Saturday, 19 July 2014

whereabouts: from Vienna to Giesshuebl

Once more, we are on the move.

I never felt comfortable with the idea of going somewhere for a meeting, a conference or a birtyhday celebration, driving an hour straight to the parking lot and after the event you go back to the car, bus or train and drive all the way home. All you have seen is the courtyard of a mansion, a terrace, maybe a view.
But why go all the way  - 1 hour or longer, when you don't make the most of the trip?  When I go somewhere, I seek for the full experience. 

The slower you move, the more you understand. Ok, this probably is not the most spectacular insight. Still, it is our concept of understanding, our concept of experience, our concept of life. When I say "our", I am referring to Mr Paula and myself. Mr Paula is at least as curious as I am. We both are not looking for the obvious - lets say the most scenic touristic spot, but for the unknown, that waits behind the corner, the place tourists ususally don't have the time to see. The second, the closer look.

Of course you get to see less, speaking in terms of coverage. We once even managed to spend full 3 weeks in the Provence without getting to see Orange or Nimes, because our path was slow. Our radius is a small one, even when travelling by car.

Could be Warsaw, could be Düsseldorf, could be Kaliningrad. An anonymous place so to say. 

Whenever we have the chance to go somewhere by bike, we go there by bike. Destinations within the radius of 20km are a nice distance for a sightseeing trip on weekend. 10 years ago our radius measured approx. 1 hour by bike. Going somewhere by bike for 1 hour was always special. But over time our radius expanded in the same way our fitness level has increased. Distance does not really matter anymore. Now it's a question about setting the alarm in the morning on the right time: an early hour makes us get far.

Long story short ...  (well, it might get long, since we move on a slow path :-): This time the destination was a Heurigen in Lower Austria. Lower Austria, the province surrounding the city of Vienna). The venue is  not far away, the village is close to Vienna, a classic distance to go there by car, for others. We chose to go there by bike. We knew the route from last year. This year I included extra 20 minutes for photo-taking.

We are not very familiar with the South of Vienna. This is how it works: In the South of Vienna the city layout is very generous. The square metre was cheap compared to better locations, closer to the city centre. The area is designated to industry and trade. Some areas would be perfect for housing developments: it's green, nice views. Business changed ever since the layout of this area has been designed. Companies change, merge, move, as a consequence you find deserted lots like the one pictured above.

Transforming a former industrial area into a housing area is a challenge. It is almost impossible as long as there are still companies around which pollute the environment. The main pollution of today is not smoke nor fumes, but decibels. And follwing to the high standards in Austria, this area will probably reamain as it for the next decade

The following building might become part of a series: Transformer stations.
Please forgive the moiré. Blogspot is not a big friend of details.

Transformer stations are buildings you probably don't pay attention to. You find them all over the city. What fascinates me, is the variety: they are never bland. This building for a example was designed with a mosaic facade and a modest grid. Ok, I admit: I see beauty everywhere.
On we went, and not much later we had left the city, passed Perchtoldsdorf and went up the hills to Gießhübl. Hübl is an old word for elevetion, so we knew what to expect. In the disctane you can see the tower of the Perchtoldsdorf castle.
See the dark green hill to the right? There is a high rise, peering from behind (you see it pointing out left from the middle of the dark green hill to the right): this is Austria's highest building. This is not the best shot of the building but since it is there I thought I'd point it out. What else can we see? A few vineyards and inbetween former vineyards, which have been given up by the winemakers.

On we went and entered the village of Gießhübl where this former grocer's shop caught my eye:
On a Saturday at noon (as you can tell from the sunlight), it was closed. Maybe it is open Mon-Fri?

Cute, cute, cute.  

This is what the village looks like:
On our way back, downhill, I probably missed some details. Enough said! Have a nice weekend and enjoy the water.


early Paula

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