The Third Time

Kittie Walker English:, travel 21 Comments

What does it feel like when you do something more often than once? Will this exciting feeling of novelty have worn off? What will it be replaced with? A feeling of recognition, of homecoming?

What the heck is she talking about? Has she taken a turn for the worse and will she be talking about her sex life? Do not worry, I am talking about my recent visit to one of Europe’s most exciting capitals.


Vienna, getting to know her

The first time I went to Vienna was ages ago, in the 70ies, together with my brother. I remember a grey town that seemed to be covered with a layer of dust, dark decaying buildings, tramcars screeching by, old women shuffling by, heads covered with dull coloured scarves and bent. A visit to some geological museum, officially closed to the public, but thanks to academic connections the doors miraculously opened for a very private viewing, showcases shed in white cloth – spooky.

Vienna in the 70ies very much reminded me of this marvellous film “The Third Man” with its haunting title melody.

And I also remember the ever present Russians in uniform.


Vienna, the comeback

The second time was in the early years of this new millennium together with my daughter when checking out the Akademie der bildenden Künste for her studies. We stayed in a nice hotel close to Schwedenplatz on the other side of the Donau.

What a difference to the first visit: the veil of grey drabness had disappeared, buildings had been restored to their former grandness, people were beautifully dressed in colours.

We went for long walks, enjoyed the new Museumsquartier, sitting outside in one of the many cafés and watch people strolling by. We saw a great exhibition by one of our favourite painters, Egon Schiele.


All good things come in three

And now the time has come for a third visit, a peaceful reunion, staying with lovely friends and relaxing in their hospitality, enjoying their romantic garden, venturing out for some sightseeing and otherwise recharging my batteries.

What strikes me these days when travelling: all towns start to resemble each other, outdoing each other with monstrous skylines. Only when you start to look closer you will discover the uniqueness.

Accompany me on a tour of Vienna and enjoy:



A beautiful Art Nouveau facade




Wiener Schnitzel - argh

Wiener Schnitzel – argh







Burggarten opposite Museumsquartier


Lighting candles in Stephansdom





Leschanz – one of the famous chocolatier of Vienna



Inside Leschanz



Relaxing and dreaming in the secret garden (weather permitting)

Comments 21

  1. Aw I want to go to Vienna! Seriously Barbara – you need to be writing travel brochures or doing a travel blog! Seriously, I think you will miss your calling if you don’t! You always make me want to go to any place you talk about and cook and eat any food you describe!

  2. Hi Lori, thanks so much for your lovely compliment, I would enjoy this very much, travelling more and writing about it! And maybe even making money with it??? 
    The Naschmarkt in Vienna is quite an experience both in beauty and flagrant commercialism. We had a Falafel on the go and barely managed to eat it: whereas I knew my Falafel to be genuine with three to four fried chick pea balls, some salad, yoghurt sauce and some chili sauce in a Pita bread this was a giant flatbread with every known Maghreb, Turkish and Lebanese appetizer thrown in. 
    Speak to you soon, Skye later this week? xoxo

    1. Hi Carly, you are so right: I am very lucky! Blogging about it has made me reflect on the previous visits and has made me aware of the differences. I have come back tonight, deeply grateful for this beautiful experience.

  3. Thanks for the beautiful tour of Vienna. I love the journey of traveling and seeing the same thing more than once from a new perspective. Thanks for taking me there!

    1. SandiCoryell Hi, Sandi, thanks for stopping by. You so aptly called it “the journey of travelling” which conjures up a vision of everything being in perpetual motion, how exciting. This time I stayed outside Vienna in a quiet small town and when we ventured into Vienna I was keenly aware of everything, observing people and how they react to their surroundings.

  4. Beautiful! I think it’s nice to visit locations more than once. It’s impossible to really appreciate a city’s personality the first time, and each return can be rewarding with new discovery or a sense of (second) homecoming!

    1. Hi, Adrienne, absolutely and I am glad I have come back now for the third time. After the first time I thought it highly unlikely but we also have relatives living in Vienna. And I guess I will be back for a fourth visit as well!

    2. I am glad that you had such a lovely time. I badly need to travel right now. And the schnitzel made me hungry. I don’t think that I have ever been to Vienna!

  5. I know cities all over the world have changed in those same 40 years, but the lifting of the Soviet “blanket” from some parts of Europe has brought on some extraordinary changes.  Glad you found as much to photograph and revel in on your third time around! But most of all, Barbara, thank you for the introduction to!

    1. sharonoday Is he not great and what a wonderful painter! Thank you, Sharon, this warms my heart. It was my daughter who shlepped me to the exhibition, a special part of it was dedicated to his summer paintings of the Wachau – spectacular.
      We also went to Bratislava this time (a post is in the making ….) and spent hours walking in the historic old town and up to the castle. Cannot bear to think of the damage the high water has brought to Bratislava and other eastern European towns. Did you see the pictures in the news? And only a week ago it was all sunshine (windy though) and from one moment to the other disaster strikes. A strong reminder to live in the moment and be grateful.

  6. Dave and I have been talking about visiting Austria as my grandmother was born there. This might help tip the balance 🙂

    1. tandysinclair You will love it, Tandy, just think of all the beautiful food (Schmankerl) to be tasted (not necessarily at the Naschmarkt though!), the wonderful old buildings speaking of grandiose days and historical events, hours to be spent in the old Kaffehäuser and the “Wiener Schmäh”, the markets to peruse …
      Very much looking forward to enjoy your Italian adventures and be transported to paradise.

  7. Thanks for this Barbara!  I’ve always been curious about Vienna and hopefully, in this lifetime, I’d be able to take photos myself (instead of just relying on your creative generosity!)  ;-)))

    1. jpage.manuel Good morning, Joy, generous goes right back at you, thank you so much! Are you planning a trip to Europe? This would be so much fun if we could all get together someplace! Have a wonderful Sunday, I am planning a lazy one with trying out a new recipe of oven baked white asparagus (this is the height of their season here) and some catching up (this is a losing battle …), what are your plans?

  8. I just love the look and feel of old European cities! The facade of those buildings is so beautiful and what a magnificent church!

    1. RoshniAaMom Hi, Roshni, thank you so much and welcome to Late Bloomers! I have been rather busy and worried with family matters those last days, sorry for the tardy reply. You take me back to Vienna again and remind me there are always getaways to breathe freely and recharge your batteries. Have a wonderful Sunday, Roshni!

  9. Hi Barbara,
    Ah the chocolate shop made me think of my daughter who was shocked when I told her the other day about how chocolate can taste differently in different place. So she asked me if I can take her to every place that makes it (the joy of being almost 9) so that she can compare.

    Looks like a lovely trip.

    1. Joshua Wilner/A Writer Writes Hi Josh,
      Lovely to see you here, come in and have some chocolate! And take some back for your daughter, I think she has splendid ideas, may she never cease to be an inspiration to you!
      It was a lovely trip including a day visit to Bratislava (which felt like Vienna 20 years ago), a stay away from family and for once being pampered instead of vice versa!

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