Central Europe for Sexagenarians – Day 13

Posted by admin on July 15th, 2013 filed in batman, photography, travel

Tuesday, July 9th, 2013
Kedd, július 9, 2013 (again, according to Google Translate)

Though we were sad to leave the Budapest apartment, we had planned to stay in the Alps and were eager to get there. We awoke early enough to move the car then went to check out the market I missed seeing the day before, stopping to get another picture of the Paris, Texas Cafe on the way.

The market is a huge indoor area filled with stalls vending fruits and vegetables, meats, cheeses and myriad handicrafts. We bought some apples for the trip then Mom and Laura made one last trip to the grocery store to pick up a few final items while I perused the souvenirs.

We met back at the apartment, packed the car and waited for Gino to meet us for our checkout. He was running a bit late, but we got out of town before noon and were on our way to Austria, again driving through lovely fields of sunflowers and windmills (not turning for some reason).

Construction at our exit to leave the autobahn side-tracked us to an outlet mall where we decided to stop for lunch. We ate at “Sweet & Meats” where we were professionally ignored by a really surly waitress. The food was tasty though, so it wasn’t a total bust.

We continued into the Alps, passing through about 20 tunnels by the end of our trip, which brought us to a little ski resort area just outside Vordernburg. We weren’t sure we had the right place, but the neighbors were very kind and offered to call the owner, who showed up a short while later.

He drove up in a nice SUV, and looked like a pretty laid back, young guy, dressed in an old t-shirt. When he got out on the driver’s side and walked around the car to greet us, we saw that his t-shirt was almost all that he was wearing. Besides a pair of sneakers and his Speedo, the t-shirt was it. He was a very welcoming, animated guy, so Laura and I were trying to focus on his kind nature rather than his bare legs (they go all the way up, in case you were wondering). But he opened up the house for us and showed us how to get to the nearby lake and answered all our questions about the area and how to work the cappuccino machine included in the cabin. He turned out to be a wonderful, very helpful host so our culture shock gradually wore off.

We took a moment to explore the cabin: it had 1 1/2 baths, four rooms (each of which had beds for two people), an upstairs common area with a fold up twin bed and a crib, a downstairs dining area with a large L-shaped bench seat and a full kitchen. And did I mention the cappuccino machine? =D

After he left, we changed clothes and hiked toward the lake. There had been the constant sound of bells in the distance, and I assumed it was some kind of wind chime, but as we rounded a corner, there was a herd on cattle grazing on the hillside just above us. The bells were cow bells!

The herd stared at Laura for awhile then continued with their dinner. We walked on, stopping to take pictures of Batman with local slugs, of the fields of wildflowers and of the little lake. The skies had been thundering and threatening rain, so rather than trek down to the lake we returned to the cabin, fixed dinner, opened our Hungarian rosé and watched “Young at Heart”, an awesome documentary about a choir of seniors who perform rock songs, and “Reign Over Me” with Adam Sandler and Don Cheadle before heading to bed.

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