After a stop in Borno, two movies, thirty minutes of sleep, a hot chocolate, and five hours of a bumpy bus ride, we arrived in Vienna at five in the morning. Thankfully, we ran into a friend who had been to the Czech Embassy before so we just followed him everywhere.
To bring you up to speed, the process of obtaining a business license in the Czech Republic requires getting a lot of documents, signing a lot of forms, an interview at the Czech Embassy in Vienna, waiting a while, and then going to the Czech Embassy in Vienna again. We are at the “an interview at the Czech Embassy in Vienna” stage.
Getting to the metro was easy enough as it was right next to the bus stop. After finding the right platform and hoping the train was going in the right direction, we waited. And as soon as we started waiting, a very drunk Austrian stumbled up to us speaking German. His hair looked like he had put way too much product in three days ago. I’m pretty sure his eyes were crossed the entire time he was talking. And his shirt was only buttoned at one spot, leaving his bare chest visible. He was smelling so strong of alcohol that he might as well have swum in a pool of it.
Our friend said “I don’t speak German” in German and then the guy started interrogating us in English.
“Why are you here? Business or pleasure?”
(we let our friend do all the talking) “It’s always business.”
“Oh, I see. What’s this?” (pointing to the map in our friend’s hand)
“It’s just a map of the metro.”
“Okay. Yeah, sure.” (the Austrian was now leaning on our friend pretty heavily)
Thankfully the metro came and the Austrian did not get on with us. What a wonderful “Welcome to Vienna”.
After arriving at our stop, we walked by a bakery that was not open but clearly baking some extremely delicious smelling food on our way to the Czech Embassy. Ten minutes later, we got to the Embassy and saw that it didn’t open for another 3 hours. Walking back to the bakery, we got some of that delicious smelling food. Then, we pass the Embassy again to a dark park, sitting on a wet bench in 46 degrees, eating breakfast.
When the sun rose, we wandered around Vienna arriving at the Schonbrunn Palace, venturing into the courtyard for some photos.
An interesting thing about Vienna’s street lights were that they did not have many lampposts. If the buildings were close enough, they would have lights hanging from the center of the street by some kind of suspension every thirty feet. It was extremely efficient at keeping the street lit – so much more than lampposts.
Wandering around some more…
…and a little bit more. I don’t know if I’m just not awake when everyone goes running in Prague but there were runners everywhere. I think we saw more runners than people that morning. It was like an ongoing Nike commercial.
And there were so many bikers and bikes. At the corner of every street there seemed to be a station where you could rent a bike for a period of time. Every sidewalk had a “bike lane” and it felt like one was coming at me quite often. They all had very intense looks on their faces as if they would run me over if I didn’t get our of their way.
I found it funny that they had a sign pointing in the direction of Budapest.
Restless and cold, we made our way to the Embassy, sitting outside for another hour. Once the Embassy opened, we waited another 2 hours nodding off several times before I was interviewed. And then Walter was interviewed. And then we were all kicked out as the Embassy is technically only open for two hours a day and it was an hour past the time it closed.
Making our way back to the bus stop, we got some food and waited another hour for the bus to come. After another five hours, a stop in Borno, bad sleep, sore joints, and a crick in my neck, we came home to Prague.
And within 5 minutes of stepping off the metro, two men are standing under a streetlamp peeing (couldn’t have gone to pee in the dark somewhere? nope, had to be under a spotlight). Welcome home.