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Tails From the Vienna Woods

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The British Isles

‘Brellies on “Standby.” It’s Dublin! Part 2

Just a short train hop from Dublin lies Cape Cod the lovely fishing village of Howth. The forecast was, “Typical Ireland,” according to our concierge, “A bit drizzly all day out at the harbour.”  Her words did not dampen our moods because, seashore!

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‘Brellies on “Standby.” It’s Dublin! Part 1

The path to this city break was not an easy one. A fellow AIS family offered the services of their visiting niece for house-sitting and so forth, and after making contact and securing the young woman’s assurance and willingness to sit for Clayton Theodore, I booked our flights. Then, the young woman disappeared from our radar AND after reappearing, failed to meet as scheduled,  sending us into scramble mode to find a replacement sitter.  Personal responsibility is difficult for some, I guess.

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London. A Capital for Food Lovers.

If it is not obvious, food and dining feature prominently on our travel itineraries, and London did not disappoint. It being near to the Chinese New Year, and London being home to Europe’s largest Chinatown, sitting for Peking Duck was a must.

London. Typically Touristy.

This was not our first visit to London, but some of our favorites are too irresistible to pass up.

London. Harry Potter, Naturally.

Here in Vienna one can’t throw a Mozart kugel without hitting schlocky souvenirs of Emperor Franz Josef and Empress Elisabeth. Or Gustav Klimt. Or Mozart. London souvenir shops, in contrast, are far more discreet in their tacky royal souvenir offerings, and even more so in their Harry Potter giftware selections. One tourist activity London does offer, though, is a “Harry Potter Tour,” and the three of us spent a pleasant afternoon walking about the city in the footsteps of The Boy Who Lived.

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London. Britain at War.

War propaganda amuses me greatly. Women were called upon to perform “man’s work” while also maintaining the home in the face of rations and the need to be spendthrift, and men were advised to watch their tongues in their presence, as presumably all women were spies, too. After the war, of course, women were reduced to homemaking. Sigh.

London. It’s a Whole Different English.

We love London. Being in London satisfies our spirits in the same way that long weekends to NYC from D.C. made us happy. There is just something about a “big city” that calls to us. (By comparison for those wondering, the population of London hovers around 8 million; that is approximately the population of the whole of Austria. Vienna, the country’s most populous city, is home to around 1 million people.)

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