Today is Part 1: Prague.
We saw SO much:
|Statue for Czech author Franz Kafka|
|City observatory tower...|
|...selfie from the top.|
But a trip to Prague would not be complete without a visit to the castle, Praha Hrad:
|Complete with crown...|
|...and knights in armor.|
But the most interesting part of the castle for me was the guards:
|We thought they were mannequins...|
|...but they are real.|
|And quite popular for photo ops.|
These guards are "a specific and autonomous unit of the Armed Forces of the Czech Republic directly subordinate to the Military Office of the President of the Czech Republic. Its main task is to guard and defend the seat of the President of the Czech Republic at the Prague Castle."
Granted, they don't quite have the hardcore hats like the Queen's Guards in the UK with their bearskin hats or the Pope's Swiss Guards in Vatican City with their distinctive hats, but these Czech Guards are serious about their job.
First of all they stand perfectly still for an hour at a time - no matter the weather or who is taking a picture of them. Then, a few minutes before the top of the hour, they have the changing of the guards. A small troop of guards march through the plaza:
Then an army soldier with a real automatic weapon clears the tourist away from the guards on duty...
...so the guards can do their fancy 10 point turn:
|Meeting in the middle...|
|...to join the formation.|
Lots of pomp and circumstance (and large weapons).
My poetry skills are bit rusty because of our holiday so I am feeling a little 'guarded' about today's poem:
centuries of sentries
watch·men with a strong·hold
on their weapons
©2018, Bridget Magee. All Rights Reserved.