Day 9 or shall we say Vienna by any means

Day 9-

 

Well today I was up with the sun, ready to take on the day…well first I had to catch up on my blogging…but then ready to take on the day!  Our plans for today were to use the “free” city bikes and go to Schonbrunn Palace.  We were then going to visit the Opera House to see if we could catch a bit of that as well!  Well…that was THE PLAN… We got off to a bit of a late start…why you ask?  Shower troubles!  Not that the shower didn’t work mind you…just we didn’t know how to work it!  We all needed to shower this morning, and Reid went first.  All of the showers that we have encountered so far in Europe are the 2 piece type (where the handle comes off and is connected to a tube…hope that makes sense!).  Well apparently when you turn on the shower and try to use the handle..it goes crazy…think hose at full blast flipping around like a snake.  Bless Reid’s little heart…he is in the shower and it starts to blast water all over the place…does he call for help?…no…does he turn off the water?…no. Needless to say, the bathroom and everything in it was soaked!  There was about an inch of water on the bathroom floor! We used all the towels that were not completely soaked to mop up the rest of the water!  This all caused a bit of a delay…but no matter we were going to have a great day!!

After breakfast, we headed off to find our “free” Citybike  station to ride along the lovely path to the palace.  I have seen these fantastic bike paths and am super excited to try them out.  Let’s see, what do we know about the Alton’s renting bikes…it is always an interesting experience!  When we finally find the bike station (this took coordinating 2 different maps,  one with tiny printing, streets going everywhere…just really hard to read and the other that was super simple with writing so small we couldn’t make out all the letters.  But finally with divine intervention helping our ancient eyes, we find the bike station.

Now if you are not familiar with the Citybike concept, it really is fantastic!  You get to essentially rent a bike for a few euros for an entire day. There are stations all over town, so you can pick a bike up at one station, and return it at another (providing there is a space for you to lock the bike into!).  The first thing you do when you get to the bike station, is find a bike you want, easy and done!  Next, you have to register your credit card…no problem…oh no wait…you must have a separate card for each bike rented…luckily we have a total of 3 credit cards with us.  Also, you have to register each bike separately…no reusing information…each bike is a whole new process.  Not ideal, but okay here we go.  Let me begin by saying that this was the SLOWEST touch screen machine I have ever used…honestly I could have chiseled into stone faster.  But we trudge on ahead, first one done, second one done, then comes the third one.  Picture this scene if you will, Reid already on a bike anxious to leave, us trying to figure out the machine, as traffic is blowing by us….Okay, we input almost of all the information for the third bike…and blip…start over.  Okay, let’s try again…almost done and…blip…start over.  Let’s take a deep breath (okay the cussing has already started a bit) and  again almost done and blip! Holy sh^&*t !!!!  Now it is decision time, we already have 2 bikes rented…do we just give up?  Do we try to find another bike station (because it was so easy to find this one!).  Finally, knowing my lack of patience…I have to step away…muttering (quietly so Reid won’t hear me) a few therapeutic four letter words… Russ has the patience to get it done!

We are set to go, and really , yes really this is when I start to panic a bit.  Reid does not have a helmet!  Okay I reason to myself, there are great bike paths, and they are used to bike riders here. We made sure that Reid stayed in between us (logically thinking if a car hits one of us, it will either be Russ or me.  Alright, here we go! This is when I begin to realize that the amazing bike paths that I have seen are nowhere to be found…we are on our own.  As we start to navigate…picture a bad scene from The Amazing Race…stop at corners to figure out directions…I begin to realize that this might not be the best transportation choice for us!  We love to ride bikes, and they are a great way to get around…when you can read a map, are not in a foreign  country, have bike helmets, and can find the bike path… We were lucky enough to stumble on a bike station that had enough openings…and voila that was the end of our biking experience in.  Just a disclaimer…we saw lots of great bike paths and bike stations…I do think it would be fun to try again…just not this trip.

So now, we are back to walking!  We think about trying the bus…but cannot quite figure it out.  I keep thinking we are just a couple of blocks away from the palace…but it was more like a couple of miles!  Well we got there after a bit…and really enjoyed our visit!  Now came decision time, how do we get back to our hotel?  At this point we are tired, hungry, and maybe a bit cranky.  We did notice a subway…metro…underground…call it what you like…station across from the palace on our walk in.  We were a bit nervous about the thought of trying to figure this out, but we were also exhausted from our long day.  AHHHH!  The “subway” I LOVE it!  When we were in Paris, I had th Metro figured out in no time!  Here is Vienna it was the same thing!!!  Why you ask??  Why is it so easy for me?  Let me tell you…it is simple!  All just lines with color coding!  You find the stop you are at and where you want to go, and just follow the lines!  Hooray!!!

We made it back, safe and sound, and promptly took a giant nap before dinner!!!

Tonight we are getting ready for adventure…going to our WOOFing farmstay in Slovenia!!!

3 Comments

  1. Kay
    Oct 16, 2014

    You are a great story teller Wendy. Thanks for the details and we can identify with the excitement, frustration, confusion & victory when you figure it all out. It looks like you’re getting into the daily living in each new country. Thanks for taking us on your journey! Love you…HUGS, HUGS, HUGS.

  2. Dana
    Oct 17, 2014

    Literally laughing out loud. I’m thinking you guys should invest in a go pro camera so you get these amazing moments on camera for all to see! xo

  3. Gabby
    Oct 17, 2014

    Wendy – great descriptions!! It’s like we are really there, except we are sitting on our couches drinking cocktails and sending our kids up to bed…so really, nothing at all like we are there. Love and miss you – keep the blogs comin’!!!

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