The Hills are Alive with the Sound of Music!!!

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February 6th 2007
Published: February 7th 2007
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Jessica Von TrappJessica Von TrappJessica Von Trapp

Oh Maria, teach me to sing!
I know I never finished my previous transcribing of the last entry that I started on the train, but I've just simply loved Salzburg TOO much to let it go any longer without talking about it. I've been on the internet every day since arriving here, but my time has been preoccupied with other things. I've been trying to enroll as a candidate for the UVic Senate elections so I can hopefully serve another term when I get back, but it's been a little tricky since, obviously, I'm in Europe. Luckily, my personal assitant (aka my dad) is a huge help on short notice and is helping get forms signed and handed in and everything, but I still spent ages yesterday typing up various platforms and bios and such, cutting them down to the word limit, and e-mailing head shots. Ohhh the head shots. Hahaha what an ordeal. I seriously hate headshots, so Derek and I spent like 30 minutes last night in the co-ed bathroom of our hostel doing a massive photoshoot. I finally got a pic I liked, but then I realized I was wearing a pink, fluffy scarf, which I didn't think conveyed the image I was going
The Lake and the DeckThe Lake and the DeckThe Lake and the Deck

This is the lake where the kids and Maria fell out of the boat, and the massive palace that was used as the back of the house in the movie (a different house was used for the front)
for (let's be honest, most students vote based on the pictures), so we had to do it all over again. Oh, and if you were wondering why we were taking these photos in the bathroom, it was because it was the only room on our hostel that had decently bright lighting. You can barely even read in our room because of the low light. And flash pictures are NOT condusive to a flattering portrait, that's for sure. Anyways, if all goes according to plan that should be handed in in Victoria sometime within the next 4 1/2 hours.

Now, on to Salzburg tales!!! Ohhhh, this city is absolutely so incredible. Between my absolute adoration of the Sound of Music and my parent's loving tales of it after their trip there when I was young, I had extremely high expectations for the place. It did NOT disappoint! You know how you can fall in love with a place based on a movie and then you actually *go* there and find out it's not at all like that in real life, or that they've renovated or torn down the landmark or something? Well, Salzburg and the surrounding area are not like
The GazeboThe GazeboThe Gazebo

I am 16 going on 17! OK, I'm not anymore, but Lesil in the movie was really 21 going on 22 (like me!) when the Sound of Music was filmed!
that. They're both essentially as beautiful as they were in the movie. I mean, some things have changed (and it's winter now, so the area is definitely less green) but generally it's still a lovely, quaint city surrounded by amazing hills and peaks.

The day we arrived in Salzburg was sunny and really surprisingly warm. I had expected it to be much colder and was actually concerned that I would be woefully underdressed when we got off the train, but I had nothing to worry about. Today, too, the weather was pretty warm and the sun was shining brightly.

Unfortunately, yesterday, the day of our Sound of Music tour, was another story.

We woke up to pelting rain and FREEZING coldness. Although that in no way dampened my excitment and enthusiasm for the tour, it made our pictures a bit dreary. Oooooh well. The tour was really fun. Derek and I sat in the very front row of the huge bus, which was decorated with bright pictures of Maria and the children. We got to see almost all of the locations in this area where the movie was filmed, though some of them were only visible from
The Wedding ChurchThe Wedding ChurchThe Wedding Church

I remember seeing a big wedding in progress at the Banff Spring Hotel when I was quite young, and telling my parents I wanted a wedding like that, just like Maria in the Sound of Music. They tried to get that idea out of my head!
a distance for various reasons. The tour was great because it didn't just show us the city locations--we also got to travel up into the lakes regions, up in the mountains, to see a few of the views from the ariel shots at the beginning of the film as well as the town of Mondsee, where the wedding scene was filmed. They also said that it was where the scene was filmed where the kids are climbing and hanging out of trees, but Derek and I watched the film this morning and that definitely wasn't the right spot. Maybe we were mistaken in what our tour guide was saying.

Our hostel shows the film every day at 10:30am, so after breakfast we settled in to watch it. It was super great for two reasons (beyond the fact that it's a GREAT movie, of course!). For one, an Australian couple was watching with us, and the girl was just as in love with the movie as I was and the two of us sang along together to many of the songs. I was really happy because no one on the bus on the tour sung along with any of the songs when they were played, and I really wanted to (but wasn't brave enough to sing much by myself). The Australians were doing the tour that afternoon, but her boyfriend or husband or whatever had never seen the film, so she was making him watch it. It definitely wasn't his type of movie, but he was pretty good natured about it (mostly) and I talked to them this evening and it sounded like he enjoyed the tour. The other thing that made the viewing especially good was that there was an Austian man in the room who was getting a HUGE kick out of these two girls who were positively in love with this movie and were animately telling stories about how it dominated our childhood and we would have given anything to be one of the Von Trapp children. See, in Austria, they have no idea what that Sound of Music is. Well, they know about Maria Von Trapp (a real person, who the movie is based on) but they don't know the American movie. I guess I Salzburg they do a bit because of the tourism potential, but that's it. He just can't believe how many people are familiar with this movie that he knows nothing about. While we were watching, various people wandered in from the US, Britain, Ireland, etc, and all of them acted like it was a dumb question when he asked if they were familiar with the movie. Even on our tour bus there were people from countries like Mexico and Korea, yet poor Austria has missed out. Our tour guide did say that the movie was translated in 2000, so maybe it will gain popularity now.

Salzburg is also famous as the birthplace of Mozart, and today Derek and I went to a really interesting museum which was set in his former family home. It was quite good, and really reasonably priced at only 5 euros, including an audio guide which played lots of his music. I had NO idea the number of compostions that are credited to Mozart! There was a stack of volumes containing his music that was taller than I was. I was amazed.

Times up, so I've gotta go. Just a few pics for you today. Tomorrow: Vienna!


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