Thursday, August 30, 2007

 

Rain, rain, rain

So we came to Vorarlberg to see my family and go for walks in the mountains, but with the exception of Monday it has been raining heavily every day. Too bad we didn't get a chance to go for walks, there are some nice and easy walking trails from Dornbirn-Bödele which I walked many times as a kid. At least we managed to spend a few hours outdoors on Monday, walking over to the Hochälpele ski lift (a drag lift so it is not in operating currently :-)) and back to the Meierei, an alpine dairy serving huge cheese boards. Elias had a good time with the cows and calves, he even offered them his bottle of apple juice, and saw (and smelled!) turkey and pigs for the first time.

We spent the rest of the week sleeping, reading, eating and meeting with family. On Tuesday afternoon we met with my mother and grandmother at a café in Dornbirn. The next day we went to see the Inatura exhibition, a kids-friendly museum of nature with stuffed animals you may actually touch, living insects, tunnels to crawl through, beautiful koi carps, and last but not least bouncy bounce. Afterwards we said hello to my other grandmother, Elias was tired from the exhibition and slept through for a while before walking around and opening all cabinet doors within reach, mumbling "no, no" all the time to remind himself that he wasn't supposed to do that.

On Thursday we had lunch with my grandmother again and enjoyed a traditional Riebel, then went for a walk in the city despite the heavy rain and finally went swimming in the Hallenbad Dornbirn, which was recently renovated and looks much nicer compared to when I was a kid. Elias was equally impressed and frightened by the fast water slide ("black hole") and the water fountains in the playground. Andrea and I were mostly impressed that a floor as slippery as this one would ever get approved for an indoor pool area, and indeed we struggled to get back to the changing room without slipping.

We had dinner at our hotel Berghof Fetz every night, and on most days Elias decided he wasn't tired enough or too hunger to go to bed, so he joined us several times, much to the amusement of the staff and other guests who smiled at the appearance of Elias in his pajamas and a sweater. And I finally managed to read Donna Leon's book about Venice and a good part of Thomas Glavinic's "Arbeit der Nacht", which is about a man living in Vienna who wakes up one day only to slowly discover that he seems to be the only living being in the world. The story is simply but quite exciting and the style is unique, fresh, simple, quick, not sure how to best describe it, but at almost four-hundred pages the book does have some lengthly parts too. Still, I am curious to find out what's behind all the occurances throughout the story and will continue reading as time permits.

Now time to pack, tomorrow we will head back to Salzburg for the christening of my niece Theresa.

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