Tuesday, October 08, 2002

Close the door, dim the lights, blow out the candles...

The Q*Bert question was in relation to a painting I saw at the Rupertinum modern art museum in Salzburg. There was another one called still-life with seashell or something that I swear depicted the seashell and a computer keyboard and mouse. Then I saw that the painter (Fernand Leger) died in the 60s. Man, he was ahead of his time. For my (second) birthday dinner I had a caesar salad and world-famous Sacher Torte at the Cafe Sacher.

Now would be a good time to mention that I was in Salzburg once before and I remember exactly one thing about it. Buying a smurf. It was Emperor Smurf, but one that could have been purchased anywhere. I had a thing about getting a souvenir from every country. I wrote "Austria" on the bottom of it. I was ten. Now back to what I will remember about this trip to Austria.

The weather was nicer on Monday. I was up early, dressed and outta the hostel by about 8 am. Methinks it's time to stop bunking with post-collegiate backpackers. Didn't sleep a wink. It wasn't because they were rowdy or anything. I mean, they were, but not in the room. I was just far too aware of there being 6 strangers in the room and their breathing kept me up. I strolled through the Mirabelle Gardens, singing Doe a Deer in my head, rode the funicular to the fortress (because everyone knows the first part of funicular is "fun") and down again, looked at a display lauding "water power," ate a sesame bretzel, bought myself a snazzy french bag that I'm told is twice as expensive in America, took a bus to Hellbrunn Castle where I saw Liesl's gazebo, but much more importantly Marcus Sitticus'eses trick fountains. Hellbrunn was definitely the highlight. There are all these sprinklers throughout the gardens that the emperor used to humiliate his guests. Including spouts inside the chairs at a fancy table. So toward the end of a big banquet he would have water shoot up through their arses. Then there are these grottos with sculptures and things, and the guide would turn the sprinklers on at his whim. At one point the tour was backed up because we were all afraid of crossing a threshold that seemed to be spurting water up with each step. I figured out the pattern and leaped over at the perfect moment...to get a shot of water in the crotch. It was a blast.

Yesterday was my father's birthday, and for some reason I was reminded of one of my favorite birthday pictures. We're posing behind our cake, and I'm holding my favorite present. A brand new E.T. doll.

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