Small Victories

I ran down the stairs of one of Prague’s metro stations. I was heading to a Couch Surfing meeting at a pub in a neighbourhood that was best arrived by subway. As I descended the stairs I noticed that the ticket vending offices were closed since it was evening. Hmmm…so I will need to find a ticket machine. I spot one and walk towards it as I fish out some coins for my purchase. I look at the machine. Uh-oh…it’s all in Czech. “Of course it is Eeva, cause you’re in Prague!” In a small panic I look at the well-worn machine looking for English anywhere.  I don’t spot any. I look around to see if anyone can help me. A woman walks past hurriedly, too fast for me to stop to ask her for help. I turn back to the ticket machine. “Eeva, you can do this. You use transit all the time. Most machines are the same.” I sigh. “I can’t believe I’m giving myself a pep talk on how to buy a metro ticket.” My worry increases a bit and I am getting flustered. I look at the machine and it’s buttons. “Okay Eeva, you probably have to pick a ticket type, put the money in and a press the appropriate button. Most machines are like that. If it doesn’t work try again.” My internal dialogue is picking up speed as I am nervous. I am freaking out over a metro ticket! As I raise my hand to drop money into the machine my eyes glance downward. “What is that? OMG! English!!”  I found instructions in English in very tiny print. I start to read it and a smile plays on my lips “YES! You figured it out girl! Exactly as you were gonna do it!”  I buy my ticket and so want to do a happy dance on the spot. I figured out how to buy a metro ticket without needing English. The validation was sweet! I never realized how happy I could be for figuring out on my own how to buy a metro ticket in a foreign country with a foreign language until that moment. Every other time I was with someone else, had help from an employee or instructions were in English. Okay, yes the instructions were in English on this machine but I didn’t see them until after I tried (and successfully at that) to figure it out. Happy! Happy! Happy!  Small victories are sometimes the best victories.

The machine that initially eluded me.
The machine that initially eluded me.

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