June 28. 2013

Upon my arrival at Silvi and Gilli’s house once more, I make my way across the living room and through the French doors leading out to the patio.  There I am greeted with an assortment of stunning bruschette (bruschetta pl.) slices on silver platters–fresh, thick bread decorated with fluffy orange mousse, pink salmon and a variety of green garnishes.

As I sink my teeth in I find my mouth filled with rich, creamy pleasure. Then to accompany the lovely light hors d’oeuvres I receive a slender glass of sparkling blush-colored prosecco.  And then another and another… And so the night – and the rest of the week – go.

I quickly glean Austria is this wondrous, magical little land where you can drink for hours and eat loads, but not wake up hung over or exhausted the next day.  I attribute this phenomenon to the nutrition and purity of the food (despite being high in fat like my personal favorite, labekase, or the very traditional fried schnitzel), the excellent water (which Austrians pride themselves on), and the balance of a regular, active lifestyle.  People also take time to relish in the pleasure of quality food…and coffee, naturally, and walk, bike and swim on the regular.  I think I just may have found my paradise.

Laura and Peter, the bride and groom-to-be, finally emerge from the hall into the living room where the rest of us, who have already had too much prosecco and too little food, are eagerly awaiting their appearance.  They are adorned in traditional Austrian wear, which admirably many Austrians’ still sport on the daily. Peter is in handsome green lederhosen and Laura in a beautiful – even sexy – red and black dirndl. They look fantastic.LP Trad Wear ReducedMoments later, encouraged by the music and the celebratory crowd, they clasp hands and with beaming faces begin to dance around the room to the lively accordion and tambourine-like instrument joyously playing across the room.  Soon we all join in and the room is flooded with sensational, joyous energy.

An abundance of food and drink is consumed; a beautiful (and hilarious) slideshow made by Laura’s sister, Kasandra, and her boyfriend, Mike, is thoroughly laughed, cried, and smiled over; and at last the night ends, “early”, that we might all get some beauty-sleep and be prepared for the next – “Big” – day.