The day kicked off with productivity of a trip to Lugner City (the mall right across from where I live) to visit Merkur for groceries, Bipa for some toiletries and rounding up all of my laundry to wash it.  Before heading to WU for the scavenger hunt, Phil and I made salami & cheese sandwiches for lunch with a side of chips.  At home, it is completely normal to eat potato chips with a sandwich.  In Austria, this is unheard of.  As I am munching away eating a typical lunch for an American, Phil explains to me that he has never had chips before with a sandwich and that it seems really strange to eat them with a sandwich.  It is very interesting how something so normal can appear to be so different for someone else and I am enjoying learning the cultural dissimilarities.

On to the scavenger hunt…

We were able to choose groups of 6 but could not have more than 3 guys.  We were given a packet that asked us obscure questions about Austria, vocabulary, different tasks to complete at the WU and all around Vienna.  My favorite ones were: learning the waltz (and then being recorded), posing as if you were from The Sound of Music, dancing with a random stranger in the city center and taking really funny pictures.  Below are a few pictures to cap off the highlights of our three hour trek of madness…

After the scavenger hunt, it was time for me to grab a few Red Bulls and head home to rest before getting ready.  In my mind, I thought going to a ball would mean dressing very polished-in which I felt I did.  It did not take too long to get ready and I enjoyed when Amanda and Phil arrived to enjoy some wine before he and I departed for the train station.  Taking the train to Baden was fun and we took a taxi to Casino Baden once we got off the train.  The ball was really cool-there was three floors jam packed with people dressed to the nines of all different ages (but the had to be at least 16 years old to attend).  It was really neat to see everyone dressed up really fancy and enjoy their time spent at the ball.  After snagging a cheese sandwich and some spritzers, we were off to take pictures and explore all of the different dance rooms.  The large ballroom on the top floor was used for traditional Austrian dances (the Waltz, slow dances, etc) and couples glided around the dance floor in a very organized fashion.  They all appeared to be very graceful-it was beautiful.  Across from the ballroom, we discovered an 80s room playing all of the top 80s hits.  We then ventured down to the “underground” room on the first floor and it played all of the top 40 songs, which is where we spent most of our time at.  We ended up circulating the entire casino and visiting each room a few times.  Needless to say we had a ball 🙂

For future reference, we are going to plan to stay out till the train starts running again or just attend a Ball in Vienna as I thought we could easily catch one back whenever we left the Ball at 3am.  Boy, was I wrong-the next train was not coming till 4:40am and it was cold, cold, cold.  We ended up sitting in this cubicle that was supposed to be warmer but all it reminded me of was an icebox.  Phil was really attentive to me and let me wear his blazer and sit in his lap instead of on the stone cold “ice blocks.”  Even the most crazy situations can be made much better just by the person that you are with.  I had a fantastic time and will let the pictures do the talking…

My First Lox

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Scavenger Hunt & Redoute Ball

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