Mozart, Bearded Women and a Cold Day in Vienna

Vienna was cold, rainy and windy, but we got to see the Stefansdom, the Hofburg, eat a Gordon Bleu and taste a Sachertorte.

Pestsäule on Graben

On Saturday in Copenhagen Conchita Wurst won the Eurovision Song Contest 2014. Denmark has won the contest 3 times, though a fourth time is worth mentioning. At the first Danish entry in 1957 the Danish song made a third place, and in Denmark it is common knowledge that the couple singing the beautiful song Skibet skal sejle i nat (The ship is sailing tonight) would have made first place if not the juries of the Catholic countries participating had found a great offence in the long kiss at the end. At the final on Saturday when Conchita won, I couldn’t help myself laughing at the idea of how the juries of 1957 would have reacted to the 2014 winner or to Eurovision in general. Personally I am all in!

The cupola of Hofburg Castle
The cupola of Hofburg Castle

But why mention this here. Well because on our journey to Israel and Jordan my boyfriend and I are having a stopover in the home country of Conchita Wurst. While I had hoped to find that bearded ladies had become the latest fashion trend in Austrian capital Vienna, all I found was a nasty weather and umbrellas flying everywhere.

Though mid-May, the weather in Vienna was absolutely ghastly and the first order of business for my boyfriend and I was to find a place that sold rain covers. Simple umbrellas wouldn’t suffice, considering the accompanying wind. We hit jackpot in Mueller, a store which sells just about anything and for 2 euros worth of rain covers we were set to see Vienna Inner Stadt.

Street in Inner Stadt
Street in Inner Stadt

I’ve been to Vienna once before back in 2004 when I lived in Ljubljana. I like the city though it is not a favourite of mine. I had hoped to get a more vibrant impression than the last time, where I had found it somewhat static and caught in the Habsburg-past, but with the terrible weather there was no chance in discovering a more quirky and vibrant Vienna. However, in one detail my trip this time around succeeded to make this trip infinitely better than the previous time, namely the company of my boyfriend.

Narrow street in Inner Stadt
Narrow street in Inner Stadt

On this journey through Jordan and Israel, I will not be travelling alone. This time I will be sharing the adventure with someone else, and I imagine these blogs will to a large extent be about we and us rather than I and me.

The National Library in Vienna
The National Library in Vienna

While it is difficult to suddenly have to consider another person when so used to travelling alone, this is definitely made up by the possibility of sharing moments and creating memories together. But enough of my romantic side.

Under the rain covers
Under the rain covers
Cold and rainy Vienna

Vienna was cold, rainy and windy, but we got to see the Stefansdom, the Hofburg, eat a Gordon Bleu and taste a Sachertorte.

Stefansdom
Stefansdom

Stefansdom was still 10 years after my first visit under renovation, but unlike then when the entire main part was covered in scaffolding, most of the church now seemed clean and fresh – even in the rain and despite it being a Gothic church, which always creates an air of horror in my opinion. Inside it was dark and filled with tourists finding cover from the wind and rain.

Detail in Stefansdom
Detail in Stefansdom

The church was parted in two sections, one for all the freebies – including us – and one further up the aisles allowing access to all the church for those who wanted to pay. Outside the church doors stood a poorly looking and very wet Mozart greeting the tourists.

Mozartkugel
Mozartkugel

In fact, all of Vienna is filled with Mozart and Mozart candy. Back home, Chinese tourists are complaining that Copenhagen does not show off enough H. C. Andersen. I am rather sure they won’t say the same about Mozart and Vienna.

Tealights in Stefansdom
Tealights in Stefansdom

After our free visit to Stefansdom we found a Austrian looking restaurant serving Gordon Bleu as the days special – and what a Gordon Bleu. The size of the entire plate it was only accompanied by a small dish of cold potato salad, one slice of lemon and a tiny bit of green parsley – Austrian cuisine at its best. Did I mention that I love Gordon Bleu?

Lion statue at Hofburg Palace
Lion statue at Hofburg Palace

After walking the windy capital of Austria and taking a stroll through the courtyards of Hofburg, we ended up at a café adding a sachertorte to our Austrian experience.

Austrian tortes
Austrian tortes

I do believe they normally taste a bit different than the one we had, but nonetheless it was nice and went well with a hot cop of cocoa to warm us up.

Scaffolding at the Dominican Church
Scaffolding at the Dominican Church

Our final stop of our short visit to the Austrian capital was at the Dominican Church, which as Stefansdom was undergoing renovation. However it was absolutely empty, all free and in my opinion a whole lot prettier and lighter than Stefansdom.

Scaffolding at the Dominican Church
Scaffolding at the Dominican Church

At five o’clock after having been awake for 13 hours, we finally made our way towards the airport, stopping once again by my boyfriend’s new favourite store Mueller and buying some of his new favourite candy – the Mozartkugel. I think I’ll end this blog now as I just remembered that there are a few of those delicious kugels left.

Auf Wiedersehen!
Auf Wiedersehen!

I’ll see you in Tel Aviv,

Zofka

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