Saturday, June 16, 2012

Austrian lake meet sun. Sun meet Leslie. Leslie meet sunburn.

Today was my first full day in Austria. We started the day around 9 am eating some bread with honey and butter. I also tried some coffee which wasn't bad but I don't think I've converted yet to a full time coffee drinker. The kids had a type of cereal that was in blocks. They would then take one block and place it in the cereal bowl where it would break apart in the milk.

Breakfast on the balcony
After breakfast we moved on to yard work and my Austrian father tackled on the task of trying to mow 3 inch grass. He proposed the idea of getting sheep to do the job instead. I also got a little more in depth tour of the yard where the family has their own grapes which they use to make wine in the fall (both white and red). They also have a garden, compost heap, sandbox, and fruit trees. We took a brief break in the middle of our work for some water, Milka (chocolate), and some sort of fruit bar item that I wasn't familiar with.

At about 11:30 am we walked down to the lake where the family has their own little property with a shed and small dock. Also parked on the property is a small sailing craft as well as inflatable toys (raft, etc). It turned out to be an incredibly hot day, even by Austrian standards. There wasn't a cloud in the sky and it got to be about 80 degrees Farenheit. I managed to cut my toe within the first five minutes (turned into quite the bleeder) and get sunburned even with sunscreen applied more than once (even now I'm shivering and burning at the same time; I still had fun though). For lunch we had some cheese and prosciutto on bread. Later when my Austrian mother arrived (she had to work in the morning), she brought these fabulous goodies that I can only describe as like cinnamon rolls yet not. The had cinnamon and sugar and were kind of half rolled like a cinnamon roll but at the same time were somewhat distinct from one. The point is though, they tasted fantastic.

The lake front (the family has a little property with a shed on it on the lake)
My austrian brother trying to cool off in the heat

Eventually we headed back to the house to make dinner. My Austrian siblings put up a tent to sleep in for the night and my Austrian mother made some chicken, rice, and salad. It was quite good and I had the chance to sample some beer. It was also nice because my Austrian grandfather was also present. And in the middle, of dinner my Austrian grandmother showed up. She was quite talkative and although I couldn't speak German I could get the gist of what she said.

After dinner I was offered a 'shot' of some liqueur. The label was purposefully hidden from me and I was told that I should ask my sister americana what it was. While it burned  a little on the way down I managed to survive.

That was pretty much the end of the day except for some things I have noticed so far:
1. When you refuse something (like coffee, food, extra food, etc.) you simply say 'Danke' (thank you) with a slight shake of your hand.
2. When you meet someone new or you aren't really acquainted with the person, you go up to the person and shake their hand saying hello. You also repeat this process when you leave except you will say "Ciao" or some other phrase with similar meaning.
3. Nakedness is not something to be very self-conscious about (I'm sure many of you are aware of this)
4. The sun is in the wrong spot. While it probably isn't in the wrong spot for Austrians, for me it is vastly different then when I am at home. The sun here almost travels totally through the center of the skyline meaning that you can't look straight up without looking at the sun.

In other news, MY CAMERA IS BROKEN!!! I'm not sure how this happened but it suddenly stopped working and it is neither the fault of the battery or the memory card. This means not only could I not take more pictures but I couldn't load any of the other pics I took today that are on my memory card. This means I'm left with my iphone camera which is not ideal because of the battery life and quality. But I suppose I will have to make due until I figure out if I can replace my camera or not.


UPDATE: Have camera again, pics are uploaded

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