Last Sunday the town of Tulln an der Donau, in Lower Austria, held its twice yearly flohmarkt. As Tulln is where Anna Grace rides on Sunday and Tony is not really into flea markets, Jack and I were dropped at the Hauptplatz for a couple of hours of sifting through Austrian castoffs in search of treasures while Anna Grace and her horse went through their paces.
Tulln is actually one of the oldest cities in Austria (older than Vienna even!), settled in pre-Roman times. It is also where Attila the Hun proposed to Gudrun; the home of Egon Schiele, protege of Gustav Klimt; and, as history sometimes goes, the home of the commandant of the Theresienstadt concentration camp outside of Prague. Tony and I toured Theresienstadt in 2001 but did not realize at the time how intertwined this part of Europe was, and to some extent, still is.
Our visit this weekend was for the expressed purpose of flea-marketing, but the pretty little city deserves a more thorough exploration. One more item on my to-do list.
Some highlights from the flohmarkt…
A large box of unopened KinderEgg toys. I think we have ten times as many opened KinderEgg toys scattered in drawers around the house; Jack and Anna Grace have not yet outgrown the simple delight of the tiny toy tucked inside a chocolate egg. The US has deemed this treat a choking hazard, so we always had to sneak the KinderEggs through customs after our overseas travel. Never made any sense to us.
Sugar packets from various cafes and hotels.
Bobbejaanland ViewMaster slides. I discovered later that Bobbejaan was a 1950’s Flemish singing cowboy who opened an amusement park in Belgium, that, apparently, is still open. I now regret not purchasing these slides.
Who doesn’t want a faux East German sign?
A Steif Okapi! I wasn’t willing to part with €100, even though the Okapi was really cute.
I saw this ceramicware all around the flohmarkt. I can not understand why; it’s hideous. Must have an Austrian cult following, like Fiestaware has in the US.
What Baroque or Biedermier house wouldn’t be made more stylish with some good ole American Longhorns (I think)? Or any of the other decorative elements.
A sale price at a fleamarket seems redundant, no?
Eventually we made our way back across the Donau and home, to “our” vineyards. The treasures included a German-language pocket guide to cheese (now I will not have that deer-in-the-headlights look when confronted with all of the choices at the Feinkost (deli)), a Romanian embroidered table runner, and even an Austrian Dirndl!
I think “American Casual/Austrian Dirndl” will be trending as fashion on Twitter any moment.
Next up is Lederhosen for my guys. Absolutely.