Saturday, 26 August 2017

August Trip 4: Vienna, Austria

To finish off my first non-business trip in years, a twelve-day trip to the Czech Republic and Austria, I stayed with my friend and fellow Council of the Youth Platform member Lili from the 19th to the 25th of August in Vienna. 

On our first night, we went to a festival that Lili told me is basically an embodiment of Austria; a drinking festival where you can play loud music. 

We saw a cool statue erected in memory of victims of the plague, and I learned from Lili that in Vienna when part of a historical building or statue has been destroyed e.g. by WW II bombing, it has to be reconstructed in a different colour so you can see which part is original. I saw that on a couple of things around Vienna, which makes sense given its history.

We then went on a sort of graffiti tour of the capital, seeing Vienna's equivalent of Prague's Lennon Wall, a place where graffiti is allowed and encouraged. Even got photos of people actively spraypainting, all chill. 

Lili brought us into the underground and showed us this really cool corridor where they have mirrors with flickering stats on them. 

This one is amount the Sahara has expanded since the start of the year in hectares, and there were ones about the number of children in poverty and number of schnitzels eaten in Vienna since the start of the year and number of relationships in Vienna, loads of stuff like that. 

We also saw a bunch of murals, one with Conor McGregor and (I think?) Floyd Mayweather shifting with "Kiss me I'm Irish" and "once you go black you never go back" above them, and another with Kylie (Kendall?) Jenner, and another which was like a screenshot of a bunch of emo texts ... it was interesting, and odd. 

Here's a photo of Lili, Lukas and me:

After Lukas left, myself and Lili explored some more.

I thought Hofburg, built in the 13th century and the seat of the Habsburg family, was beautiful. 

Another cool place was the Natural History Museum.

That's a picture of me dabbing in front of a bunch of skulls. The Natural History Museum was really cool, with so many animals from so many different parts of the world and parts of history as well as gemstones and other inanimate things  but unfortunately my phone ran out of storage and my deleting 150 photos didn't free up any somehow. Also, I couldn't really enjoy it because I was still worried about college not letting me do biology, same thing that hung over me in Prague and Brno.

On the last night, we went to a film festival held with the screen leaning against the Vienna state parliament to watch Swan Lake the ballet, but first were treated to a short film called Historic Striptease where a woman in full 18th century garb stripped down from like 8 layers of dresses to a night gown. Was funny, especially in front of the parliament building. Very stereotypically Continental.

Then on the 25th, I had to travel from Vienna to catch a flight in Prague to get to Dublin, so I got up at 5 am, got the bus and two metros, got a 5 hour international bus through Brno to Prague, got a metro and a bus, got the plane at 4, was met in the airport by Leon, got a Dublin bus and a DART and a lift, and was back in Leon's. Whew. 

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