Thursday, August 04, 2011

All Good Things Must Come to an End...

Yes, all good things come to an end, but the memories will last forever! We had a fabulous two weeks in Burgenland and I'm so glad that I had the opportunity to share this trip with my mom.

She is still thinking about our trip too - she continues to cook and bake some of the things we ate while we were there. Two days ago she made apricot marmalade (like the stuff we had at the pension every morning); and yesterday she tried to make cabbage strudel (remember, she ate five pieces!) My son tried the cabbage strudel yesterday and said it was delicious! I'm sure there were will be more Burgenländishe foods coming our way in the days ahead.

Sadly, this will be my final post on our trip to Burgenland. Oh, I'm sure that I could probably go on and on for several more days (or weeks!) and I will likely still occasionally insert a little story or a picture or two as things occur to me, but I think I've successfully covered all of the major highlights of our trip.

So today, I leave you with some photos (and of course, commentary!) on the "land" and the "lake."

We think we understand why our ancestors came to Minnesota. When you look at the landscape of Burgenland, it's like looking at the corn field or the wheat fields that you might see in the country right here in Minnesota!

Minus the vineyards of course! (Oh I know there are vineyards in Minnesota too, but not like these.)

The grapes are growing everywhere - every little patch of available land! Everyone has their own little patch of grapes and everyone makes wine. The wines made in Burgenland are delicious!

This picture could almost be mistaken for Iowa with all the wind turbines, don't you think?

Flowers were in bloom everywhere too...

One day, during our visit we traveled to the city of Neusiedl to visit with some cousins (Mitzi and Rosa). We had lunch at a newer hotel that was recently built just north of Neusiedl in Parndorf. After lunch, we had the opportunity to go up to the 14th floor and view the Neusiedlersee (Lake Neusiedl) from the north.

Can you see it in the distance? If the day had been clearer, it would have been an even better view. And yes, immediately in front of the hotel - that is an outlet mall. Just like the ones we have here in America.

Quick people picture of second cousins Rosa (middle) and Mitzi (right), Rosa's husband is on the left. I stayed with Rosa's family twice over the Christmas and New Year holidays while in college and studying in Germany.

On a different day, we also viewed the Neusiedlersee from it's most southern end. You have to travel into Hungary to see it (keep in mind, it's a big lake!) Behind these houses you can see the southernmost end of the Neusiedlersee.

Much of the lake in Hungary though is made up of "Rohr" or reeds. These same reeds were used to make the thatched roofs that you often see on older pictures of homes in the Burgenland area. This is a barn that we came across in Hungary.

Much of the area surrounding the Neusiedlersee is a National Park and since 2001, it has also been named a World Heritage Site. This area would be like heaven to an ornithologist because of the various different birds that can be seen here. We saw thousands of geese and an old fashioned well as we traveled through the park

And of course, let's not forget the storks!

But, the best way to see the Neusiedlersee is "up close and personal." We did something that we never "in our wildest dreams" thought we would do on this trip. One afternoon we traveled to a marina in Hungary and we boarded Martin's sailboat and headed out to the lake!

The captain of the ship and his first mate (or do they look more like the "Skipper" and "Gilligan"?)

We had to travel down a long (with emphasis on the word "long") channel of rohr to get to the lake..."How much longer before we reach the lake, Martin?"

The long trip through the channel was worth it. Once we made it to the end, we had a front row seat viewing the beautiful Neusiedlersee!

A very happy captain and first mate basking in the sunshine!

So, that's my story. Special thanks to Martin and Ilse - this trip wouldn't have been possible without the two of you. I hope you know that you will always hold a special place in our hearts (and we hope you will seriously consider coming to America one day soon!)

Tomorrow we will resume regular programming, a.k.a. needlework updates! Although, I did find a few more photos of the embroidery from Hövej. That still counts, right?



Vonna Pfeiffer said...

I have enjoyed each perfectly written, well remembered, beautifully composed picture of the lands and people you have visitied each day you have posted Cathy. You can see and tell the specialness that this trip held not only for you, but for your Mama. I thoroughly have enjoyed this and am so thankful that you have shared your memoirs with us all!

Margaret said...

Just wonderful! I've so enjoyed travelling vicariously through you! Thatched roofs -- and that's a barn? Gorgeous! Your trip is definitely one to remember and treasure for always! Thanks for sharing it with us!

Kathy said...

Thank you so much for sharing your trip with us. The photos and descriptions of the places were beautiful.
Thank you.

Katrina said...

I've so enjoyed reading about your trip!!! Glad you had such a nice time and even better sharing it with your mom :-). BTW, can't stop thinking about that cabbage strudel, I'd love to try making it :-)!!!! Off to google to see if I can't find a recipe.

Anonymous said...

Wow! You took some cool pictures! Thanks for sharing! I have 'never' seen a pot of Edelweiss!

Katrina said...

Hi Cathy, thanks so much for sharing your wonderful holiday memories with us - its been a true pleasure to see all the beautiful sights, food and your family :)

JillMN said...

You have really captured your trip well. Have you ever been to Kramarczyks in Minneapolis? They have a meat counter to take stuff home and a restaurant to eat in. You would probably like it.

Anonymous said...

Thank you so much for the travelogue. It was really informative especially since my grandmother came over from Vienna (no idea of location other that). She reminds a lot of your mother adn the other ladies in looks so perhaps it was the same area. She lived in Pierz just north of St. Cloud as I am originally from MN. She did crochet very intricate lacey things but not quite like the examples. Those were truly wonderful to see!!. Mary in TN.

neonfrostjaxin at hotmail dot com.

Brigitte said...

Oh Cathy, what a wonderful two weeks you must have had in Austria and Hungary. I was so enjoying your reports and pictures about your trip into the country of your ancestors and relatives. It must have been very exciting for you and your Mom.

Andrea said...

How wonderful. I've really enjoyed coming along on the trip with you so to speak. :)