Last Wednesday we Koois spent most of our day in Hallstatt, a quaint, picturesque Austrian village which sits by a sparkling lake and is surrounded by towering mountains. We had all been there before (except Elliott) and were glad to return. Before we left we spent the first half of our day at our Airbnb apartment so Elliott could get the sleep he missed out on the night before. Sleep regression, man. It’s a rough business for everyone involved. Since he was up for a lot of the night, that meant I was up too. So he napped and I napped, and several hours later we finally ventured out of the house and on to Hallstatt. Hallstatt was pretty much how we remembered it: gorgeous and absolutely brimming with tourists. It’s a wonder this tiny village doesn’t combust from all the foot traffic. As an escape from the tourists on the ground, we took a 50 minute boat tour around the lake. Elliott enjoyed himself for the first 20 minutes then wanted to no longer be on the boat. Bad timing since we still had half an hour of learning to go. He did better when he and I went into the dining room part of the boat but lost his cool with ten minutes or so left on the tour. Thankfully my kid is really into himself and my mother-in-law found a window where he could look and smile at his reflection so that seemed to settle him down for the remainder of the tour.
We learned the way to do Hallstatt, if you really want to enjoy it and get away from selfie-stick paradise, is to wait patiently until about 5 in the afternoon. By then, the tourists have taken off on their charter buses, leaving the village nearly empty and silent. That’s the time to walk around, pop in some stores before they close, admire the houses, and get yourself something scrumptious to eat by the water. And if you’re lucky, you can pet a village cat, which I assume is high on your priority list like it is on mine.
The next day we went to the Lichtensteinklamm in the state of Salzburg. “Klamm” is German for “gorge”. So we saw a gorge. The area was beautiful and a lush green. I didn’t get the memo that we’d be hiking on this trip which was unfortunate news for my white converse. Oops. Will carried Elliott on his back for the entire hike. Elliott was fascinated by the rushing water at first, but again grew weary of our plans with about ten minutes left in the hike. We made it to the main waterfall and created sweet memories there by changing Elliott’s diaper on yet another park bench out in nature. That helped the situation and he did fine the rest of the way back, and even felt up to flirting with our waitress at a nearby restaurant. Such a trooper.
We’re back home from vacation – a bittersweet feeling. It’s good to have Elliott sleeping again but I’m definitely missing the mountains. Good thing I’ve got Peppa Pig here to comfort me.