Posts Tagged With: Easter

East For Easter

A long time ago, I said I would tell the truth and nothing but the whole truth.  So I would like to say that my decision to go to Prague was well thought out and researched since I was looking for a different spin on Easter than the usual chocolate bunnies and hidden eggs commercialism.  But the real story of why I found myself in Prague over Easter is due to a travel Russian roulette of sorts.  The NZ Welshie and I chose our top 3 destinations/travel timing and by pure fluke it turned out to be Prague over Easter.  To add insult to injury, with the chaos that is my work life, my apartment turned B&B, and a few weekend getaways here and there, left me with no time to research or plan much of anything.  When push came to shove there was nothing to do other than buckle up and enjoy whatever was to come my way!

Beautifully painted eggs from one of the Easter Market stalls

Beautifully painted eggs from one of the Easter Market stalls

By the time I had made sure that my seat back and tray tables were in their upright and locked positions – the worries of  Good Friday conference calls and teaching an old dog new tricks had all vanished into thin air.  There were no other plans in place other than finding the NZ Welshie somewhere in Terminal 1 to begin our Easter weekend adventure.  Hopefully this one steered away from “bitches be crazy” drama we faced the last time we spent Easter together.  From the moment we met, we realized that both of us had been under the gun with everyday life and so no plan was going to have to be the best plan.  As the taxi swerved on that ever so windy road, we decided that when it comes to Prague it was probably a good idea to cover the basics like Charles Bridge, Old Town Square, Prague Castle, and the Astronomical Clock.  To add to this we decided to sprinkle a little jazz on the water, some street art eye candy, and a few munchies from the markets on route to a whole lot of Czech cuisine was the way to go.

Popular snack from the Easter Markets

Popular snack from the Easter Markets

The Market in Old Town Square

The Market in Old Town Square

What we forgot to factor into our back seat planning was the weather, the crowds, and the time change!  Yes, there’s nothing you can do about crowds but why would the clocks spring forward when the flurries all around us were clearly signalling it was still winter is just beyond me.  Despite these few setbacks, the NZ Welshie and I managed to do enough on our hit list for me to know that I liked Prague.  I say like as I wasn’t blown away by Prague like everyone kept telling me I would be.  I found the city to be architectural beautiful with a lot to offer but there was just something missing for me.  Chemistry perhaps?  To this day, I’m still not sure exactly what it was but I haven’t completely ruled out that “second date” just yet!

The Astronomical Clocks in Old Town Square

The Astronomical Clocks in Old Town Square

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Categories: CZECH REPUBLIC, czech republic: prague | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

Hidden Gem

Inside look at the Quarter Acre Cafe

I don’t know why the three of us in a car always makes for an eventful day.  Since it was rainy and wet on Easter Monday, we decided that we would take our time getting back to Welly which essentially translates to numerous stops at cute little cafes along the way for tea, chai lattes, and cakes of all sorts.  After several hours behind the wheel, I was finally able to pull into a truck stop which left much to be desired as far as the cuisine went.  After choking down a rather unpleasant breakfast, we were on the road again.

The next stop was in Shannon when we spotted what look like a cute little and pulled into the first available parking spot.  Before stepping out of the car, we noticed that there was a teenage boy who was kicking a dog and the girl with him was giving us the skunk eye.  Yes, there was 3 of them and they were only teenagers but the sensible Welsh girl spoke up and said, “Maybe we should just keep going as the last thing I need is to get my head kicked in!”.  That was all we took and we were back on the road. 

Slice of Heaven

Luckily we spotted another sign for a cafe shortly after that but were little shocked to find out it was in a garden centre.  Where we in for another treat like the meal we had at the truck stop?  Well we desperately needed to nip into the loo so good or bad, we were stopping.  Much to our surprise, the Quarter Acre cafe was amazing.  The food was fresh and amazing.  The service was unbelievable.  It was everything that we were hoping for and would never have discovered it if it wasn’t for the teenage thugs in Shannon.  The owner of the cafe even gave us apple/feijoa pies for the road as we were in for bumper to bumper traffic for the rest of the drive.  It was the perfect little retreat with a wooden fireplace to boot that gave us the much-needed break from the grueling drive ahead.

Categories: NEW ZEALAND | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Wrong Side of the Road

As if we'd forget to "Keep Left"

Our Rental Car

It’s funny how things end up working out for my Easter roadtrip.  Due to a lot of interesting circumstances, my hand was forced and I was going to have to finally drive in New Zealand.  I was splitting driving duties with another fellow Canadian who was a first timer as well and we were going to have to quickly get used to driving on the wrong side of road. 

Loaded with maps, a GPS, and extra insurance we hit the road.  The roadtrip was a great introduction to driving in New Zealand if we ignore the issues with roundabouts and not one but two run-ins with the New Zealand police.  What happened at the first roundabout is something that will remain with the 3 people who were in the car and all I’m willing to say is that it added an extra hour to our roadtrip and there might have been a moment where my life flashed before my eyes.  The police…well that’s a whole other story.

Police Officer story #1  involved a routine drinking driving roadblock where everyone in the car stared at the instrument the cop shoved into my driving buddy’s face.  The driver stared back at the lady cop with a blank and slightly grossed out look and we could tell she was wondering how she was going to get away with not putting her mouth on this unhygienic instrument.  The police officer clued in and then chimed in with instructions right before my driving buddy orally violated the breathalyzer. 

Posing with our car

As for the second cop story…let’s just say that there were 3 major driving violations that started out with the police officer pulling us over and saying, “wow, there were some scary moments back there!”.  He broke out laughing when we blamed the GPS for breaking the speed limit amongst other things and after a quick chat about who we were and where we were from, he proceeded to give us directions to our bach and sent us on our way without a ticket or warning in sight.   From Wellington to Napier, we had made it safe and sound without any major incidents and gave us moments that we’d laugh about all weekend long.

Categories: NEW ZEALAND, nz: wellington | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

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