Vanessa – September 1- Present (Activities):

I usually have something planned every week for the weekend. The weekend before last I visited Wien with some other exchange students and then came back the next day for a hike and outing with several local families who are friends of my host family. We hiked up a small mountain to some old ruins, had a glass of wine, and enjoyed the sunshine while the children ran around and played games. Then we made our way into a museum full of only the most unnecessary inventions. For example, glasses with a tennis net drawn on the bottom half of them so you “knew how high you needed to hit the ball.” Basically it was just a building full of entertaining objects to make you laugh! After the museum we went all went to dinner together at something called a Heurigen. It was just an open area where are a large group of people could sit down, eat some good food, and drink wine. Many times the owner of the Heurigen is serving up his wine from that year, and if you ever visit Austria you may not leave without experiencing and authentic Heurigen.

Last weekend was first a Rotary meeting in which the three exchange students living in my district were formally introduced to our rotary club. That night all of us exchange students travelled back to my town of Hollabrunn where a pre-celebration of Oktoberfest was taking place. The next day was the traditional Oktoberfest celebration in which I got to wear a dirndl and listen to traditional Austrian music. The real Oktoberfest takes place every year in Munich, Germany and is popular for people all around the world. Hollabrunn, however, also has a much smaller Oktoberfest and this is what I got to visit with my host family!