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While soaring over the Atlantic Ocean, I made a promise to myself to embrace as much of the Czech culture as possible to ensure that I leave the Czech Republic with as much understanding of the people as possible. So when it came time to touch the statue of St. John of Nepomuk for good luck, I was first in line.

The St. John of Nepomuk statue is situated on Charles Bridge at the exact point he is said to have been thrown into the water in 1383.

The St. John of Nepomuk statue is situated on Charles Bridge at the exact point he is said to have been thrown into the water in 1383.

The Czechs immortalized St. John of Nepomuk on the famous Charles Bridge in 1683. Some say King Wenceslas had St. John killed for refusing to reveal a confession made by the queen, but others say King Wenceslas had him killed after he invited an enemy — a bishop — to Prague.

Today, tourists, including myself, line Charles Bridge to rub the gold plaque to ensure good fortune and a return trip Prague. However, we weren’t so lucky.

After paying St. John a visit, storm clouds rolled in over the red rooftops — an abrupt change from the sunshine we had seen since landing. A few small drops of rain quickly turned into thrashing winds and heavy downpour. My classmates, professors, tour guide and I then tried to make our way through the maze of Prague’s brightly colored alleys, sloshing through the puddles as fast as we could.

By the time we made it back to the hotel, my shoe had ripped and my clothes were soaked. Each person crossed the threshold wetter than the person before. Once everyone was accounted for, laughter filled the Residence Lundborg as we all recounted our “first unforgettable night in Prague.”

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