Last Saturday was, in short, a beautiful (if cold) day. It was the perfect day for our mini-Salzburgerland road-trip. I’m not going to lie and say that we all packed into the car bright and early that morning, but the point is that we did leave when we planned to. And the rest of the trip went according to plan as well, not that our plan was overly detailed. We knew our first destination was the Golling waterfall, and after that, we were going wherever the wind blew us in the most unimaginative use of the line.
It seemed strange to me as we were going to the waterfall that I still haven’t quite gotten used to the idea of driving on the other side of the road. Another strange thing was that we had to pay a small entrance fee when we got there. It occurred to us that it would be possible to sneak in at night as there were no barriers to prevent us, but all things considered it’s probably not the safest thing in the world to do. A short walk and an awkward photo shoot later we found ourselves at the base of the waterfall. The spray made the air even colder there, and the fact that the sun couldn’t quite penetrate the trees didn’t help either. But the waterfall was so beautiful it was worth the cold hands. After another short walk and a conversation with some Americans we were near the top of the waterfall. And when all the ogling was done it was time to start the short trek back down.
We visited several other beautiful places that day, but two things really stuck in my mind. The waterfall and the amazing view we were treated to when we drove up to the ice caves. It was something of an ordeal to get the perfect photo of it. I was determined for one of those cliched photos where everyone in the group is staring off into the horizon, but failed to explain that to the Austrian man I asked to take the photo. Cue a photo of our backs. Just our backs. Luckily plan B, balancing a camera with a timer on top of the car worked out considerably better and it only took us 15 or so minutes to get it right. Of course we realised later that you can see a tiny bit of the car in the bottom of the frame, but by then it hardly mattered. We’d had a great time, and some amazing photos to show for it.
Up until that point I’d been struggling with a big decision. Should I stay another semester? I think when we were standing at the base of the waterfall and then later looking out over the mountains was when I made my decision. Or at least that’s what the romanticist in me thinks and I’m more than willing to go along with that. I’m going to stay.
Salzburg is just too beautiful. Sorry Perth, but you just can’t offer me the same amazing mountains I’ve fallen in love with. Sure, you’ve got great beaches that I miss like hell (why did I decided to go to a landlocked country?!), but right now you just can’t compete. That, and everything’s just whole lot cheaper here.