Surprise!!!

Friday May 4, 2018
I was especially looking forward to Friday’s practice because we were going to scrimmage. I had a little hitting lesson before it all started and then I went to pitcher/catcher practice like I always do because 1) I live there so why not and 2) I usually end up catching for someone. So there I was, behind the dish just catching a little bullpen and I hear “Boo”. Caught the ball, turned around and saw MY MOM. I dropped the ball and totally left the pitcher out to dry (Sorry Angela). The night before that I was messaging her about video chatting the next day. Little did I know she was on her way to see me with her best friend and literally on the plane about to take off from Seattle. I had absolutely no idea she was coming. If you watch the video, her shadow even goes over me as I’m sitting there waiting for the pitch and I still didn’t notice. She did an amazing job of covering it and keeping it a secret for about a month. When I saw her I didn’t know what to do and didn’t think it was real. HOW, is all I could think about. I was at a loss for words. It will forever be one of my favorite moments in my life. They both watched most of the scrimmage and I hit the cycle for them with an inside the park home run😉 We went to dinner and then went to bed shortly after. I knew they were probably really tired and jet lagged. It was definitely one day for the books. I can’t top it. I cried happy tears that night and fell asleep with a smile on my face.

Saturday May 5, 2018
My weekend was just going to be hanging out at the park watching games, as usual, but my mom showed up and already had reservations in Salzburg for the next few days. Change of plans, let’s go!! It was on my list of travels while I’m in Europe and even better that she gets to see it with me! I looked up the train times and we went from Wiener Neustadt to Vienna to Salzburg in a few hours. It was a longer train ride than we expected because the first train to Vienna was a half hour late so we had to take a different connecting train to Salzburg. Besides the one, literal, screeching halt, it was a pretty smooth, beautiful ride. Once we got there, we walked about 15 minutes to the hotel. Most of the time, people mentioned The Sound of Music when I would tell them where I was going. Some of the movie was filmed in Salzburg, including scenes at the Mirabell Gardens which were right behind our room. At this point, I had only seen little parts of the movie and not the whole thing. The front desk gave us the movie and a DVD player to solve that problem. We just walked around the gardens and had dinner in the hotel on the day we got there. I also talked to my dad for an hour a half that night too. It’s always good to talk to pops, see Andrew, and of course the kitties back home.

Sunday May 6, 2018
Happy birthday Daniel!! 🙂
We walked across bridges and into Old Town to make our way up to the Hohensalzburg Fortress. It was an amazing view of the city. I’m so glad my mom and Katie were there to see the beauty with me. It makes it so much more special. The fortress stood on top of a giant rock and was ran by Archbishops. When each leader was at the helm, they added onto the fortress. We took a short Audio tour through it and it was pretty cool to learn about. We also had lunch up there. It was a little windy by that time, but still a very cool thing to do. That’s definitely what I’d call, lunch with a view.

Honestly, all we did was walk to the fortress to take the funicular up and back the same way. It took us almost all day because we ran across a bunch of shops and of course we had to stop and take a peek. With no schedule and no place to be at a certain time, it’s nice to just browse a new city. Especially the city of Salzburg. It is amazing. We walked by the buildings where Wolfgang Mozart are born and where he lived for 17 years. It is SO crazy to me that some of these places are exactly where history took place. It’s the real deal and amazes me every time.

A long day walking our way through town resulted in room service for dinner and watching The Sound of Music. It was the first time I’d seen the whole movie and it was really good! I had to see it before the tour, it would just make it so much better.

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Where Mozart was born

Monday May 7, 2018
The Zoo and the Cathedral were the main things on our list for the day. We were clearly bus public transportation rookies because we failed to press the stop button when we saw the zoo come across the screen. I just assumed that we were stopping quite frequently that the driver would just stop there. Nope, guess not. We still got there, it just took a little longer. It was a smaller zoo in an interesting location. The Salzburg Zoo was just outside of town and kind of pushed up against a big rock. The first exhibit right when you walk in was a primate exhibit and I noticed that from the street. SCORE. I saw a what looked like two juvenile gibbons, one black and one white (tan). I love to watch gibbons swing in the trees. It is just amazing to watch. If you haven’t seen it, YouTube it. I could have sat there and watched them for hours. When we walked by them on our way out, they were vocalizing. They sounded like sirens. Both of them were way up in the canopy at the time. This zoo had all kinds of monkeys and if you know me, it was the jackpot. Gibbons, capuchins, tamarins, squirrel monkeys, and marmosets. There weren’t any great apes (gorillas, orangutans, or chimpanzees), but I still enjoyed what I saw. Some of them were so small that you probably wouldn’t guess that they are actually a monkey. It’s really interesting to me to learn so much about primates and captive animals in general and then see them first hand. Zoos are a pretty bad environment for the animals to live in and it is quite sad to see sometimes. It’s a bittersweet place to visit because we all know I love to see the animals.

After lunch, we just planned on walking to the cathedral. Well, we saw Mozart’s residence again and took a little detour. The audio tour guided us through the building with some very interesting information. They have his actual violin that he owned and played. It has only been in there for 5 years because it was previously in a private collection. There are many pieces of music, old pianos, historic books, and some original copies of letters written by Mozart himself as well as some from his sister too. Some of them even had the feather pens with them. I don’t listen to that kind of music, but I’ve heard it before and learned a little about him in school. Not that I remember much, but it was such a cool place to see!

We made it to the cathedral. I knew it was going to be amazing inside and I couldn’t wait for my mom and Katie to see it too. It was one of the biggest ones I have been in and it was breathtaking. So big. The ceilings were incredibly detailed. Looking straight up almost made me dizzy because there was so much to see and it was so high. Beauty, every way you look.

For dinner, we decided to go to a place right by our hotel. A skybar on the top of a building that we walked by every time we left the hotel. From there we could see mountains in every direction, rooftop views, and the fortress that you can see from almost anywhere. It was a very nice night and afterwards we just took a leisurely stroll through the Mirabell Gardens again. The fountains were lit up and there wasn’t very many people at all. Another long but GREAT day!

Tuesday May 8, 2018
Last day in Salzburg, time for the Sound of Music Tour! We changed our minds and switched to the bike tour instead of the bus tour about 15-30 minutes before they started. Best decision we’ve ever made. It was AMAZING. A beautiful day and we were able to see so many sites, some that a car or bus wouldn’t be able to get to. Tom, our tour guide, was the best and made it so much fun. He had such a passion for the movie and what he does. In some parts, he blasted the soundtrack while we were riding. It is tough to get lots of pictures and videos, but we made quite a few stops and sometimes I multitasked a little bit if ya know what I mean. I only had to jump off my bike once because I was trying to press a button on my Apple Watch and the tire slide out from under me, wasn’t even taking a picture (eyeroll). Now worries, not a scratch. I’m just glad I didn’t ride my bike into the water like some other rider did on a tour the previous day. Anyway, we rode 15km and it took about 3 1/2 hours total. I loved it. The bikes were brand new and so smooth. There were so many times where I just thought to myself how cool it was that I got to do it. Even better with my mom there too, that makes everything more special. We got to ride our bikes through pretty much everywhere in Salzburg. In the city, through the landscapes, around the hills, on a beautiful day, with wonderful music making the hills come alive.

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We had just enough time to eat some lunch, and ice cream of course, and relax for about an hour before heading to the train station. Again, we went to Vienna and then back to Wiener Neustadt. I hung out at my moms place for a while where we had dinner too. We got the menus and as usual, we asked for one in English. The waiter responds, “No, only German.” Okay, well, this will be fun. Luckily another waiter translated it for us and we ended up getting some pretty good fish and chicken dishes. A couple hours later, I went back to the clubhouse. Home sweet home and it was great. It’s always nice to settle down after a trip back where it first began.

Life tip: GO TO SALZBURG!!!

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