Written by Taylor Heinicke (University of Wisconsin-Madison) Student Correspondent for CET Prague, Spring 2022
Living abroad is truly the best thing I have ever done. I’m happier than I’ve ever been, and life just seems like more sense in Prague. That said, there are some aspects of life here I’ve begun to adapt to that make significantly less sense.
I did some research into what would be difficult to access in the Czech Republic (that I wouldn’t give a second thought back home) – tampons with applicators, chapstick, etc. Google was wrong. I have been able to find most of the stuff that I was worried about finding. What I haven’t been able to find is hot sauce.
Capitalizing on a nice day at the beer garden
I put hot sauce on everything. Like everything. I even debated buying the Costco pack of Cholula to bring with me just in case—something I severely regret not doing now. Spice hardly exists here. Even the spicest level of food pales in comparison to a medium spicy back at home.
Hot sauce impossible to find—maybe a small thing of Tabasco here and there, but most restaurants don’t even have it. And the salsa is sweet, not spicy. I did not anticipate that.
In all honesty, it’s probably good that spice is rare because I have also not been able to find TUMS. I abuse TUMS more than hot sauce. As someone with a sensitive stomach, TUMS are practically my lifeline, my post-meal regime, my faithful companion. While I’m sure I could find some sort of anti-acid if I really wanted to, I search for TUMS everywhere I go- and to no avail.
Hot wine on a cold day at a cafe
Additionally, I have a bad habit of running slightly behind schedule. On mornings before class, this means taking my coffee to go. Like the TUMs, I have yet to do an extensive search, but I’m convinced that there are no to-go mugs in Prague. Which means I take my mug to go. Which means as I’m running haphazardly down the street in an effort to be late AGAIN, half of my coffee survives the trip.
Alas, all of my clothes are now covered in coffee stains, which is quite an obstacle considering I have yet to find stain spray for my laundry. It blows my mind. I spill on myself ALL of the time- everyone in Prague must have it much more together than me.
Discussing these little obstacles I’ve encountered so far seems silly. While slightly inconvenient, life is too much of a fairytale to even be concerned about things like this. At the end of the day, it’s given me a new appreciation for items that were so mundane for me in the U.S.. My recommendation to anyone with similar vices: pack accordingly.
Sunset in Praha 2 on the way home from class