Several good friends of mine moved to Prague in the 90s to find a bohemian life-style they could find no place else.
It was the time right after the Velvet Revolution, when an entire country was emerging from the dark ages of communism,
and a wonderful new feeling of freedom and opportunity was palpable.
To me going to Prague at that time in a way seemed cliché, as if people were hoping to find another version of
Paris in the 20s. It seemed too many people were going, that it was the “thing to do”. But looking back on it, I think
to myself, so what? And the fact is, Prague was (and remains) a wonderful place (in fact, one of these friends of mine,
who married a Czech woman, actually headed back recently…and has no regrets). Sometimes I get bummed that I didn’t give
Prague a try at that time, and my friends’ stories confirm that it would have been a great experience.
These thoughts about Prague came back to me as I was reading
Pamela Gerhardt’s Imagining Bohemia on the
Traveler’s Tales site. It’s a wonderful little story about her experience
visiting the city in 1993, at the height of the “second Prague invasion” (the expat invasion, not the communist one).
It’s a fine little bit of reminiscence, especially for those of us who remember those days with real fondness…and a wee
bit of regret.