I went to Hell.
And by Hell, I mean the highest rated tattoo shop in Prague, Hell Tattooing. Yes, I've already gotten one tattoo in Prague at a different shop. Hell prides themselves on only doing original work, so I knew the small red moon I wanted behind my ear would be better to get elsewhere (I got it from a reputable shop in old town that's used to tattooing tourists for that one). But before I ever got to Prague, I knew I wanted something major to honor my love for Prague and my time here. I made the appointment back in the beginning of June. It blows my mind how fast that month passed.
When I went in for my appointment, I told the artist what I wanted. She went away for two hours to sketch it out, showed it to me, then spent the next five hours tattooing this onto my left shoulder:
|my new tattoo of the Charles Bridge|
I've also believed in the mystical power of numbers for many years. I also think the Charles Bridge represents Prague's beauty and history. This tattoo was about my love for Prague, a place I truly feel I belong and has stolen my heart, as well as my love for the Charles Bridge, that I am lucky enough to cross almost every day. Bridges have also been a symbol for tying together nations, and what better tattoo for an international business major to wear proudly?
As for the words Little Traveler, they are a reference to a Deathcab for Cutie song, Little Wanderer, that I connected a lot with. (The Czech word for wanderer, however, has religious connotations when translated, so I opted for the word Traveler). I also think the phrase describes me well. I've been the little one in my family (as the youngest and shortest) my whole life, and I have always seen myself as the little one. And the phrase "little traveler", well, it's so simple, and that's how I feel here. I'm nothing too special or fancy, just a little traveler finding her way in this world. I also got Czech words because in the middle of my back is an Arabic word (Inshallah) and on my right shoulder is a french song quote (Je vois la vie en rose). The three languages represent a lot of me and my experiences with cultural submersion.
I love this tattoo. It is my eighth and by far the largest. And yes, it hurt ALOT. But any tattoo is going to hurt when it takes five hours, especially one with as much detail as mine. Worth it, though? A thousand times yes.
Then, two days after getting a brand new tattoo, I took a day trip to:
This is a town maybe an hour outside of Prague. We took the metro to the train station where a bus took us to Kutna Hora. By we, I mean my study abroad organization, CEA.
|Gothic Cathedral in Kutna Hora|
After this, we had a traditional Czech meal, which for my vegetarian self meant hermelin, aka, fried cheese. Not too bad though. It was a paid for meal and kept me from starving, which allowed me to fully enjoy the next part of our trip:
|Bone Church in Kutna Hora|
|The resemblance is striking|
It was a spectacular trip that showed me even outside of Prague, the Czech Republic is amazing. The craziest part is just being somewhere with so much history. My country is barely three hundred years old, and now I have a 700-year old bridge on my back.