You know time in Austria is drawing to a close when you receive the memo and invitation for a going-away Heuriger** for all Fulbright grantees. How did all these months slip by so quickly?
We headed to Vienna once again for this event, on June 24, and because Bill was helping with interviews for 2010-13 student Fulbright grantees on Monday, we stayed the entire weekend. This meant we were able to attempt an exploration of the Wachau Valley (up the Danau), a simple (?) day trip out of Vienna. Sweet!
It was great to see all the people we had met in early March, and compare stories and experiences. (We had missed the mid-way point seminar in Altemarkt due to my back injury.) The party was also for Austrian students and grantees who were soon beginning their Fulbright in the USA. We had a great time, even when the skies opened and it poured buckets for 20 minutes. On the way home we came through an umsteingenpunkt (exchange point) at Spittelau where we saw the thermal (garbage burning) plant, a fabulous creation by the artist Hundertwasser. His work is known all over Europe (maybe also all over the world), and was on my list of things to see. I nearly jumped up and down. OK, I did jump up and down! So excited, even if it was almost too dark to see it!
**Heurigers are restaurants that are licensed to serve only their own (produced) wine; usually this wine is ‘new’ wine. They are normally limited to serving a buffet of foods, not offering a selection from a menu. There are lots of Heurigers (from the German Heurig meaning this year’s) in Vienna; they are comparable to the Styrian Buschenschanks I wrote about early on.