Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Summer Luge and Salzburg, Austria

After a quiet morning in Hallstatt, we were off to the summer luge and Salzburg. We also planned on visiting the Eagle's nest, but it turned out to be more of hassle than it was worth. However, the summer luge was the unexpected treat of the day.

Jill gets towed up to the top.

Tait's short video of the trip down.

It cost us each ten euros for two trips up. I was pretty skeptical, but figured it would not hurt. This is another one of those things that traveling with others got me to do that I would normally skip. Not too much of a surprise, it turned out well too. The first time down, none of us went quite as fast as we could. I think we were worried about rolling out. I tried to record and go faster the second time, but it was beyond my abilities. I got the first two seconds and final two. Apparently, when I thought things were getting turned on, they got turned off and vice versa. Annoying, but oh well. My brother got some first person footage that works.

Our concert hall . . . or room.

A statue in the Mirabellgarten.

After the luge and our failed Eagle's nest visit, we headed to Salzburg to enjoy a string quartet and quintet (I had to look that one up) playing some of Mozart's works. While I can recognize a few classical pieces by sound, I do not have a chance of naming them. The first half was a treat. I enjoyed some pieces I knew and got to know some that I did not. Unfortunately, after intermission the breeze seemed to fade and room heated up. I was very ready to be done by the end. It felt like something I had been drug to as a kid. Curiously enough, just before the concert started, a high school group of 30-40kids came in. They also seemed very ready to go by the end. Afterwards, we met up with Hannan who had enjoyed about half the concert from the courtyard below, for free. Smart.

A large square and fountain from the Sound of Music tour.

Modern art.

The front side of the Von Trapp family home.

Our second day in Salzburg left a much better impression with me than the first. On the first, it did not seem bad, nor did it seem great. However, on the second day we took a Sound of Music tour. I can't say that I have ever seen the whole movie, but one day I will. If I am watching Julie Andrews, it tends to be Mary Poppins. Watching the Sound of Music should have been on the to do list for my winter in Antarctica. If only it had subtitles (for those of you who don't know, by chance I kept getting movies with subtitles to watch on my 12 inch TV screen).

Wheat and an Alp, if a singular form of Alps is Alp.

Seeing all their well behaved dogs definitely is making me miss Sabah.

I do not know why, but Salzburg had more unicorn statues than anywhere else I have been.

The first thing our tour guide, Yaltov, told us was that the movie actually is not popular in Austria. After that, we rolled. I loved it. I got to see the city by bike, learn a little bit about an American classic, and appreciate Salzburg a lot more. I even heard a few ideas to flush out my bike tour. For those of you who have seen the movie, feel free to name the scene that goes with the photograph. Our guide told us, but I have forgotten all of them. I just know that ice cream, cold weather, and Salzburg's bike plan are just a few of my favorite things, favorite things.

Bike paths along the Salzach River.

In the afternoon, Tait and Jill headed for the fortress, while I settled into upload photos with my brother's computer before he left with it the next day. I also took a glorious nap. It amazes me how much a hot day can put me to sleep which is so better than sweating through it. When we met up that evening, we went out for dinner where we had a great overlook of the city as the sun was setting. Afterwards, we went out to a place called Eisbar or something like that for sweet treats and beer. I got a strawberry milkshake that I devoured in about two minutes. I wanted another, but it was not to be.

Old city Salzburg and its castle.

I liked Salzburg. It seems like another super functional, livable cities that has great milkshakes too! Actually, could any city that is that hot in the summer be functional if it did not have a proper sized ice cream industry? Salzburg is also the right size at 150,000 (factoid, that small population is served by 24 churches). Sign me up for the US (or Kiwi) version!


  1. I feel like I failed you brodykins. If there was anyone around to inspire a musical-disney-movie night, that would have been me.

    I was too wrapped up in singing 'the sun will come out tomorrow.'

  2. What a great trip you had! It reminds me of the Sound of Music tour that I did with my family a few years back. The summer luge was great fun. Neither of my kids wanted to go down with me as I wouldn't let go of the brake!