If you start to take Vienna – take Vienna. -Napoleon

28 Jan

Hallo again from Vienna! I’ve now been in Vienna for 2 weeks, and am still having a blast. I might never leave! 🙂 I’m going to a ballet tonight (Romeo and Juliet), a ball (yeah, like Anastasia!) tomorrow night, and Greece and Turkey in a week and a half. Where else in the world can you do all of that so easily?! My Intensive German is going well…I’m am learning a lot! We took a field trip to a Kaffeehaus where both Beethoven and Mozart played! This week we’re taking a field trip, or “Exkursion,” on Friday to the Naschmarkt! I’ve already gone to the Naschmarkt but it is one of my favorite places in Wien!

I’m going to list some facts about Vienna and Austria that I’ve learned in the past couple of weeks that I find very interesting!

1.  There are 60,000 registered dogs in Vienna. I happen to adore dogs, so this fact excites me more than just about anything! People bring their dogs on the U-bahn, in restaurants, and in stores! The restaurants will put out little bowls of dog food and water for the dogs! To walk them around, you have to have a leash and a muzzle, but granted they all seem very well behaved!

2.  A BUNCH of famous guys have lived/performed in Vienna! These include Mozart, Beethoven, Schubert, Brahms, and Strauss in the music department. I’m SO glad I took Music Appreciation at Purdue last year! Living in the city really helps make these guys real! More famous guys from Vienna: Gustav Klimt (my favorite artist!) and Sigmund Freud. And if we’re including all of Austria, Arnold Schwarzenegger (although he never lived in Vienna…he’s actually from Graz, which is Southwest of Vienna)

3.  Austria is about the size of Maine, and is surrounded by eight different countries: Germany and the Czech Republic to the north, Slovakia and Hungary to the east, Slovenia and Italy to the south and Switzerland and Liechtenstein to the west. Another wonderful thing about living in Vienna is that you can go to so many different places that, for one, don’t take very long to get to, and secondly, aren’t very expensive (comparatively speaking, of course).

4. 75% of Austria is Catholic. I found this very interesting, because, being Catholic myself, I normally find myself in the minority! I looked up the percentage in Indiana, and found that only 20% in Indiana are Catholic. The cathedrals and churches in Vienna are absolutely breathtaking. Stefansdom (or St. Stephan’s Cathedral) is probably my favorite, just because it has so much history and is so awesome in every sense of the word! Right now it is being cleaned, which I find to be quite disappointing. Stefansdom caught on fire during WWII and so it is now black from soot and other air pollution. I personally think the black shows the history that goes along with the cathedral. But, they’re cleaning it anyway, so now it’s half white and half black!

Well, I’ll leave you to ponder those facts! I sure have been pondering them…but now I need to get some beauty sleep for the ball! Waltzing isn’t easy, you know…

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