Monday, 11 December 2017

Sunday, 10 December 2017

Walking into the Season of Light
December Days in Vienna

Autumn's last Leaves and Shards of Glass
Wall at the MuseumsQuarter

Gift-Wrapped Box and Light Bulbs
Hanging from tree branches

Leaves and Christmas Lights
Autumn melding into winter

Photographed 3 December 2015
Walking past Glacis Beisl towards the MuseumsQuarter
Images and Text © Merisi

Tuesday, 5 December 2017

Saint Nicholas and Krampus
Were You Naughty Or Nice?

Don't be sassy with Krampus! A true Tale

Saint Nicholas Day
Naughty or nice,
on which List
are you? ;-)

A True Krampus Tale

In the rural area of Upper Austria -
where I spent my childhood -
Saint Nicholas visited our house on the
eve of his feast day, and always in company
of at least one Krampus.

I must have been four or five years old,
when I was sure I had recognized a friend of my father's
behind the fearsome Krampus mask. I also figured that
his pelt was really a winter jacket worn inside out and
the chain he was dragging along and rattling noisily
looked like the ones used in cow barns.
He was carrying a large wooden pannier on his back,
just like the one the baker from the next village used
to transport bread.

I don't remember how it started,
but at some point I began to taunt him:
After all, I had been a good girl,
so what was I to be afraid of anyway?
At the end, I challenged him to try to fit me in the pannier
and before I could say anything, was I high up in the air,
lifted into the basket, and out the door we galloped!

I was still giggling when we passed our garden gate and
reached the country road that led towards the village -
we lived outside, amongst fields and meadows -
when all of a sudden I realized I had no shoes and
started begging to please be let go.

Saint Nicholas lifted me at once out of the basket and
onto the icy road and I ran home, with stockinged feet,
through the snowy landscape,
and ran and ran as fast as I could,
all of a sudden sensing danger all around me.

The End

"Traditional celebrations of Saint Nicholas Day
in Northern Europe included gifts left in children's shoes
(the origin of our American Christmas stockings).
Good children receive treats - candies, cookies, apples and nuts,
while naughty children receive switches or lumps of coal.
Sometimes coins were left in the shoes,
reminiscent of the life-saving doweries the saint provided.

Today - especially in families of German extraction -
children still put a shoe outside their bedroom doors
on the eve of Saint Nicholas Day, and expect to find
candy and coins or small gifts in their shoe on December 6th.

In some households the father of the family
may dress up as Saint Nicholas on the eve of his feast.
He comes in, sometimes with his sidekick,

Krampus or Black Peter,
and helps each child examine his conscience.
He admonishes the bad and rewards the good."
Quoted from: -> St. Nicholas

Pictures taken
5 December 2009
Images and own text © by Merisi
All Rights Reserved
Repost from December 2009

Sunday, 3 December 2017

First Advent Sunday in Vienna
Christmas Market at Schönbrunn Palace

First Sunday of Advent
It was not yet eleven o'clock,

but a steady stream of visitors
was filing into the square in front of the palace,

milling about, perusing the Christmas craft for sale,
and enjoying refreshments at the market stalls.

Photographed Sunday, 3 December 2017
Images and Text © by Merisi

Thursday, 30 November 2017

It's Off to Work We Go
Snow Day Morning in Vienna

Early Morning Commuter
St. Charles Church

St. Charles Church
View from the Portico

Photographed 1 February 2017
© by Merisi

Wednesday, 26 July 2017

Viennese Coffee Melange, anyone?
The Grumpy Waiter is but a Tall Tale

A cup of coffee
served the Viennese way,
with a glass of water
and a downturned spoon
on a silvery tray

I invite you
to join me, sit down,

a friendly waiter is already
on his way to take your order

Café Hawelka


Almost seven years
of drinking coffee in Vienna,
and I have yet to encounter
a grumpy Viennese waiter.
Signed: Merisi, June 2012
Still my opinion, 26 July 2017 :-)

Images and Text © by Merisi
50mm lens

Sunday, 23 July 2017

Vienna off the Beaten Path
Or Is It? Coffee's Included, No Matter What

One of the smallest coffee houses -
if not "the" smallest - of Vienna

Oh là là, a Love Affair
My friend, the no coffee please C,
here in Vienna, she fell for it,
lock, stock, and barrel

Down Under
Where biped meets
one-legged table

Images and Text © by Merisi

-> Kleines Café with Merisi
-> Café Sperl with Merisi
-> Café "Zucker und Fett" in the 2nd District