Tag Ein: Wien

Day one consisted of getting up at 10 CST, to fly 4400 miles to Vienna. The flight was good, I was able to complete the Frank Abagnale book, Catch Me If You Can during the eight plus hour flight. Thanks to the Austrian Airlines inflight entertainment, I was able to fathom that we passed over Moncton, Labrador, Ireland, Liverpool, Manchester, Amsterdam, and other points continental. We landed, and after a bit of discussion, about where exactly we were going, we were on a bus to Vienna. And I had my first stamp in my passport.

We spent the afternoon trying to find Herr Adams, which consisted of taking une autobus to the Landstrasse, and then several U-bahn lines to find our quarry, our host. We picked up the key to his place, and the traced our route back to the flat. It’s a very large place, several rooms and I think that it was orginally intended for several people, but he occupies it himself. He pays 500 euros a month, which is comparable to the 450 dollars a month that I pay for housing. After a few minutes watching the Austrian TV and CNN International (one of two English Language stations that Herr Adams has– BBC being the other) we headed down to a local establishment for some food. I had a beef tenderloin with a fried egg on top (It was 6am, CST, I was in the mood for breakfast) accompanied with side of was basically were home fries. It was quite good. I did my best with my Rick Steves’ German Phrasebook, but it was determined later that the waiter spoke fluent English, so there was no point in pretending. That and two cups of Caffe later, we headed down to the Sudbahnhof to arrange for travel to Praha manana. (I’ve found myself, lacking the knowledge in German reverting to Spanish. It really doesn’t help in anyway shape or form, but it does make me feel better.) One hundred and fifty seven euros later, we took the rail back to Herr Adams’s flat, and took a nap.

Tonight we met up with a co-worker of our host, he was a nice Austrian man named David who spoke English better than most folks I know. We had a fine time talking politics and other things, while enjoying the local bier and other Osterreich goodies. I saw the cathedral at Stephanaplatz, which I tell you was damn impressive. You see things in books, architectural history books, and I’ll admit, those kind of things generally bore me, but seeing them first hand, realizing how old they are, how big they are… It’s pretty awe inspiring. I should have come to Europe a long time ago…

Another thing that has struck me is the amount of English that people speak, the impressiveness of being bilingual, the amount of advertising that seems to be everywhere, and the density of this city. I really would like to see a map of Nashville and Vienna, two metro areas that are supposed to be the same size population-wise. Also, top 40 in the US is top 40 everywhere. I’m conviced the best way to blend in is to walk down the street singing Elton John at the of your lungs with a fractured German Accent….

Houhld meee clooser Tineeeey Dannncerrrr….. Kount de headlighcts on de hiiiiighhhway….

Tomorrow we go to Prague, our tickets that we have purchased are available for travel at four times tomorrow, a 6:50 am journey that I know we won’t make, a 10 something journey that we probably will. Next update will be Friday most likely, when we return from the Czech Republic.

Auf Weidersehen por manana.

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