guten tag! today started out as usual, alarm going off at 6:30 and pushing the snooze until 7:30, barely getting out to door on time to catch my transportation with bread and banana in hand, then commuting by bus or u-bahn to my earliest class. after class i did something very exciting:
i bought my train tickets to PRAGUE and BRATISLAVA!
i am so excited to start traveling the world! first bratislava, then paris, then prague, then budapest, then italy! i can't believe i am blessed with all these opportunities. i guess dreams really do come true. :) after we bought our tickets we went to the naschmarkt for lunch and i had the BEST thing ever. have you ever heard of a falafel? yeah, me either until today. it's egyptian! so i guess i don't have to go to egypt anymore since i experienced it here in vienna. so basically what falafel is: a tortilla with hummus, chili pepper, falafel (ground up chickpeas and beans), lettuce, grilled vegetables, and some sort of ranch dressing! it was so good, i wanted to eat it all day. then me, paige and alexa went to the michaelerkirche! i could NOT wait! why was i so excited about this you may ask? well, this is the church with the crypt where bodies have been preserved and mummified since the 17th century!!! can you believe that?
this is the michaelerkirche where the crypt is. anyway, it was an awesome experience! unfortunately, we weren't able to take pictures while we were down there. so just one more reason for you all to come here and see if for yourself! we started the tour out inside the church and the tour guide gave us some background information on the church. it's basically the same issue as any catacomb type deal: there is a plague epidemic, everyone gets sick and dies. they bury them in the city and then everyone else gets sick and dies. they start running out of room to put all the dead bodies and the sickness keeps spreading from all the dead bodies lying around so they put them underneath the church and decided to have their cemeteries outside the city walls. however, the difference in this crypt is that before this so called epidemic outbreak, people had paid A LOT of money to be buried in this crypt, because they wanted to be as near to the emperor as possible. and this is where our story begins! our tour guide (who spoke rather fluent english with a hint of southern accent, which i quite enjoyed) lead us down a steep staircase into the depths of the crypt! there was definitely an eerie feeling down there, but i found it entirely fascinating! we walked to the first room that was full of metal coffins dating back to the 16th century! there were occasional bones strewn across the room, which added to the aura of the crypt. then he took us to the mummified bodies! we got to see three of them, all entirely dressed in their original burial clothes that had been preserved due to a draft that flowed through the crypt to reduce the smell that was caused by dead bodies. heres my few favorite things i learned:
1. we saw one mummy who, after being buried for a while looked kind of like this:
(except minus the eyes, hers were definitely gone!) when the guide asked us why her mouth was open, i was like well duh, the muscles deteriorate and that's just what happens! well, that was not the answer he wanted. so i quickly responded, "ohhh i mean she was buried alive and she died while screaming for help!" gold. he said back in the day, that was one of the biggest fears of the time! so before burying the bodies, they would tie a string to their finger that linked to a bell in the grave-keepers house and if it rang, they knew someone had been buried alive! turns out the bells always rang because of the wind, so they never went and checked the bodies. guess we'll never know how many people were actually buried alive!
2. there are some 4,000 people buried down in that crypt. they have only found 400 of those bodies. so where are the rest? well they were running of out room, so they would spread out the bones of the floor and cover them up with cement! so the actual floor of the crypt was about a meter and a half below the place we were standing! the floor is very uneven and bumpy, and there was even a bone sticking up out of the floor. that was kind of creepy.
although it was a pretty creepy crypt, i rather enjoyed the experience!
wellp, then our day did a complete 180 and we went next to the imperial treasury! that museum is seriously any girls dream come true. so many jewels, diamonds, gold, silver, and fancy dresses!
the imperial robes!
the royal basinet and some sort of necklace pendant that i want a little too much.
alright, so this is quite possible the most unattractive, awkward looking picture of me ever taken. but i had to post it because do you know what i'm standing next to??? a unicorn horn! ok, not really it's actually a narwal tusk. but for those of you who don't know me, i have a very close and loving friend who is a unicorn and this made me miss my dear sweet carl pillow-pet dearly!
we all wanted a picture together, and i think this photograph did the trick! there's paige and alexa obviously, and if you look close enough you can see my reflection ever so slightly reflecting off the glass!
by the end of this museum, i was worn out and ready to go home and get some serious homework done! and for once i can say i actually succeeded! so that's basically the rest of my night was homework and music. sometimes those days are necessary though, even when living in a beautiful city like vienna.