Europe : : Prague, Czech Republic

My first night living in Prague I took a ride on tram 22 having not even the slightest idea where I was going or how many memories would eventually be made on that very tramvej dvacet dva. A mere half-day in I had already seen impressive works of graffiti sprawled over the blank spaces of the cityscape that weren’t determined to be of some historical importance. In the Czech Republic, graffiti is completely legal and considered to be an expression of free speech–a right of serious importance to the Czech people who for so long were censored under Soviet rule.

After getting off the tram, myself and a few others roamed around a bit, mostly just feeling giddy about being in Prague. I came across this graffiti heart down a lonely alley and was immediately struck by it for reasons that are still unclear to me. As one might assume, I naturally fell deep in love with Prague and yet of all the brilliant sights of art and architecture the city contains, this is the image I keep on coming back to when I think of this place. I could talk for days about this city and the feelings I harbor for it, but I think this simple, not-too-attractive image accurately depicts what I often pretend, which is that that’s my love letter to a city that’s not really mine, that that’s my messy heart painted pink and blue and scrawled with paint like ink.


‘Sights’ is a portion of ‘Stories From Untamed Waters’ that will cover the places that have influenced me, changed me and inspired me. Check back for more images and their stories.


A Collected Past

March 21st, 2007

My letter

I didn’t know if I’d miss you. I don’t say that with a lack of sensitivity, I just didn’t know if I’d allowed you to really seep into my skin and stick with me. It seems that somehow you managed to find a home somewhere in the tissue surrounding my heart. If there is even tissue there, I should know, but I don’t. Although it frightens me, I find that feeling this way for someone else is exhilarating. I miss you. I miss the comfort that I get from knowing that I can see you at any moment and that if I really wanted, you’d come put your arms around me. I know I haven’t completely let you in and that sometimes I remain mysterious. I don’t know if you like that or if it bothers you. If it does then I’m sorry. I don’t like being so guarded, but my heart is a fortress and I tend to protect myself from whatever external forces I find to be even remotely threatening. You already knew that though. I’d like to think that we’re going to be together for a long time, maybe even an eternity in my romanticized imagination, and listen to folk music, dance around, play in the sunshine, and have intellectual conversations about faith and destruction. I like what we’ve got going on and I think it’s something special, something that will leave a lasting impression on me. I hope the city treats you kindly. I want you to see a lot of beautiful things and take them in, appreciate everything that whirls around you at full speed. Look towards the sky at the buildings that tower overhead like giants. Walk the street like you belong there and meet people who you will remember for their stories and bizarre character. Revel in your experience and sometime when I cross your mind, call me, even if it is just to say hi. Those calls are always nice and full of warm fuzzy feelings. I hope you think about me because I think about you, sometimes more than I think I should. I don’t know why I’m writing all of this to you, but I suppose it is because writing it down is a whole lot easier than saying it aloud.

April 10th, 2007

Why don’t we go blow ourselves into a million little pieces? The earths broken ground could be covered in flecks of flesh, bone, and blood with our thoughts of peace and turmoil scattered somewhere throughout the wreckage. Our volatile behavior, the masses that abide by the rotating machine that screams in our bleeding ears to proceed along our path of destruction. The murky waters that were once pristine are now bubbling over the surface in a composition of oil, greed, and the misfortune of those who paid the ultimate price. We hear the warnings that plead for us to recognize the inevitable doom we have aligned for ourselves, but blindly we ignore them. Each domino leans ever so slightly until the bomb is dropped and the ripple effect glides along the line until all is lost. There is no God or Allah that can save us. We turn to such mechanisms for comfort, but when the bodies that lie among the ashes cry out for redemption they shall find themselves alone amongst the blood, sweat, and tears. From here we welcome ourselves to Armageddon, one of our own creation. A battle between ourselves and the idols we had prayed would save us. A million little pieces. One by one, each sprinkled across the ruble that had once been a promising civilization, the breeding ground for hope, happiness, and great fortune. As our hope morphed into AIDS, WMDS, and SARS, where were our saviors? As our happiness gave us starvation, slavery, and civil war, where were our protectors? As our great fortune turned into dust, where was our Lord God Almighty?

April 12th, 2007

I await the time that I discover that solace, that inner peace that actually makes me believe we’ll all be alright and provides a much needed comfort. I’d like to believe that our destruction can be undone. Sometimes pressing rewind is all we really need to do and it sounds so simple, but the world doesn’t function when we work in reverse.