Saturday, December 10, 2011

Sweatpants Across Europa: Austria

A decade ago, I applied for a work visa in Britain and used it to work and travel for several months. This is that story.  To begin at the beginning, go here.


Back in civilization, we boarded a train for Vienna. We passed through Salzburg, by numerous lakeside resorts bordering the Alps, and arrived at our destination. Here we enjoyed two days amid growing throngs of travelers as the tourism season picked up considerably.

On our last day we decided to hunt out some famous graves. Our guidebook made it sound like these graves would be sitting by themselves in highly visible locations with many signs pointing to them. As it turned out, they were unmarked and set in a sea of similar-looking gravestones. After asking some equally uninformed tourists where our desired tombstones were, we wandered aimlessly as the mid-day temperature rose. It was turning out to be a very bad idea, indeed. After a lengthy, uncomfortably warm slog, we came upon our goal: Mozart, Schuman, Beethoven, Liszt, and a bunch of Strausses. It was such a significant moral victory that we took many more pictures than we would ever care about later. Contented, we stopped at McDonald’s for lunch and raced to Central Coffee House, the coffee house that begat the coffee craze in Europe that begat the coffee craze in America that begat Starbucks. Caffeinated, we booked the next train out of town.