bratislava, slovakia

December 3, 2010 - Bratislava, Slovakia

bratislava is only an hour away from vienna, and we got a bus for only 6 euro each! score : ) i had written down the directions from the bus stop to the hostel we had booked, but unfortunately we didn't arrive at the right station! haha but no worries mate, because the australian came to the rescue! :P he had a map of the city in one of his heavy europe guide books, and we figured out where we were and LUCKILY the hostel we booked was one of the ones recommended by the guidebook, so it was on the map! we walked along in the snow with our backpacks (not falling over! yay!) and checked in to our hostel.

went for a walk down marianska st (reminds me of you, mariana!) to see what shops were near by, and then asked at the hostel if they knew of a good computer shop. they did, and we managed to find it somehow (by walking around lost :p) there i bought a new hard drive, put it in, and BAM there you go, my laptop is completely fixed! months and month of issue after issue, hours spent trying to fix it (dad mostly) and after buying a new hard drive it is finally fixed. thank god!!

we both knew the day we arrived that we liked bratislava a lot more than austria. it had a welcoming feel to it, and the people were nice (in austria most of them were grumpy and rude!) and it was also a lot cheaper! austria made me realise how much i like eastern europe. i read that outside of bratislava they don't speak much english (but some german) and they are quite shy, so if you learn a few slovak words, like hello (dobry den), please (prosim) and thank you (d'akujem) then that will take you far and while they might seem un-welcoming at first they are actually quite friendly and willing to help you once you make a little effort!

the next day we did a free walking tour, and it was freeeeeeeeeezing. coldest day yet!! don't know how the guide survived coz she was tiny and not even wearing gloves! we walked all day but still had frozen feet and fingers at the end of it : ( she was great though, and pointed out quirky little statues and explained what they meant. she told us about how they only got mcdonalds in the 1995 because the communist party was in power from 1948 - 1991, she showed us a building where napolean came to sign an agreement of some sort and they had to hide all of the valuables beforehand otherwise he would take them as 'gifts', she showed us the coronation path, where the newly coronated king or queen would walk to see the public, she showed us a blue church (very cool!), and a church where an agreement was signed for slovakia to join germany in WWII (hitler gave them the choice of joining germany or letting hungary take over slovakia yet again - they chose to join germany because they really hated the hungarians! later, in 1945 there was a succesful uprising against german occupation but by then thousands of slovakian jews had already been sent to concentration camps) we also saw the narrowest building in the city.

after the tour, scott and i went back to the christmas stalls in the main square (rectangle :p) we both got a chicken burger with vegies and sauce (2 euro!) and also tried a potato pancake (the fresh, crispy ones are amazing!) there were more stalls in another square, where we got a cup of hot chocolate (again, it was melted chocolate but this one was soooo good!)

that night we went to an ice hockey game, which was cool! a slovakian version of the mighty ducks :p when we were buying tickets the players from the home team were walking from a practise rink to the competition rink, and they were BIG guys! even without padding. the goalie was funny because he had SO much padding it looked like he was having trouble walking : p the supporters for the home team had drums and horns and all sorts and were very vocal and loud in their support! (the drummers weren't very good :p) there were some very angry slovakian men in the stands yelling at the ref haha! just like an AFL game but a different language and a bit more cold : ) the white players won in the end (i was going for them, but didn't make it obvious because i think everyone around me wouldv'e beat me up :p)


building that looks like a ship
on the way back from the computer shop
cute cakes
hostel courtyard
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