Europe Day Ten: Slovakia: A Long Walk And A Visit To The Botanical Gardens In Kosice Before The Storms.
I awoke early again on Thursday morning. It was my last full day in Kosice, Slovakia. I wanted to visit the botanical gardens in the city before I left. . The botanical gardens in Kosice were located about 2 1/2 mile from the Hilton Hotel where I was staying. It rained during the night. Rain was forecast later in the afternoon, with the possibility of severe thunderstorms.
I wanted to walk to the botanical gardens before the rain And I wanted to walk so I could explore some more of the city . So, after having my coffee I was on my way. It was still mostly cloudy when I left the hotel. I made my way though the streets of the Old Town . I again saw, and admired, it’s most famous landmark, St. Elizabeth’s Cathedral.
After walking through the quiet streets of the Old Town I entered the busy streets of Kosice. Here I found the motor vehicles, buses and trolley cars and the hustle and bustle of city life. But it wasn’t a crazy traffic like New York or Los Angeles. It was a busy but orderly traffic. .
As I walked, I was reflecting on my trip to Slovakia and my search for the villages were my great-grandparents were born. I reflected on my memories of my Slovakian maternal grandfather. I never knew his wife, my maternal grandmother. As I was thinking of them I saw this jade plant on a widow ledge. It immediately reminded me of my paternal grandmother. She had one in her house that she told me I brought for her when I came home from the hospital at my birth, I think she wanted me to visit her hometown next. I may return soon and visit both.
Once again, however, my lack of planning came back to haunt me. When I arrived at the botanical gardens I discovered they didn’t open until 9 a.m. I tired, unsuccessfully to get the guard to let me in. It was only 7:30 a.m. The watchman at the gate spoke no English and kept pointing to the sign that said 9 a.m. I had time to kill and I was hungry so I tired to ask him where I could get some breakfast but I don’t think he understood.
You can learn a lot about a city by observing the apartment buildings, and homes of the local folks. And the ones I saw were so clean and well maintained they said a lot about this beautiful and and quiet city.
Here is a link to a gallery on my blog website with more photos from my walk to the botanical gardens. Europe Day Ten Slovakia Kosice downtown walk June 9 2022.
I walked under the canopy of leaves formed by large old trees along the trail. The woodlands echoed with the songs of the many birds fluttering in the branches. I roamed these beautiful wooded areas and was able to capture images of a few of the birds including an Eurasian nuthatch,
and a Eurasian blackbird. I saw a few other birds and here is a link to these photos in a gallery on my blog website. . Europe Day Ten Slovakia Kosice birds botanical gardens June 9 2022.
It was now late in the afternoon, the sun was out and it was hot and I was hungry. I had walked over five miles so I decided to leave the botanical gardens and take a taxi back to my hotel. I started walking along the busy street. There were plenty of cars but no cabs.
So I decided I had no choice but to walk the 2 1/2 miles back to the hotel.
Well when I was still about a 1 1/2 from my hotel, storm clouds moved in again. I began walking faster when I heard thunder in the distance. A storm was approaching and the question would I at make it back to my hotel before the rain. Here is a link to some more photos from my visit to the botanical gardens and my walk back to my hotel. Europe Day Ten: Slovakia Kosice Botanical Gardens June 9 2022.
I didn’t Just as I got to the cobblestone streets of Old Town the rains started. And it was a torrential rain. I was near the Pho Viet restaurant so I ran inside for lunch and shelter from the storm. It is where I would spend the next hour while a torrential rain fell outside. I had a nice bowl of seafood noodles soup while I waited for the rains to end. They did, but , when I was a few blocks from my hotel started again. I sought shelter under a tent but I was still soaked . The rains finally ended and I finished my 8 mile hike. Despite the rain, it was another great morning in Kosice.
I spent the afternoon editing photos and packing . I was leaving Kosice the next day and spending my final night in Europe at a hotel near the Budapest airport. I was very concerned about getting my COVID test to allow me to return home. I planned to spend my last night in Kosice roaming the streets and having a last meal in Old Town. Well the weather had other plans. The storms continued all evening. And some were severe. I enjoyed the thunder and lighting but I had to stay in the hotel where I had a nice meal of salmon and mixed vegetables. I fell asleep as the thunderstorms raged outside.
“A garden to walk in and immensity to dream in–what more could he ask? A few flowers at his feet and above him the stars.”