Vienna

Happy Holidays and a prosperous New Year

It is this time of the year again. After a very busy fall season with several trade shows, product launches, and musical adventures we are finally finding some peaceful days to enjoy the holidays, spend time with the family, and enjoy a few vacation days in Vienna, Austria.

We greatly enjoyed watching the Nutcracker at the Staatsoper (State Opera) last week, and while I could not take any photos inside, the Opera building looks quite spectacular from the outside, too:

Opera

 

Yesterday we packed our suitcases again and continued our journey towards Salzburg and the small village of Obertauern in the Alps. The flight to Salzburg was just fantastic with a thick blanket of fog covering many of the smaller valleys and low foothills.

1X5F0140

 

And the approach to Salzburg airport was quite impressive, too. Is there really an airport somewhere underneath those clouds?

SalzburgApproach

 

Upon arrival in Salzburg we were greeted by frigid temperatures and copious amounts of snow on the ground. Even the luggage carts at the airport had a beautiful icicle display to offer:

Icicles

 

The drive from the airport into the Alps to the village of Obertauern was great. The landscape is just so pretty and the mountains left and right got steeper and steeper the closer we came to our final destination.

Trees 

After checking into the hotel, we immediately went to rent skis and poles and were on the slopes in the afternoon already. The ski area here is indeed one of the best places on the planet. Tons of lifts and trails, perfect slopes, well groomed every night, and not too many people. We are going to enjoy the next 10 days here, no doubt!

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year 2008!

Swanee, Calvin, Nora, and Alexander Falk

 

P.S. You can find more photos from 2007 on my personal photo web site on SmugMug...

Where in the world...

... was the XML Aficionado, when he took this photo today:

Where in the world?

It is indeed a grim place, and it is no secret that this is somewhere in Vienna, Austria (since that is quite obviously where I've spent this week - as can be seen in recent blog postings). But the question is: where in Vienna, and what place is this? I'll provide just one hint: DiffDog would have loved that place.

Be the first one to comment on this XML Aficionado blog with the correct answer, and you'll win one single-user license of Altova DiffDog 2008, the essential differencing and merging utility for developers.

Disclaimer: all blog comments subject to review; prize cannot be exchanged for cash; void where prohibited; winner responsible for all taxes and dues; employees of Altova GmbH and Altova Inc as well as Falk family members are eligible to participate, since the location of the above photo is only known to me personally and I was alone when taking that photo; batteries not included; no animal was harmed in the taking of the above photo; if you are reading this, then you (a) are probably a lawyer and/or (b) don't need any glasses...