The Silent Attraction of a Famous Tourist Destination – Prague
Strolling the deserted streets of Prague, near the central market, I turned to an ally that was dark, and mystifying at the same time. I was there for Christmas in 2015 with a friend. The street market was heaving with vendors selling souvenirs, crystal, hats, toys, beer, sausages and the world famous Trdelnik but the streets adjacent to the market were mostly quiet and abandoned.
After living in the UK for five years, I was quite used to exploring places that boast of character, history, culture and aesthetics but are mostly comatose in the late evenings. Wandering around the cold streets of Prague in late December, I found myself standing next to a giant face that was consistently moving.
I didn’t know that I was actually standing next to a landmark. The site was intriguing but hardly anyone stopped by to admire the gigantic face. The night was gradually falling and standing in that distant nook of the city, a tourist was besotted with this huge face that kept revolving. For me it was a discovery, something like Columbus finding America (a bit of an overstatement I know, please ignore). But, I was glued to it and wanted to take as many pictures as possible right at that spot.
I was happy with my discovery which was right next to city centre. I had been to the famous Astronomical Clock the previous day that the world goes to Prague to see but somehow found myself more interested in Costa coffee that I found in a little ally on the way to the clock. Maybe I am not one of those who find history intriguing. Contrary to my firm belief that I love history, I figured that it isn’t something that would fascinate me as
Contrary to my firm belief that I love history, I figured that it isn’t something that would fascinate me as much, when I found myself looking at the clock and feeling nothing but fatigue and disinterest. Don’t get me wrong, the place is beautiful and of course holds immense significance but I failed to admire it as much as it deserved to be admired.
I had been to Charles Bridge too, which was a great experience and had made a faint attempt to reach the famous palace as well (never reached the top to tell you honestly) but nothing interested me more than that revolving face. Little did I know that I was standing next to a world famous sculpture that had been situated there only a year before my visit.
It was a reflective sculpture that revolved and was a depiction of the head of Czech’s famous writer Franz Kafka. Made of stainless steel, it comprises 42 independent layers and the whole sculpture weighs roughly about 42 tons. It is similar to the figure that has been installed in Charlotte, New York, named Metalphorsis. The mirrored fountain face rotates 360 degree and is made of 40 steel pieces.
I was there for three days but the most distinctive memory of my visit to my first European country, Prague, Czech Republic, was that sculpture. The culture, the people, those little streets, crammed coffee shops and food stalls are all a part of the memories I made in Prague but what stayed with me was the moment when I discovered that corner where that sculpture was revolving in all its glory.