Salzburg City of Salt

Salzburg, Austria
May 5, 2022

Like many cities Salzburg was established on trade routes for salt, salt was the refrigerator of its time keeping food from spoiling and was very important. Salzburg is also the home of Mozart, who is a pretty big deal in the music world even bigger than Snoop Dogg or Beyoncé.

Its other claim to fame was that it was the town that the real Von Trapp family from the Sound of Music fame lived and they won’t let you forget it. There were posters advertising The Sound of Music tours and what is interesting is that most Austrians have never seen the movie because it came out in 1962 and , get this, it’s in English. Snap! So, Salzburg understands that the Sound of Music is a big deal to anyone over the age of 70 who speaks English.

Photo credit: Wikipedia

Our guide Frank told us that you can now stay in the Von Trapp house that is now a hotel. With all this Mozart and Von Trapp hoppla there was not one mention of Austria’s most famous export, Arnold Schwarzenegger. Not one shout out for the Governator of California.

The bus ride took 2 hours to get there and put us briefly on the autobahn. Trucks are forbidden in Europe to drive from Saturday at 10:00PM to Sunday 10:00PM and we passed a truck stop for those truckers to take their day of rest on Sunday, it included a strip club with silhouettes of ladies in various yoga poses.

Our bus stopped by what we were told was a garden and this was to be an important landmark to meet and for bathrooms. The garden was pointed out on the map and we were told to just remember the big hard to miss garden. Where was it again? Was it this little strip of shrubs and trees by a bus stop? It looked bigger on the map. It was moments later that I realized that the garden was hidden by the big damn wall we were standing by. The Mirabell Gardens was pretty and had the fountain that they danced around in The SoM (Sound of Music) and some gnome statues, but no statue of Arnold.

We left the garden and made our way through the town passing Mozart’s first home and then later his second home, there were also shops advertising “Mozart Balls”.

Yep, little chocolate balls with some goodness inside that to this day remains a secret. Mozart would be so proud.

Also there was the best sign for the Golden Arches we have ever seen. Woo wee the hillbillies were impressed now!

We crossed the Salzach River over a bridge with locks of love attached to the rails or padlocks with the names of couples locked around the fencing. You attach your lock and then you are to throw the key in the river to symbolize that you are to be together forever, well statistically only 40% of the time.

Our tour snaked its way through the streets and through buildings via passage ways designed to access the streets without walking all the way around the block.

Marla and I added a few more acronyms to our vocabulary:
JAMS- just another market square.
JAS- just another statue.

There was a point that we looked at each other and agreed that we were burnt out on taking photos of JAMS and JAS, beautiful old buildings (BOBs) and ABC’s, or another bloody church.

But speaking of the devil our next stop was the Erzabel St. Peter Abbey where we toured a Benedictine monastery and former cathedral considered one of the oldest monasteries in the world. So we took more photos.

It is also next door to where we had lunch in a really fancy banquet room. After our lunch of turkey snizel we were too tired and full to hike up the hill to check out a view of the city so we went rouge.

Our guide left out something very odd and unique that we discovered after our lunch while on our free time. We explored another courtyard and there was a dude balancing on a giant golden ball. Wha wha what? How come there isn’t a bigger crowd watching this daredevil? He must have been 20 feet in the air! Our adrenaline kicked in as we made our way over to him, after all Marla is a nurse and can help apply direct pressure on any injury and I of course had my camera ready. This guy was understandably not moving a muscle and for good reason, we found ourselves looking at a giant golden ball with a statue of a man on top without any explanation. Another “ whimsical street art” exhibit designed to give senior citizens a scare.

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About Allan

Family, travel, drums and watches. Marla and I have been traveling together for over 40 years. I love going somewhere new experiencing that wonderful feeling of the unknown, getting uncomfortable and having an adventure. As Anthony Bourdain said, “… travel leaves a mark on you and you leave a mark on it…”

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