Sunday, 31 January 2010

To begin at the beginning....

We arrived in Salzburg on a Sunday morning. No snow was the first surprise! The extreme cold was the second...continental Europe has such a dry, bitter, cold cold - not like us island Brits, where it usually has a damp edge to it. This made us cough when we breathed in too fast, and snuggle deeper into our coats, scarves & boots - so grateful for piling on the layers, even though it made us feel ungainly. Austria still has the wonderful tradition that all shops are firmly closed on a Sunday and I love that. Our stores are open every day (sometimes 24 hours) and I love the stillness os a city that's closed. It keeps one day special, to be spent with family & friends or just alone....enjoying the slower pace, reading newspapers, eating when you feel like it, napping when the need arises...

So that first day we wandered the freezing streets, revisiting old favourite places, seeing what was new and what had changed since our last visit. This was my 28th time in Salzburg, so I know everywhere quite well by now and the streets & squares are like old friends.

It was our wedding anniversary, so I'd booked a special dinner for us in a favourite restaurant. If you've never visited Salzburg, I can only describe it as a precious jewel of a city. It is surrounded by mountains and divided by a green & fast flowing river - the Salzach. Our first dinner was at M32, which stands on top of one of the mountains, the Monchsberg. To reach it, there is a huge lift cut into the mountain (it's possible to walk up and down too - but better in the warmer months, and in daylight! )
The room is a wonderful mixture of modern and traditional.....the lighting and deep colours make it romantic but spacious and it has a luxurious feel that I love.....
Beautiful red amaryllis filled the vases and the glasses sparkled against the white, white linen. We ate warm carrot & olive salad, home made tagliatelle with wild mushrooms, local perch bathed in foamy wine sauce, ginger panna cotta with pineapple & sour cream ice cream, we drank crisp dry Austrian wine that tasted of the freshness all around us and we talked and laughed and just enjoyed being together in this beautiful place with nothing to worry about for a few days...

After supper, I ventured out into the freezing night air to take some photos Bbrrrrr...
but worth it I think. This is the Altstadt, the oldest part of the city and the place that Mozart was born. In the right top corner you can just see the huge, white fortress that has overlooked and protected the streets below since the 1100's. I took a better picture of it when we went to the restaurant again for lunch a few days later....it had snowed by then too...

And the Salzach river that divides the old and new parts of the city is banded with bridges...some pedestrian and small (the Mozartsteg is one) and some large and carrying traffic (the Staatsbrucke is in the distance)

It is the perfect place for a few days of beauty, relaxation, food and elegance...small enough to see on foot, large enough to keep you entertained whatever your interests.

I shall leave you with a little angel who stayed in my mind long after I saw her. Cosy and snuggled in the snow, the picture of calm & peace.

February beckons tomorrow, and then the world (at least the Northern Hemisphere) will begin to wake from hibernation once more.

So much to look forward to! xox

5 comments:

  1. Absolutely lovely Rachel, I really enjoyed reading about Salzburg (a city I have yet to visit) and your anniversary meal sounds divine! By the way HAPPY ANNIVERSARY to you and Paul :)
    Love Morwenna xoxo

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  2. Rachel, my friend..this was lovely..so enjoyed going along for the trip with you and Paul..LOVED reading about what you ate at that restaurant..perfect....and the photographs of the old buildings...such old buildings...looks so different than here....so much history...thank you for for shaing this...

    and thank you for the kind comments...Heart's Ease was such a special place to me.

    But life is indeed funny...Sharon lives right around the corner now here in SLO....so even though we don't live there...we still have each other here....

    sending love to you and A. and C.

    Kary and Buddy
    xxx

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  3. Oooh, thank you for sharing your trip with us!
    That dinner sounded divine.
    I most certainly want to visit Salzburg again...we went there two years ago for our anniversary too, isn't that funny?
    I would like to see it in the summer time. Perhaps we'll meet there someday!
    Big hug,
    Dawn

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  4. Rachel, thanks for stopping by:-) Could you email me at Taketimefortea@aol.com, I want to explain something to you:-)

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  5. I just loved this blog, I could FEEL how cold Saltzburg was from those pictures! That dear little angel was so sweet, I would have loved to have seen that. Thanks Rachel, love love love

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