Spring Break is finally here. After almost two months of living abroad, we finally have a welcome respite from our schoolwork. If I was home, I’d probably be sitting on my couch watching Netflix and taking daily Dunkin Donuts runs. Here, it’s a different story. This will be the third weekend that I am traveling, and every trip brings about new experiences and places to cross off my bucket list.
I’m sitting on a train heading to Munich, Germany as I write this post. The fact that there’s WiFi in the coach has provided me with just the right amount of motivation to sit down and blog. We’re traveling through the Czech Republic countryside, and it’s just the beginning of our six-hour journey.
A few weekends ago, my study abroad program offered a free trip to Kutna Hora, a medieval Czech city about an hour and a half outside of Prague. Between the 13th and 16th centuries, the city was the center for silver mining and coin minting. The day trip included a stop to the Italian Court, the main location for the minting process.
The city also includes St. Barbara’s Church, an impressive display of gothic architecture whose namesake comes from the patron saint of miners. It is also one of the most famous churches in Central Europe, although each church I’ve seen has been equally impressive.
What all of us were most excited to see was the Sedlec Ossuary, a Roman Catholic chapel that is decorated with the bones of 40,000+ people who died from the Black Plague in the 14th century. The church had an eerie feeling to it the moment I set foot inside. I also couldn’t grasp the concept of 40,000+ skeletons until I was greeted by skulls and bones rearranged in decorative shapes and placed throughout the church.
Although there wasn’t much to do in Kutna Hora besides tour the landmarks and admire the architecture, it provided us with something to do on a sunny Saturday afternoon. I know I’ve said this before, but the fact that the trip was free was a big influence on my attendance. We might as well take advantage of it while we can because it will be a rude awakening once I fly back to the States.