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Posts tagged ‘Austria’

TAKE A HIKE – HOCHSCHWAB

Sorry – long time no hear but I swear, I am hard at work with my studies, reading, researching and writing papers. But life mustn’t be all work and no play. So…just for you… some beautiful mementos from a recent hike in Austria’s very gorgeous Hochschwab region.

Bodenbauer Guesthouse, Hochschwab

Bodenbauer Guesthouse, Hochschwab

Spend a weekend at this gem of a guesthouse where the St. Ilgen valley ends and is surrounded by a majestic panorama of mountains: Bodenbauer (http://www.der-bodenbauer.at/der-bodenbauer/anreise).

From there venture up and out into some breathtaking walks, treks, hikes, and climbs.

Hainzerlheutte

Hainzerlhuette

A short hour-long trek will take you to the lovely Hainzlhuette where cows laze happily in the meadow and the Wirtin will serve you up a very tasty Brettljause and refreshing drinks so you can tank some energy to power onwards.

Haeuserlhuette

Häuslalm

Further up the mountain about 2 hours straight up from Bodenbauer is the Häuslhuette situated along a route that is better marked than the Hainzerlhuette route (Haeusl Alm website). The Häuslalm is along route 840. Consider downloading maps of the area before you go because the markings aren’t always optimal. And if you are crazy enough to venture up in pounding, stinging rain, dragging your soaking wet body, step-for-step upwards like I did, you might just have a Frodo-like experience that would make the entire effort worthwhile. Cold, rain-beaten, and tired, you might just enter an abandoned-looking hut after the two hour hike that seemed oh so everlong to find an interior filled with the warmth of a wood-burning stove, the scents of homemade grilled Bratwurst, an abundance of drink and an over-bursting of song and merriment. Unbelievable. Not only was the hut busting at its seams with hikers out in that weather (some who climbed over in hail and snow), there was an accordion, an accordion player and a cabin full of beer-mug-swinging Austrians who knew all the lyrics to all the songs he played. Good times were had by all and I may have been mistaken, but I could have sworn there were some hobbits in the corner milking their Barlimann’s Best. Indeed, thank goodness this world has more to offer than work and perfect weather. Life is short, make the best of it!

 

 

 

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Word of the Week – Arschknapp – Butt Close

The word of the week comes from a statement made by an Austrian news reporter describing the head-to-head election results for Austria’s new president. Tarek Leitner of the Austrian public TV station, ORF, offered his professional, analytical take on the situation as “Arschknapp.”

And with the results standing at 50/50 on the evening after the election and a nation holding its breath and this time around – the whole world watching — while the over 800,000 absentee ballots that will decide the outcome are counted, Leitner’s political analysis seems Arschgenau.

Arsch: butt or arse
knapp: close or tight/narrow

News report and video with “Arschknapp” statement: Tarek Leitner sorgt mit „Arschknapp“-Sager für Lacher

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EASTER IN AUSTRIA VS EASTER IN THE US

This past week when I emailed my work colleagues that Peter Cottontail had stopped by and left goodies in the kitchen, half ignored the message and the other half actually questioned who this generous Mr. Cottontail was and why he was leaving us all chocolate bunnies and colored eggs. When I responded that he had hippity-hopped his way down the bunny trail just to make a special stop, my colleagues were kind enough not to suggest that the extended Easter Holiday break might do me some good.

Though Peter Cottontail’s bunny trail may usually bypass the land of Schnitzel and Strudel, Austrians and Americans share many Easter traditions. We all dye Easter eggs, decorate our places with pussy willows, consume some kind of ham on Easter Sunday and give Easter baskets with enough sweets and chocolates to ensure post-sugar meltdowns all that way into summer. Sure the Easter Bunny comes for Easter, but in Austria the furry fellow looks and acts like a real rabbit whereas in the US, the Easter Bunny looks like some character who just escaped from Disneyworld.

But those Austrians, the gemütlich folk that they are, just had to one-up us on Easter traditions with Easter Monday. That’s right. Not only is Sunday a public holiday here, but Monday is too. As if five weeks of paid vacation a year ain’t enough.

But thank goodness Monday’s a holiday. It gives us an extra day to remember to move the clocks forward and sorely needed recovery time from marzipan-lamb hangover and Billa battle wounds from Saturday afternoon’s grocery store visit. Because if you’ve lived here long enough, you’ll realize that the extra day off means that all grocery stores will be closed from 5 pm Saturday until 7 am Tuesday. This in turns means that the Saturday shopping trip requires a gathering of supplies for the hunkered-down weekend and you and all other expats, immigrants and tourists will be descending on Billa at five to five on Saturday afternoon in a mad dash for the very last loaf of bread (carrot with whole wheat?) and organic-happy-cow-long-lasting milk. Pretend like you’re back in North Carolina and they just announced a hurricane warning and you’ll be in your element.

And if the grocery store isn’t enough to get your adrenaline pumping, then it’s time for another Austrian tradition that is kicking and screaming to make its way to the country of monster trucks, mud wrestling and nude beach Olympics. Quit tossing those eggs. Get rid of the spoons and lose the running shoes. You’re a grown-up now. Time for a grown-up Easter sport. Time for some… Egg Boxing!

Sure the Austrians quaintly call it “Eierpecken” – egg pecking. But we’re Americans, dang rabbit! And when we import a holiday tradition, we give it an injection of testosterone and a punch of raw brutality.

Tired of hearing about cousin Charlie’s new candy-red Ferrari La Ferrari? Put him in his place this coming Easter Sunday and challenge him man-to-man to an egg-boxing contest to see what old Chuckie’s really made of.

So tune in tomorrow where I got you covered with all you need to become the very next hard-boiled egg boxing champion – exclusively here: EGG BOXING 101 – The Ultimate Guide to Becoming a Winning Egg Boxer

Also check out some previous Easter posts:
Vienna’s Easter Markets

When the Bells Fall Silent and Fly to Rome: Holy Thursday to Easter Night

Who can resist the Egg Bear – Austrian word of the week

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VIENNA’S EASTER MARKETS

Easter Eggs at Schönbrunn Easter Market in Vienna

Easter Eggs at Schönbrunn Easter Market in Vienna

Easter abounds in the month of March in Vienna. And I got you covered with over 10 different markets where you can eat, drink and be merry and – more importantly – finally find everything from lavender satchels to perfume his sports bag to the long-sought-after Kaiser Franz Josef egg – guaranteed to grant you instant Austrian friends-for-life at any Easter egg exchange event.
But be nimble – some of these markets are literally here today and gone the day after tomorrow.

SCHÖNBRUNN EASTER MARKET
Schönbrunner Schlossstraße, 1130 Wien
March 9 – 29, daily from 10 am – 6 pm
www.ostermarkt.co.at
Public transportation: U4 Schönbrunn

OLD VIENNESE EASTER MARKET AT THE FREYUNG

Kaiser Franz Josef Egg - yours for the taking - available for purchase at a Vienna Easter Market near you

Kaiser Franz Josef Egg – yours for the taking – would I steer you wrong? Available for purchase at a Vienna Easter Market near you

(Freyung, 1010 Vienna – near Schotten Church)
March 11 – 28, daily 10 am – 7:30 pm
www.altwiener-markt.at
Public transportation: U3 Herrengasse or U2 Schottentor

ART HANDICRAFT MARKET AM HOF
(Am Hof, 1010 Vienna – on square in front of the Plaza Hotel)

from March 11. – 28, Mon – Thurs 11am-8 pm, Fri-Sun & Holidays 10am -8 pm
www.kunsthandwerksmarkt.at
Public transportation: Herrengasse

KALVARIENBERG FESTIVAL
Kalvarienberggasse, St. Bartholomäus Square, 1170 Vienna
March 9 – 27, Mon – Fri 10 am – 6 pm, Sat & Sun 9 am – 6 pm,
Live music every weekend starting at 4:30 pm
www.kalvarienbergfest.at
Public transportation: U2 to Schottentor and then tram 44 to Frauengasse OR an insider tip from a helpful reader: hop on the 43 at Schottentor and get off at Elterleinplatz and it’s right across the street (many thanks, Sandy!)

PRATER EASTER MARKET

Wooden Easter Ornaments at Schönbrunn Castle Easter Market in Vienna

Wooden Easter Ornaments at Schönbrunn Castle Easter Market in Vienna

Prater
March 27, starting at 11 am
www.praterservice.at
Public transportation: U2 Praterstern

EASTER MARKET AT FRANZ –JONAS PLATZ
February 19 – March 27, daily from 9 am – 9 pm
1210 Vienna, Franz-Jonas-Platz

EASTER MARKET IN ALTE AKH
Spitalgasse 2, 1090 Vienna
March 17 – 28, daily 12 – 9 pm
Public transportation: U2 Schottentor and then tram 38 or 40

EASTER ART MARKET AT CASTLE NEUGEBÄUDE
Otmar-Brix-Gasse 1, 1110 Vienna
March 17 – 20
http://www.schlossneugebaeude.at/
Public transportation: U3 to Simmering and then bus 73A

EASTER IN THE FLOWER GARDENS OF HIRSCHSTETTEN
Quadenstraße 15 oder Oberfeldgasse, 1220 Vienna
March 26 – 28, daily from 10 am – 6 pm
https://www.wien.gv.at/umwelt/parks/blumengaerten-hirschstetten/veranstaltungen/ostern.html
Public transportation: U2 to Hardegggasse, then bus 95A

OLD VIENNESE MARKET IN FRONT OF PALACE HARRACH (by Freyung Easter Market)

Happy Easter Chickens

Happy Easter Chickens

Freyung 6, 1010 Vienna
March 11 – 26, daily: 10am – 7:30 am
Organic Farmer Market Freyung
U2 Schottenring or U3 Herrengasse

EASTER MARKET AT SCHÜTTAUPLATZ
Schüttauplatz 24, 1220 Vienna
March 18 – 20, daily from 8 am – 8 pm
Public Transportation: U1 to Kaisermühlen-VIC, then bus 92 A

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