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The Salzburg Fortress

What a way to spend a birthday

sunny 80 °F

Bekki was due in today after a day of delays. We thought and hoped she would arrive around 6pm. Since today was Bel’s real birthday we thought that maybe Bekki would arrive in time for dinner. Bekki, was traveling with her sister Shanna, Bel’s friend Izzy and the baby Emilo.

As the weather was forecast to be sunny we’d planned to go up to the Fortress/castle today and it was about 80F. Dale and I were there 3 years ago and thought that the kids would enjoy it. Bel and I took the Funicular up while Dale and Elias walked. The walk was very steep, in some places one must use the strips of wood laid into the ground as to not slide down the hill. It must have been very difficult to haul the stones and wood up in order to build the fortress. The Funicular is like a gondola which rides on rails and goes straight up the cliff.

At the top we found the museum. This is really a self-led tour of the fortress. We’d taken a tour before but couldn’t find it so we just did the self-led, which seems to have replaced the one we took. Many rooms are open and lots of items are on display, including kitchen items and torcher items. An Archbishop’s house is open, I’m not sure but it seems like this was the original house from maybe the 1100’s or so. It has original furniture and wall decorations of gold knobs on blue painted ceilings.

Bel was hungry so we stopped at the Terrace Café which overlooks the Austrian Alps. She had some soup, I had a coffee with Mozart liquor and Dale an Applestrudel.IMG_20140703_125805_884.jpgIMG_20140703_144236_455.jpgIMG_20140703_131124_735.jpg

After the Fortress we all walked down the path to old Salzburg together then went back to wait for Bekki. We took turns at the front door as the door required a key which she didn’t have.

After waiting until 9:30 pm we devised a new plan. Dale, Bel and I would go eat while Elias stood guard. We had her birthday dinner then walked back to the apt but there was no Bekki. Finally at 10pm she arrived. She’d gotten lost a couple of times then drove around the area for about 1 hour looking for our street. To make matters worse, they had not eaten since breakfast. Dale took the girls out while I gave Bekki some beer and leftovers and Elias’ take out dinner.

Everyone was safe and sound except now Sunny, who was on her way back to the US missed her flight to Denver which meant she would miss her connection. What Next…

Posted by Miss Chris 13:51 Archived in Austria Tagged salzburg travel driving outside europe fortress Comments (0)

Concerts in Salzburg

A day with 2 concerts in Salzburg

Dieter called early to say that the car was in the shop so they would meet us for dinner in the old city as we offered to share our free meal with them. This freed us up for the day to do as we wanted, but actually we had stops that we really wanted to make, plus a concert that we’d seen advertised.

We started with a second visit to the Salzburg Cathedral “The Dom” just to look up to the dome and to see again the place where Mozart was baptized as a baby. “The Dom” is an amazingly impressive Cathedral; the dome was destroyed during the war but rebuilt, while a very small area of the structure is from 774, it was mostly destroyed by fire. The structure is not so Baroque as some but the statutes are much larger so that it takes your breath away to see. This would be amazing place to visit on a Sunday morning but alas we will be in Vienna by then.

After another ride up the hill to the fortress we got to visit some of the rooms. I especially wanted to see the torture chamber but alas I learned that it really wasn’t used for that. Still the view from the top was great.

Upon arriving in Salzberg we’d learned about a Mozart concert taking place every afternoon at 3p.m in the Residence. As we’d been to the Mozart Residence I assumed that it was taking place there but we found out that it was actually at a place in St. Peters called the Residence where the Arch Bishop lives. We were not able to go before so today we were planning our time around this concert.

After the fortress we still had a couple of hours and had worked up an appetite and were thirsty so thought that we’d hit the beer hall reported to the ‘beer hall of all beer halls’. We walked very quickly to the beer hall as it was several minutes away only to find that it did not open until 3pm. So tired, thirsty and hungry we turned back to the city to find the concert.

We found, thru asking lots of people, where the concert was and made sure that we were first in line, then got the best seat. The venue was held in a small room, probably built in the 1300’s or so with arched ceilings. A harpsichord was in a corner with chairs set up on 2 sides.

At 3 p.m. the director of music (I think that is his position) came in and gave a little lecture on the instruments used during Mozart’s time. Then the harpsichordist came in to play a selection of pieces including the minuet written by Mozart when he was 6 years old. It is simple now but when one thinks that he was so young it is very impressive. This concert was quite fun as it was a very old instrument played in a very old room with about 20 people in attendance.

As we were walking around we saw the Director of Music putting up signs for another concert, this one at 7p.m. with tickets going on sale at 6 or so. The music was 2 Mozart piano sonatas to be played by a Russian pianist.

We arrived 1st once again to purchase the tickets and once again the Director took us to where the best seats would be. This room was in the St. Peters with arched ceilings but set up in one long corner of the room. The piano was set up in the center with seats on 2 sides and about 30 people were in attendance at this concert, our seat about 10’ away from her right hand.

The pianist was a young woman who was from Russia but studied at Julliard and she was amazing. She walked in with no music, sat down and started playing. The hands glided over the keys without any effort, it seemed that she wasn’t hitting the keys just by looking at her hands. She produced strong powerful sounds and then the softest sounds with barely a touch. Both Dale and I were so moved by her music.

Dieter had phoned on my cell phone earlier that the car was still in the shop so we went to dinner after the concert on our own. This was the free meal given to us by the Hotel for all of the hassles we had at our arrival. We just bought the bottle of wine and drank the entire bottle, but the hotel was just a short walk so we didn’t care. But what a great last day in Salzburg.
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Posted by Miss Chris 23:06 Archived in Austria Tagged churches beer salzburg austria concerts fortress 773a.d. st._peters Comments (0)

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