Posted at:24 June, 2015 in Ambassador Blog
….I had to catch the #18 tram across the city to Westbahnhof where the Hostel Ruthensteiner is located. The ladies inside checked me in and gave me a glass of homemade elder-flower-lemonade to refresh me and make me feel welcome. That was really nice of them. Elder-flower-lemonade is awesome! I dropped my bags in my room and signed up for an evening walking tour of the city. Vienna is beautiful, just as I had heard.
After the tour, I stopped at a bar called ‘Addicted to Rock’ for a beer and then I came to the hostel to sit at the Hostel Ruthensteiner bar to make friends. I only had one beer and then turned in for the night. I like it when I meet people who are on the first trip of their lives. I feel like I would like to take them under my wing and show them how easy it is to effortlessly travel for a few days.
…there were four up-and-at-it South Korean girls who were in the bathroom to shower one after another. It takes a long time to get four girls through the bathroom and shower in the morning. It was nearly 10am before I even got to breakfast.
I spent the day wandering around Vienna. The city has traffic light symbols unlike any I have ever seen anywhere else it he world. To endorse tolerance, the green ‘pedestrian crossing’ symbols have depictions of couples in love holding hands to cross the streets. There are all forms of couples, including same sex couples holding hands on the green lights. It is a very interesting way to integrate all ways of living into a very traditional city. Hopefully some day they will have a light with a person with a massive backpack on as he crosses the street heading for towards the train station.
€4.50 – Exotic Austrian beer in a bottle
€4.50 – Sandwich snack in an Austrian pub to feed your growling worms
€4.30 – A pint of beer in an Austrian pub
€2.20 – One way public transportation cost
€9.00 – Schnitzel and fries in a tourist restaurant
€24.00 – Paid walking tour of Vienna
A restaurant called ‘Centimeter 2’ drew me in for lunch. If you have a fascination with your food measured in lengths, this is the place to eat. “How much bread do you want?” “Umm, just a piece.” “No, how many centimeters of bread do you want?” “What, umm, 8…” And then eight centimeters of bread is delivered to you! A strangely fascinating system…
At 4pm I met up with Dr. Zora who I met in Uruguay for her afternoon coffee and a visit. We caught up on some tall steps overlooking the city. But, doctors are busy and she had to carry on. I came back to the hostel to hang out in the bar and talked with French tourists who drank Weissbier with me. Hostel Ruthensteiner has a great bar that is rounded which makes it nearly impossible to not make friends with those sitting around you because you are nearly looking at them anyhow. The hostel is not a party hostel, but rather more of a relaxed atmosphere setting where gentle music plays when someone in the common area is not entertaining with one of the musical instruments hanging on the wall.
My friend Cat showed up later in the evening. Cat and Beaver…I think that is funny. Cat and I went to a pub called Kangaroo where we drank strange Austrian beer, including a ‘chili beer’ which tasted normal, but burned your throat after. It may be the first non thirst-quenching beer I have ever had in my life. I felt like I needed a beer to chase it down. However, the creativity of it impressed me.
I headed to the hostel to pack up and to get down to the common area of Hostel Ruthensteiner for breakfast. The hostel has as much chopped breakfast fruit as your body needs to replenish the previous night had you been abusing your stored vitamins on a party. But the best part of the breakfast is that lovely Monica will make you a hot chocolate just like your mom did when you were a child. I spent about an hour hanging out near the front desk where the very sweet ladies working behind the desk in a relaxed atmosphere making one feel at ease in their presence. It is very comfortable at Hostel Ruthensteiner.
I caught the train heading to Salzburg. I have realized that I really love to watch a city pass by from the window of the train… For some reason I also have an affection for cruising through stations which the train does not stop where I can try to read the names of our non-stops that we wiz by and try to find a relevance for their names in my life. Something about that experience brings me pleasure…