Monday, July 26, 2010

On the Road to Spain

We left hot, tropical Wien Saturday morning for Salzburg. Unfortunately the weather took a turn for the worse. Rain and wind all day. A steady rain in Salzburg - we got soaked walking around. We don't have proper rain attire. I grew up in California, so o.k. I'm not up on the latest rain gear. Nonetheless, today we could've used some proper gear.

We finally found a cafe/restaurant (almost all the cafes were full 'cause everyone was hiding out from the rain) and the kids took some black&white pix of each other.

The plan is to wake up early tomorrow and head straight off to Lausanne.

Pascal: I like the rain 'cause if I get my hair wet I don't have to take a bath and wash my hair.

Dean: I thought snow was bad, but rain is way worse.

Anika: The weather was bad, but therefore I had a good time.

Tessa: But I don't have any shoes.

Sabine: Today is today, but tomorrow will be different.


We made it to Lindau on the Boden See today. Nice weather, nice lake, sunshine, pretty town and sailboats all around. Smells like vacation.

Lindau has a re-ocurring symbol of a tree with oversize leaves (sometimes with roots). Don't know what it means. Of course I couldn't say what the picture of the oak tree meant in Oakland, except that the city's name is Oakland so... get it: therefore a picture of an oak tree. Maybe it's the same thing for Lindau.

That's a model of Lindau, Pascal the giant is attacking.


Next day, on to France. We stopped in a little town (Clemont-Ferrand) that had the name of Pascal all over it!! Was Pascal the mathematician born here? Don't know. But we ate at Cafe Pascal, and found a Rue Pascal.

The huge Michelin factory, or its decaying remains is near by "Town du Pascal."

Saturday, July 10, 2010

The Green Woods around Wien

It's getting almost up to 90F in the city so we took an hours drive into the Wienerwald. Ahhh..... Very green, hugely green, all the photos had to be adjusted 'cause they were just too green. We walked up the waterfall and midway we took off our shoes and played around in the stream. I love the rocks and trees growing out of them. I love water.

The 'Disney' Schloss

Visited a non-crumbling Schloss. Pretty cool. But it turns out to be a fantasy of sorts. The castle was built on the site of an ancient castle, but was built more for the sake of art then accuracy. A very rich German coal magnate (from Schliesia where my mother was born) collected tons of medieval artifacts and wanted a place to pur them. So around 1900 he built up this castle to house his collection. Really beautiful stuff all over the castle, the coal magnate was certainly a passionate collector. Lots of film crews use the castle because of its appearance of authenticity and completeness.

It's almost cute little baby Jesus in Mary's tummy carved into a massive wooden door.

Anika's growing prettier by the day.

Also at the castle they had an awesome show of birds of prey. We saw them fly free and right over our heads. Here is the "Weisskopf Adler".

The castle is a mismash of different styles, but how cool a real drawbridge and moat!

Around Wien

Bands from around Austria came to Wien and marched around town. Very nice outfits.

Poor St. Sebastian.

Aggstein Schloss (again)

Ani clowning in the party room of the castle. This room was sooo cool. Huge wooden tables a open fireplace, wooden beamed ceilings, windows overlooking the valley below. Knights in armor, stuffed bears, elks, eagles, etc. lining the walls. I was thinking how great it would be to have a party of 50 or so people in this room. And then..... a funny coincidence: my colleague at work (who moonlights as a band leader) happened to have played at a party in this same castle the same weekend we were there. Why do I call all these castles "crumbly castles"? Well, my colleague parked his car inside the castle walls to unload his music equipment, and on his second trip back to the car he saw a huge rock fall from the castle wall, blatsch&*$ right through his front windshield.He confirmed that it was an excellent party room.