Oh Vienna

Whirlwind weekend in VIENNA

 

Vienna weekend away

📷 by www.theviennablog.com

There’s nothing quite like a city break in the ‘in between’ months (or any kind of break let’s be honest), spending a long weekend with a couple of your bestest girls in a fabulous city is something that just can’t be beat*.

For me, the ingredients that make up a perfect short escape are lots of art, consuming at least 1000+ calories per meal, heaps of walking from one historical site to another, drinking delicious wine and mucking about on city rent-a-bikes.

Just one hour + 45 minutes away by plane and Vienna was the autumnal playground for myself, R and B (R‘n’B ha!) to diligently carry out the activities listed above.

Fast forward weeks of planning outfits…

Vienna weekend away

📷 Screenshot from the most sacred of exchanges – The Girl’s Whatsapp group

And trawling the internet for the weekend’s itinerary inspiration (The Vienna Blog is THE one-stop-shop for helping plan out where to go and what to see) and figuring out the best routes to get round everything on my our list.

Myself, R and B kicked off our trip scoffing face-sized pain au chocolat’s and downing caffeine by the gallon at Gatwick early one Saturday morning. Buzzing from the copious amounts of coffee consumed and the anticipation of a decadent girl’s weekend away laying out ahead of us, we practically skipped off the plane through Vienna airport and located the self-service kiosk that distributes tickets for the CAT train into the city.

Sadly not a feline-themed mode of transport, but could you imagine if it was??!! 😍

The City Airport Train takes around 15 minutes in whisking you from Vienna Airport (which is humongous) to the centre of the city. Collecting our tickets – €17 for a return trip valid for 6 months. You can take a cab from the airport into central Vienna but expect to pay €35-40 per journey – we boarded one of the green and silver double decker carriages (which was exciting as we had never seen anything like this. Southern Rail, take note, train overcrowding can be avoided) to the main station of Wein Mitte. The semi-suburban countryside gradually gave way to big concrete buildings with scrawling graffiti tagged in impossible to reach places.

Spiderman’s real guys. He’s a frustrated Austrian teen with a penchant for the word ‘bitch’.

Clattering off the CAT train feeling like superior travellers, we strode up to another ticket machine to purchase our travel cards for the Vienna U-Bahn.

Oh there’s no option to turn the words on the screen from German to English.

Hmm. Well that’s fine. It’s a ticket machine, how hard can it be to work out if we think rationally.

Agreeing within our group on a button that looks like a 24hour pass for use on the U-Bahn we start pushing crisp euro notes into one of the money slots.

The machine spits it out.

Giving the fresh notes a bit of a scrunch and crinkle, and a good old rub on the trousers, we try feeding them in again.

The note flops back out. Nope, it’s not having it.

Out comes the plastic.

The three of us start to get panicky now as a queue of impatient, tutting Austrians is forming behind us while we are literally embodying the clueless, faffing ‘Brits Abroad’ stereotype that the rest of the world laughs at us for.

R punches in her PIN code.

The purchase goes through but the anticipated tickets don’t materialise and the screen resets itself to obnoxious ‘‘Welcome’ text animation. Stepping aside from the machine in confusion so that the perturbed commuters behind us could successfully buy their tickets, we exchanged puzzled looks and gave a fraught verbal run down of what just happened. Were we going to end up in this ticket hall for the entirety of our Vienna trip? Yes. At this moment it felt so.

“I’m going to try again” said R, taking a place in the queue.

“OK, I’ll try the second machine” replied B, joining the end of a second line.

The saga continued for another 15 minutes. Until by what seemed like a fluke, R successfully purchased three U-Bahn tickets.

(You then have to validate them on the little red bollards before the platform. I suggest discretely scoping out how the locals glide through.)

We quickly reached our stop in the neighbourhood of Schwedenplatz –smug traveller bubbles gradually being re-flated – and bickered our way to the Airbnb apartment from the metro station, guided by a pre-plotted GoogleMap on my phone.

‘I’m sure the map means this way’

‘It can’t be down here, these look like office blocks’

‘What?! I can’t hear you, over the sound of the case wheels on these FUCKING cobbles!’

Eventually locating the building (which we walked passed twice trying to find it), contacting the Airbnb’r about how to unlock the door (it appears we’re ‘those people’ who need to take a capability test before going on holiday) we were dumping our bags in the simple apartment, refreshing faces for the afternoon and prospect of lunch.

Let loose on the streets trying to find the Royal Opera house and a gaggle of eateries that surrounded the venue, our raised spirits rapidly deteriorated when we got lost.

Again.

For this I take full responsibility as I suggested dragging the girls to the Royal Opera house area for food as it ‘will be soooooooo nice’ but stupidly didn’t work out a route on Google beforehand as I thought it would be effortless to find.

Hangry and frustrated, R whips out her phone to solve all our problems. Except her map wasn’t picking up a GPS signal.

Great.

Everyone is grumbley once more.

Another 20 minutes of trying different roads for restaurants, an empty café stood out like an oasis in the desert and we rushed through the entrance.

‘Do you serve wine?’ R asks determinedly striding in and up to the bar / counter.

‘Ummm yes’ the waiter / barman answers confused and unsure about the question, his eyes darting across the 3 of us nervously.

Plopping into the chairs around a window seat table, this was not the pretty Viennese restaurant I had envisioned to find on our first day here.

But none of us cared at this point. Lunch was ordered (chicken & chips + a bottle of white) and devoured in record time.

Fed and with happy hats back on, we drew out lunch for another hour to rest weary legs from the miles of wandering done that day.

Around mid-afternoon, tipsy, determined and armed with a set of directions to the Royal Opera House from our pal barman / waiter we left the café only to find out how flipping close we actually were to the bloody thing in the first place.

First on our itinerary list was the Albertina museum. Home to Picasso, Monet, Degas, Matisse, Kandinsky…

Albertina, Opera House Vienna

📷 by Em 

It was quite a surreal experience staring half-cut at paintings you’ve only seen books.

 

bunny vienna

📷 by Em – B and her namesake.

Fountain Vienna

📷  by Em                              OI! You! Yes, you! No photos!!

Our late lunch buzz slowly wore off, signalling time to head back to the apartment to get ready for the evening.

A quick nap and a good hour spent dolling ourselves up for dins and drinks, we tumbled out of the apartment to a local sushi restaurant a short walk away.

Yes, I know. Vienna isn’t really known for its sushi, so why the fuck did we end up there?

Another one of my boo-boos.

I had planned for us to go to Figlmüller on the Saturday night, but didn’t make a booking, thinking how busy could it be? Apparently, very.

It was full up when I rang to reserve a table as we first arrived in our apartment earlier that day. The only table they could give us was for the Sunday at 6.30pm. Which would have been fine if I hadn’t already booked us in to Motto am Fluss – a really cool modern-Austrian restaurant that’s on the river.

Silly Emma.

I rang up Motto am Fluss to switch dinner plans around but they were fully booked for that Saturday evening.

Figlmüller is the home of schnitzel in Vienna, we couldn’t not go during this trip. Sadly I cancelled our table at Motto am Fluss for the Sunday and made the executive decision to take the reservation at Figlmüller instead (#firstworldproblems).

Moral of the story book Motto am Fluss and book Figlmüller as they are both popular.

So back to the sushi place, this was the only restaurant in what seemed like the whole of the city that had a table available for three on a Saturday night.

Glammed up to the nines we rocked up at IKO (which by the way is quite casual, so we got some ‘looks’. Like, ‘who the fuck wears a metallic mini skirt for sashimi’ kind of stares. Well me. I wear a metallic mini skirt for sashimi) it was busy. And hot. Oh very, very hot as the kitchen was a feature within the actual restaurant, so we started sweating from every pore approximately 0.09 seconds after our heels crossed the threshold. Needn’t have bothered with the 45 minutes it took perfecting a dark smoky eye as our make-up steadily disintegrated, one drip at a time.

The waitress parked us at the end of a long communal table and took our order shortly after.

The food was cracking, as was the wine. Plates upon plates of sushi, Thai noodles and spring rolls.

Then drunk on Pinot Grigio and wasabi, I took charge of the girls once more and herded them to a wine bar back up the road that was number 2 on TripAdvisor with rave reviews about how charming a venue it is and happened to be literally round the corner from our apartment.

Vinothek W-Einkehr is run by a husband and wife duo, Roland and Sylvia. Their speciality is wine and cheese, with the place being a shop during the day but a bar at night. Don’t be put off by the smell when you first go in though because it does pong a bit like the back end of donkey’s arse.

A rowdy group of trashed Austrian laaaaaddds were there crowding round the glass cheese counter, stumbling and bellowing at each other in this little space.

Whoops, have I fucked up again… my brain slurred to itself thinking I’ve bought everyone to some shitty shop that serves a bit of warm booze.

We slid past them to a table; Roland came over and started quizzing us immediately about who we were, where we were from and what we planned on doing in during our stay in Vienna. Off the back of his questioning he says he has the perfect wine for us to try.

I couldn’t tell you what it was. Could’ve of been Austrian Jacobs Creek for all we knew but it was delicious and we had some more.

The drunktards eventually left to shout at each other somewhere else so it was just the three of us, Roland and Sylvia for the rest of the evening.

 

 

B and I woke roughly at the same time to the sound of R softly snoring in the corner, on a squeaky sofa-bed.

Blissfully scratch-free from the hangover fairy, the sun was shining (kind of) as we got ready for the day.

Also picked up a handy travel trick courtesy of R in the process…

The top that I had wanted to wear was severely wrinkled. Creased clothes don’t bother me as looking like I have a touch of the scruff is my signature style according to B. This top resembled a dish-rag though when I pulled it on. Moaning to the girls that there was no iron to sort it out, R laughed and said ‘You don’t need an iron. Come here.’ Bending down to the socket to plug in her hair dryer, she yanked taught the hem of my screwed up top, whacked up the heat and switched on the power. Blasting the fabric on my body with the hair dryer, close enough to warm up the fibres but not staying in one place long enough to cause me third degree burns, she worked her way round my outstretched arms. The hair dryer clicked off and she marched me over to the mirror ‘There. Much better.’

Staring at my reflection, the top was wrinkle-free.

Have since tried this trick on countless other cotton-like garments I can’t be bothered to iron and it works every time.

I was itching to get going because breakfast is my favourite meal. And any deviation from having a hurried mouthful of porridge while I get ready for work I find very indulgent and exciting (i.e. having it served to me in bed, airport breakfasts and going to an actual restaurant).

Don’t get me wrong, I love a boozy lunch, or a long tasty dinner as much as the next person but breakfast never fails to get me geared up. I love the variety of foods you can have to feed your fasting body. Sweet, flaky pastries, tangy fruits, spongy cakes, spicy poached eggs n’ avo on brown toast, a savoury sarnie dream made up of extra crispy bacon topped with lashings and lashings of ketchup.

Through obsessive Googling (isn’t it weird that Googling is a legitimate verb now compared to 10 years ago?) and scanning TripAdvisor reviews, I had found out that Café Central was a must-visit for breakie in Vienna.

Some people get hyped over must-have bags, must-have clothes, must-have shoes. I get my kicks from must-have breakfasts.

Practically pushing Rn’B out the door we wandered towards the city’s shopping district. The streets were eerily quiet. Nobody was around, save for the odd clan of elderly tourists and their flag wielding guide.

Vienna cathedral city

📷  by Em  

The route took us past the cathedral and up to the pocket of high-end shops. Working up an appetite gazing at the glossy things in the still windows, Café Central’s dark shiny doors shone brightly against the grey building in which it was housed.

Ever the keen beans, we were 35 minutes early for it opening – add not checking timings to my list of complaints for Taylor’s Travel Tours.

Rn’B are good sports though and usually trust me when I say ‘No, we HAVE to eat at this place’.

Killing time we faffed around taking obligatory pics under the sign

cafe central vienna

📷  by Em  

B kept glancing into the glass fronted café door with a confused crick in her brow every so often though.

‘Don’t both look at once girls, but that waiter-man in there has a huge bushy handle-bar moustache. He’s sitting by the door’.’ She says turning to us with a knowing look and making not-so-subtle head jerks towards to Café Central’s entrance.

Never ones to miss an opportunity to check out interesting people (because come on, how often to you see a properly full handle-bar moustache? You would’ve done the same) we started subtly craning our necks to get a good look. Clocking a bald man sporting a spectacular sprout of facial hair under his nose sitting by the door amidst the scurrying waiters and waitresses preparing for the café’s imminent 10am opening, we gawked in fascination.

‘He’s not doing anything.’

‘How long do you think he takes each day to brush that thing?’

‘Why’s he just sitting there staring out of the doors?’

‘Maybe he’s the manager or bouncer.’

‘How raucous can breakfast here get? It’s Vienna. Christ.’

‘Do you reckon he has a special comb?’

‘Guys, I think he’s a statue.’

 

*silence*

 

Ah.

Feeling silly and with still 15 minutes to go we drifted over to a stone wall to people watch actual people. At the 10 minutes-to mark a couple of people also lurking on the walls and against buildings around the café started forming a queue. Like moths to a flame, our British-ness compelled us to follow suit.

Five minutes to go before opening and the line for Café Central was quite long now. Passers-by had gradually joined the parade of Sunday breakfast goers, a riot nearly broke out between a German bloke who initiated the queue and a bunch of Russians who felt they were above the laws of queue etiquette by trying to push in front of him. We witnessed the back and forth, with lots of gesticulating and shaking of heads.

International crisis averted, the doors opened and everyone was happily seated to order their croissants and coffee.  Founded in 1876, the café has high vaulted ceilings with dramatic sweeping arches, intense dark wooden features and a luminous counter heaving with rows of little jewel-like pastries front and centre. It’s not a shabby place to have your morning cuppa.

vienna-breakfast cafe central

📷  by Em, R & B

All opting for a traditional Viennese Breakfast (soft boiled egg, semmel and a large buttery croissant with loads of jams), I ran down the plans for the rest of the day to the girls.

cafe central cake vienna

📷 by R

An hour later, sloshy with hot drinks, we bid adieu to Café Central and its moustached stony guardian. Meandering on down the road, our first stop was the Spanish Riding School.

Mixed feels about this organisation, a) don’t like the fact that these horses are kept in a city, I think they should be roaming the countryside (I know they get a summer hols and breaks and stuff, but still feel funny about the whole equine ballet thing) b) but the actual school and art itself is historical and impressive c) just because something is historical and impressive doesn’t mean it’s good i.e. Giza Pyramids being built by slaves. None of us were totally comfortable with it, needless to say we didn’t hang around for long, as not being horsey people the smell was starting to get pestilent.

Spanish riding school vienna

📷  by Em

Next on the tick list was the palace. Now armed with a physical map of the city (swiped from the riding school), what could go wrong in trying to find a sodding palace?

Everything I tell you.

In the end we all got so fed up trying to read the actual map, attempting a rescue with GPS and a failing 4G, three grumpy girls kept stomping up and down the same walkway over and over again trying to figure out where this bloody palace was.

Vienna is tiny compared London or Paris, and those cities have at least half a dozen palaces between them which are piss easy to find.

Admitting defeat and throwing the itinerary to the wind, we just started walking in a random direction.

And despite loving a good plan, obsessively researching places to go and plotting routes and schedules, sometimes you just need to wander in an unknown city with zero clue as to where you are going.

Correct, I am now officially a walking, talking  Pinterest quote.

But guess what? If we hadn’t of trailed off course and followed our noses, we would’ve never stumbled across ANOTHER Asian couple taking faux-wedding pictures outside a fancy-pants building.

But the scale of this production was minuscule compared to the full on glam squad Paris bride had.

Wedding photo Vienna

 📷 by Em

I feel now is the time to mention that I saw a third pair battling high and harsh Scottish winds on a blustery day at outside Edinburgh Castle (although chronologically, it was my second ‘faux-wedding’ sighting). Veils and Castle Rock in an almost storm do not mix! Let’s not also forget the couple in Mexico partaking in ‘candid’ holiday beach shots for ‘fun’.

It’s an epidemic I tell you.

The smell of warm sweet things and throng of people going in and out of a set of gates lured us to a park hosting a travelling funfair. Sticky-faced children rode a prettily painted wooden carousel, exasperated parents laden with bags of candy floss and popcorn attempted to muster up enthusiasm with each rotation to wave back at their little sugar-crazed darlings. Noisy rides with offensive flashing lights, jutted and jerked up and down much to the delighted screams of the occupants, carts sold packets of hot roasted chestnuts and circus folk darted in and out of the caravans haloing the main hubbub.

vienna weekend

 📷 by R

Uninterested in the fair, save for observing the odd bratty meltdown, the park path we followed led us up to the mammoth building framing the background of the festivities. Vienna’s Rathaus a.k.a The City Hall. The outside of the Rathaus is a vast expanse of time-stained limestone, with steps skirting the body of the hall and dramatic full window arches overlapping each other again and again, creating a simple striking pattern.

vienna girls

 📷 by Em

As someone who falls to pieces over the tiniest bit of art, I was knocked sideways taking in close up this example of extreme Gothic beauty.

Vienna Rathaus

 📷 Vienna Rathaus

I defy anyone not to feel a tiny bit awe-inspired when starring up at the colossal spires touching the sky.

Wandering aimlessly along the empty streets and chattering about nothing while walking, we pottered around the more modern areas of the city peering in the windows of the shut shops.

This is another thing to be aware of if you are visiting Vienna over a weekend. Shops shut on Sundays, including supermarkets. So make sure you have an ample stash of tampons and toothpaste packed in your case.

jewellery Vienna city

 📷 by Em – pretzel bling anyone?

Sensing we needed some semblance of a plan before we had trekked the whole city on foot, I suggested we pick up the itinerary again and go ride the Giant Ferris Wheel in Prater.

Jumping on the metro and then walking the rest of the way (another 20 mins, soz guys)

Vienna girls weekend away

 📷 by Em – my little schnitzel.

We rocked up to the park.

Another fair seemed to be taking place, except this time there were a bunch of adults knocking around in lederhosen and dirndls.

All of us had totally forgotten it was Oktober-fest season.

Huge beer tents dominated the patch of green attached to the base of the Ferris wheel and theme park that is Prater. Stalls selling bratwurst, soft pretzels (edible ones not in jewellery form this time) and Glühwein lined the straw / bark mix pathway leading visitors through the event. My favourite feature was listening to a rendition of Lady Gaga’s Poker Face played by a Bavarian oompah band.

Similar to this one, but without the minuscule shorts.

prater Vienna

 📷 by Em

Weaving in and out of the stein-drinking crowds, we joined the short queue to buy tickets for the wheel.

€9.50 lighter, stepping into one of the carriages, our little red painted box slowly set off climbing the circumference of this mechanical circle.

view from prater vienna

 📷 by Em

There’s not much to really say about it. The wheel was fun, has some amazing views, lasts for around 20 minutes and it’s definitely a good thing to tick off the list of things to do when visiting Vienna for a weekend break.

Happy that we had at least done something blindingly touristy that day, tummies started rumbling for a sugary snack and wine.

On our epic morning walk we had come across Café Landtmann opposite the university and agreed it would be a good place for lunch. Hopping on the metro again from Prater to the other side of the river where we were a few hours previously, the sun finally started to play ball and burnt away the clouds for a bright blue-skied afternoon.

cafe landtman vienna

 📷 by Em

Sitting outside, shades on, we each tucked into whacking great slabs of cake, washed down with Viennese coffee and a round of Pimms / Aperol Spritz.

vienna drinks

 📷 by Em

This was it. We had set up camp for the afternoon now eating cake and drinking summer cups in the mild sunshine.

Time ticked on to mid-afternoon, suitably jazzed from half a dozen drinks between us, another itinerary activity was proposed.

Rent a trio of city bikes that were docked in a station opposite the café.

Yeshh! Thishh was-sh an excellent idea!

Paying a small fortune for a mostly liquid lunch, our little group ran across the road to the bike station and proceeded to spend a good half an hour figuring out how to release the bikes from their individual ports.

Basically you need a credit or debit card and A LOT of patience.

Not being drunk could also possibly help you too.

The three of us on wheels, we dropped into one of the cycle lanes that snake around the city and whizzed past the sights we had seen that morning. Past the Rathaus, past the location of the faux-wedding photo shoot, up the road we bore trenches in trying to find that bloody palace, through the archway marking out the Spanish Riding School…

bikes in vienna

 📷 by R – pic stop!

Dinging our bike bells at pedestrians in the cycle lanes, laughing and smiling our way, slightly out of breath, to the other side of the city again, we popped the bikes back in another docking station just under the free one hour you have to rent them before being charged. Knackered, hopped on the U-Bahn back to the apartment to get ready for the biggest bit of meat. Ever.

There are two Figlmüllers. They’re very near each other but the larger, grander looking Figlmüller at Bäckerstraße 6 is the newer restaurant to cope with the popularity overspill from the original ‘hole in the wall’ place.

As you can probably predict we turned up at the wrong restaurant (the newer one, there was a queue a mile long of people hoping to snap up an unreserved tables for walk-ins) until we got fed up with waiting and grabbed a harassed-looking waiter to explain that, um actually we had a booking unlike the rest of the rabble, (obviously with a touch of self-satisfied smugness that only comes from your name being on a much sought after ‘list’).

‘Eeh- Emma iz not on the list.’ He said quickly scanning a piece of paper with a huffy shrug of his shoulders.

‘Are you booked at this place? Or on Wollzeile street?’

He had a point there.

Google mapping the other Figlmüller 30 seconds away and giving my name at the door, we were ushered through another throng of table-chancers and squeezed into a corner cover squashed up against the front window.

Figlmüller vienna

The restaurant itself was lit in that soft, glowy, romantic light which acts as a real-life insta-filter and had tables crammed in at every available space – but not in a claustrophobic way as you’d expect, it perfectly accentuated the cosy charm.

The walls were covered in memorabilia of Vienna, Austria and a collection of grainy old photographs of family members who started up and continued to run this iconic Viennese restaurant.

A waiter materialised, took our wine order and handed over massive (in size as well as food listing) menus, describing each type of schnitzel and every possible way they serve it.

I opted for a chicken schnitzel with a side of shredded roast potatoes.

Oh my god it was massive.

Figlmüller schnitzel

 📷 by R                                          ‘That’s what she said.’

It was a beast of a meal and so delicious. Figlmüller is one of the best places to eat if you are in Vienna for a flying weekend visit. But take a lesson from me, book it in advance.

It was still earlyish when we finished up, so our little gang wandered the neighbourhood streets to ride out the meat-sweats.

We popped into an ice cream parlour at the edge of Lugeck, a stones-throw from Figlmüller  and our apartment. Selecting a couple of cold scoops each, we scuttled back to our place and topped off the night piling into the double bed to coo over Ryan Reynolds, Sandra Bullock and the mega-babe that is Betty White on Netflix.

the proposal film

The next morning, after gathering up all of our assorted crap (and one *read: mine* prosecco soaked make-up bag left to dry over the sink from the first night *courtesy of R*) into a trio a of wheelie cases, we clanked and jangled back on the cobbled streets to the metro.

I picked Café Mozart for breakie as its smack in the heart of city and opposite the Vienna Opera house. I thought it would be another impressive place to eat scrambled eggs and sip tea surrounded by buckets of ambience and character.

But it was very flat.

The space itself is a grand restaurant that was probably fancier / more exciting in its younger days but is now purely drawing off the glow from its proximity to the Opera house and museums in the vicinity.

It was OK. And a bit expensive for an average breakfast, but whatever.

The final stop on our (slightly botched) weekend itinerary in Vienna was a visit to the Demel bakery.

Demel is the oldest bakery in Vienna, and like Augustus Gloop rocking up at Wonkaland, I was fizzing to get my mitts on some treats. Cue more map drama in actually finding the place, but we eventually got to Kohlmarkt street and saw a parade of people clutching bright mauve cake carriers with ‘Demel’ boldly printed in metallic gold and white lettering on the side.

Another traditionally Austrian building with huge front windows depicting scenes from children’s story books featuring clusters of sweet things as the star of the scenes.

The bakery was packed. And I mean rammed. You are fighting everyone and their mum to see inside the case of cakes and pastries to take away. Picking a small cake covered in hard pink icing, I paid and got out of the confectionery bloodbath as soon as I could. We sat in the seating area outside the bakery, R and I pulling apart our bright mauve boxes, fishing out our purchases eagerly.

demel bakery vienna

 📷 by Em

I bit into my cake expecting a light, fluffy, fondant-fancyesque cousin. What I got was a mouthful of marzipan and alcohol soaked heavy sponge.

It wasn’t for me, which was sad because it looked so pretty.

R however, had chosen well and was low-key obsessed with her chocolate cake.

Cake demel bakery

 📷 by B on R’s phone – look at those messy chops.

Washing everything down with a bottle of Wasser, we headed off to the station to take the CAT train back to the maze that is Vienna airport.

Three (ish) hours later, exhausted from a whirlwind weekend of fun and food, we were touching down at LGW (why is Gatwick always grey when you come back from holiday? No matter what time of year it is, that runway is shrouded in miserable clouds) and pulling in to the terminal.

I switched on my phone to a bazillion messages.

A new unread email caught my eye.

My face must have betrayed something because B nudged me to look up at her.

‘Everything alright?’ she said

‘Yep’ I replied, desperately trying to sound nonchalant while clicking the display to blacken in lock mode.

I smiled at B, pretend stretching my arms in the cramped plane seat space in front of me in an effort to appear unbothered by what I had just read, ‘Yeah, just mum asking about what I want for dins’.

Satisfied and smiling back, she turned away, standing up to get her stuff from the overhead locker along with R. My heartbeat rang in my ears as I unlocked my phone again, cupping my hand around the case in a casual attempt at shielding the contents from the girls. I glanced down at the email glowing brightly on the screen…

 

CONGRATULATIONS… OFFER FOR INTERVIEW – OVERSEAS POSITION

Hi Emma,

We are pleased to invite you to an assessment day interview for the upcoming winter season. The assessment day will start at 9.30am and will consist of various tasks. If successful through the morning sessions you will be asked to stay for an interview in the afternoon, so please be prepared to stay all day….

 

I was about to be pulled back to Austria sooner than anyone could possibly think…

 

vienna girls trip

📷 by R – die drei Freunde 

 

Steps walked: 46,797  Distance walked:  35.45km

*well maybe a couple of weeks somewhere exotic with Tom Hardy.

Oh Vienna

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