Paris – Vienne – Balaton – Vienne – Paris

In the middle of our move we took a week off to spend it with my family on lake Balaton. We packed a small bag for the lake and a large bag with winter clothes and Gergö’s collection of cooking pots. My carry on bag decided that was the best moment to die on me, after many, many years of faithful service. For a while now the handle wouldn’t go back in unless you knew exactly where to push with both hands at the same time. Now it doesn’t even come out, so I had to carry it everywhere.

We arrived in Vienna late on Friday night. On my way to my mum’s place we saw two older men walking on the street. One had a walking frame with 20 cans of beer on it. I thought that was a very Viennese thing, but it got even better. They wanted to cross the street, but there was a car parked where it’s easy to cross. So they crossed between two parked cars and the walking frame toppled over and the beers fell to the ground. The man started to swear loudly and called the car blocking his way a whore. It can’t get any more Viennese than that, I thought.

Well, I was wrong. My mum texted to say she was still out but that there was a knuckle of pork in the fridge that needed eating. She also had cans of Ottakringer beer. So that was our extremely Austrian dinner.

We left Vienna on Saturday, stopping off in Sopron to buy Hungarian children’s books for my nephew and to acclimatise: pörkölt and nokedli for lunch. Nokedli are Nockerl or Spätzle in German. The English word is dumpling, but they are not like dumplings at all and there is no English Wikipedia page for this food. Anyway, they are delicious and you should try them.

I also had cold fruit soup. It’s a Hungarian thing and I love it.

We went back to Vienna on Thursday night, leaving behind family and flamingo. On Friday we signed the rental agreement for our new apartment and then visited it for real for the first time. Before that day we had only seen it on photos and on a whatsapp video a friend took, while she visited the apartment for us.

We dumped the contents of our large bags onto the floor (no furniture yet) and bought a fancy mattress and slatted frame (at least that’s what my dictionary says is a Lattenrost) on a whim.

On Saturday we put all the empty bags into one of the big ones and flew back to Paris. We’ve been clearing things out, packing and running errands for the last ten days. 5 more to go!

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