Upheld

This photo has become a tradition for this blog on each Christmas Eve since 2010. This ornament is appropriate, as it was spied that year hanging in a vendor’s booth at the Christmas Market in Vienna, Austria.

I do believe I missed last year, but we were busy traveling the world. Goddess and I spent the first half of this year continuing those travels, spending time with friends and family all over the world.  We’ve settled down for a spell to see how that suits us.

Know that our wish for you is to have a peaceful end of the calendar year adhering to whatever practices bring you comfort and joy.

Hopefully you will find a bit of relaxation in there too.

Christmas Eve Globe Lights Ornament by Bill Anders Photography

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Byzantine Cross

Russian Orthodox Church, Vienna, Austria.

Found while roaming the back alleys, well off the beaten tourist path.

Directly across the street from the Iranian Embassy.

Decay

Time for a (small) break from Weinachtsmarkt posts.

Goddess and I are not the typical tourists.  Sure, we’ll check out the major sights of a town or city, but often those are quick visits as we move on.  And unless we need to move quickly from one side of a city to another, rarely do we take the public transportation.

There’s too much to learn about a city by walking the side streets.  Especially if they are the streets that only the locals typically see.

Plus, it satisfies my need to look for details and patterns.  I’m touched that way.

In a Rain Man sort of way.

Even better if the details and patterns are old.  And part of the decay.  Since it all gives a certain feel and tells a certain story.

A few from Vienna, Austria:

 

Ghost Home
Framed Window
Red Handrail

I can just imagine the people walking down the missing steps in the last image.

Wondering where they are now.

If they are.

Hundertwasserhaus

It’s been a crazy week.  At least it’s over.

Just in time to roll into another crazy week.

Time to stay sane.

Either that or embrace the insanity.

Just like the Hundertwasserhaus in Vienna, Austria.  Insanity is row after row of block house.  Even in Vienna, with its classic architectural facades dating back hundreds of years, can look the same street after street.  Thankfully architects and artists like Friedensreich Hundertwasser can break the insanity while creating functional apartment complexes.

And the beauty is that not only does the complex break with tradition, but he extends the concept into the surrounding streets, making the experience completely tactile.

We found out that he’s done some other apartment and business complexes pretty close to were we live.  We’ll definitely have to make the trip.

Clang, Clang, Clang…

…went the trolley.

One beautiful thing about the major European cities are the trolleys.  I just enjoy watching them zip by.  I don’t even mind waiting for them as they cross the street or zip out to take the lane in front of us.

There’s just something about them.   Perhaps their Old World charm.

Here in the Old World.

Smokin’ & Jokin’

No matter how cool the weather, there’s always a place to stay warm while talking with friends and enjoying a beverage.

Graber, Innere Stadt, Wien, Austria

Stark Ravin’

Well, not much raving. 

But a lot of good thumping beats while relaxing with a hot cup of glühwein.

Sitting on faux bearskin rugs laid on on benches in plastic tubes designed to keep the bartenders dry and some of the warmth in.

Lined with string lights, dancing with disco balls.

All thumping, but not so loud to interrupt conversation.

Party Tube 1 Party Tube 2 Step outside.

Look at the lights.  The shadows.

The show projected on the walls.

Raving WindowsThe DJ in the fishbowl, spinning his mp3’s while grooving for the crowd.

Museum Quarter (MQ), Wien (Vienna), Austria.