Proper posh

21:51 Paul Robinson 0 Comments

11.30am, Cafe Central, Vienna

I have just been to watch the Spanish Riding School at the Hofburg Palace. It was peculiar site to a northern lad from Oldham. We were all sat in a large, palatial room decorated with two giant chandeliers. The audience are sat within two upper tiers and the ground floor is covered with sand (yes, sand). The classical music started and in walked the horses and riders (and yes, horses).

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There were four pristine horses and temperamental black horse. The horses are taken around the room and perform various walks, canters, skips and general horse-y stuff. The riders remain virtually motionless and their control of the horse is very subtle. The mystique is built up by prohibiting photography and by snooty staff constantly judging you. I didn't envy the guy who was 'dressed up to the nines' but his only role was to sweep up the horse poo. It was interesting to see some dressage, but I'm not in a rush to see it again.

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Afterwards, I visited Cafe Central which is an institution amongst Viennese intelligentsia. Originally opened in 1860, some of the cafe's patrons have included Freud, Hitler and Lenin. In such renowned company, I felt compelled to go for the classic Viennese 'kaffe und kunchen' - melange and apple strudel. Eating the strudel, I couldn't help but picture the restaurant scene from Inglourious Basterds.

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The cafe was a little touristy, but unlike the hundertwasserhaus , it is still operating as intended and you can appreciate it in it's true glory.

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