A BLOG ABOUT A LITTLE BIT OF EVERYTHING

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Praguing and Blogging

Prague was perhaps our favorite city yet. It's so beautiful and quirky, affordable, and full of nice people. 


Babies climbing up a radio tower



We met up with our friend Rich. New friend really! He and I grew up together (our moms are friends), but we hadn't seen each other in years. Rich has been living in Prague the last two years, and he graciously showed us around and treated us to a very awesome dinner. Check out Brendan's pig...or guess, which is the pig? 


We met many of Rich's Czech friends, and they were all so funny and sweet. I didn't get photographs of everyone, but here's some from last night:


The guy to my right did the props for the movie Hostel II. I told him this series of films had me very scared to stay in a hostel! 

Other things that happened in Prague: 
Played fooseball with Rich and friends.
Got asked if all Americans read is Shakespeare (because Shakespeare appears in so many films taking place in American high schools).
Got many compliments from Rich's Czech friends...true gentleman! 
Took the craziest cab rides of our lives (taxi drivers here have NYC drivers beat in insanity category).
Had to pay 6 crowns (approximemtally 5 cents) for ketchup at McDonalds when I ordered French fries. This is all so very, very wrong. 
Brendan (a bit tipsy) got very mad at some backpackers at Mcdonalds for taking too long to order and preventing him from purchasing extra ketchup packets (for me, obviously). 
We walked by a former communist prison and by former communist housing/barracks. 
We drank lots of beer! 

Today, we made it to our last stop, Berlin, and we finally returned our rental
car. This is how relieved Brendan felt being done with the liability of driving a rented car through many a foreign country (2,500 miles to be exact). 

Our hotel in Berlin is awesome and around many shops and restaurants. We have 3 full days to explore here, and then we head back to the USA (but not back home). I do miss free ketchup, so...it's cool. KETCHUP!!!
<3 S&B 

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Vienna

On our first day in Vienna, we checked out the Kunst Historisches Museum, which Brendan had been very excited about since the moment we first planned this trip. It has a large cabinet of curiosities and also paintings by Peter Bruegel, Vermeer, Rembrandt, Durer...we got to the museum at 1 and didn't leave until it closed at 6. We went to a cafe, got drinks, and met up with Tony for dinner at a vegetarian restaurant. 


The next day, we visited the Sisi museum, about Emperess Elisabeth (nickname Sisi) who was assassinated. She was incredibly eccentric and led a very strange life which included insane dieting and beauty rituals to maintain her 5'8", 99 pounds, and 20 inch waist figure. The apartments were pretty crazy too. 

Up next, we played with the butterflies! 
The butterfly house was beautiful ! 






Vienna is pretty: 





At night, we checked out a screening of an opera. I really have no idea what was going on, but the singing was nice. 


Today, onto Prague. 

<3 S&B 

Monday, July 21, 2014

Hallstatt Salt Mine

On Sunday, we said goodbye to Salzburg and headed to Vienna via the slow and scenic route through Hallstatt. This makes the drive an hour and 45 minutes longer, but I had read it was a beautiful drive and it was. Mountains, lakes, green green grass, tall pines...I felt like we were driving through heaven! 

Once we reached Hallstatt, I saw this funicular going straight up the mountain 

Little did I know I would soon be on it! I was a little scared. But I wanted to see the salt mine, and I definitely wasn't going to climb up there. 
At the top: 

We were in the clouds





We still had a ways to walk uphill to get to the mine: 

Once there, it was time to suit up: 
It's really cold in the salt mines, plus you have to slide down on your butt, thus the protective gear. The slide after this went straight down, so I couldn't even photograph it. It was fun!

I learned all about salt and how it's made...it was being mined here 7,000 years ago. They know because they found a preserved miner's body from the prehistoric age...Brendan kept telling me we were going to be trapped and preserved in salt too. This was, less than helpful. 

It was too dark for photos, but at the end, we rode a mine car

We had no seatbelts of any kind. I can only hope these methods of transport have good safety records! 

Our guide, Gerhard, took a selfie with me. He was super serious. 

After going down the mountain, we checked out the bone house. Hallstatt today has less than 1,000 people, but there isn't much burial space, so bone houses were necessary back in the day. The skulls were decorated and everyone was cool with touching their loved ones bones. 


I can't believe I have a skeleton. 

We arrived in Vienna at 8:30. Brendan and I had to go park the car in a park and ride...the process took an hour and involved getting caught in a big thunder storm. It was kind if romantic because it was in Vienna, but would have been more romantic if I wasn't wearing open toed shoes. We ate bad pizza at 11pm, but I didn't care that the pizza was bad, it was a darn good day!
<3 
S&B 

The Hills Are Alive With the Sound of Stacy Reenacting The Sound of Music

What a title! 
But yes, it's true. Brendan was a good sport and went with me on The Sound of Music tour. I sang all the songs and reenacted all my favorite moments! 
Do-re-mi


16 going on 17 

Liesel's first kiss: 
The Hills Are Alive...



The patio and lake used in the movie (they used a different house). 

Lake 

Wedding chapel 





The abbey 
How do you solve a problem like Maria ? 

Forgot to take a picture of the I have confidence street, drats! 

The tour was 4 hours, so we drove in the countryside and learned all about the real Von Trapps, movie trivia, and lots of singing. On our tour, people from Korea, Japan, India, USA...Austrians don't care much about the movie (they have their own version) but everyone else does it seems! 


Also on Saturday...
We visited the Dom Museum and saw their cabinet of curiosities (the main attraction)! We saw the archbishop's quarters and we learned about monks. We saw little wax paintings and all sorts of church treasures. No photos allowed :( 

We visited the dwarf garden. These are statues of real people that entertained at mirabelle palace. An archbishop commissioned the statues, which were later ordered to be removed and destroyed, but they were saved and returned. 


It was a good last day in Salzburg! 

But Salzburg has been VERY hot...90 degrees. We are all very over the heat wave, which should hopefully subside with rain this afternoon in Vienna. 

Yesterday's update coming soon! 
<3 S&B 
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