Monday, June 15, 2015


 One of the most famous performing groups in Vienna is the Spanish Riding School. These are a special breed of horses, Lipizzaner, which perform in the downtown palace, or Hofburg, as they have done for 450 years now. Our family had been to see a rehearsal here (which isn't really worth the time or money, though it does take place here).
 We ended up with two extra tickets and Rob tried to sell them back to the ticket office. He asked some guy standing around what to do and the guy responded "You don't want to be asking me about that . . ." so Rob went out on the street and found a mother and son and sold the tickets to them.
 We were way up in the balcony and even though we had seats, we often stood just so we could see. The ends of the balcony would have had the best views. The music was great, the horses were great, their handlers were great. Then the guy that Rob had talked to came out: he was the pooper scooper entre'act. Rob's exchange with him made me snicker through the whole second half.
 After the show, we walked across to the horse dormitories and actually saw some of them! I've never seen them before or since, so I don't know why we were lucky that day.
Here's a closeup. The Lipizzaner begin life dark and then get lighter and lighter as they reach maturity until they're nearly all white. They seemed whiter and brighter to me than they had in the past. I think they're pretty magical with their dancing and prancing and braiding through each other and leaping and jumping. I'm glad the kids got to see them. Two of the students are allergic to horses and came out sneezing and eyes watering, but they were still really excited about them.

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