I have this idea in mind that while hiking I can get rid of some mind-bullshit and fill the empty spots with fresh and of course brilliant thoughts.
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In the 19th Century Bad Gastein attracted health tourists from all over Europe and later skiers from all over the world. But the snow has gone and there are other places in Austria which are also appealing and so the huge number of fabulous Art Deco and classicist hotels became unbelievably oversized.
Ten years ago I was on an event in Berlin called the Pecha Kucha Night. During the interruption I talked to Friedrich Liechtenstein who – at the time – wasn’t yet famous. He told me about the End Of The World Congress held in Bad Gastein, a lost city in the Austrian mountains. I immediately hooked to the story and always when I thought of Austria I also thought of the Hotel Miramonte from which he talked a lot.
We stood there for three nights and design wise it’s really a wonderful place which I can absolutely recommend.
What a day. A tiny drizzle and a beautiful atmosphere awaited us uphill. I was not in my best shape because of an infection and happy not to have to climb upwards. Pavlov liked the cows, the horses and running next to the river. We have been to a rustic restaurant with many many flies and he became a fly hunter for an hour. A wonderful day for all of us.
Our first hike in our holidays! And again we made the old flatlanders mistake to think of kilometers in the mountains nearly as kilometers on flat land. Our knees and calves reminded us for the next three days to never do it again, but we already forgot it 🙂
Stubnerkogel mountain top is easily accessible by two (expensive) ensuite cable cars and you have the best views from around there. On bright days you can even see famous Großglockner. There is even a suspension bridge but there is no sense for the bridge, it is just to lure tourists like us over there.
If you have seen it all, you can now turn around and drive back to the valley, you can walk downhill to Stubneralm and have a “Brotzeit” and then take the first cable car or you can walk further downhill to Bad Gastein all the way, like we did (no!). It was good anyway, but only do it if you are already well trained.
Heinrich Hoffmann, Hitlers photographer, once said “Der Fotograf bildet ab, sonst nichts.” (The photographer depicts, nothing else.) This was his argument for turning a 10 year prison conviction to only 4 years. Albert Speer, Hitlers architect and later Reich Minister for Armaments and Ammunition, was convicted to only 20 years of prison while other leading Nazis of his rank and with very similar collections of crimes against humanity were sentenced to death. Leni Riefenstahl, Hitlers infamous director, wrote: „[…] wo liegt denn meine Schuld? Sagen Sie mir doch das. Ich habe keine Atombomben geworfen, ich habe niemanden verleugnet. Wo liegt denn meine Schuld? (Where is my fault? Tell me that. I didn’t throw any atom bombs, I didn’t deny anyone. Where is my fault?
Together with Göbbels as Reich Minister of Propaganda and many others creatives, they created the myth around Hitler and the Nazis. Their grandeur and elevation. They depicted the führer as a Messias and the SS as saviors from evil. But their professions deal with visual aspects and they have been and still are underestimated in their effects. Is design able to create a monster? As you can see in this very distinct examples, it sure is.
A never finished building to host more than 50.000 people. With a planned height of 70 meters and a diameter of 170 meters the biggest still existing of the Nazi buildings.
from where the Reichsparteitag happened and Hitler held his infamous speeches.
I have been there several times and the surroundings of Teschendorf are always worth a hike. Horses, cows, vast green landscapes with slight hills (very tiny Brandenburg-like hills, of course) and light forests build a great shire atmosphere which invites you to to immerse in nature.
Because of covid my Mom wasn’t able to have a party for her 70th birthday last year. So we had her party at our family gathering in August.
When my Grandma died some years ago, I looked at all the old family pictures from the 50s and younger and with those pictures in mind I wrote in her obituary: “For me she was the calming role model and responsible for a lively and cheerful big family in which there were as good as no quarrels – without any psychology books.”
When I look at the pictures of this event, I know that she did very well and still effects us all today, seven years after she went away forever.
Next to La Wantzenau, which is a very picturesque village North of Strasbourg, we made a walk trough a forest with a small animal enclosure. We saw some interesting beasts but were also eaten by them: mosquitos everywhere! I was very happy to have spray with me. But the best part was when we found out we were directly next to two rivers: The small river Ill and the huge river Rhine. we just had to climb some stairs to see it. How strange that a river is upstairs. Pavlov was very jumpy that day :-).
We have been to Strasbourg before: My brother was just born and I myself have been 4 years old. My Mum at the time bought a leather handbag from a street vendor which was very smelly. We called it “the dog” and it had its place on the balcony for many years to come.
At the bottom of this post you will find some old pictures from Strasbourg my Dad made more than 40 yrs. ago.
At the time we went onto the roof of the famous cathedral but this time (Corona and I don’t know) the cathedral was closed over noon and we haven’t had the chance to see it again from the inside. But we went into another, very beautiful church – Saint-Pierre-le-Jeune-protestant – which is really a gem and worth to go.
Eglise Saint-Pierre-le-Jeune protestant
A little throwback to the past
The last picture I remembered to have seen in our family album. I made my mum repeat the pose from memory. Not too bad! And she doesn’t look at all like she is more than 40 yrs older than on the first picture!