Taking Some Time to See Vienna

Trip Start Sep 11, 2005
Trip End Dec 13, 2005

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Flag of Austria  , Vienna,
Sunday, October 30, 2005

November 3, 2005

When I think of Vienna I think of high class for some reason. A large city which was home of the Hapsburgs and the line of royalty. Fancy buildings, fancy people, and the renowned Opera come to mind. The Vienna Boys Choir, the Stallions, and history can be found here. It is a large city with a lot to offer.

I will be honest and tell you that at this point in our trip we are tired. We really enjoy our flat shared with us by the Happy Hostel. We are supposed to be sharing it which means it is inexpensive, but we have had few neighbors to share our comforts with. So we have found a little piece of home and have stayed here more than we had planned. We have ventured out to see things though, don't worry.

Our first full day in Vienna we went to Augustine Church and sat alongside others as we enjoyed good music giving praise to God. Since we didn't understand the language we did a lot of praying. It was very nice to sit in God's presence and simply talk. The orchestra added a nice touch as well. Following the church service we hit up one of the many art museums to see a special exhibit on impressionism, some of our favorite. We then came home and settled in to our room and caught up on the news of the world. CNN is about the only channel in our language and it is good to know what is happening and what we need to continue to pray for.

We enjoy movies and have greatly missed them. Since we found an English Cinema we have been frequenting it. We saw Zorro 2 and Flight Plan, and we enjoyed both. We found out that going to the Opera can be cheaper than the movies so we've been doing that as well. It is not as stuffy as I had imagined and can be a lot of fun.

Our first night at the Opera we saw Billy Bud. We chose this one because we were familiar with the author Herman Melville and it was on the night we wanted to go. We lucked out because it was in English and it was a pretty interesting story. Our ten dollar tickets were not the best seats, but we managed to enjoy it anyway. If we do it again we will definitely go for the cheapest standing tickets with a much better view. If we wanted a seat it was 9 Euro or 70 Euro, so we went with 9. Next time we will go with 2 Euro and stand for the three hours. It was pretty entertaining so I don't think it will be too much work. I felt way underdressed, but I didn't want to spend money on nice clothes. So I did the best I could with my khakis and Keens. Thankfully no one seemed too upset about it. It was a good show despite what I looked like.

Other Vienna activities were roaming through the Hapsburgs residence and seeing all of their cool stuff. The fine china and silver was so pretty and I could have used it to throw an awesome get together. I don't know where I could have the party, but I hate seeing that stuff collected in some museum instead of out and being used. There were so many different sets, it seemed like quite a waist of money. I guess that's what happens when you have money to burn.

St. Stephen's Cathedral was also a nice sight. It was All Saint's Day and a service was being held. We peaked into the amazing building and slipped into the chapel to pray. The color of the intricate glass work always catches my attention. I always pray and tell God that I hope all of it brings Him glory and that the people which surround me know Him deeply. Being in these places of worship is always a treat.

As we stroll through Vienna we enjoy taking it all in. The various shopping streets, the opera house, the Hoffburg, all of it stands tall and proud. What we have enjoyed the most though may be our little place to call home. The name Happy Hostel sounds kind of sketchy to me, but it has been great. The receptionist Andrea, seems like my friend. She has been very helpful. Our apartment has helped us cook some great food and get some enjoyed sleep. If we balance the computer just right on the radiator we pick up a wireless internet connection. That always makes me happy. Vienna has been fun, the entertainment incredible, and the place to stay very cozy. We couldn't ask for more.

Our Last Day: We enjoyed our last day here in Vienna. We went to the Kunsthistorisches Museum. It was an incredible museum which houses many pieces of art which once belonged to the Hapsburgs. I liked the building as much as anything. We roamed around the streets of Vienna and then hit the opera one last time. This time it was a piece done in German entitled Osud. It was nice to see the contrast with the previous opera we had been to. This one was much more dramatic, how I envision operas to be. The high pitched singing and flashy sets caught our attention and made us glad we came. We took the standing seats and had a much better view this time. It was much more challenging to follow since we didn't know the language, but the little screens by where we stood did translate for us. It is a nice feature which I appreciated. We are thankful to have been a part of the opera experience.

We're gathering our stuff together to head to Athens tomorrow. We are not sure what all is ahead but we are looking forward to the warmer weather and hopes of being near the coast again. We'll do our best to keep you posted.
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