Maybe Someday I’ll Finish My “Christmas in Austria” Posts – But Right Now Another Polar Vortex Is Trying To Kill Me

Remember when I briefly, very briefly, entertained dreams about being a world-famous blogger, but then I quickly discovered that I am too lazy to manufacture enough blog posts to really be considered a blogger? Well, Exhibit A:  I still haven’t finished posting about my Christmastime travels, and it’s almost the end of January. By now, I’ve been so beaten down by multiple Polar Vortexes that I can’t even remember that magical time, only a month ago, when snow seemed fun and winter seemed romantic. Before my town became known as Chiberia. Before we started reading fun facts like, “It’s warmer at the South Pole today than it is in Chicago.” Before my husband’s eyelashes froze together when he was walking home from work. Before the doors to our balcony froze shut.

Now I just want to think about beaches and sun and sand and – anywhere but here. Last week I went to said beach. I tried to work out a deal with the hotel where they would give me free lodging indefinitely in exchange for my legal services, but apparently my Illinois law license does not carry much weight in Mexico.

I’m desperately trying to cling to that already distant memory of warmth. All I want to do is think about the beach. And talk about the beach. And post about the beach. Because while being in Austria at Christmas was magical and surreal, I just don’t feel like writing about the cold and snow right now. I may need to table this Austria post until July.

What the hey? It’s my blog. I can do whatever I want. So instead of posting a half-hearted Sound of Music montage from Salzburg today, despite my promises to my family, I’m just going to toss up a few of my recent pics from paradise.

For the record, I always question my life choices around this time of year, when it’s ridiculously cold and the holiday glow has worn off. Namely, when my husband and I take our annual We-Must-Go-To-Mexico-For-A-Few-Days-In-January-Or-We-Might-Start-Sniffing-Glue, where we basically sit on a gorgeous beach for four days and say “No, seriously, WHY do we live in Chicago” at least 100 times a day, while inevitably laying plans for a much simpler life lived out in a shack on a beach. And this year, in between rounds of Chiberia, let’s just say the island-life-planning was at an all-time high. Because- and this is the thought that I just can’t seem to banish from my mind – you know, winter can be a choice.

The following pictures are just a day in the life for some people. So. I guess I should start looking for a lawyerly-type job in an exotic land. Lawyers Without Borders? I swear, these bar exam requirements are really cramping my humanitarian style.

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Weirdly, even if I can’t actually be part of these beautiful scenes right now, it makes me happier knowing these places do exist. And maybe someday, surf and sand will be my new reality. Here’s hoping. But for now…it’s this.

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I’ll leave you with this song, which I recently rediscovered, thanks to a recent sick day when I watched all episodes of “Girls.” I DARE you to listen to this song and not have an impromptu dance party. At the very least, you will be able to forget for a few minutes about the fact that you are colder than you have ever been in your life. And you’re not even outside right now.

If you are obsessed with KOL like me, check out this version: it’s a more perfect marriage than margaritas and guacamole.

Christmastime in Austria – Vienna Edition

As I mentioned in my last blog post, my husband and I spent the Christmas season in Austria this year.

Our itinerary: Vienna, Salzburg, Innsbruck, Seefeld, & Zurich for New Year’s

{oh and London for a tiny tiny stopover, just long enough for afternoon tea!}

As expected, Christmastime in Austria is so ridiculously cute, it’s too much for one to handle. Christmas markets (the most delicious food + mulled wine = perfection), in the most idyllic settings imaginable. Words failed me. Continually. And as you may have noticed, that doesn’t happen very often. The word “surreal” has never received so much overuse as it did during our 10-day trip.

That being said, I think the best way to share this trip is through pictures.

I’ll start with Vienna. Ok, fine, I’ll say a few quick words (see, I can’t resist trying…).

I didn’t expect its grandeur to rival that of Paris, or Madrid, or London. Those Habsburgs knew how to do it up, let me tell ya. As you gaze across the grand plazas, and the horse & buggies trot past you, you can truly imagine it as the center of the Holy Roman Empire. The city is impossibly beautiful, and incredibly clean. Actually, all of Austria seems to fit that description.

Oh, and Mozart? Yeah he’s still a big deal.

Some of our most memorable experiences in Vienna:

  • the Christmas markets on Christmas Eve
  • sipping champagne in a Viennese drawing room where Mozart may or may not have played
  • a Christmas Eve church service that ended in candlelight caroling in a Viennese courtyard
  • strolling around the Hofburg Palace on Christmas Eve
  • a Christmas morning run along the Danube River
  • Christmas Day at the Christmas markets at Schonbrunn Palace

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Next up: Salzburg!