It is a lovely winter day. My Honey does not feel well, so I am going to church on my own. His parting words to me were, “I am sure you will be fine. Have a good time.” I should have heeded the warning.

I quite enjoy riding public transit in Prague. It is handy, speedy, and pretty much hassle-free. Perhaps that is why I find myself fairly sauntering up to the tram stop. The sign says #18 will not appear for nearly 10 minutes.

I don’t want to wait that long. I for sure don’t want to be late today.

I notice #3 is on the board, even though there is no schedule posted for it. I remember seeing #3 stop right where we were waiting to transfer to #17 last week, so I decide to be adventurous and try a new route, thinking how proud I will be to share it with my Honey.

I settle into my seat with relish and focus my eyes out the window. The scenery rolls by like an old-fashioned movie. The views are familiar, even friendly now that we have lived in the Czech Republic for more than a year. I think again about the need to orient myself fully with the city’s layout—another alert overlooked.

Yes, I’m on the right track. The #17 was listed on the last two stops. When we come to a nice place to wait I’ll step off and make the transfer.

The announcement was clear. I do not know a lot of Czech, but this message is always translated into English, “This is the final stop. Please exit the tram.” Huh? My feet carry me tentatively down the steps and over to the signpost.

Oh good, #17 stops here…but not between 7am and 4pm on Sunday. Oops!

I refuse to be daunted by the challenge. I cross the street and take the escalator down to the Kobolisy metro station on the red line, wherever that is on the map. A train is loading, but I am not sure what direction to take, so it leaves without me.

This is not really a problem. I could easily find my way home, so I’m not LOST.

I ride around underground “for a while,” plotting and transferring as I try to link over toward Modřany. Finally the clock tells me my escapade needs to end. Even if I find my way to church, the service would be ending by the time I arrive.

I get off at the next opportunity and change over to the other direction to make my way home. It looks like my jaunt will cost me two hours. Surprisingly, instead of tearing up, I find myself starting to giggle. It is only a slight giggle at first, but slowly it takes over my whole body.

Our mouths were filled with laughter, our tongues with songs of joy. Then it was said among the nations, “The Lord has done great things for them.” Psalm 126:2


© 2013 Thrive.


Question to Consider: When have you experienced laughter as a result of a cultural blunder?