notes for june


Well, my travel plans have unexpectedly rearranged themselves, and owing to a number of factors, I won't be able to travel to Romania as planned, which is rather a disappointment. After abandoning real work and with a bit of help from the Internet and a guidebook to the Czech Republic grabbed from the library, I have devised Plan B. I will still be travelling to Budapest, Vienna and Prague for work, but with the full 8 days I have before I need to return to Singapore, I've decided to venture to the Czech spa town Karlovy Vary, then to the countryside to do some light walks in the Ceske Svycarsko national park, then head up north to Dresden in Germany, and end my trip in Berlin, which I have not visited since I was a student, and would love to see again.

Please feel free to share travel trips for the cities I've mentioned as I hadn't had much time to plan my trip and pretty much improvised my travel plans over the last 24 hours, and I have slightly more than a week before I depart. I promise to put up a travel guide of my own when I return!

Meanwhile, other thoughts floating my head this month
  • Linen weather is in full swing! As the picture above indicates, I did buy that linen shirt from Uniqlo that I wanted, and it is so good.
  • I decided against the olive chinos. I only wanted them because my thighs have gotten bigger from yoga, but chinos are not essential to my wardrobe and I shall enjoy my other trousers instead. Does body change affect your shopping decisions?
  • Sale season is great for lingerie/underwear shopping
  • Non-shopping news aside: "Half The Sky" by Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn is amazing - harrowing and inspiring at the same time. One of those books I want to buy for all my friends.
  • Watched "Prometheus". After that I went home to watch "Alien" on DVD with running commentary by Ridley Scott and I decided "Prometheus", though beautifully shot and gripping at times, was largely redundant. 


Anonymous said…
Karlovy Vary is beautiful, and so are Dresden and Prague! I've been to Prague numerous times, but now I can't think of a must-visit that isn't a typical one, except The National Gallery - Trade Fair Palace.
I love to wander around alleys and parks that aren't crammed with tourists, it's so tranquil.
Do you plan on visiting a spa in Karlovy Vary?
Fleurette said…
When will you go to Berlin? I will be there in mid-july so I would be so fun to arrange a meet up!
Cato said…
I’m sorry that Romania didn’t work out in the end, but your new plan isn’t bad, either!! :) I’ve been to Karlovy Vary and Marianzke Lezke , but only for very short stops on a trip to a city nearby, both cities are really beautiful, they just will most likely be full of elderly German “spa” tourists, if you don’t mind that.;)

That national park must be gorgeous!! I’m afraid I start coming across as if I was making this up, but actually my dad is from that area, and I found old pictures from there in my grand mother’s album, what a stunning landscape – I would LOVE to go there too! And Dresden is also definitely worth a visit, I don’t have any insider recommendations for it, but I’m going to tell you what I liked! Moreover I might be in Berlin in mid July, too, but I don’t know yet for sure, would love to meet you!! (I’d excitedly try to make you come over to Munich because it’s so close to your route, if I hadn’t those “uncertainties” in my schedule in late June/early July, I’m sorry…)
hannah-rose said…
Hmmmm.. I'm still unsure whether to see Prometheus. I think I can probably get behind it purely for the special effects, which are apparently mind-blowing. But Alien was just so damn good, you know?

Our notes are so similar this month, even though you're starting to dress for summer. I picked up a tonne of lingerie at the half yearly clearance at my work, I've finally dumped a pair of chinos that I've had in my wardrobe for SO LONG. Like years and I have only worn them once, but I liked the colour and I liked the idea of them but they did NOT Look good. Why did they last so long? I don't know.

And your new plans sound fantastic, there will be so much for you to do and see and enjoy and I am desperately jealous. Prague!!! Vienna!! And Germany. I will need your tips when you get back because I'm going in January of next year!!

not interested in prometheus, but i'm not big into alien or "end of the world" movies. snow white was very good if you're in the mood for charlize. I finally found white linen pants, so comfortable in the hot weather.

-ps. you take beautiful vacation photos, have a fun & safe trip!
Ammu said…
Here are my two cents on Prague - one of my favourite cities in the world :) My favourite place to hang out was Cafe Slavia, just opposite the opera house. Good food & service, great coffee, and when we were there, Martina Navratilova came and sat at the table next to mine. And it's not too expensive. Historic too - it's the place where charter 77 was drafted. Also there's a great Bosnian restaurant called Luka Lu - delicious food and wine. Can't remember the address but it's on Google. My favourite bar was this place called the Hanging Cup, close to the hotel where my friend and I stayed - near Prague castle. And there are some great museums as well - Museum Kampa, the Dox Center for Modern Art, the museum of Communism to name a couple. And venture out to one of the church concerts - they are great, not too expensive and held in some beautiful old churches. Jan Paukert deli serves great sandwiches, and the Erhart Cafe has yummy pastries. In Berlin, I would definitely spend some time in KaDeWe (shopping!) and at the Helmut Newton museum of photography. Also, check out the Martin Gropius Bau museum - they host some great exhibits. Vienna is fantastic too - check out Hotel Sacher for the delicious Sacher Torte, although the city is full of lovely, formal coffeehouses. Have fun!
Eileen said…
Love your blue shirt! I have a Steven Alan dress that is close to the same shade and its so soothing!

My waist has gotten a teeny bit smaller as a result of more self-control and I am starting to look out for dresses with a more defined waist-line, compared to shapeless A-lines which could potentially look maternal.

The navy blazer sounds starts this week if I am not wrong. I have one navy linen jacket from Massimo Dutti that is from a couple of seasons ago. Its really a lovely neutral although I do admit that it is a special ocassion jacket. Do share if you decide to get it!
miss sophie said…
these are all places i've never been, but your posts on travel are always inspring me to add more places to my list!

i agree - the end of season sales (still odd given summer is just starting) have been very good. isn't uniqlo's linen quality great? :) i love the linen blazers i got.

i'm going to have to read that Kristoff book, and adding some more to my summer reading list this week...
lin said…
J: Good to hear that, Karlovy Vary certainly looks beautiful in pictures. But I hope I can work out some accommodation soon - am trying to avoid the film festival but that is proving to be rather difficult!

Is a spa a good idea? I've always been quite indifferent to spas although I like a good message, but I haven't had time to check out what the town has to offer...

Fleurette: That would be great, but I think I might just miss you by days - mine are 5 to 7 Jul, leaving Berlin on 8th. Email me if you think we can meet up!

Cato: I guess elderly German spa tourists would be an interesting change of scenery haha.

What a coincidence about Ceske Svycarsko! Your family history must be so interesting. I'll share any good pictures I get if I make it there so that you can compare the landscapes.

I wouldn't mind making a stop in Munich but I do think I wouldn't have enough time. I am in Berlin from Jul 5 to 7 so let me know if you are around. And do share recommendations for Dresden if you have the time :)

hannah-rose: The special effects are great: they're done with with great taste and style which isn't always the case with big-budget movies, haha. Alien gave me sleepless nights when I first watched it and Ellen Ripley is my all-time favourite cinema heroine, bar none.

I hope I get to share some interesting stuff from my trip...I am scrambling so much that I can only pray for some good luck to come my way!

Pret a Porter P: I have a thing for apocalyptic movies...I think it's because it frightens me. I did watch Snow White and Charlize Theron was incredible, not to mention her wardrobe. I pretty much wasn't keen on the scenes where she wasn't around though...

Ammu: How can I thank you for these great tips? The Helmut Newton Museum is already on my list, and I will take your word on Martin Gropius Pau. I'm a bit frightened of Sacher Torte though, it sounds painfully sweet.

Eileen: Thanks! It reminds me of my kindergarten uniform.

I wish my thighs weren't making my trousers too tight but I suppose if they are stronger, then so be it, haha.

Oh the Massimo Dutti sale! Must exercise control...
lin said…
miss sophie: just missed you! that book is a must-read. i find myself more interested in non-fiction of late, I'm keen on Cheryl Strayed's "Wild" as well .
Fleurette said…
Oh, such a bummer! I'm in Berlin from 13th till 21st of July! Have a nice trip to all those wonderful destinations!
lin said…
Fleurette: Oh well...hope you have a good trip nonetheless. Did you sort out your accommodation? I had a pretty hard time getting rooms at a short notice but thankfully airbnb worked out for me.
Ammu said…
You are welcome! Have a fantastic time. Regarding Sacher torte, it is very sweet, so maybe you want to give it a miss. I would definitely try a Viennese coffee though - very unusual to have whipped cream with coffee and those coffeehouses are gorgeous.
Fashion Tidbits said…
Make sure to take some pics for us! XO
Maria said…

Café Sperl for authentic Viennese coffehouse-culture, sipping your Wiener Melange coffee and rosé amongst bearded men with large newspapers.

Café Hawelka for more of the above, though less well-kept than Sperl - very cozy.

Kleines Café for a drink where all the artists of Vienna once have sat.

Museum Leopold in Museumsquartier for the Egon Schiele exibition, they also have a nice collection of Wiener Werkstadte-furniture and some Klimt and Klee work. The whole Museumsquartier is a very nice place, I recommend the club sandwich at the café Halle, and the photobooth, and the quirky giftshop.

Trzesniewski for authentic bread with various toppings (sounds more boring than it is) for lunch.

Julius Meinl am Graben for the huge variations in foods, chocolate, wine, everything... Luxury.

The Schönbrunn Zoo is actually very nice, and the gardens by the palace of Schönbrunn are very nice. Not exactly for park-hanging, but nice to look at.

In general I'd recommend the area/street Neubaugasse for vintage shopping. Eat traditional food such as schnitzel and knödel at for instance Figlmüller. Eat sausage at any würsltstand. If you don't eat meat, the vegetarian food at Kantine in Museumsquartier is quite good. There are a lot of great museums, such as the Albertina. Also, make sure to eat a Sachertorte, not neccesarily at Hotel Sacher.

(I'd also recommend the bath Rudas in Budapest!)

Email me for further tips and addresses! Have a nice trip! :)
Eileen said…
Lin! update update.. I was at Uniqlo over the weekend to pick up a shirt for my hubby for Father's day and I ended up getting this linen shirt too.. but in pink:)

I have to say that quality looks decent! Thank you for recommending great stuff at your blog!
Anonymous said…
i would like to recommend you to visit also couple of other places while you are in Prague. First of them is
Karlštejn (Beroun District) - very close to Prague and magically nice. Most of the local people are going there to escape the tourist trap which their beautifull capital city obviously is..u can get ther on the bus or even bike. Second place is Kutna Hora - another medieval town placed on the hills.
The truth is i lived in Prague 9 years ago:) so some things may have changed...But Czech Republic to me was always like from the fairy tale about Cinderella-very popular movie for children in Soviet Union in
early eighties I enjoyed it every time i were there.
Have nice trip.
lin said…
Ammu: I think I will still order one, in the name of good travel journalism, haha.

Fashion Tidbits: Will do!

Maria: I can't think you enough for giving me such a nice long list! Especially when it involves so many food choices - I find food the hardest part to get right as a tourist.

Eileen: The pink is lovely! Such a zesty colour. The shirt is so comfortable too...I've been wanting to wear it everyday in the hot weather - it makes cotton feel stifling.

db: Thanks for the recommendations! I have visited Prague and while its beauty can't be denied, I'm quite eager to explore more of the country. I expect I'll see plenty of tourists where I'm going but am cherishing a hope that it will be less crazy than the scene in Prague.
Anonymous said…
If you don't mind I would like to ask you a question.
How about visiting and exploring Berlin? This is probably one of those european capitals which are still fresh and cool not being a total tourist destination-thoe a lot of Americans there. My question is about where would you like to go and what would you like to see in Berlin? I was staying there a lot recently-mostly somewhere between Mitte and Prenzlauerberg(for some reasons i don't like Kreuzberg..) Some time ago I saw some pictures on Dead Fleurette blog and guess it's East, where the most things are happening.
I hope my commenting activity is not overwhelming to you, I am following your blog for couple of years never living any foot prints:) and now suddenly decided to communicate.
one more idea for you in Prague-if you haven been yet to Villa Bertramka-the place where Mozart was staying during his visits to Prague. Its a quiet and intimate place on the southern partof the Petrin hill in the area of Smichov, perfect to visit on the late afternoon when they still have some concerts inside the building and you can sit on the bench around the fountain chilling out.
lin said…
Anon: Hi, I do plan to spend 3 nights in Berlin actually, I love the city and the first time I was there I was actually overwhelmed by the fact that there were so many things to see and do, and it's got such an amazing history too, with WWII and then the Wall. This time I hope to relax a bit and enjoy the great cafes, see some exhibits. Was hoping a good band would be playing somewhere but haven't seen anything that interested me.

I will be staying in Mitte. I didn't like Kreuzberg either, haha.

That's a very interesting suggestion for Prague...I hope I can spare the time to check it out...I actually have a rather full schedule for work for Prague so I hope I can score some free time to explore the places I haven't been before.

Pls dont apologise for long comments, I always appreciate the time people take to respond to my posts!

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