Thursday, August 25, 2016

The Truth About Hallstatt...

Hallstatt, Austria.

Beautiful Hallstatt, Austria

It is beautiful isn't?  I wanted to do a blog posting on what Hallstatt is really like.

While I was planning our vacation, I searched and searched to find out if we should go to Hallstatt or not.  It looked beautiful, but I was hesitant.  I knew that there would be a lot of tourists there (I am fully aware we are tourists too), but we do not like places that are overrun with tourists.  Remember our day in Rothenburg ob der tauber?  Anyway, I had read it could possibly be busy but that we should visit anyway.  We like to do things that a most traditional tourists do not do, so I figured we would be safe.  I mean, how bad can some tourists be?

Boy was I in for a surprise.  I have never seen so many Asians in one spot in my entire life.  I had no idea that instead of seeing any Austrians, we would see so many Asians.  Now, I would like to point out that I am in no way racist against Asians.  One of my closets friends from high school is Asian.  I have no issue with Asian tourists other than the fact that they have zero self awareness, run and push, and are so concerned about rushing to get their picture that they could care less about anyone or anything else in the process.

The moment we checked into our beautiful hotel, Gruner Baum, I had wondered if I had made a bad decision in coming to Hallstatt.  There was an instance where we were trying to enter our hotel's front door and we simply could not because so many Asians were blocking the door and had zero regard for us saying excuse me.  It was bad.  It was so bad that our hotel had Asian music playing during breakfast and even had egg rolls and noodles for breakfast.  It was bad.  It was very clear that Asians make up the majority of the tourists that come to Hallstatt, so it is hard to blame the hotel for catering towards them, but it was still frustrating to us since we wanted local cuisine.

There is so much catering to the Asians that the advertisements for drindl rentals are shown with an Asian girl on the billboards.  It seems as though the entire village has accepted that the Asians are their target audience, which does not bode well for us non-Asians.

You might be wondering why the Asians are so obsessed with Hallstatt.  We learned that a Chinese business man built a replica of the village because he found it to be so beautiful.  I guess it is a status symbol in certain Asian countries to say you have visited the real thing, even if it is for a few hours to take a picture.

My advice to you if you want to visit this beautiful area, is to stay in Obertraun, which is across the lake from Hallstatt.  There area a few Airbnb options in this area and also a few hotels and restaurants.  Our afternoon in Obertraun was delightful.

Our bikes just outside of Obertraun with Hallstatt across the lake.

The view of Hallstatt from Obertraun

If you stay in Obertraun, it will be a lot less busy and possibly a little more enjoyable.  You can take the train to Obertraun or ride the ferry over from Hallstatt.  If you get off the train at Hallstatt, do not worry, it is a short 20 minute walk to Obertraun which is no big deal if you are wearing backpacks.  Wheelie bags might be a different story!

If you do choose to stay in Hallstatt, I would suggest to plan activities that take you out of town during the day.  If not, be prepared to be pushed, shoved, and not to get any pictures of anything you want that does not have a hundred Asians with their Nikons. 

We enjoyed our time in Hallstatt, but it was an area that we will not visit again, which is too bad since it is so beautiful.

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Life Lately...

Things have been pretty uneventful the past few weeks. School has started back for me, (yay!) and I am finding a new routine.  

My two loves heading out for a walk while I was going running.  I love that fluffy tail.

We spent last Sunday afternoon at one of our favorite places, Somerset Winery, with some of our favorite people!  We were celebrating my last full time week in the OR.  

The beautiful sunset we got to see on our walk the other night.  There are not many things that I love about Kansas, but the sunsets are definitely one of them!

I have night time clinicals this semester and I had my first one on Thursday this past week.  I woke up on Friday afternoon to this.  I think they were super concerned as to why their overly active mama was sleeping during the day!  Angel had also brought me one of her toy mice to sleep with, what a sweetheart!

That is a peek into our life lately!

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

The Missouri State Fair...

Corn dogs, funnel cakes, carnival games, live stock, and lemonade all in one place?  Sign us up!  Can you believe that Ken and I neither one had ever been to a state fair before?  I guess considering that the Missouri State Fair takes place in August and it is usually in the triple digits might be one reason we had never gone.  With milder August temperatures, we decided to change that.

We woke up on Saturday morning and Ken told me his goal for the day was to win me a prize.  He told me he wanted to go to the fair.  Who am I to deny myself of a corn dog?

We loaded up and made our way to Sedalia, MO for a little fun at the State Fair.

We were both surprised with how large the fair was!

Ready for some fun at the Fair!

We spent most of the day wandering around looking at pigs, chickens, and of course the other people at the fair.  We played a few games, ate a corn dog or two, and enjoyed some beer and lemonade.  We avoided riding any rides because, you know, a basic rule should be to never ride something that can be assembled in less than a day.  Plus, on a girls trip we once met a carney and I have to question this guys ability to problem solve, therefore, he is my only example of the traveling crew, hence no carnival rides for us.  :)

The mule cart show with a lady driver that we watched.  We had no clue what was going on, but we had fun commenting on the carts and the mules.

Ken enjoying his beer at the fair

The proud owner of a stuffed husky that only cost us $30 in games to win, but you know, winning the husky made it more fun!

We definitely had a fun afternoon at the fair!