Friday, November 14, 2008



I've seen this sort of thing several times and it always surprises me. That empty lot in the foreground used to be a building -- a building that was attached to the building that is still standing. Is this a strange thing, to tear down only part of a building?

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

No schnauzer allowed

no schnauzers

Today's post is dedicated to my favorite schnauzer owners -- you know who you are. :)

It's not uncommon for people to take their dogs practically everywhere with them. It's also not uncommon to see signs posted to tell you that your dog is not allowed in a certain area. However, what is uncommon is to see a sign with such a distinctive looking breed of dog. Most signs look like this:

Monday, November 10, 2008

It's kosher

Hadar kosher shop

Food shopping is a little different here than in the States. I have a large supermarket practically across the street from my apartment and that's where I do most of my shopping. (It's large by Austrian standards, but certainly not something like a super center.) But sometimes I head over to this shop to buy items that you don't typically find in European grocery stores. Items like a normal size jar of peanut butter, pancake syrup, boxes of baking soda, American-style mustard, and vanilla extract. Last week when I was there I also noticed kettle corn and chocolate chips. And the items are exorbitantly priced -- well, no more than food products anywhere else. I don't know why a kosher store carries these products and a regular store doesn't, but I'm glad to know it's available.

Thursday, November 6, 2008



There are so many churches and cathedrals in Vienna. I've walked past this one on Mariahilferstrasse many times, but haven't been inside yet.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Can't wait

fall day

Ah, fall. It's the perfect season. This is the view from our apartment. And yes, there is a guy peeing on the wall. When I spotted him, I knew I needed a photo. I was sure that by the time I went to the other room, found my camera and got back to the window, he would be finished. But he wasn't. Apparently, he really had to go.

Monday, November 3, 2008


at the bus stop

It's nice to ride the bus in the fall. It's not hot and stinky like in the summer and you don't have to stand and wait in the bitter cold like in the winter.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

another sunset


I don't know if I'll ever get tired of the view from our balcony. Especially as the sun is setting.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Kleines Café

Kleines Cafe

Brian and I haven't visited this cafe, but I think we should make a point of stopping there. This is how Lonely Planet describes it:

Designed by architect Hermann Czech in the 1970s, the Kleines Café exudes a bohemian atmosphere reminiscent of Vienna's heady Jugendstil days. It's tiny inside, but the wonderful summer outdoor seating on Franziskanerplatz is arguably the best in the Innere Stadt.
It sounds like just our kind of place, don't you think?

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Fog on the Danube

Danube in fog

It's been really foggy here lately -- and not just in the morning. This photo of the Danube River was taken around noon. Here's the same view on a sunny day: New Blue Danube.

Monday, October 20, 2008

On the beaten path

wooded path

I was hoping for more reds and oranges. Still, it was a nice walk.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Taking a short break

My schedule is a little crazy this week and I think I may be running out of photos. So I'm taking a break. Hopefully we'll be back to regular programming next week, so check back on Monday.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Austrian village


This is a photo of the village from the balcony of the hotel where the retreat was located. It was taken early in the morning as the fog was rising.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Milk princess


Several of the cows where wearing flowers on their head on Monday when they came down from the mountains. One cow had on much larger head gear, but she refused to pose for a photo. Someone told me that she was the milk queen -- the cow that had produced the most milk over the past year. So I thought perhaps this cow was the milk princess.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Men in tights


Well, not really tights, but lederhosen. I couldn't resist a photo and these two were more than happy to comply when I asked nicely. In fact, the guy on the left borrowed someone's hat to get a more traditional look. I thought they just dressed like this for the festival, but I continued to see guys in leather pants throughout the week.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Filzmooser band


Last Monday, the village had a big celebration where they brought the cows down from the mountain for the winter. I missed the arrival of the cows, but I got to see the band play for a while.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Room with a view


I spent last week at women's retreat with other women from churches in Germany and Austria. It was a great week and a beautiful location. This is the view from the balcony of my hotel room. The mountain is called Bischofsmütze (or Bishop's Mitre) because it looks like a Bishop's hat.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Fernwärme Wien

Fernwärme Wien

And yet another view of Fernwärme Wien. This is the last one.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Fernwärme Wien

Fernwärme Wien

This is another view of Fernwärme Wien.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Lennon Wall

Lennon Wall 8

Just one more shot of the wall. This message is hard to miss.

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Lennon Wall

Lennon Wall 3

While we're talking about the trip to Prague, let's take a look at Lennon Wall. It use to actually mean something, but it's become somewhat of a tourist stop since communism fell. It's still worth a visit. It may look like a big mess from this far back, but there are some interesting scrawlings there.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Departure board

Departure board

Last year Brian and I made a short trip to Prague and I just loved the arrival/departure boards at the train station. The sound of the little tiles flipping around every time the information changed was quite nice.

I decided this photo would be good for today because I'm departing for about a week. But don't worry, I have photos lined up for the rest of the week. And I hope to have some lovely photos from other parts of Austria when I return.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Winter sunset

vienna sunset

This is another photo taken from the balcony. I never get tired of the view. The needle sticking up on the left is Donauturm (Danube Tower). And I think the thing sticking up on the right is the tallest apartment building in Vienna, but I'm not sure.

Photo taken January 20, 2008.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Street musicians

street performers

Like yesterday's photo, this one was taken shortly after we arrived to Vienna. In fact, it was our first day in this fair land. After finding the place we would live for the next month and probably after taking a nap, we headed downtown to check out the scene and grab dinner at Pizza Bizi.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008


Vienna 1

I was looking through some old photos the other day and ran across this one. It was taken on July 12th of last year -- less than two weeks after we arrived in Vienna. Donaufelderkirche is the third tallest church in Vienna and it's located just down the street from where Brian and I stayed our first month in Vienna. I still like to look for it any time I'm looking over the city -- from the Riesenrad, Donauturm, or any other place we take visitors to see the city view.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Doggie bag

Doggie bad

I never could get at a good angle to snap this shot, but it was so cute I had to share it anyway. No, I'm not talking about the guy wearing white socks and sandals. I'm talking about that cute little dog carrying a shopping bag in his mouth. I followed this pair for a block or two (I was going the same direction) and there was one thing I could tell for sure -- the dog was quite pleased with his purchase. And, just in case you're wondering, I was standing across the street when I shot this photo, so I don't think I looked like a total stalker.

Monday, September 22, 2008



The Haas-Haus is a postmodernistic style building (whatever that means -- thanks Wiki) that was completed in 1990. There are other modern buildings in Vienna, but this one gets a lot of attention because it stands in such strong contrast to Stephansdom, which is located almost directly across from it.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Stephansdom's south tower

Stephansdom 3

The south tower is 445 feet high and took over 65 years to build, from 1368 to 1433. And it's probably been under renovation ever since that time. (I'm being a little sarcastic here, but it does seem like it requires a lot of upkeep.) For a small fee, you can climb the 343 steps to the lookout point. It's supposed to be a nice view, but the view is "somewhat restricted" according to the cathedral's website due to renovation.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Stephansdom at night

Stephansdom at night

It's worth taking a trip into the inner city after dark to view Stephansdom. On the left edge of this photo is Haas-Haus, a modern building that stands in start contrast to the architecture of Stephansdom.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Double-headed eagle mosaic

Stephansdom 1

This is another section of Stephansdom's roof. You can see how the city has grown up next to the cathedral. This photo was taken a block away from Stephansdom -- the buildings on the left and right are not part of the cathedral, but rather offices and shops that line this side street. The double-headed eagle depicted in the mosaic is the symbol of the Hapsburg dynasty.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008



This is just a small portion of the side of Stephansdom. One of the most famous aspects of the cathedral is the roof, which is covered in 230,000 glazed tiles.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Stephansdom replica


I haven't posted a lot of photos of Stephansdom. But it's not because I don't like it or haven't taken many photos of it. It's because you can't really capture the grandeur of the cathedral in a photo. The city has grown up so close around it, it's impossible to get a photo of the entire building. Situated next to Stephansdom is this small replica of the cathedral. Over the next few days, I'll post photos of Stephansdom from different angles.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Tichy Eissalon

Tichy Eissalon

When I ask people in Vienna about their favorite eissalon (ice cream parlor), Tichy is almost always mentioned. Sometimes the statement is along the lines of, "People say Tichy is the best, but I prefer...", but often it's named as one of the top three eissalons in Vienna. I visited Tichy once several years ago and didn't think it was any better than some of the other eissalons I had visited. However, I'm pretty sure they had ice cream parlor chairs there and I haven't seen ice cream parlor chairs at any other eissalon. I'll have to go inside and check it out the next time I'm in the neighborhood (which is a long ways from my neighborhood). Maybe I'll try their ice cream as well. Like most eissalons, Tichy closes sometime during the fall and doesn't reopen until spring.

Thursday, September 11, 2008



From the window in our living room you can see a large windmill farm off in the distance. The view from our window doesn't look nearly as nice as these two windmills which are part of one of several farms we spotted while driving to Melk last July.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008



This is a view of the Gloriette from which I took the photo posted yesterday.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Schloss Schönbrunn


Schönbrunn Palace is one of the major tourist attractions. In addition to the palace, there are several gardens, a huge maze made out of hedges, the Vienna Zoo and a great view of the city. This photo was taken from the Gloriette, a pavilion located on a hill behind the palace.

Monday, September 8, 2008

Egyptian god Anubis

Egyptian god Anubis

This photo was taken a few months ago during Eurocup. That's why this statue of the Egyptian god Anubis is wearing a soccer jersey. There was an older man taking a photo of his wife standing in front of this statue and I was just milling around waiting for them to move out of the way. So he asked (or I offered, can't remember) if I could take of photo of both him and his wife, then he insisted on taking one of me and Brian. He took a couple of photos -- I think this was his artistic rendition since it's tilted. I think he enjoyed being able to see the results right away on the digital camera because he was still using a 35mm film camera.

After the photo shoot, we spoke for a few minutes. He asked where we were from and whether we were visiting or living in Vienna. He told us their names and that he was from the former Czecheslovakia and his wife was from Austria. He was quite impressed with my German and said to his wife, "Listen to her German, she doesn't even speak with an accent." To which his wife replied, "She has an accent." Oh well, at least other non-native German speakers think my German sounds nice.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Pestsaule statue

Pestsaule statue

This is another statue to plague victims. The statue in the center of Graben Square near Stephansplatz memorializes the citizens of Vienna who died of the bubonic plague during the late 1600s. Between 75,000 and 150,000 residents of Vienna died during the plague and this area of the city was used as a mass grave.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008



Votivkirche is probably my favorite cathedral in Vienna. Sometimes I wonder if there will ever be a time when half of it's not covered by scaffolding. You can't tell in this photo, but most of the building is white. The part that is covered is still being cleaned. And the roof is being restored on the right and back side. If you google Votivkirche, you'll find some interesting photos like this one that show the building without scaffolding. The white part has been cleaned and the gray part was still awaiting cleaning. The photo was probably taken in the late 1980s or early 1990s.

Monday, September 1, 2008

Segway city tour

city tour

There are a lot of options for city tours: walking tours, bicycle tours, bus and carriage tours. But the most modern method has to be the Segway tour. It seems like a lot of fun, but I'd be afraid of falling off!

Friday, August 29, 2008

Holy Trinity Column - Koszeg, Hungary

Holy Trinity Column

This column which stands in front of the Church of Jesus' Heart was built to memorialize the 600 people who died during the plague following Rákóczi’s War for Independence (1703-1711). The column was completed in 1713.

Read more about Holy Trinity Column here.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Placed by the Gideons

Gideons Bible

I'm never surprised to see a Gideons' Bible in a hotel room in the U.S., but they're not as common in Europe. Koszeg is located about 2 or 3 miles from the Austrian/Hungarian border, so it makes sense that the Gideons would leave a Hungarian/German/English Bible.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Looking over Koszeg

Koszeg, Hungary

Earlier in the week Hungary celebrated a national holiday, so there were a lot of people taking advantage of the long weekend. Fortunately, the people we were visiting were able to find us a hotel for the night. Apparently it was one of the last available rooms in the city. Our tiny room was part of a finished attic with two beds pushed under the slant of the roof. It was actually quite cozy. We had one window which was located on the sloping ceiling, so our view was the rooftops of Koszeg.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Jurisich Castle - Koszeg, Hungary

Jurisich Castle

Jurisich Castle is located in the north-west part of the city. This section just happens to be located right outside the restaurant where we ate lunch.

You can read more about Jurisich Castle and the city of Koszeg here.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Church of Jesus' Heart - Koszeg, Hungary

Church of Jesus' Heart

Over the weekend we visited Koszeg, Hungary, a small town in Hungary. The town is referred to as Hungary's Jewel Box because it is one of the most attractive towns in Hungary.

The Church of Jesus' Heart, also called Sacred Heart Church, was designed by a Viennese architect and completed in 1894. During our visit, we saw two weddings take place at this church.

Friday, August 22, 2008

On hold

You may have noticed that I've been absent all week. Or maybe you haven't. I'm not going to fool myself into believing that there are people out there anxiously awaiting my next post. I may be a little vain at times, but come on.

I plan on being back next week with a vengeance. Or at least with some photos. So stay tuned.

Friday, August 15, 2008

Neue Donau


This is a shot of the Neue Donau, or New Danube. On the left is a man-made island called Donauinsel (Danube Island), which is basically just a big recreational area. I think you can walk across the bridge when it's connected like this, but the bridge is made of up 4 sections and can be rotated to help control the flow of water. I'm not sure how it works, but I think it's used to help prevent flooding.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Where do you come from?


When I first saw this, I thought she came from the future. But then I realized the date was 2007 followed by a smiley face and not 2070.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Fountain at Melk Abbey

Melk Abbey

We weren't able to tour the abbey because we had Sharkdog with us, but Rhonda and I walked through the courtyard where we found this nice fountain with what we think were koi fish.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Melk Abbey

Melk Abbey

Melk Abbey is a Benedictine abbey located in the Wachau Valley outside of Vienna.

Monday, August 11, 2008

The Last Supper


I think you have to really see this in person to appreciate it. It's a mosaic of da Vinci's The Last Supper. This is what Wikipedia says about it:

There is a life-sized copy of Leonardo da Vinci's The Last Supper on the church's northern wall. It is a mosaic made by the Roman mosaic artist Giacomo Raffaelli which was ordered by Napoleon I in 1809, but it was not finished before Napoleon's abdication. Francis II of Austria bought it, wanting to install it in the Belvedere in Vienna. As it was too large for the building, it was set up on the north wall of the church, where it remains to this day. The mosaic is 9.18 x 4.47 m and weight approximatively 20 tons. (,_Vienna)

If you look at the photo on Wikipedia, you can actually see some of the detail of the individual tiles.

Friday, August 8, 2008