sure, it was only a very small layer of snow, but it completely changed the look of everything. I don’t think every else was too impressed though, as the freezing conditions had resulted in the entire tram network being shutdown for the first time ever.
I opted to walk into the city rather than navigate the horror that is replacement buses, and found the snow became less and less as I neared the city centre. Unfortunately the snow had pretty much melted again by the next day, and it is completely gone this morning.
I have been walking on the latter half of this post for a few days. It is a bit long and personal, so if you aren’t into that stuff then feel free to comeback later when I have more pictures and less words on offer!
As a look at my calendar these days, weekends are filling up with trips, people are coming and going from Prague, and exams or term papers have deadlines looming. It all seems to have come about so quickly, but when I think about it, it has now been over three months since I left Australia, and over two months since I have been living in Prague. Before I know it I will (hopefully) be spending my last weeks in Europe travelling with Chris, before embarking on the dreaded day long journey home.
Thinking about all this time and how quick it has flown by has resulted in a somewhat pensive mood on my behalf. Most days I often find myself thinking about what I have done since being overseas, and what I still want to do. Some days I feel content with all that I have experienced, but then other days I feel like I have also missed out on a lot, especially when I observe what other exchange students have done. There seems to be an eclectic mix of students here in Prague, with some people jumping on a plane or train every weekend to see a new country, while others have hardly left Prague at all. There is quite a culture among Erasmus (an exchange program ran by the EU) students of partying and drinking and staying up until ridiculously late, which doesn’t really interest me too much. Sure, I have the odd night of drinks with some friends, but when I speak to other students they seem to being doing something every other night. Again, this can sometimes make me feel like I am doing exchange “wrong”, or that I am missing out.
But when I really sit down and put some thought to it, and look past the generic ideal of what being on exchange means to a lot people, I am really happy with how my experience has gone. I have travelled a lot, and I still have more planned. I have met some lovely people: sometimes people I also see once, other people who have become good friends over the semester. As much as Charles University has annoyed me in a bureaucratic and academic sense, it has also been a blessing in disguise in allowing me to enjoy my experience without the pressing burden of hard university work. And above all else, exchange has also made me appreciate what I already have. I go to university at one of the top universities in the world in the most liveable city in the world, I have a wonderful family back at home who supported me in even coming here, and I know that I have a wonderful life to go back to living with Chris in a little apartment in Melbourne.
So yeah, I guess the conclusion of this was that I am accepting that even though my experience of exchange might be different to others, as is what I hold ideal, and I am very grateful for this experience that I have had (and am still having!).
Also, I hope it snows again soon!