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Celebrating Thanksgiving – Austrian Style!

Guten Tag!

Can you believe it is already December?! The time is flying by. It feels like just yesterday I was walking through the baggage claim in the Vienna Airport meeting my new family for the first time. Since my last update I have played a few more games, traveled to some new places, experienced the Christmas markets here in Vienna and also had the opportunity to celebrate Thanksgiving…Austrian style!

Hockey is getting better each month. The scores of the games are closer and we got our first win this past weekend against HDK Maribor in Slovenia! We have played four games in November, with a record of 1-3-0. The trip to Maribor was our first away trip and it was nice to play outside of Vienna for a change. It brought me back down memory lane and gave me the feeling of being back in college again, traveling to our away games with the team. We were really short in numbers only having a total of ten skaters and one goalie. However, we made the best of it, played as a team and we were rewarded with a “W”!

Jackie and I decided to take a two-day trip to Salzburg and see what it was all about. While we were there we toured the city and also took a walk in Maria von Trapp’s shoes (not literally-although I wish)! I am a huge fan of the Sound of Music so it was so cool to get a chance to see some of the locations where the movie was filmed. Some things we got to see consisted of: the Mirabell Gardens, Mozart’s Residence, Residence Square, Hohensalzburg Fortress, the Augustiner Brewery, the Leopoldskron Mansion/ Lake and the Hellbrunn Palace where the gazebo from the SOM is located. Considering the fact that we were only there for a total of 25-30 hours and still got to see all of these places, I would say we did a pretty good job as tourists!

The weather has completely changed in Vienna and it is safe to say that winter is finally here. The temperature has dropped and the ground is covered with snow. This makes the Christmas markets (known as Christkindlmarkts in Vienna) look even more like a postcard. They are picture perfect with lights, decorations, people, music, hot punch, great food and of course the snow to top it all off.

On Thanksgiving, the family that I live with cooked me a meal and made me a home-made pumpkin pie to celebrate the holiday. Although we didn’t have a turkey, it is the thought that counts and I was very appreciative that they took the time to make me feel like I was at home with my own family. The mother of the family baked the pie and the little girl finished it off with some sprinkles on top! After we ate dinner I was able to Skype with my family back home.All my relatives go to my house for Thanksgiving so it was nice to be able to see everyone. My brother set “me” (the computer) up in the living room where everyone was. This way I was able to see everything that was going on and people would randomly stop and have a word with me and then move on like I was in the same room with them. It definitely didn’t feel like I was thousands of miles away!

Now that Christmas is approaching the family took down all of the fall decorations and started to put up Christmas decorations. It looks very nice with the garland hanging all around but there is just one problem…I am allergic to Christmas trees/ real garland! Ever since I was little I have had a fake tree at Christmas because I am allergic to the mold spores. I don’t have the heart to tell the family so I am loading up on my medicine and have my inhaler at the ready!

I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving and are enjoying the beginning of the Christmas season. I also hope you are all watching the Christmas movies at night on ABC Family, celebrating the 25 days of Christmas! That is one thing I will really miss this year and being with my family of course! That is all for now.

Happy Holidays!


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