Published Categorised as Austria, Life in General, Travel No Comments on Amstetten

Amstetten is the most extremely aver­age place in Austria. It’s a largish commuter town in between Linz and Vienna. You have no reas­on to visit it. Its main claim to fame is that Josef Fritzl lived there. I was there to teach in one of the schools as a visit­ing teach­er.

This glass in the hotel door is nice though, eh? This seem­ingly derel­ict barn was the hotel’s neigh­bour however. I would have been very temp­ted to get this plate set from the char­ity shop if it weren’t €60 and it weren’t impossible to bring back to the UK unbroken. Local ice cream shop sign. Yes, that is an eggnog sundae. (For Amer­ic­ans- German eggnog is pretty much the same as Advocaat and is alco­hol­ic). Spaghetti Eis is Mr Whippy extruded into spaghetti form in a simil­ar manner to Play Dough, served with straw­berry sauce. You want calor­ies? We got ’em. (Also upside down apostrophes) Peep­ing tom 80s street art. A little stream of the River Ybbs. Even­tu­ally it becomes part of the Danube. Even­tu­ally.

It was also carni­val time in Amstetten. It was all very normal after Wall­ern Carni­val. “Grave­yard of the Living Dead”. A least there was one tract­or? And the chick­en people were blast­ing out a glam rock song that seemed to have lyrics about chick­ens. It was Shrove Tues­day, so I had pancakes as dessert. The Austri­ans have donuts instead. I bravely celeb­rated both culin­ary tradi­tions. Fash­ion!  A good bet in any small Austri­an town is to find the oldest look­ing pub you can find. They usually have good food. This place was doing wild garlic specials. I had some great Bärlauch gnoc­chi. Vegans however are screwed in rural Austria. If it doesn’t have meat, it’s covered in dairy.Wrap­ping paper in the book shop. The hazards of teach­ing 12 year olds. One boy offered to bring in a Nerf gun to use in the drama skit. This was the result. I had to declare a Nerf gun amnesty to be able to get anything done.Shiny dirndls in the second-hand leder­hosen shop.

The selec­tion of books provided in my hotel room.

 Dramat­ic look­ing bakery near the hotel from two differ­ent angles. Oh I’m spoil­ing you. A short walk from the hotel was a strange little nature reserve area in the hills. All the houses in the street lead­ing up to it looked like they’d been very fancy circa 1972 and never been fixed up since, which is very unusu­al in Austria. They like everything done up and spick and span. Confess your sins before strolling along the nature trail.

Book I got in the char­ity shop. “Baking makes you happy” accord­ing to Dr Oetker. (Is Oetker even a real doctor? Why do they seem to only make frozen pizzas and baking supplies? It seems like a strange combin­a­tion of products). Yes, I will scan this book.

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