Alone at home, Tereza wakes up. She dresses and goes outside to see the Vltava. Standing over the river, the water looks more depressing than anywhere else. Something catches her eye, and she sees that several brightly colored park benches are rushing downriver. They rush past her, and she turns as if to ask someone why benches are washing downriver, and she sees two final benches go by. Feeling deep grief, Tereza knows it is Prague’s “farewell.”
Again, Kundera has entered a dream sequence without warning. Tereza goes outside to see the Vltava, the river that runs through Prague, one last time because she knows that she and Tomas will soon leave Prague. The park benches going down the dark, depressing river represent the mass emigration of Czech people from their homeland during the Communist reign. Tereza is only leaving Prague, not the country, but it is still the Communist regime that is driving her actions.