Friday night my friend Doris invited me to her house Saturday morning for homemade pancakes. When Andrea and I showed up the next morning, it was a bit of a couchsurfing get-together! My friend Meghan was there and Doris had a couple friends over as well as three couchsurfers staying with her at the time. Doris and friends made amazing chocolate chip pancakes from scratch and everyone that came brought different toppings. We had all kinds of fruit and jam and sweets, including real Canadian maple syrup from the two couchsurfers from Canada.
After our late breakfast we all headed to Brunnenmarkt, the Turkish vegetable market in the 16th district. I was especially excited about this because we are each assigned a different district to present for our Cultural Studies class coming up in June and I was assigned to the 16th! I was able to take quite a few pictures and start my project.
That day Doris, Meghan and the couch surfer from Virginia, Hannah Love, convinced me to come on a bike ride with them the next day. I was a little apprehensive because I have never been very good on a bike, but I said yes anyway. I woke up early Sunday morning to meet the group of twenty or so couchsurfers at Florisdorf station. We were all from different backgrounds; there were people from Australia, Austria, Germany, Hungary, Sweden, Turkey and the USA. We then took the train to the Wachau region and got our rental bikes. Dominik, who grew up in Krems, led our bike tour. We biked down one side of the river and then back up the other, visiting the towns of Dürnstein, St. Michael, Spitz, Mautern, Stein and the city of Krems. One of my favorite parts was riding along the river directly across from Dürnstein. The picture above shows all of us posing in front of Dürnstein and you can see the ruins that I hiked to on our class’s field trip to the Wachau last month. It was tough getting back on a bike, but I’m glad I did it. Now I feel comfortable enough to rent the city bikes in Vienna (as long as I stay away from cars).
After we returned our bikes, Dominik led us on a walking tour of Krems. First we rested our bike-weary legs in the park and then filled our bellies with some ice cream. Then Dominik took us up a hill in Krems to overlook the Wachau valley. It was beautiful. After the train ride home, Doris, Hannah, Jai the Australian and I went to Vienna’s famous ice cream shop on Reumannplatz called Tichy. There we tried a wonderful dessert called Eismarillenknödl. It is apricot mousse made from the apricots grown in the Wachau region surrounded by vanilla ice cream and rolled in cookie crumbs. OH MY GOD. I have been back to try the raspberry and snowball flavors as well.
It was a wonderful weekend where I met a lot of people and I can’t wait for more couchsurfing events!