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Friday morning, it was time to pack up and leave Slovenia. We were bound for Salzburg, Austria, a town we’ve now stayed in three times, but have only ever visited twice. We usually stop there for an overnight when we go to Slovenia. This time, I decided to book two nights so we could enjoy Salzburg’s marvelous downtown area. By Friday, I was ready to move on, even though there were a lot of things we didn’t have the chance to do in Lake Bohinj.

For instance, we didn’t ride the cable car that goes up Vogel mountain, where there is a ski resort. I expect the ski resort will be doing a lot of business soon. And there were some walks we could have taken, and restaurants we could have tried. I’m actually surprised Lake Bohinj isn’t more of a year round destination, but I’m sure the locals appreciate the break from the tourists. I grew up near Williamsburg, Virginia, so I know what it’s like to deal with tourists in the summer.

The morning of our departure, I got a message from the host at our next accommodations, an apartment that doubles as a music studio. I found this property on Booking.com and was intrigued by it. The guy who owns it is a musician and music producer. Since I’m also a musician of sorts, I thought it would be a fun place to stay. In any case, he needed copies of our passports and COVID-19 vaccine certificates. Bill took photos of the documents and emailed them. Then, we went to our last breakfast at Villa Stare.

The proprietor met us. He’d already set a table for us with a fabulous spread. It turned out we were the only guests, and his breakfast attendant was not there because she had to go see the dentist. He cooked us scrambled eggs, and we enjoyed fruit, breads, coffee, and cold cuts. I was impressed by how beautiful the table looked.

We told our Slovenian host what a good time we had and how beautiful his country is. I hope we can visit Lake Bohinj. It’s such a pretty area… and I really enjoyed being there when it was so quiet, even though we missed out on some of the more touristy activities because they were either closed, or the weather didn’t cooperate. I would definitely go back if the opportunity arises again. Below are some photos from our journey from Slovenia to Austria.

Our drive to Austria was uneventful. There were no blood sugar meltdowns. The most exciting thing was crossing the border and Bill remarking that he could barely understand the Austrian border official’s accent. We got to Salzburg about an hour before check in began, so we found the property where we were staying for two nights. The host, Ray, was there. He was easily recognized. The cleaning lady was finishing up cleaning the house, but Ray said the house would be ready in a few minutes. We said it was no problem, since we were going downtown for lunch.

Ray turned out to be a very attentive and helpful host. I liked how he set up checking in and out at his rental. There’s a lockbox on the gate, and he sends the code and other instructions before guests arrive. That way, guests can just let themselves in without having to wait for him to show up. It’s also probably a little bit safer, in the COVID-19 era. Ray’s place is very close to downtown Salzburg, maybe about ten minutes away. We found a parking garage that had typically tiny parking spaces. Kudos to Bill for managing to park our Volvo without a scratch. It wasn’t easy, even with parking assist.

We quickly found an Italian trattoria called La Campana da Enzo. It was kind of a hole in the wall place– tiny, with no frills furnishings, and art for sale on the walls. I kind of wish I’d bought a painting there. I have been wanting to buy some art for our house. But, we just had a rather no frills lunch. Tortellini with a tomato cream sauce for me, and spaghetti with artichokes for Bill, paired with red wine and sparkling water, were our orders of the day. I guess the restaurant had trouble with locals using their toilets in the hall of the building, because to access them, you have to get a key.

The staff at this restaurant were very kind and friendly, even though we arrived just before they take their afternoon pause. There was one other guy in there, and he was telling the trilingual waiter in German about places he’d lived in Germany and France. And he also said the restaurant should offer pizza. But the waiter said that the restaurant was too small for pizza. I found myself nodding, since I’m sure a proper pizza over would make the place unbearably hot. I suddenly realized that’s probably why our old friend Gino in Nagold doesn’t do pizza. His place used to be a bakery, and it’s tiny.

The staff had their lunches while we finished up our pasta dishes. Then, the well spoken and friendly waiter kicked us out, since the restaurant closes during the afternoon. We didn’t mind, since it was now time to check out our new digs. I think the bill was about 30 euros. Cheap!

I suppose we could have gone back to the city for dinner, but we’re old farts now and like to relax at home in the evenings. So we watched The Sound of Music, which I had purchased on iTunes ages ago. I know Austrians probably think it’s a cheesy movie, but I love it. And it was pretty cool to go to Salzburg and see that some of the businesses in the shots of Salzburg in the 1965 film are still there in 2021.

There are a couple of restaurants near Ray’s place, but we were pretty full from lunch and had plenty of snacks. So after we watched Julie Andrews and friends, we watched Dreamgirls. Saturday was to be our fun day in Salzburg. More on that in part thirteen.

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