Wally in Wien

It is again 0:00, and yours truly is attempting to type on an old, senile german Macbook, which seems intent on (and mainly occupied with) making more noise than the dishwasher in the kitchen.
I am the only person here still awake, leaving me to curse in silence as this insufferable old mule of a computer decides to buck off whatever I had written so far. For the third time.

Apart from this vengeful machine, I am sharing this spaceous freestanding house with Gloria and her mother, Sylvia. I apparently look rather underfed, because somehow there is always awesome food on the table for me to enjoy. It is reminiscent of the last homely home, the idyllic House of Elrond where Bilbo stays before crossing into the wild (which in my case would be the Balkans).

Vienna city center is some 15 kilometers away, to be reached by bike or by train. They pretend to have some kind of biking culture here, but they didn’t quite get it. Biking is apparently a sport which only coincidentally gets you from A to B. You are to ride on a mountainbike, preferrably fully armed but sporting at the very least a protective cap. A red light means you stop, period, regardless of traffic or the lack thereof. Aerodynamic clothes are a must, even though it seems to be unfashionable to exceed 20 km/h. And if your light is broken, you obviously can’t use your bike. Imagine the risks!

Needless to say, I am not popular in Viennese traffic.

The old town is awe-inspiring and almost too large to explore on foot. Clearly, the Habsburg monarchs had too much time and money on their hands.
And it was not easy getting here. I chose the worst day possible to hitchhike here, as apparently Ascension Day and Father’s Day combined assured there weren’t any cars around to take me from Munich to Vienna. I was saved by a member of Italian nobility, as this kind guy with a sportscar took pitty on me standing in the rain, taking me to Vienna in no time.

Between playing on the Naschmarkt, jamming with Chicago-born Robert at his mothers sumptuous appartment behind the Stephansdom, playing on the lawn near the giant Riesenrad with fellow traveller Roland, exploring the nightlife with Gloria, or just studying guitar and reading in the garden, time flies by, and I am sorry to be leaving on Saturday.

Last but not least I would like to thank two great Albanian girls, Kejsa and Altea, for hosting me for a couple of days in their apparment in Strasbourg. I got stuck in that city, but it was totally worth it.

Off to bed: tomorrow I will continue recording some improvisations and tunes for the benefit of the extremely hospitable hostess-mother, and for others who might be interested.

Auf wiedersehen!

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