12 C
Vienna
Sunday, September 24, 2017
solar eclipse
“It’s difficult to make predictions,” the great Danish physicist Niels Bohr liked to say, “especially about the future” – a proverb that captured quite elegantly the gap between what is real and what we can prove. So Bohr hung a horseshoe over his door for luck. As the evidence of climate change piles up all around us, the remaining cosmic truths can...
face veil ban
While banning the face veil may be within Europe’s rights, is it the right thing to do? First, let’s get one thing straight, the niqab, and the burqa are not the same thing. While both are additions to the hijab, a general term used to describe covering of the head, face or body out of modesty, the niqab covers the...
trams
Push the button, climb the high steps and plop yourself down on a polished wooden seat. The seat’s design has an inward slope, so with every twist and turn you slide back or to the side. The ticket validating machines make a funny noise when there’s a bump on the rails, and the signal bell clangs every so often...
Sebastian Kurz
On Saturday, July 1st, in a muted and highly uncontested leadership election in Linz, Austria, 30-year-old Sebastian Kurz secured 98.7 percent of the vote to head the Austrian People’s Party (ÖVP) before October’s elections. A mere three days later, the headlines surrounding Kurz were far less flattering. A scandal surrounding a study on religious kindergartens was added to whispers of...
Heumarkt
Vienna has traded their skyline to improve the Wiener Eislaufverein and other public spaces in the area. But at what cost? In this proud old city, the prospect of tearing down a familiar landmark for a high gloss commercial development feels a bit like your mother getting a facelift: Must you? Really? On the Heumarkt Project, a new high-rise hotel and luxury apartment complex...
unplugging
Summer in the mountains is a world apart: Here, the air is thick with smells of moist earth, acacia and wild honeysuckle. On a cloudless day, the light is clear and shimmering, the night sky a cascade of stars. There is no ambient urban glow, no hum of passing traffic. Instead, the background is a warble of finches and yellow...
Alois Mock
History is often remembered in an iconic photograph, and so it was when the Foreign Ministers of Austria, Alois Mock, and Hungary, Guyla Horn, met on June 27, 1989 on the border near Sopron, and with giant lopping shears, cut through the high barbed wire fence strung between cement pillars that was the Iron Curtain. It was a seminal moment...
vienna tourism
With visitor numbers at an all time high, the Vienna Tourist Board rethinks the City’s image. Locals may not have noticed, but Vienna’s got a new line: in October 2016, the official slogan touting the Austrian capital’s fabulousness rather quietly went from “Vienna: Now or Never” to “Vienna: Now. Forever.” Interesting. In place as long as I’ve been coming to this fine...
sebastian kurz
When Sebastian Kurz was asked to be State Secretary for Integration in 2011, he was 24 years old. It was a new position, and then-ÖVP party chairman Michael Spindelegger knew he was taking a chance. So did Kurz. “I was downright shocked,” he told journalist Edda Graf in a recent interview. He still hadn’t completed his law degree. “I...
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