Saturday, July 7, 2007

AT - Salzburg, Berchtesgaden

This morning started with an attempt at visiting Berchtesgaden, located just over the border in Germany. For those unaware, this town is basically 100% tourist-oriented because the last thing Germanic people want to do is visit its main attraction: the Kehlsteinhaus, or “Eagle’s Nest.” This was a birthday present for Hitler and is located way at the top of the Kehlstein mountain, overlooking the Berchtesgaden area and the Königssee – an area which is supposed to live up to its name as a very scenic area.

However, upon my arrival via train, I sat around for two hours and then took a train back to Salzburg. A connecting bus is supposed to take you up to the Kehlsteinhaus, but no such bus arrived of the two time slots it was supposed to be there. Of course, the rail station doesn’t know anything of the buses (which are privately contracted) and there was no bus info person I could talk to. Back in Salzburg I spoke to the ŐBB folks and received little aid from them – though that’s not a big surprise considering they’re Austrian and the bus line was in Germany. Ahh, a lovely introduction to the reputed efficiency of Germany.

Upon my return, as the train rolled over the Salzach River, I espied smoke rising from a bridge to the north and what were throngs of people all about. As my train rolled by the roadside adjacent to the station and crossed over a street, it occurred to me: another gay rights parade. This one ended up being much smaller than the earlier one in Wien and it could almost be questionable whether it was really oriented toward sexual orientation or if it was just a parade of advertisements for dance clubs. Regardless, there was certainly no denying that these floats were staffed with some of the hottest people I have ever personally seen, both male and female. Hey I’m willing to admit when a man is handsome or even hot, especially if I can reaffirm my sexuality by drooling upon the pavement at the bastions of seduction gyrating beside the men. What’s scary is that I actually found myself dancing to the music… not just tapping my foot and nodding my head like I did back in Vienna; I was getting into it right there along the roadway. Ahh, I love techno.

I attended a choir performance of Mozart’s Requiem at the Kollegienkirche (University Church) and later that evening I saw a string quartet perform at Schloss Mirabell. I arrived about a minute after the show began solely because I could not figure out how to get to where the concert was – otherwise I would have arrived five minutes early. I wasn’t the only one running a tad late: I met an interesting girl from Montana (that makes all of 1 person that I know from Montana) whom arrived at the same time. She is a math major spending her summer in Salzburg to study dance… I just never really put those two disciplines together.

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