Vienna (raining), Budapest (fine)
We did well with our alarms, and were in Vienna (Wein) by 9am. It was interesting at the Lippizaner ticket place as the queue was way out the door, and as it was raining there were lots of umbrellas out. We looked at the shorter queue, but didn’t see a person there, so abandoned that idea for now and went to Starbucks to get out of the rain. I had a hot chocolate (have learned to ask for them with milk rather than water), and Jody had a cappachino. The it was 10am and the museum of illusions was open. There was a group of around 20 teenagers that went in just before us, and it was interesting watching what they did with the exhibits. It is a fairly small museum, but had lots of cool things and we took a number of silly pics. I took one step on this vortex tunnel thing and thought it wasn’t for me, but Jody walked the whole way though she felt a bit sick after.
Then we went back to see if we could get our tickets to the horses. The queue was even longer at that stage. We worked out that the practice sessions were from 10-12, and people could queue up for that whole time. We found a guy to ask questions of, and he took us to the front of the line but their machines were down. The lady explained that it wouldn’t be nearly as busy on actual perfomance days, so next Saturday we should be just fine to go in there about 9.30 and get our tickets. So the 3rd day in Vienna, and still haven’t got our tickets! Then Jody decided she needed some tights for lounging around in Nico, so we went shopping in H&S. That was a sucessful trip, but funny when Jody was in the changing rooms and I was outside playing on my phone. I thought the door looked slightly open, so called out to her but she wasn’t there. Had not even noticed me sitting outside, and was up on the next floor. Thank goodness for phones and mobile networks! So by then it was after 12, and we had to check Nico out by 2pm, so it was off to the trains again. It was raining pretty hard by that stage, so we were pleased to be on the underground. Catching the trains has been pretty easy for us – similar to the tube in London. But our second train stopped and everyone got off. Then we all seemed confused about which side of the platform we should catch the next train. We got on and off a couple of times, but then sat down and were pleased when the train headed off in the right direction.
Jody then went to the bike shop to see if the derailer had arrived, but unfortunately not. So we decided to head for Budapest, and pick her bike up on Friday. This was a shame as we could have headed off yesterday if we had known it wouldn’t have been ready. Oh well, never mind. So it supposed to be a 3 hour drive to Budapest. It rained quite hard for the first part of the journey so it was slow going. But then it became dry, we crossed the border and Nico was happy sitting at 70mph amongst the huge number of trucks that joined us. It was very weird driving in Hungary as there was nothing really to see except flat fields. There weren’t any little settlements, and even 20kms out of Budapest we were driving through farmland. The we hit Budapest, and I really wished that I had had a reststop before we did. It took over an hour to drive through the city, and I was well and truly over it by then. The bad thought was that we will have to do the trip in reverse on Friday, but at least I have 2 days with no driving. Our campsite is a bit different, we drove in and stopped on the first pitch we saw and then went to find reception. We ended up staying exactly where we parked as it was level – not that it was nicely parked in the middle or anything and lucky neither of us have OCD.
The girl at reception talked and talked and talked about things that we could do, and neither of us seemed capable of taking it in. We took away the brochures, and headed off to the university restaurant. My dinner of crumbed turkey with rice and grilled veges was really nice. Jody had pork which was extremely tender, but received boiled veges instead which weren’t quite so nice. But it cost us $10NZ for both meals so that wasn’t too bad.
Now we are sitting in Nico with limoncello working out what to do tomorrow. It is May the 1st which I hadn’t realised which means that many of the shops are not open. All of the attractions should be, including the hot baths which I have been looking forward to. I think we will be doing the hop on hop off bus for a while as that seems to be an easy option. I didn’t have much concept of how large Budapest is, but it is similar to Auckland and will take us about 30 mins by public transport to get into the middle of the city. I am thinking I will be sleeping very well tonight as that drive was rather tiring. It was quite long, I was driving at speed and there was a lot of traffic. Nico is being very good though and responding to my directions quite well.
Jody is just refilling her glass with limoncello. I am thinking we might have to find another bottle…..Read more