Alles Gute zu meinem Geburtstag. Danke. Birthdays at Shirleyfest are fun!

I had a wonderful birthday in Vienna.

I decided to head out to the Naschmarkt as the Winnike’s arrive today and I wanted to get some treats. Part of the fun of a birthday is getting messages on social media from friends all over the world. I check those and they make me smile .The city is empty at this hour and all the building are glowing as the sun rises. I make my way to the Naschmarkt but I’ll tell the truth I stoped at Demel’s bakery for a mini apelstrudel first. At the market everything is arranged so beautifully and it’s not crowded at all yet. I get my treats and also stop at the flower stand I like and the shopkeeper arranges a beautiful bouquet. I also want some apples so I stop a stand near the end of the market. I’m floundering a little with my German when a nice man translates and saves me. We get to talking about travel, living in Vienna, food..his name is Arno and he has a software company. When I mention I’m at the market to get provisions for my friends who are arriving for my birthday, he insist on buying me a birthday coffee and we chat even longer. Super nice guy. I walk on but stop at the Hotel Sacher because Wolfgang, the concierge, has emailed me birthday wishes. He is there and I get his warm birthday wishes in person.

I put everything away and go meet Dan and Sharon and we do a walking tour around town. At our last stop a new friend, Christine, happens to be walking by and she calls to me. “I have a birthday present for you.” I had dinner with her family the night before and she had asked if I had eaten the chocolate covered chestnuts. I hadn’t so a pretty wrapped package of those with a sweet card and roses were in her bag for me, Dan and Sharon come by my apartment for aperol spritzes and we meet latter at Restaurant Grace for a terrific dinner. Starting with the house cocktail of course. Dan and Sharon had brought me a great gift from Copenhagen and even nicer they offered to carry it back to the states for me in their luggage. The restaurant has made me a special dessert and I feel very lucky to have such a great day in Vienna.

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