Friday, January 3, 2020

South Africa to Czech Republic

Our dear friend, Laurie, and her South African husband are here to visit us!!

Laurie has been a friend of ours for twenty years, and over those years we have been through a lot of significant events together...not the least of which was her wedding with Daniel in September 2018!!

Because they now live in South Africa, we haven't seen them since that beautiful week-end we spent celebrating them. Now we get to welcome them to our very different world than SA!!

They arrived last night and will be with us until Monday, so we not only have sweet time ahead of us for connecting and getting to know Daniel better, but also for a little sight-seeing since this is his first trip to Czech!

So we headed up to Pustevny today, taking the chairlift to the top.

This chairlift was the first built in all of Europe, in 1940!

At the top of Pustevny are some beautiful wooden buildings built at the end of the 19th century in a traditional folk style of this area. Some are restaurants, while others are accommodations.

In March 2014, there was a fire that heavily damaged this building, Libušín, resulting in the loss of not only the building, but treasured frescos inside dating back to the 19th century.

However, funds were raised and a rebuilding and reconstruction project began a few years ago and is almost at completion. They are beautiful once again!

In all the times that Laurie has been to visit us these past 20 years, somehow we never took her up here. I'm glad that's been corrected now, and that she got to come here with her husband!

There were a lot of people up here today...skiers, sledders, hikers, walkers, and even someone on a bike with really fat tires (you'd want those for snow and ice, I guess!).

It couldn't have been more enchanting!

By the way, for those of you in the area, January 11-26, there will be ice sculptures up here, and it's free of charge for entrance to see them!

We headed back over to one of the newest restaurants up here, at the upper station of the chairlift.

The restaurant was crowded with people, but at the very moment we walked in, a table opened up so we could sit down, and have this view.

That's looking down the ski hill, with the chairlift on the far right. There aren't many skiers here as the snow is not quite enough yet. But it made for a pretty view, looking out that way, and to the other side, with our friends in main focus!

The last chairlift leaves at 5 PM, so we took it down in the dark...and cold!

What a special afternoon to share with Daniel and Laurie in a place we love.

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