Sunday, July 6, 2014

The Angelico Austrian Adventure - in which the second shooter isn't on the grassy knoll

Midga and I were both in suspend mode when Asha came in from doing various errands around town. There was a train she wanted us to ride! But one thing Midga and I have in common is that we find it hard to come out of suspend mode when low on battery, and while we were fussing around it left. So we waited an hour (not a bad frequency for a tourist service) and tried again.

The "bummelbahn" is basically a Land Rover dressed up with a boiler and funnel, towing an air braked trailer carrying about 20 people. It goes up the mountain stopping at most of the villages, and plays a tape like the City Circle, but in both German and English. When there's no talking going on it plays traditional Austrian music, some of which is familiar to us.

At the top station the humans got out to take photos. They turned out just like every other tourist photo ever taken, but in real life it's quite beautiful. At one point Midga climbed to the top of a hill, or knoll, in a grassy paddock for a better vantage point, and Asha stayed at the foot of the hill. Midga started snapping away first, which made Asha the second shooter. Geddit?

On the way up we had seen a few things we liked the look of, so we did the stopping-all-stations thing on the way down, staying for an hour at each stop due to the service frequency. Unfortunately the wood museum was closed, so we just walked around and looked through the windows. There was an outdoor model railway layout as well, which was well worth a look. When we're at a model railway expo at home European models don't merit a second glance, but over here they fit into the landscape perfectly.

After using up the remaining time drinking chocolate (hot for Midga, iced for Asha) and buying a multi-purpose sun hat, the next stop down the mountain was a hotel which featured a welcome board on a nine cylinder radial engine with a two blade propeller. Round the side of the hotel were two classic tractors, of a make we'd never heard of. Unfortunately it was closed too, or we would have gone inside to see if there was anything else interesting.

We killed the rest of that hour sitting in the outside dining area of a closed cafe. It was a big day for closed shops. The wind was blowing straight into the enclosure, and bringing all the flies with it. Austrian flies obviously get an easy time of it from the locals, and Midga was able to clock up a kill ratio of 4 for 6 in not much time. The flies didn't even take the hint when he waved them away with his hands still reeking with the blood of their predecessors.

The next stop was the farming museum, which was, you guessed it, also closed. There wasn't much to see through the windows either. Rather than waiting another 57 minutes we walked home, which took us about as long but we were able to drop in at a supermarket on the way. Asha didn't like the sparkling mineral water she'd bought that morning, so we were standing there in the shop staring at the German words and trying to spot useful keywords in all the marketese. Without an internet connection I didn't have a clue. We also looked for a SIM card but no luck.

Both the humans went into a deep discharge and trickle charge cycle straight after dinner. Tomorrow our coach touring starts!

1 comment:

Talldad said...

Re: "two classic tractors, of a make we'd never heard of"

Give us the names, man, the names...

And the same for those trucks you saw...