The Uber driver let us out in front of the Hofburg Palace. It was cold and windy and the sky was so clear it made the buildings sparkle. The plaza was full of people. The small Christmas Market in front of the Palace was full of the smells of Gluewein, Wurst, and pastries, and I did a "Mary Richards'" spin without throwing my hat in the air! We had arrived and it was heavenly.
Our first two weeks were in a beautiful home North of Vienna that welcomed us with fresh snow and outstanding sunrises and sunsets. We were instantly at home and happy. We both went from window to window over the time we were there just soaking up the views.
Our second two weeks in Vienna were within walking distance of the center of the city and we were on the top floor of a beautiful old building with views of the city all around. We could walk or ride the tram to the city center and easily enjoy all Vienna had to offer. We spent New Year's Eve on the rooftop of our apartment with Champagne while we watched the fireworks exploding over the Vienna skyline.
Once again HomeExchange proved to be more than we could imagine.
Living in these two wonderful homes allowed us to explore one of the most beautiful cities in the world. In the first few days, I actually said that Vienna was moving to first place in my heart before Paris and Venice. Those who know me, know that is no small statement!
Vienna is palaces, museums, culture, food, art, Christmas Markets and music. Music. Always music. Barrie is the musician in the family, so we were happily attending concerts. listening to the music of Mozart, Beethoven, Haydn, Schubert, Strauss (I learned there was a Senior and a Junior Strauss), Brahms, the Vienna Boys Choir, and the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra.
For my small part, I tried to teach Barrie to waltz!
But whether we walked, rode, listened, or danced, Vienna spun around us like a beautiful veil of lace that we want to carry with us always.
People often ask us, "what is your favorite place to visit," and we always reply, "wherever we are!" For now, I think we may have a different answer. Vienna is calling us back.
It has taken me a few weeks of being back in the USA before I could write about Vienna. I had to assimilate all the sensations, tastes, smells and sights of this lovely city before I could verbalize anything. And since my words will never really show you Vienna, I hope the pictures will!