Sunday, July 18, 2010

The Cross Cultural Experience

I've been to Europe many times, but each time, I'm reminded that cross-cultural experiences never end, even when you "know" the place you're going.  Yesterday we drove to Hallstatt, a pretty town, not too far from Salzburg, but not terribly close either.  Its in the lake district and so we knew we'd have to drive on mountain roads and that it would a while to get there.  We got to drive through a lot of small, charming villages and towns on the way.  We got to drive right through these many towns, not around them, not on an ugly bypass or on the gas station/fast food drag, but straight through the middle of the town center, at 2 miles an hour.  This is charming, and a welcome reminder that roads, towns and villages are organized differently here.  And also that the pace of life here is different.  But, wow, we could have gotten there a lot faster on a highway!

We were invited to brunch today at Brooke's house.  Brooke and her family are from Michigan and have lived here two years.  We got put in touch with her via someone who works at Teo and Mara's new school.  I, like any good invited guest, asked what I could bring.  Fruit salad.  Awesome.  But only if you remember that the grocery store is not going to be stocked particularly well, the fruit may not be ripe, and, of course, that you aren't going to get a second chance at another store in the morning because the stores are closed Sundays. 

Teo and I had a long discussion about how nice it was that everyone had the same day to relax as everyone else….  We brought orange juice and champagne. 

Why do I happen to have champagne you might ask.  Leftovers from the 50th anniversary.  We had about 27 bottles left over, and we are slowly, quite slowly, working our way through them!  I think we're down to 24.

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