Saturday, July 04, 2009


[click to enlarge] To celebrate the Fourth of July, we took the whole group out to lunch at the Schweizerhaus, a classic Biergarten (a beer garden, just like it sounds). This may not sound like the obvious patriotic choice to the casual American observer, but check out the model stelze or pork joint the kids are posing in front of -- this is like the Austrian version of BBQ! So we ate it with traditional accompaniments: potato salad and coleslaw and the condiments for the pork: mustard, cranberries, and horseradish. Most of us washed it down with Almdudler (Austrian ginger ale) or Apfelfsaft gesprizt (apple juice with mineral water). Then Rob instructed the students in the culture of German-speaking Europe:
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The Schweizerhaus is an institution in the Prater, which I'll explain the next post. It has been around for almost an hundred years, and even when the rest of the area is completely devoid of people, the Schweizerhaus will be full. It has gigantic umbrellas for the rain, lovely shade trees for the sun, a playground (spielplatz) for the kids, and marvelous food for the rest of us. People come from all walks of life (a 20 year reunion was taking place next to us, and six guys in biking outfits all pulled up as I was leaving) and eat well and stay for several hours to enjoy the pleasant atmosphere.

Today, however, Joss wasn't having any of it. Rob spent the first forty-five minutes trying to feed him to calm him down, and I spent the last forty-five walking him around in the stroller to help him go to and stay asleep. It made our patriotic celebration hectic and I couldn't enjoy my crunchy pig with ambrosial mustard. We are so ready to move on from the crazy-baby-must-have-nap phase of life!

1 comment:

Frau Magister said...

I'm jealous - that sounds like a great way to spend the 4th of July (except for the crabby baby part).

I've never noticed the model stelze before - I'll have to look for it next time.