Thursday, March 27, 2014

My belated trip update! Part 1

Hey guys Izzy here! Boy golly I've been really behind on writing to you about my adventures. I'll try to make it up with my update. So, Sabrina and I decided to go on adventure over Spring Break with a fellow student, Gao. Gao is a student in international relations who is on exchange from Beijing.

Getting to the airport from campus was a bit of an adventure. We had to take one bus into the city center, then walk to get to another bus stop. That bus must have taken 40 minutes to get to the airport. It was still pretty fun seeing parts of Dublin I'd never seen before. The airport in Dublin is really nice, I liked it just as well as the one in Indianapolis. Anywho, we arrived safely to the airport in Vienna.

At first, I was a little nervous about how big the Vienna airport was. But Sabrina, Gao, and I managed to navigate to the correct train station. The trains in Vienna were really neat, probably because it was my first time on a train. Of course, all the signs and voice announcements were in German. Luckily, the hostel was at the last stop so it was a relaxing ride.

After we dropped our stuff off, we decided to explore Vienna at night. It really is a beautiful city. The architecture is amazing, all fancy and old-fashioned looking. I especially loved the consistent look of all the shops, so white and pretty.
We got to hear St. Stephan's cathedral's bells toll. They were amazing! I'll try to find the video for you. It got lost in all the computer files. Sabrina loved the horses outside the cathedral. They were pretty neat to watch.

The next day we decided to visit the Schonbrunn Palace (I think that's how it's spelled). It was so huge! The rooms were amazingly decorated and Sabrina said it was the fanciest house she'd ever seen. One room was called the "million dollar" room because it's walls were covered in some of the rarest, and most valuable wood in all of the world. My favorite room was the grand dance hall, complete with one of a kind ceiling murals. Sabrina loved the oriental themes rooms with delicate rice paper drawings imbedded into the walls. Sadly, we couldn't take pictures on the inside, but Sabrina bought a little guide book so I could remember the rooms.
After the tour, we went to the carriage museum next door. It was really neat to see all the royal's carriages. They came in all shapes, sizes, and styles. Sabrina's favorite was the really decorated carriage (I think it was for special occasions). I thought the little carriages for the children were so weird. They were exact replica's of the other carriages but ridiculously small.

We went to the zoo afterwords since it was only a few minutes walk away, on the same grounds as the palace. On the way, we stopped by a hot house. The plants were beautiful and we had so much fun exploring the greenery.

The zoo was one of the best I've ever been to. It was great fun to walk around, even if the signs were all in German (a few were in English too). Sabrina was ecstatic to see giant pandas for the first time. I had fun seeing the koalas. The zoo grounds were lovely and all the exhibits were first rate. Sabrina's favorite were the free flying bats in the rainforest dome. They flew right over your heads, and were really active. We wanted to explore the zoo longer, but the apple strudel demonstration was starting.

The strudel demonstration was fun (and tasty). Afterwords, we walked around the back of the Palace. There was so much space around the back of the place, it was crazy! The fountain was beautiful but would have been better if it was running (the problem with coming in spring). Still, it was fun.

We headed back to the hostel after that. Sabrina and Gao were exhausted. We started our tradition of Spar-Treeing it that night. For those who don't know, there's a convenience grocery store chain in Europe/Ireland called EuroSpar. It's symbol is the word Spar and what I gather a green, upwards pointing spade (like on a deck of cards).  To Sabrina and Goa however, it looked like an evergreen tree. Thus it has been dubbed forever in Sabrina's vocabulary as Spar-Tree. Thus, to save money on our journey, we often had many Spar-Tree dinners. Yeah Spar-Tree! More to come next blog (the computer's not going to like all the picture's I'm posting). Until next time,



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  2. Grandma here. Glad to hear more about your trip from Izzy and yourself. Loved that picture of you under the look so-o beautiful. Wow, you got to see live giant pandas! Is that a picture of the palace? It's huge, but, not as pretty as castles:-) Always glad to hear more about your adventures across the water. May God the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit keep you ever safe. Love always, Grandma