Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Vienna/Wien. Not Wein.

This past weekend I was in Vienna.

The flight was from Hamburg was about 1.5 hours and Air Berlin gave out sandwiches, it was great.

Purse packing went better for me this time, as I mentioned in my Prague post. Bought a new bag and crammed all the things in it. Might add photos of it later, but I probably won't.

Saturday we tried to do a walking tour and were 1 minute late to the starting location. Someone told us the first stop and we ran there but they were already gone... assuming they started early. jerks. So we wandered around looking for giant real looking things and took their picture. Later on, I checked online for the main things to look at in Vienna and it seems we saw them all. score. The method of wandering aimlessly and occasionally exclaiming, 'oh, that looks like a thing!' was a success. We went to the Sacher Hotel cafe and had the famous Sacher Torte(chocolate cake) and Apple strudel. nomz. I was sick on Saturday but tried to power through and see all the things. We also walked around the Naschmarkt which was a giant empty lot full of people/weirdos selling random things. Saw a stuffed cat in a box. soooooo, that was great. Saturday night we went to a massive Schnitzel restaurant called Figlmüller. Malia got the schnitzel and I got the baked cheese thing, which I have decided was vegetarian Schnitzel, and some Spinatknödel or spinach dumplings. Delicious. 

Here is our food:

Dumplings and baked cheese thing:

 Malia's GIANT schnitzel:

On our walk back to the hostel we passed the St. Stephen's cathedral, still not finished, but looked nice at night!

Front of St. Stephen's cathedral with a lightshow happening:

We played pool when we got back to the hostel and I went to bed and hoped to fell less illlllll on Sunday.

It worked. Sunday we went and got food, and the most delicious Chai Latte thing of my life:

Then we walked a mile or so to the Schloss Schönbrunn palace. 

Here is a picture I snuck of the floor in the Chinese closets in one of the main ballrooms:

After that we went and took a quick peek at the Danube:

and then got some more baked goods and coffee and headed to the airport.

Here is my flying neighbor Herr Strudel all buckled up for safety:

Sorry for the poor quality of some of these photos, I will try to upload the pictures from my camera to Facebook soon. I realize that posts will only words can be pretty boring, so I figured any photos are better than none.

-Michelle + Mr. Mink

also, I was hoping to embed Billy Joel's Vienna into this post, but couldn't get youtube to cooperate. So just sing it to yourself.

Prague, Prag, Praha


Sooooo, an update on purse packing:

Purse packing is fun and makes you feel far superior to anyone you see with luggage. However, I think it would work better in warmer weather, or for staying with friends/in a hotel. The flip-flops for hostel showers, and toiletries take up a lot of room in a purse... and if you were staying somewhere super clean that provides toiletries to you, you could skip those things. Also, purse packing would work well for you if you have ANY self control and don't go shopping and buy a bunch of new stuff that you magically have to cram in to your exploding purse. I have no self control, clearly.

I need to do a purse break-down post with photos of my bag... but realistically, this will never happen.

For Vienna, Malia and I bought new, cheap bags for purse packing that were a little larger than our last bags. Malia's broke instantly... soooooo don't buy purses from New Yorker. Mine worked pretty well. It was still stuffed and about to explode, but I didn't have to stuff my coat pockets with toiletries and bonus purses, so that was nice.


Prague(including iPhone photos):

We left work Friday and headed to the airport. The guy at the check-in desk was AMAZED by the size of our luggage(purses) for the weekend. Purse-packing for the win.

We took a bus to a train to get to our hostel and on the bus we were sitting across from a lady with the longest eyelashes ever. It was really amazing. I spent the whole time trying to figure out if they were real, or how she managed to grow the worlds greatest eyelashes. I'm sure she thought I was a total creep. Plus I was sitting backwards on a bus, so I also looked like I was going to vomit. Cute.

Got to the hostel and it was super nice! I should have taken a picture of our bathroom. Huge shower and cool sink. Good for you Mosaic House Prague. Also played the 'guess where our roommates are from by looking at their toiletries' they had some large ziplock bags, god bless America, and some full size German products... American students living in Germany. What a fun game.

Saturday morning we went on a walking tour with an adorable Spanish guy as our tour guide. The super thick Spanish accent made even the boring history things hilarious. Also he told a story, which he totally made up, about a Turkish guy giving a girl a kebab to make her fall in love with him and I decided that is the most romantic thing I can think of.

We went in the church of St. James. Story of the church. Some famous thief guy went in there looking to steal some bling from a religious statue. The statue came to life grabbed the guys arm and then re-froze in statue mode. People came in to the church and saw the dude dangling from this statue and after he promised that he changed and would no longer do any thieving, they cut off his arm and freed him. The statue then came back to life, dropping the arm, and the church people hung it up as a warning to other thieves. That thief guy then became the church keeper. Moral of the story: if you try to steal something, your arm will be cut off, and then you will be given an upper management job.

Here is the dangling arm(shriveled thing hanging off the wall on the right):

And the inside of the church for my Grandma:

We also saw the atomic clock, it has a rooster on it. I don't have an iPhone photo of it, so you will have to look on Facebook at my other photos.

After the walking tour we crossed the river to the other half of Prague, old city, new city, some city. We walked up to the Strahov Monastic Brewery and captured this view of Prague:

and drank this beer and ate these brownies:

It was strange to me that these monks have been making beer for so long, but hey... liquid bread is great, so whatever.

Sunday we walked around and ate some Prague street meat(for Malia) and some spinning bread roll covered in sugar and nuts(for me) Then we took a cab ride of death and I thought I was going to vomit all over the place. I didn't. Proudest moment of my life. Thinking of listing it as a resume skill.

Vienna post up next!

Friday, November 2, 2012

pack it in a purse(hire me Rick Steves)

quick Munich post:

Munich was amazing. The weather was warm and sunny and perfect. Saturday was one of those days where everything was exactly what you wanted/needed. After a fairly cold/rainy Hamburg week, Saturday was a magical sunshine-y day. We went to the Neuschwanstein Castle which was in some mountains in Füssel, about 2 hours away from Munich. Usually I am not a huge nature freak, but everything was soooooooo great. The fall leaves, sunshine, mountain views and a castle. If only there were donkeys. It was warm enough to expose my shoulders in an attempt to get a slight tan. glory. We left the castle and grabbed some food on a lake. Since it was warm, the bees were SWARMING. I think they love me/hate me. I freaked out, naturally, and put on a show for all the germans. sorry germans. The waitress came over after a while and put some coins on the table because she said she had seen people doing it to keep bees away. I looked it up and apparently it has something to do with light reflecting and confusing their giant bug eyeballs. These bees must have had really strong eyeballs. So I ran away and sat by the lake and soaked up some more sun and looked at all of the dogs. all of them. Germany has sooooo many dogs and I want to steal every single one of them. We headed back to the hostel and put on our dirndls and prepared to go to some beer hall place. We couldn't find the beer place and everyone on the street was confused by our Dirndls. Oktoberfest ended the week before, so everyone just thought we were dumb. Doesn't matter. It started raining a little so we headed back to the hostel bar and hung out there for a little bit. We ended up going out(not in Dirndls) with a few people we met who lived in Munich. Sunday we woke up and went to the Chinese pagoda in an English garden and found a German beer garden and had a giant pretzel. Soooo multicultural.

Last weekend I wasn't able to go to Dresden, but it ended up being a nice weekend anyways.

Tonight Malia and I are flying to Prague for the weekend. Last night, we decided we were too lazy to pack real bags and that turned in to a 'pack all the things in our purses' adventure. I think it might have taken more effort than packing a real bag, but hey.... maybe this is interesting enough to convince Rick Steves to hire me...

I will have to take pictures to document the packing.

For this weekend I have:

the clothes I am wearing:
-Thick socks
-Long sleeve shirt
-Giant Man shirt(pajamas)
-Jacket with large pockets containing: umbrella, mini purse + locks for hostel(I know jacket pockets aren't really a purse, but whatever)

-socks + bonus socks, in case of rain
-underwear + bonus underwear, in case I am not allowed back into germany and have to live in the airport
-elephant spandex pants(pajamas and sunday clothes)
-flipflips, in case I decide to shower + perfume for when that doesn't happen

I think I can probably do a better job packing, maybe I will perfect the pack it in a purse technique for Vienna.

Yay, adventure.

Also, I have been joking for a while that I would be fluent in German in November, so this would be the month I start talking.... I never really thought November would arrive... but alas. DeutscheMonat ist hier. So now have to speak German at home. Sorry if I get reallllllly silent this month, roomies.