Well that was fun. And I can’t believe it was half-a-year ago!
(I’m writing this in December, but posting it retroactively so that it is posted in the July 2019 blog-posts.)
I’m just now writing about a visit from one of Hayden’s best friends, Elizabeth.
She flew in and hit the ground running. Hayden showed off his (current) favorite city, Stuttgart, and we went on a road trip to Vienna to take the teens to a concert.
We learned a big lesson: be sure your train tickets are validated. That looks different in every city and even from train-stop to train-stop. I showed the kids how to use one of the ticket machines near our apartment and it automatically validated the tickets… the ones they bought at other stations (half a dozen of them!) had to be validated by walking over to a little machine and inserting the ticket. I hadn’t taught them that because the machine I used validated the ticket when it printed.
I got a call from Hayden saying that he and Elizabeth were being detained for trying to scam the system. I arrived to find he and Elizabeth surrounded by two transit employees and one dude with a big gun. They didn’t care that there was proof that the kids weren’t trying to scam the system (as evidenced by the handful of tickets they had on them… they stood around me while I withdrew a large sum of Euro from the ATM and paid. I was angry at the officials for not having a bit of grace… anyone could see that they weren’t trying to ride for free… made absolutely no sense, but we learned that we must make sure the tickets we are using have some type of time stamp on them.
While the bigs were doing their thing, I took the littles to a fun Sushi place that had a rotating food display. That was a highlight for Parker! Anna proved you can eat jello with a fork… she learned she doesn’t like Japanese jello.
And our apartment was perfectly located. The mall directly across the street had a food court that stayed open until midnight. Unheard of in Europe.
Anna got one of her first Lego sets so Parker helped her put it together.
Anna’s favorite store in the mall was the pet shop.
To make this mall even better, the top floor was an indoor play place that was perfect for Parker and Anna. We brought a day pass and had a blast!
Another activity for Anna, Parker and me… The Spanish Riding School. We didn’t get to see a ballet performance because the horses take the summer off, but we did get to tour the facilities. Very impressive!
Outside of the Spanish Riding School you can see remnants of an old Roman house.
I took a nap time to go to the river to take photos using the new techniques I learned on the photography tour in Venice.
I was able to add two mugs to my collection!
Vienna was a beautiful city to visit and if we go back, we’ll shoot for staying in the same general area near the Millennium Tower, especially as there was an open air parking lot just around the corner perfect for the Family Truckster.