Published: September 14th 2007September 1st 2007
You Don’t Always Get The Time You Need
Every time you talk to someone about taking or being on a trip that lasts anything longer than 6 months you get some standard assumptions and questions. Inevitably however you are talking to goes through a few stages. Stage 1- Congratulations
: “Wow that sound great/fun, I imagine that you are having a blast.” Stage 2 - Skepticism
: “ That must be _______ (fill in with your choice of the following: tiring, tough to plan, hard to carry enough stuff, impossible to get along with each other for that long, etc). How do you manage to accomplish it?!?” Stage 3 - Incredulous (sometimes referred to as the Rudeness stage )
: “How do you afford that without working?” (This one is always the toughest to answer and the more embarrassing part of the conversation. People who are polite don’t ask, other people always want to pry into your finances. Sometimes it’s hard not to be nasty when a complete stranger asks this question… “Um, it’s none of your business!!”) Stage 4 - Wonder (usually an unspoken part of the conversation)
: This is the part of the conversation when you see people, specifically those people that enjoy travel too, stare into the distance with a glassy look in their eyes. This is the moment that your conversational partners are imagining what they could do with a year out in the world.
No matter how much people think they know what long term travel is like they are almost always wrong. I certainly won’t claim to be the most knowledgeable person in the world when it comes to this topic. As many of you have noticed Kel and I do travel but we do it at our pace and in our style. This means that there are others on travelblog.org that are WAY more hardcore than we are and others who live in a much more luxurious state than we do. I like to consider us somewhere in the middle of the travel pack, at least for the experienced travelers who are regularly seen on Travelblog.org
One misconception that seems to plague even the nicest and most realistic of people we come across is the belief that you could do everything in the whole world in one year. Sadly,
a year is merely an appetizer to a life long addiction of travel, you merely skim the surface if you try to see lots of places. Our recent time in Vienna is a perfect example of just plain not having enough time.
We love seeing our friends and have been so lucky that at least a few of our closer friends have been able to meet us in Europe while we have been abroad. The only challenge that has arisen due to meeting our friends is that jumping around from place to place can make travel more complicated and difficult to plan. Instead of following a contiguous route through Europe, we are on our way from north eastern Europe to Greece. We needed to find an easy and cheap way to get from point A (Krakow) to point B (Santorini) without too much fuss. Turns out it is nearly impossible to go from Krakow to Santorini so that meant a brief stop in some other place. We were lucky in this case: nearby Vienna, which we had yet to see, had good connections to Greece. Thus, with only one day free, we ended up in Vienna, Austria, the gateway
between Eastern and Western Europe, a bastion of culture and beauty. Whirlwind Through Music Town
What is Vienna known for? Pretty simple, music. Vienna is the Nashville or L.A. of classical music. Many of the world’s greatest composers come from this beautiful city of sights and sounds. Can you truly do a town like this justice in a day? No way! Does that mean we didn’t try? Once again, no way!
We got up pretty early on our one full day in town and set out into the confusing, windy streets of Austria’s capital city. After a quick ride on the easy to use metro system we found ourselves by the National History museum which is directly in the heart of the monument area of Vienna.
We learned, only a few weeks earlier, that a quick city tour gives you a good feel for a city but can also spoil your appetite for more of the city. We suggest staying away from half day tours if you have multiple days in a city, they take all of a city’s mystery away. But, in this case we didn’t have multiple days so we opted for
one of Kel’s favorite means of transportation, a horse drawn carriage ride.
Kel, the consummate romantic, loves feeling like a princess. This, of course, will come as no surprise to those of you who know her well. She loves anything that allows her to travel in the open air through a city…and it never hurts to make an open air trip in any method of transportation that has long been used by Queens. With a tiara, a tight lipped smile, and a flashy wave, Kel would make the perfect royal in any carriage parade.
Our tour guide was thorough and had tons of good information about the new and old parts of Hofburg, the Rathaus, the museum district, a few cathedrals and many, many other interesting Vienna sights. Vienna could definitely fill a couple of days on any trip if you are interested in history and churches. St. Stephen’s and St. Peter’s are both gorgeous cathedrals that are worth a peak. I would also highly recommend a wander through the old town of Vienna. While very confusing , the old quarter of the city offers many beautiful buildings, even if they aren’t always famous.
After our carriage
ride we went in search of lunch. As is often the case, most of the restaurants near the sites are cheesy and not worth your time, but after a quick walk down some back streets we found a cute local restaurant which had great Viennese specialties. The broth soup with pieces of pancake was especially good as, of course, was the dessert strudel, love me some apple strudel!
During the afternoon we spent a little time getting things together for our trip to Greece. We stocked up on corn starch (at this point we were carrying enough for almost three weeks for Kel, that equaled out to almost 5 kilos (11 pounds) of cornstarch), bought some fun books, and I got a haircut. After our quick shopping spree, I headed back out into the city to do some more photography. Kel decided to remain in the room and catch up on rest since she hadn’t slept well the night before.
After a fabulous dinner later that night we went to bed early to ready ourselves for what, we believed, would be a harrowing trip to Santorini, Greece the next day. Hope you are all doing great back home.
We miss you all immensely and thank you all for reading our blog!
There are more photos below