Happy Halloween! Even though this isn’t America, the conditions for celebrating Halloween are ideal in Austria. November 1 is a public holiay here, so you’re always free the day after! Funny to think then thatn the way that Halloween is celebrated today is really only a recent import. Or well, maybe it’s not that funny.. but in any case, parties are in abundance on this day. Here is the party I went to yesterday in the 8th District. 🙂 I hope you all had a great time too!
The middle of the middle of Vienna is here, on Graben, outside Stephan’s cathedral. The background shot of the blog itself is actually taken towards 7 o’clock from this position, standing almost exactly here. It’s not that crowded now as it was this summer, as we’ve got a cold spell, and the tourist season definitely is over. Normally, just like all others who live in Vienna, I avoid this place like the plague during the height of summer. Once, I agreed to meet with a friend here after work, to go eat somewhere nearby. Being hungry and swimming in tourists made us vow to never come here hungry again… lol. Apart from going sightseeing in the cathedral and the castle, there is some extremely exclusive shopping to be done in this area. And some allright ice cream to be had during summer. Other than that… it’s for the street performers and the tourists to run free.
When the need arises, it is good to know that there is one place in Vienna that really can accommodate sophisticated bottoms. The Opera Toilet, which is at the subways station just by the Opera House plays Wienerwaltz music non stop. Really, non-stop… when you walk past even really late at night after a night out, it’s still going strong.. this still cracks me up. I think it’s only the tourists that go there, unless you’re really desperate… and have to. It’ll cost you 70 Eurocents. But hey.. the music is pretty ok! 😀 I found this youtube video which gives you a brief listen to the music. magical!
The first snow has arrived! Ok, it’s not thick and white wonderful snow, but your average first snow which is a thin layer that kids make the most of. Like here, where someone has made two snowmen in front of the church up at Kahlenberg. It’s pretty awesome though, not long now and it’ll be Christmas!! Wheeeeee! 🙂
I was impressed with these the first time I saw them, but now I know that they’re really common. Seems almost every second bar has them, and then they come in whatever beer type that the bar is selling. I still find them absolutely adorable, and like beacons of light in darkness (sometimes quite literally). This is my favourite economy beer in Austria. It’s from Styria. 🙂
Cute bike I saw at Heiligenstadt. I’m quite sad that the bicycle season is coming to an end… I’ve been sick the last three weeks, so have missed the very end of it. Now they’re already promising snow for tomorrow, so let’s see!
Ok… this is also a bit juvenile.. this is from my Vienna album, and every time I see these in the shop I have to do a small maturity check. The initial hilarity of it has definitely worn off by now, but in principle I’m still happy to be able to go to the supermarket and get cheese that’s ‘extra dick.’ I can inform you that the cheese itself is not really worth the moeney… unless you really need cheese that will last for years, and don’t mind the taste. I usually get a pack of these individually wrapped extra thick (that’s what it means, if you were wondering) slices when going to music festivals during summer. They’re ideal for that. 🙂
Brunnenmarkt! This is a market in the 16th district, that’s relatively big, and cheaper than Naschmarkt. Same as all the other markets around town, they sell everything from groceries to clothes to antiques.. This picture was taken just as they were closing up today. It’s pretty close to Alser Strasse on the subway.
Still chasing autumn. Seems that there is a bit less extreme colouring down in the city than up on Kahlenberg where I work, but that only means that I can fit in some more photos before the leaves are fallen! This is the walkway to the overbridge by Spittelau station. People rushing to get home from work, or to the shop before it closes…
Autumn is coming really fast this year, seeing as we’ve had such a long and unusually warm summer. So now nature is fast-tracking it. My instinct has also kicked in, and I’ve started knitting… I’ll try to get some nice autumn shots before all the leaves have fallen in the days to come. This one is from the canal in the third district.
Today I have a nice little scene from the 8th district for you guys. The 8th district is really cool with lots of funky shops, but since I don’t live close to it I rarely go there. This is right after sundown, standing on top of the subway looking down Josefstädter Strasse. I used my good camera and a tripod, so I suppose the difference is noticeable for once… ^_^. Has been a while since I got my big gun out to shoot… Feels good.
A friend of mine dragged me along to see “We need to talk about Kevin,” and thus we ended up at this little gem of a theatre called Filmcasino in the 5th district. They screen movies that are a bit more arty, and thus do not end up in the blockbuster cinemas. But the thing about this one is that it’s extremely(!) well preserved! When you walk in there, it’s really like going back to the 60s. The box office, the poster windows, the walls, ceilings, floors, the little kiosk… the chairs in the theatre, and the picture display. It’s extremely awesome. 🙂 I would definitely recommend it to those who are into good movies that aren’t all about selling tickets to cover a humongous special effects budget. The programme can be found here. I quite enjoyed the movie, by the way. I wasn’t even paid to do this little promotion… ^_^
This dessert, albeit delicious, has one of the most un-pc names ever: translated into ‘negro in shirt.’ Basically it’s a chocolate cake/pudding, served hot with chocolate sauce and whipped cream. In spite of the name, I love it! 😀
Ok I know this is childish but COME ON! It’s funneeh!! I was out walking with my friend in the part of the neighbourhood that I’ve never been in before, when we walked past this garage. Yes, it’s a garage. Where you can take your car and have it fixed. It’s actually pretty innocent in German.
In some of the parks here (this one is far out by Donauzentrum) they have chess boards. Large ones. In other cities I’ve often seen them, but not in use. Seems that Vienna is one place where old guys especially take things quite seriously when it comes to huge chess. These guys were pretty into their game. I suppose any day now outdoor chess season is over..
One thing that I’ve liked about living here since the very start is the cheap rates that you get for cellphone contracts and internet. Competition is high, so the deals are usually really good. Today, I saw that even at my local supermarket I can pick up a budget version of a USB internet stick and have mobile internet super fast and cheap. Fair enough that this one is only 3GB per month and you have to pay 8,80 €, but hey – it’s in the supermarket! Pretty rad. 😛
Such plates can be found all over the city, but mostly in districts with a large representation of Jews before WW2. The plates are put down on the pavement outside houses, showing the names of those who lived there and who were exterminated (bad word I know, yet close to the truth) during the war, mostly in concentration camps. It also shows the date that they were deported, and which camp they were sent to. These plates are on Mariahilferstrasse in the 6th District.
I quite like the plates. For me, they help make history real.
I used to think that NZ was pretty grand when it came to loyalty boxes… it even featured in one of Tourism New Zealand’s ads. In Austria (and thus Vienna) they’ve gone one step further, to even use it to sell newspapers. I’ve never actually witnessed anyone getting a paper and not paying for it by putting coins on that thing. I’ve seen plenty of people get newspapers from these things though. No wonder, that Vienna is one of the safest cities to live in in the world.. 🙂
My local butcher. I love how they still have these all over the place.
Repairwork being done… When I first got here I thought it was a mosque. But it’s actually more like a power plant, and the tower is the pipe of the incinerator. I think somehow they burn rubbish to make hot water which heats up many homes in Vienna. Buuuut, I can’t say I’m 100% sure what the process is.. It’s supposed to be green energy. So.. 🙂
I always liked the signage of/to my local pharmacy. It’s clearly stayed the same since the 70s, which must have been terrible in the 80s, a little weird in the 90s, but now totally ok somehow. The pharmacy is pretty much all I’ve seen of the outside world for a couple of days (and the walk to and from), have been home from work nursing a flu. I like the pharmacy logo here.. the snake and the basin is there, but it took me a little while to register the first time I was running around looking for one.
They’re always able to see us. But still, they’re never able to keep off those that feel the need to make a run for it to squeeze in through the doors just before they close… So sometimes I wonder what the cameras are good for. City life treats people in strange ways… where I grew up, if you missed the bus you’d have to wait an hour or two for the next one. Unless it was a sunday: 6 hours. Here, people are willing to risk their safety just for 4 minutes, when the next subway comes along.
A sure sign that it’s finally getting colder is when the Maroni-stands pop up around town. They usually sell chestnuts (? Edible ones…), potato wedges and or potato chips called ‘kartoffelpuffer’ (cute!). And they’re mostly fried on such barrels as you can see here. It’s a very southern German/Austrian thing, so if ever in the area try some!
From spring until Autumn, there are what I call ‘berry ladies’ all over town, selling fruit and veges (and sometimes also really awesome mushrooms and snaps) that are made in Austria. This one is selling stuff from the Digles farm. The fact that she is still here at the subway station in Heiligenstadt goes to show that this autumn is really nice and warm! Today we had about 11 degrees, which is the coldest it has been for almost half a year… When she disappears, which must be soon, that means that it’s truly autumn!
It cracks me up how they’ve got 1,5liter bottles of beer in the supermarkets here. Gives a new meaning to ‘sixpack’
Fairness doesn’t go very far here…
The consequence of living in a country that’s spelt almost the same way as Australia…
They tell you the minute you think about getting a bike here, that you should make sure to get a cheap bike and an expensive lock. Which is true! But whenever I see sights like this, I can’t help but wonder…. Why?? Are those wheels and tyres so useful to people?? A friend of mine has had her seat stolen twice.
On a late afternoon. Always some words to contemplate.. (although these don’t make much sense)
On some point if spending some time in Vienna, you are likely to see a smoking ash tray.. people here smoke like chimneys, and seeing as the ‘smoking law’ is quite accommodating to smokers, you cannot find many young people that are not partysmokers, if not full time smokers. Sometimes the cigarette buds in the ashtrays catch on fire, and then you have these smoking ash trays.