Monday, April 28, 2014

Vienna, Austria: Should I Shave My Legs for These Shorts? (answer: no)

On our way to Vienna I wracked my brain to remember the song I just KNEW mentioned the city. I had my aha! moment after we had checked into hostel Ruthensteiner, one which I highly recommend! My only complaint is that the light turned off on me in the bathroom EVERY TIME. But this didn't happen to LDL or Gibby so who knows what I was doing wrong. 
Anyway, the song is "Vienna" by Billy Joel and we made our way through the streets alternately singing the tune.
Our time in Vienna didn't start out so happy...and I blame the ATM machine for that. I arrived with only 10 euros left over from my February trip to Ireland so I knew I needed to withdraw more. I typed my usual information into the machine and waited for my money. It spit my card back at me, but no money. I was convinced the machine had eaten my euros and refused to leave it until I found out for sure. LDL let me use the data on her phone to check my bank balance and I learned for some reason the transaction hadn't gone through. Sigh of relief there, but I still didn't have euros. 
None of us wanted to try that machine again, so we decided to find the hostel first. We took the metro and met a group of students traveling like us. They were from all over America and told us they were headed to Budapest next. Which was apparently true of literally every traveler we met, besides ourselves.
Seriously, I think we missed something great by not included Budapest. It never even OCCURRED to me that Budapest would be cool. 
More on that when I write about Salzburg! 
We found the hostel fairly easy, located just around the corner from the central train station. 
Our triple room was quaint and perfect, overlooking a patio in the back. We promised it we'd soon be back, but hit the streets armed with euros, determined to fill our time in Vienna with fun before we left the next day for Salzburg!
We wandered down the main shopping area and bought pizza off the street, ready to eat anything at that point! 
In Prague I threw out some of my colder weather clothes, like a long sleeve shirt, a pullover, and two pairs of socks, so in Vienna I filled the new space I had in my backpack with a pair of shorts from H&M. My legs were finally liberated and I wore those shorts for at least half of the trip. I don't think I would've survived Italy without them! They had a tendency to ride up so Gibby and LDL sometimes got quite a view...
We passed through a beautiful park and made it to Stephensplatz just in time to hear the bells ringing out around the square. 
Exhausted and semi-lost, we sniffed out Wifi in a nearby McCafe. I am terribly embarrassed of how often we found ourselves in McDonald's/Burger King/Subway during this trip. Blame it on the Wifi? Or our exhausted American palates? Or the abundant train stations? Either way, I'm not disclosing the number. It's far too high.
At this point in the evening LDL and I were making up songs to sing to our beds back at the hostel so we decided we were done for the night.
In the morning I grabbed a plum from a fruit stand and a cheese twist from a kondetorei for breakfast while we walked to Schloss Schoenbrunn, the GIANT castle in Vienna. 
Since it was a Saturday, there was an Easter market in the courtyard. It looked interesting, but we didn't have much time before our train so we stuck to the highlights. The grounds around the castle were spectacularly well-kept and the flowers bloomed in cantstopwontstop Miley fashion. Cadet squad experimented with panorama photos as we pranced down the long driveway to a huge waterfall. Behind the waterfall was a steep hill that promised a dreamy view from the top, so we fell for it. Huffing and puffing and cursing that damn cheese twist, I reached the top and took in Vienna. Billy Joel was right, Vienna had been waiting for A Very Lucky Girl. 





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