Part of the reason I chose to study abroad in Prague is because I did not know much about the city at all. When I arrived in Prague, I did not have classes for the first week, so I took the time to explore the city and meet new people. I went to many famous historical sites such as Old Town Square and Prague Castle. My second week in Prague, I started classes at Anglo-American University a small college home to many international students. I have met people from all over even from places as far as Japan and Kazakstan. I have grown to love this little university and enjoy spending all my free time between classes on the campus grounds.
Prague has been a known settlement since the sixth century when a merchant documented in his journal a trading market in a Central Europe settlement called Praha. Prague thrived during the medieval period, mostly during the 13th century when it became the capital city of the Holy Roman Empire. Prague was ruled by kings and queens for centuries, and these royals had a decent amount of money that they often chose to splurge on extravagant things. Many of the structures or monuments built by these royals are still standing today in Prague. However, my favorite thing in Prague from the age of Kings and Queens is the peacocks.
Back to when I first arrived in Prague, I kept hearing about these peacocks in the park behind my university from other students in my program. I was interested but did not think much of it as I wasn’t too motivated to go look at some peacocks in cages. However, on my first day of school, I decided to venture beyond the small courtyard in the center of the campus and walk through the back door into the beautiful park bordering the school. As soon as I entered the park, I was immediately greeted by five brightly colored peacocks. They were freely walking amongst the people, relaxing in the shade or eating grass in groups. I was instantly mesmerized and spent the next hour sitting in the grass watching the peacocks as they roamed the park. The peacocks have most likely been in this park for centuries after they were brought over by Prague royalty. The gate to the street from the park is wide open all day everyday but the peacocks do not choose to leave.
There have been many unexpected things during my experience abroad so far. While I expected there to be new experiences and challenges to be faced, I did not expect myself to find such simple joy in a small park in a big city. I now spend almost every break I have during school in the park sitting with the peacocks and enjoying the beauty of the park. Prague is a magical city, and it is impossible not to find joy in the littlest things such as the majestic colorful birds roaming a little park in the center of the city.
Maddy M. is studying Psychology and Criminal Justice and studying abroad with CEA in Prague, Czech Republic.