I love Saturdays in
I’m not the biggest shopping person, but the Naschmarkt is certainly not a traditional shopping experience. It was remarkable, with aisles and aisles of the most random and fascinating chatchkis and knickknacks you could ever hope to find. People were selling old pictures, personal correspondence, old money, magazines, books, and truly random stuff. It was so much fun to sift through the piles, and to look into someone’s life via their words and photographs. I wanted to buy everything – all those primary source documents just waiting to be used. In the end, I bought my brother a second edition in English (with a German introduction) of T.E. Lawrence’s Seven Pillars of Wisdom and a magazine, Kristall, from 1964. It has articles (which I sadly cannot read) on soldiers and popular actors such as Gregory Peck. The one featuring photographs of soldiers has the title of “Innere Führung - Reine Glückssache!”, which freetranslation.com told me means “In leadership - pure matter of luck!” I’d love to be able to read it, but no matter what, the pictures are very good quality and the magazine itself will be great as a coffee table book. I cannot wait to go back on a future Saturday and see what else the market has to offer – I’m sure I’ll come home with some form of correspondence as I barely resisted that purchase today.
A kebab stand, however, proved impossible to resist. My brother told me I would live on kebab and I don’t mind at all. We then left the Naschmarkt to find a park to eat and relax for a bit. The market not only provided me with gifts and a meal, it also gave me an opportunity to interact with some local people and get a sense of the culture here. The market was extremely busy and every kind of person imaginable was there eating, meandering or shopping.
While walking to the park, I spotted what appeared to be an art nouveau building and I figured it was Otto Wagner. It was gorgeous, with floral decorations and touches of gold. Sadly, our guidebook mislabeled the picture – claiming it was a Hundertwasser creation (luckily, thanks to the earlier tour and my reading on art nouveau, I knew it was wrong). I’ve never taken a survey of art history, so I must say it’s a testament to this course alone that I was able to recognize not only the style, but the architect of the structure, called Majolikahaus. Undoubtedly,
We went to a random local park, which turned out to be a cute children’s playground. It’s always fun to see that families in general are the same everywhere – the kids playing on swings and equipment and the parents hanging out. One kid, Leon, proved to be particularly funny to us as he was wearing a cape with “Batman” written on it and we watched him and other kids have fun while we planned our next excursion.
Yesterday, the professor had asked us to find out what a statue was on the main pedestrian way. We found it, but could not decipher what it was for, so we asked at a local bookshop. It’s a Plague Column, commemorating the end of the plague. A wood column was originally put up in 1679 and replaced by the opulent statue currently up in 1693. It includes depictions of the suffering of the plague, which is clearly destroyed thanks to God – many angels and Latin phrases in praise of God run along the statue. And it’s in the middle of shops. So strange.
With that, we decided to go touristy and get that famous Sacher Torte at the Hotel Sacher. It’s clearly a tourist zone, but the cake was absolutely delicious – covered in chocolate with a light lining of apricot in the middle. The mélange was also excellent. However, I do not have a desire to go again. So far, my preference is for
After some additional wandering, it was time for some relaxing and dinner at the apartment in Simmering before heading out for a fantastic techno evening at the famous club Flex. A large group of us went and it was really nice to have most of us together for the evening. We started outside the club at the outside bar/café, which is located right on the