Austria, shopping

Vienna, Austria Part 8… coming home!

Unfortunately, our last night in Vienna was a bit of a let down.  Bill picked up a cough of some sort while he was in Africa and he woke me up in the middle of the night.  I had indigestion, no doubt from all the good food and beer we enjoyed on Sunday.  I managed to grab a little more sleep, but was still kind of crabby in the morning as we packed up to get to the airport.

Bill ordered a cab online.  He says this is a good thing to do, especially if you are coming in to Vienna.  If you don’t pre-book a cab, you end up paying more.  Our trip to Vienna from the airport was over 40 euros, but coming back it was only 32 euros.  Bill rounded up to 40 because he’s a generous guy.  The cab was prompt and arrived at 6:30am, getting us on our way despite the heavy Vienna traffic.

We tried to pre-book my bag but for some reason weren’t able to, so once again we paid 30 euros to check my luggage.  Paying to check luggage is one of my many pet peeves, especially since it’s a rip off.

I must say, Vienna has a lovely airport with lots of nice amenities.  One thing I loved was the free wi-fi.  There are very nice stores in the airport as well as a beautiful food court/gourmet market.  If we’d had more time, I could have had a good time shopping for goodies.  Instead, we had a nice and huge breakfast that I couldn’t finish.  More eggs, sausage, and bacon.  My eyes were way bigger than my stomach, though Bill was able to finish his with ease.

Really good shopping!

One thing the Vienna airport doesn’t have in abundance is electric outlets.  They haven’t followed the trend of other airports that have installed outlets for people who need to charge their electronics.  I managed to find an outlet in the food court area, though the wi-fi didn’t work there.  I guess that’s to keep people from camping out there all day.

The flight back to Stuttgart was uneventful, yet annoying.  The guy in the seat in front of me insisted on reclining for a one hour flight.  The guy across the aisle from me kept farting or something… it wasn’t nice.  Fortunately, the flight was quick and turbulence free and we were soon on our way home… until we got on A8, which closely resembled a parking lot.  I mean it.  The cars were barely moving.  It took forever to get to the exit to A81.  I was feeling queasy from the flight and the smell of diesel fumes.

We got home at about noon and I immediately slipped into my nightie because I knew I wasn’t going anywhere.  Bill went to the Hunde Hotel Haase to get the dogs.  When he got home, he made this for dinner…

One of our Hello Fresh meals…  Zucchini stuffed with basmati rice, zucchini, and gouda cheese.  The base is rice, cherry tomatoes, and peppers.

This was healthy, tasted good, and looked pretty.

It’s good to be home again, though I’m already planning our next trip.  The champagne bucket says we’re going to the Canary Islands.  I’m not sure when yet– maybe in June.  Should be a lot of fun!

anecdotes, dogs

There’s a good chance we’re going *somewhere* this weekend…

The main barometer as to whether or not we’re going to be able to go somewhere is whether or not we can get our dogs spots at the Hunde Hotel.  Bill sent them an email asking if they had any space for the upcoming Columbus Day weekend and was advised that they did.  So, as long as the dogs are appropriately vaccinated (we need to reacquaint ourselves with the shot schedules here in Germany), we should be able to break away for a couple of nights.

I want to do this because I want a change of scenery, but I also want the chance to have the dogs try the Hunde Hotel before we go back to the States for a week next month.  I don’t want to have any problems with Arran getting in trouble like he did at Camp Bow Wow in San Antonio.  I doubt he will have as many problems here, mainly because the Germans don’t do things the way Americans do.  We have used this boarding facility before with dogs who were less laid back than the ones we have now.  We never had any issues.  But it would be best if we were close by, in case Arran has issues.  I don’t expect Zane will have any problems at all.  He loves people and other dogs.  Arran, on the other hand, can get very moody and crabby if he doesn’t have time to himself.

Zane and Arran

Another potential issue is the fact that our cars have temporary plates on them.  That’s fine in this area because the local cops have no doubt seen them on lots of American cars.  Other cops should know what they are, but there’s no guarantee.  Bill took his car to get inspected yesterday and it needs work done before it will pass.  My car is being inspected today and I expect it will pass.  If it does and we decide to drive, we will drive it.  But we also don’t have our international driver’s permits yet.  It’s not a huge deal to get one, though it will require getting passport photos done and visiting an office or two… and whether or not we can do that before the weekend depends on whether Bill can break away to get it done.

We had international permits last time we were here.  They were good for one year and we never actually used them or renewed them when they expired, though we did drive to other countries.  However, if you get caught without one, you can end up with fines… or so I’ve been told.  The USAEUR license that we get is only good in Germany.

We may end up taking a train somewhere, which is just as well…  Train rides can be fun…  or they can be a nightmare, as we discovered in France back in May!

We flipped a coin last night to decide where we should go: France, Germany, Belgium or Switzerland.  We flipped three times and Belgium was the winner.  If we go to Belgium, I think I’d want to take the car.  That way, we can bring back some beer.  Last time we went to Brussels, we went by train.  It was fun, but it took several hours to get there.  Since we no longer have the luxury of four day weekends, time is more of a premium.

Although Belgium won the coin toss, we may just go somewhere in Germany.  There are still a lot of places I haven’t seen yet.  And once our cars have the appropriate license plates and we’re completely “legal”, we will be within a couple of hours of France and Switzerland anyway.

Anyway, I hope to make a new discovery this weekend!

ETA:  My husband has just informed me that my car passed inspection and has appropriate plates now.  Just have to get the Toyota squared away now.