Lockdown in my hometown

Victoria in lockdown - covid
The news even made it to Austria

I’m originally from Melbourne, Australia. If you haven’t heard, Victoria (the state where Melbourne is located), is currently in the middle of a pretty serious lockdown. This was even reported in Austrian news, which means, it’s huge. Melbourne is now in week 4 of a six week planned lockdown, but from the numbers it seems like they’re going to be stuck in there longer.

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I was never destined to learn another language… but here I am

10 green bottles
Sepuluh botol hijau…

I’m quite often asked in Austria if I learnt German at school. My answer: “No, I learnt Indonesian,” is usually met with very blank stares.

When I began high school in Australia it was mandatory to learn one semester each of French and Indonesian.

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Cabbage Surprise – waste not… want… not

zucchini fritters
Dinner for one?

I have a bit of an obsession with food wastage – as I’ve already mentioned in a previous blog, it kind of upsets me. In an ideal world, I shop once a week and have a basic idea of what I’m going to eat each day. Back in my bachelorette days this often resulted in very boring weekday meals. Because if I bought a whole broccoli, then I was forced to eat broccoli almost every night to use it up.

The more people you have in your household, the more variety you can purchase without wastage. And when you’re just one… well it can make it difficult.

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Your intolerance isn’t real… except when it is

You know histamine intolerance winehow it goes these days… it seems that everyone is on some kind of special diet… everyone is intolerant to something. Look… it’s not like I don’t believe them, because I know plenty of people who have legitimate intolerances… but it’s almost like sometimes… well… I don’t really believe them.

This is not helped by the fact that it seems there are those who practice ‘selective’ intolerance. They make a big deal to get a gluten free meal in a restaurant, but on Sunday afternoon gorge on ‘standard’ pizza with apparently no ill affect.

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Traditional Austrian Dishes – Backhendl

Backhendl SalatAustria is well known for many different types of food – some you will definitely have heard of: strudel, schnitzel, goulash etc. Each region also has specialities they call their own. Though consider that Austria has nine states in a total of 84,000km² (compare that to Australia’s 8 in 7.7million km²) – this means that a dish ‘local’ to one area is very often found in other places too.

I live in the state of Carinthia (Kärnten) and I work in the state of Steiermark (Styria), so I’m familiar with quite a few.

We’ve already talked about Kärntner Reindling, Kärntner Nudeln, Jause and Glundner Käse and this week I’m focusing on Backhendl.

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Damn you Covid – preying on my predisposition to go overboard

Swimming is finally back on - post coronaIn my town the opening of the local outdoor swimming pool was delayed by two weeks due to COVID-19. You might already know I’m a keen swimmer. You might also already know that I’m no stranger to overdoing it. Living in a land with a swimming pool that’s only open for 3.5 months per year just exacerbates my desire to make the most of the season and swim as much as possible. So what happens when Coronavirus wipes two weeks off that measly 3.5 months… what do I do, you ask?

I flat out panic.

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Sitting… standing… or both?

First standing desk
The first standing desk

We all know that sitting all day is bad for us. After I slipped discs in my back, I was under strict instructions: from here on I would need to balance out time spent sitting with movement, be it walking or standing.

At the time, because I couldn’t drive, I created a standing desk at our dining room table – two cardboard boxes created the perfect height for my laptop. I’d stand for half an hour and then I’d sit for half an hour, and so on. Soon after, we installed a standing desk in my home office, and thankfully my company provided me with a standing desk at work. So I was set.

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When the parents don’t come to visit – thanks Covid

garden hut painting
This time last year

In a world without COVID-19, this past week would have been very different. On Thursday afternoon, a picture-perfect summer day, I would have picked my parents up and delivered them to our house for their (almost) yearly sojourn to Austria.

There would have been lots of hugs and probably a few tears. We might have had a BBQ on the back terrace, listening about how their trip had gone so far – a cruise from Prague to Berlin – possibly they would have had to deal with colds or other difficulties, but they would be in good spirits because they had finally arrived in Austria.

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Slowly emerging into a post COVID-19 world

The last two weeks have been crazy!

Here in Austria we’re slowly easing out of restrictions, and with that life returns to a semblance of normal.

Our first Hofer shop after two months took up the entire belt (not previously achieved). Even though we were getting irregular grocery deliveries during lockdown, we had purchased mainly necessities, so it was necessary to stock up.

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