Day number 3

20170629_105634 (2)Today we are at almost 3000m altitude. My bum is on fire and the rest of the muscles are on strike. That path with a steel wire wasn’t quite straight (photo).

Reaching the peak I see…snow. Some sort of a Christmas in July. It certainly feels that way for me and I’m celebrating every second. Mainly because there is no more walking for today. But Champagne wouldn’t hurt. I’m sweaty, standing in snow in my short pants. Hot and cold «feelings» mixed together.

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Tonight we are staying in a hut on top of the mountain. It is busy here and we are too early. Bedtime is a few hours away and to be honest I’m looking forward to sleep, especially knowing that I gonna share a room with 11 other hikers. What could be better than a room of farting and snoring people? Oh dear! I find this thought is too disturbing to keep in my head. I need a help.

No book in my bag, only a phone with empty battery, so we decided to play cards for the rest of the day. It is not that kind of reward you are waiting for after a long and painful climb. But I quickly change my mind when I look at the snow and wind greeting newcomers. Anything is better in comparison. My mind, body and spirit are getting numb at that point. I’m reaching my summit. Looks like in altitude the air does become thin and less concentrated so do my thoughts. But there is always a reward when you least expect it.

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Clouds are gone and we can see that we are on the top of the world with a breathtaking view over Dolomites. The sun is visiting the peaks for the last time today to kiss and say “Good night”. It always does this way. Every day. For million of years and nothing changed. Time stopped. This feeling is worth millions. At this point nothing else matters, even not a few snorers.

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Doors wide shut

img_3161-2European holidays started.

Last time I was in Austria in winter 3 years ago or so. I already forgot how beautiful and manicured this land is and also how crisp and white Austrian winter country side. Breathtaking nature combined with pedantic approach make this country a fairy-tale land.

And I’m definitely an odd gnome here. Lost in-between dirndls (ladies in traditional clothing) and stiff Austrian men in leather trousers I’m too different even if I ll try to blend.

Therefore I don’t. I don’t even try, I observe with a strange smile of foreigner. I overhear how Austrians are talking about no snow on the slopes (they make it with artificial snow blowers anyway, cause tradition is money, money is tradition), talking about Christmas dinner (every year magazines print recipes for Xmas turkey and cookies, though every housewife has her own secret recipes which she never gives away) and stupid neighbours (even this part became a tradition).

And I admire Austrians for being fateful to their roots and keeping door of traditions open, though as we know, one open door causes another door to close. In this regards door for newcomers is pretty much shut.

img_3188-2 Мои пропуски постов абсолютно бессовестны, но оправданы. Моё отсутствие было обусловлено занятостью и попытками прихода в себя. Всё-таки смена дня на ночь и тепла на холод не проходит бесследно, по крайней мере, для моей способности думать.

Мы в Австрии, а Австрия в Рождестве.

Занятые распитием глинтвейна и шатанием по рождественским рынкам австрийцы разговаривают о выпечке традиционного печенья, об отсутствие снега на горнолыжных спусках, о расписание каникул и надоедливых соседях. Всё здесь кажется домашним и ухоженным, таким же, как было много лет назад.

– Как ты думаешь, каким словом можно охарактеризовать Австрию? – спросила я жителя Австрии.

– Домашняя страна. И не только потому, что это моя родина, но здесь всё про дом, -сказал он мне, -а ты что думаешь?

– Традиция, -сказала я, вспоминая, что даже на корпоративах треть австрийцев будет одета в национальный костюм. Последний раз кокошник на новогодней вечеринке я видела только у Снегурочки.

Как бы там не было, быть австрийцем не просто, хотя бы потому, что для начала им нужно родиться. И только бывший мэр Лужков опровергает правило, став почётным австрийцем несколько лет назад. Судя по всему, австрийцы не против соседа с русским акцентом, особенно, если он научился прятать свои миллионы в кожаные штаны покроя “австрийский фермер”. Кто знает, может и кокошники скоро войдут в моду, если не в России, то хотя бы в Австрии.