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Um, another two-week hiatus; but this time it wasn't just sheer laziness/apathy. I've (finally, finally) made it to Salzburg Thu. evening last week and stayed until Wed., and while I didn't do as much as I'd planned, I enjoyed it a lot.

It's funny, I always used to think of myself as a city-person, but recently, every time I come home from Salzburg I vaguely play with the thought of maybe looking for a job there. I miss seeing mountains when I look out of the window, and so much more green than here, where I don't have any view at all, unless you count the wall and windows across the yard, which for the most part I don't even see, because I keep the blinds pulled down for privacy. I miss the smell of mown grass on the evening air.

At the same time, I'm at odds with spring; or maybe spring is at odds with me. It always feels as if I'm expected to do something, be something, that I can't do, or be; that is beyond me. I'm too passive, too stagnant; all this exploding lushness of new green with its abundance of flowers everywhere overwhelms me. Too much beauty in the contrast between that and the snow on the mountains. Too much life I can't keep up with. Too much of everything. Salzburg was already full of tourists. I'm glad winter is over, but I also kind of missed the austerity of March or November.

(Maybe this is also why I'm so bad at photographing spring.)

Fri. was spent doing nothing except shopping for groceries and hiking maps, and reading. Sat. I went on a bit of a hiking tour, mostly to find out how far up I would be able to go before getting stuck in the snow, but as it turned out, the second day of my period, a sudden and untimely bout of summer with temperatures around thirty degrees, being lazy in the morning and only starting out at 11:30, plus a very steep path, is not exactly the best of combinations. (Surprise, surprise...) And the silly thing is, this wasn't even unexpected. I can read a map. I knew was in for a leisurely couple of hours on a (as it turned out, not particularly attractive) forest road with ca. 400 m of height difference and after than another 400 m that would be a bit brutal. But, and I really don't know why, sometimes I have these attacks of selective perception/misplaced optimism that makes my brain go, 'Oh, just go on, it won't be that bad...'. And, to be honest, after having checked the snow situation on various webcams in the vicinity, I never thought I'd make it all the way up to 1.300 m.

No such (ahem) luck, though.

I'm only thankful I met no one on my way up there, because that was absolutely and utterly pathetic, making my way from one tree with the path markings to the next, because the path as such wasn't very visible, stopping for breath at every other, collapsing at every fifth, my body threatening to go on strike ('Busy with the hormones and the bleeding here, and also trying to cope with the heat, are you fucking insane? Give me water. Another Mexalen would also be nice, thankyouverymuch.') So, no waxing poetic about the beauty of nature there, mostly I'm just patting myself on the shoulder for being stubborn enough not to give up.


At least there was a bit of a view...

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Proof that I really made it. Bärenpfadsattel, 1330 m. Note the steepness of the slope on the left.

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This was the most interesting and enjoyable part, actually. After getting down from the Footpath from Hell™ (less panting and sweating, much slipping and sliding) I followed the valley to where it narrows to a rocky ravine...

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View in the other direction...

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Another fork of the valley with rivulets of meltwater meandering through the gravel.

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After that I didn't even make it out of the flat on Sun. (or out of bed, at that, for much of the day), but continued rereading R.Pinto's The Third God, and rewatched a couple of episodes of TW:MD, feeling guilty for wasting my time like that, but really unable to face anything more strenuous.

Mon. I drove to Scharfing/Mondsee and hiked up the Schafberg. This time I actually did get stuck in the snow, but at a point where I really didn't want to just turn back again, so I ended up crossing several large snow-fields, rather fervently hoping that the person in whose tracks I was walking had known what they were about and that I hadn't missed some vital bit of information from childhood about snowfields and spring and how this might all lead to an unpleasant death a couple of hundred meters below. Which obviously didn't happen, and now I regret not taking a picture, but that seemed a bit too much like tempting fate (at least the camera's fate) at the time...

I was also much relieved to find out that Sat.'s hiking tour wasn't indicative of my level of fitness, because the first 850 m up to the Schafbergalm were no problem at all, after which my muscles started to protest a bit because I'm simply not used to four hours of constant climbing and 1.300 m of height difference any longer. Sadly, Wienerwald fitness =/= alpine fitness, I'll have to find a way to do something about that. What also didn't really help during the last part were all the tourists in sneakers who'd gone up with the Schafbergbahn and were hiking down all relaxed and comfortable, while I was sweating my way upwards.

The view, however, was gorgeous, although the weather was cloudy and not very clear.

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Lunchbreak! :)

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Seen from below on my way back to the car.

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Tue. was a bit meh, I couldn't really decide on what to do, so I finished The Third God, because I'd come to the part where it's impossible to put the book down (more about that later, if ever I manage to get my thoughts into some sort of coherency & order...), and then around 1 pm drove to the Chiemsee, parked the car in Riemsting, and maeandered around the Langbürgner See rather unenthusiastically. Everything was pretty and picturesque and nice and whatnot, but for some reason I didn't really enjoy it much. Definitely a case of too much spring, and it's more noticeable there than in the mountains, with all the bikers and holiday makers and blue skies and green meadows with flowers...

Chiemsee, unapologetic kitsch.

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Langbürgner See, impressions

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Back at the Chiemsee, thunderstorm approaching.

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Wed. I watched the final episode of MD, packed my things and then biked to Salzburg in the early afternoon for my by now somewhat habitual walk around the Mönchsberg. The weather was still rather too sunny and hot though, and no inspired thoughts re. MD were forthcoming, even though I packed pen & paper. Biked home via Leopoldskron, faintly depressed, put my things in the car and drove back to Vienna with a detour through the Salzkammergut (Wolfgangsee - Mondsee - Attersee), absolutely glorious in the evening light. The frustrating half-hour long search for a parking space at 10ish in the evening was so worth that...



On the western side of the Mönchsberg, right in the centre of Salzburg. Some lucky bastards actually live there.

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Five minutes walk from there on the eastern edge of the hill.

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Comments

( 2 comments — Leave a comment )
(Deleted comment)
solitary_summer
May. 6th, 2012 04:33 pm (UTC)
*hugs back* As always, I'm happy you enjoyed them! :)

And please don't apologise; I've been reading your work-related entries, and the absolutely *last* thing I want is for you to feel somehow obligated to write on top of all that. In fact, I felt vaguely guilty being all lazy in Salzburg...

Re. desert — not really. (As in, I've been to Morocco once, a long time ago, but it wasn't really a desert as such.) My brain is so strange sometimes. In winter I long for spring, and when spring comes, I'm completely overwhelmed and it all doesn't quite fit either...
( 2 comments — Leave a comment )

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