I am in Vienna on a long weekend vacation with Kim. I picked this city to see the 12 Bruegels, so I thought I’d take a buffet-read at one of my favorite books, Short Life in a Strange World. Here, a passing montage of travel:
For the next four days, we will mostly move in international space: trains, stations, hotels, galleries and museums, escalators and lifts, restaurants, bars–places where everyone is welcome, or anyway invisible, if they have a little money. Like the child on the little sled, you glide along.
And, a reminder of what it’s like on the other side of the calendar:
Steve Barley and my brother and I take the train on to Würzburg, where my brother leaves us, heading back to Frankfurt and London. It is getting furiously cold now, across Europe. Barometric pressure is collapsing. Elements float free. The schedule loosens. Each train we catch is delayed, by a few minutes only, but delayed nonetheless, as though even Swiss–German railway efficiency were struggling to oil its points, to keep up steam in its boilers, to stay alive. Each stage of our journey is framed by a little fretfulness, a milling on cold platforms, a glancing at departure boards. But the trains come and we move on.