AK Month-to-month Recap: September 2023


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After a busy summer time, it was all about staying put in September. Zero journey plans, simply having fun with the most effective of my adopted metropolis for one of many nicest months of the 12 months.

However regardless of being restricted to a small geographic space, this month wasn’t about stress-free. I spent all the month consumed with DRIVING LESSONS.

Let’s check out September 2023!

Kate and Charlie taking a smiling selfie in sunglasses, each holding a frozen mango margarita, with a street festival in the background.
Having fun with frozen mango margaritas at Americke Fest!

Locations Visited

Kate standing holding a sign reading "Kate's first day of Czech Driving School. I am 39 years old. My teacher's name is Honza? Probably Honza. I want to be retired when I grow up."
I needed to take a primary day of faculty pic!


This month was all about one factor: driving. Lastly, I started the method of getting my Czech license — and studying to drive a handbook car (aka stick shift) for the primary time ever!

Whereas many overseas residents can alternate their licenses for a Czech license, People can’t — so I needed to undergo the entire driving college course of. It entails 28 hours of driving (actually, 28 45-minute periods), beginning with 5 on a driving simulator when you’ve by no means pushed a handbook earlier than, and 5 idea courses.

I went to Autoškola Horázný, and all the factor price me 39,300 CZK ($1,685 USD): 34,900 CZK ($1,496 USD) for an intensive course (with double periods, accomplished in 4-6 weeks reasonably than three months), together with driving take a look at with translator; 600 CZK ($26 USD) for the medical certificates; 700 CZK ($30 USD) for the speculation take a look at; 3000 CZK ($129) for a translator for the speculation take a look at; and I took so many apply exams I needed to fork out an additional 100 CZK ($4) for a further 100.

Driving college in English prices about double what it prices in Czech, irrespective of the place you go.

It could appear overkill, however I’m SO glad I did this. The Czech driving system could be very totally different from the American driving system — numerous guidelines about predominant roads vs. minor roads, when to present manner, velocity limits for various sorts of zones, and guidelines for driving amongst trams.

Now that I do know what I do know, driving within the Czech Republic with out realizing the foundations appears remarkably reckless!

I’ll have extra of an replace after my driving exams in October.

Kate standing in an old-fashioned library with a crenellated ceiling painted with angelic frescoes. There are old books on the stacks behind her. She wears a long magenta skirt and a black top.
How wonderful is that this library?

Taking a non-public tour of the Strahov Library. The Strahov Library in Prague is likely one of the most stunning libraries I’ve ever seen — it’s straight out of Magnificence and the Beast.

In the event you purchase a daily ticket to the Strahov Library, you possibly can solely poke your head in and take images. In the event you shell out for a non-public tour, nonetheless, you possibly can really stroll by the library, take numerous images and movies, and be taught a ton out of your information. They’ve books relationship again to the ninth century!

You’ll be able to ebook a non-public tour right here. It’s dear, however price it. There’s a fantastic brewery throughout from the library, too!

A splendidly shocking night of Romani delicacies. Are you aware something about Romani delicacies? I knew nothing. So when a Romani chef placed on a night of meals of his individuals, my foodie buddies and I jumped on the probability to strive one thing new.

And we had been BLOWN AWAY by the meals. It began with a bitter cabbage and mushroom soup that was bursting with dimensions of taste. We then moved on to potato purée wrapped in gut casing — type of like a near-vegetarian sausage. The primary course was big rabbit and potato ravioli in cream sauce. And we completed with buttery potato gnocchi served with plums and ice cream.

On prime of that, each dish was accompanied by a boozy kombucha. Total, my buddies and I agreed that it was one of the fantastic culinary experiences we’ve had in fairly a while.

Numerous meals festivals and enjoyable with buddies. Prague’s hotter months are filled with meals festivals, and September isn’t any exception. One among my favorites was Americke Fest, an enormous avenue celebration with a ton of Latin American meals and drinks! And, in fact, the annual Prague sizzling canine consuming contest at Mr. Scorching Canine, together with a burčak competition on the Botanical Gardens and a Karlín avenue celebration.

Charlie and I are thrilled {that a} Neapolitan pizzeria has opened in our neighborhood — a brand new department of San Carlo, a Prague chain we like. We tried a couple of new spots — Funwari for Japanese-style pancakes, Gao Den for Vietnamese fusion, Sandwich Rodeo for American classics.

And evenings at two of my favourite eating places in Prague — Aromi as a result of truffle season has begun and so they do a FAB truffle pasta, and Kantyna for yet one more butcher’s dinner (Dinner off the Bone).

Charlie and I additionally did a really touristy factor and took a sundown river cruise in Prague! So good….

New furnishings! I received a cupboard to carry my sneakers and equipment, as my one tiny European armoire is exploding. Sure, IKEA as soon as once more (the furnishings pickings are slim within the Czech Republic) however it’s NICE IKEA and I’ll change out the knobs quickly. It has doorways which are glass on prime and wooden on the underside.

Spending numerous time with my kittens. After a lot time away this summer time, it’s been SO good to be with them each single day, rubbing their furry faces and giving them numerous kisses.

A gothic church set on a big park with a fountain in the middle of the grass.
My neighborhood sq. in Karlín — love what number of inexperienced areas there are in Prague!


Murray has began pooping outdoors the litter field once more. He received SO GOOD for awhile, and now he’s regressed. He’s nonetheless peeing inside it, although.

We’re going to strive some new litter to see if that helps; truthfully, I can’t bear in mind what stopped him final time.

I spent September wrapped up in anxiousness over my driving take a look at. It was so onerous to not fear about it.

That, and it took up an annoying period of time and the commute was a ache (whereas most of Prague is super-easy to get round, the driving college is by JZP, an space that’s both a ten minute stroll, 5 minute bus, 14 minute stroll or a 32-minute steep uphill stroll from my house — I’d take the bus there and stroll again).

I don’t care, although — I knew it will be a tricky, intense month-plus, and would reasonably get it over with ahead of stretch it to the standard three months. (As soon as once more, I’m grateful to be self-employed and work my very own hours; it made taking all these classes far simpler. I don’t know how 9-to-5ers do it, particularly within the winter when it’s darkish.)

Lewis the gray tabby cat with a white belly and white paws, stretching out languidly on the bed and sticking his tongue out.
Lewis trying kinda horny.

Weblog Posts of the Month

16 Enjoyable Issues to Do in Sorrento, Italy — Sorrento is probably the most effective day journey bases in Europe, from the place you possibly can go to the Amalfi Coast, Capri, Pompeii, and extra. Right here’s a information to the city.

A Detailed Information to Perast, Montenegro — I completely liked spending my thirty ninth birthday on this tiny city on the Adriatic. It is best to add it to your itinerary for certain.

Montenegro Journey Information — Wish to journey to Montenegro, however don’t know the place to start? Begin right here. It’s filled with every kind of ideas from my previous a number of visits.

30 Enjoyable and Fascinating Issues to Do in Montenegro — The very best of Montenegro, in a single massive submit!

Most Fashionable Reel on Instagram

Dubrovnik’s Partitions: Definitely worth the Price? was a enjoyable reel to place collectively. Are you aware JUST how costly the partitions have gotten over time? It went from the equal of $7.16 in 2007 to $37.77 in 2023!!

I received to lookup a long time of pricing data and apply that towards the Croatian inflation fee too. (It might price the equal of $10.68 if merely adjusted for inflation at present, which exhibits you simply how nuts it’s turn into.)

For extra enjoyable reels and dwell updates from my travels, comply with me on Instagram at @adventurouskate.

Kate taking a mirror selfie wearing a sheer nude-colored long-sleeved top with tiny black polka dots over a black corset, as well as black shorts. She's inside so wearing her fuzzy purple slippers and Murray the cat hangs out by her feet.
Fast mirror selfie — plus Murray!

Trend Discover of the Month

I noticed a reel on Instagram the place @andreasfashiongalaxy featured a sheer long-sleeved polka-dot prime worn beneath a strappy black costume. It’s a fantastic little video on how one can make an attractive costume extra wearable, in methods apart from throwing a blazer or cardigan on prime.

“OMG I NEED that sheer polka dot prime!” I commented. And he or she replied that it was a couple of seasons previous from Topshop, and perhaps I may discover it secondhand someplace.

I took to the web, and what are you aware — I discovered it on eBay. One fast bid later, it was mine. And it’s all the things I hoped it will be. A beautiful pinky beige with tiny black dots.

I wore it out to dinner at Aromi, on prime of an H&M x Mugler corset and my favourite black wool Rome Shorts by Sézane. Ideally, it needs to be worn over a tank prime reasonably than a corset (received my eye on this one), a belt with an precise gold buckle, and I’d love some polka-dot tights for fall!

What I Watched This Month

The Diplomat. Charlie and I selected this Netflix political thriller at random sooner or later, and it’s turned out to be a enjoyable watch. Mainly, Keri Russell is a high-level diplomat in Afghanistan who is because of return to Kabul till she is all of the sudden chosen to be ambassador to the UK as a substitute, which is reeling from a terrorist assault on a army ship.

However what makes this totally different? Her husband is a former ambassador, additionally high-level all over the world. And he’s a complete narcissist — tremendous charming and affable, however he can’t stand not being the focus, so he retains making an attempt to be concerned within the secret happenings of various governments. Great things.

Under Deck replace: This month we watched a sequence in actual time for the primary time: Under Deck Down Below, Season 2. We weren’t going to look at it, however this season has been within the information lots: one crew member tried to sexually assault one other crew member, and it was stopped by the producers.

That predator was fired promptly, together with one other crew member. It’s introduced up a variety of questions on actuality TV, the place so many exhibits ply contestants with alcohol and conditions like these can so simply occur.

Past the terrible stuff, it was really constructive seeing how nicely Captain Jason and Chief Stew Aesha dealt with the scenario. They set instance that others ought to comply with. Jason is my favourite of the captains and an enormous a part of that’s how he manages his crew, each in good occasions and unhealthy. And the forged is beautiful this season, and a lot of the company are laid-back and funky.

Murray the gray tabby cat with a big white belly, twisted on his back on Kate's office chair, offering his belly up for rubs.
Chief Furry Officer, Murray Bear! (I’ve an entire music I sing him about being a chief furry officer when he’s sitting in my workplace chair.)

What I Learn This Month

Counting the Price by Jill Duggar with Derek Dillard and Craig Borlase (2023) — Jill was the mannequin little one of the Duggar household. She was probably the most religious, the best-behaved, and her father’s favourite daughter. Till she and her husband started questioning Jim Bob’s monetary domination of the household — and he reduce them off. That is the Duggar memoir that tells the ugly fact behind the scenes.

WELL, YOU KNOW I HAD THIS ONE PRE-ORDERED. The Duggars have been a morbid fascination of mine ever since their first TV particular; at present I’m one of many many DuggarsSnark members on Reddit. Yeah, it’s a bizarre pastime, however we additionally helped increase some huge cash for the Youngsters’s Security Heart of Arkansas, serving to little one victims of sexual abuse within the Duggars’ area.

I didn’t know if Jill would spill something substantial on this ebook — and YES. She did, and the ebook was SO price it. The overarching theme of the ebook was Jill’s relationship together with her mother and father and her father particularly, and the impression of rising up on actuality TV however not being compensated for what she gave the community. She doesn’t speak about her brother Josh’s abuse (which in fact is her proper) however shares a variety of anger on the abuse reviews changing into public.

Among the many revelations within the ebook? Jill was contractually sure to indicate her labor and supply on TV. Her second little one’s beginning was, as many people suspected on the time, traumatic — she had a uterine rupture and wanted a right away c-section with no anesthesia (JESUS CHRIST).

And Jill’s sister-in-law Anna as soon as gave beginning on the bathroom and advised the producers she didn’t authorize them to air that footage. They aired it, then later determined to take away it for re-runs, however saved it in all of the flashback sequences.

There’s a second from Jill’s childhood after they had been on the seaside of their modest swimwear (primarily attire over wetsuits) and her being terrified that the boys would see ladies in bikinis and would go to hell for his or her ideas. As a result of the Duggars at all times educate that it’s the ladies that defraud the lads.

And most delightedly, Jill alleges that Jim Bob has dedicated felony tax fraud. (Within the phrases of Iago the parrot, “I’M GONNA HAVE A HEART ATTACK FROM NOT SURPRISE!”) Not solely did he pocket all the truth TV cash whereas telling his youngsters, “It’s a ministry,” he additionally advised the IRS he paid the youngsters cash he by no means paid them and so they didn’t discover out till they received an enormous tax invoice. Oh MAN, if the IRS take Jim Bob down, that may be SWEET.

Oxford England, with layers of gothic church steeples and stone buildings, underneath a partly cloudy sky.
Oxford on a sunny day, by way of Shutterstock.

Coming Up in October 2023

This month will probably be quiet, for probably the most half, and spent nearly fully in Prague. I’m very anticipating much more Prague time! I really feel like I’m nonetheless recovering from the summer time!

However Charlie and I will probably be spending a protracted weekend within the UK for our buddy’s annual bonfire celebration outdoors London. Currently we’ve been visiting a brand new vacation spot in England for a couple of days earlier than the bonfire. Final 12 months was Brighton; this 12 months we’re doing Oxford! I’m desirous to lastly go to this college city that could be a standard day journey from London.

Past that, I hope I can slot in a day journey or two someplace new within the Czech Republic earlier than the tip of the month. I do know I preserve saying that…however now that driving courses are almost completed, there’s precise time for that!

Developing subsequent…my driver’s take a look at. Ship me all the nice vibes!

Six friends posing arm-in-arm in Belgrade, including Kate and her friend Leah in the middle.
Belgrade, 2015: Melvin, Becki, me, Leah, Rob, and our native information.

In Memoriam

It’s at all times heart-wrenching to say goodbye to a buddy from the world of journey running a blog. This one particularly hurts.

I met Leah in Kotor in 2015. We grabbed a drink as running a blog colleagues however ended the night as buddies; a couple of days later, I employed her to work for me. You’ll be able to nonetheless see her stunning work scattered all through my website at present.

On her weblog, The Sweetest Method, Leah advised tales with unflinching honesty. She shared the truth of digital nomad life with humor and humility. However her biggest power was her images. Comfortable, stunning, at all times inventive.

Leah moved to Maui to construct her images enterprise. After years of nomadic life, she felt referred to as to place down roots on the island she had liked since childhood. We misplaced contact a couple of years in the past, when she gave up social media.

This month I discovered that Leah is on the official listing of lacking individuals in Maui following the devastating hearth in Lahaina.

Leah, you didn’t deserve this. You deserved mild and pleasure and a protracted, blissful life. I hope you’ve discovered the peace you looked for on this world. I hope your family members are capable of obtain closure and ultimately discover pleasure of their recollections.

I’ll always remember you.

It is a story Leah wrote that has at all times stayed with me, about working into a bunch of Syrian refugees on a prepare in Macedonia. Please take the time to learn it.

And please keep up a correspondence with your folks who hand over social media. Not everybody who goes offline is in place.

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