On Thursday, we started the day by walking back to the Burggarten to see the Schmetterlinghaus, or Butterfly House. It's a greenhouse structure with a tropical environment that was originally home to the Imperial butterfly collection. It was a little smaller than I imagined, but it was definitely worth the 4,50 euros to go inside. There were butterflies everywhere, chasing each other and flitting from one end of the greenhouse to the other. The butterflies were not shy about getting near people, apparently they sometimes land on visitors but luckily (or unluckily, if you like butterflies on you) none of them landed on us.
The lemon ice cream we had was frozen inside an actual lemon! I'm not always a lemon flavor fan but this was the most delicious lemony thing on the planet. It was kind of a rip off at 4 Euros, but hey... when in Vienna do as the Viennese do and spend lots of money.
We also saw these adorable pugs chilling on the sidewalk near our cafe.
We met up with David, one of the American students Alice introduced us to, and decided we'd rather have (more) ice cream than coffee. We went to the famous Zanoni and Zanoni cafe near Stephansdom, and I had this pear ice cream thing with hazelnut liqueur or something... I don't really know what it was but I ate the whole thing because it was incredibly delicious. Rebecca had poppy seed ice cream that was surprisingly good, and apparently what Zanoni's is famous for.
I tried to join the local wifi network but encountered a hilarious problem:
Through a series of unfortunate misunderstandings, we bought tickets to see the Wiener Symphoniker rather than the Wiener Philharmoniker... The Philharmonic had performed on Wednesday night and left the country immediately afterwards to go on tour, and we bought tickets on Thursday morning for what we thought was a Philharmonic concert. Regardless, it was an amazing concert in the beautiful Musikverein hall. We bought stehplatz (standing room) tickets for about 6 euros, which was a great deal for what we were about to see. We stood in back leaning on a railing with all the other (mostly Japanese) tourists, we used my scarf to mark our place when we arrived at 7 before the 7:30pm concert.
The Vienna Symphony played Arthur Honegger's Symphony No. 3 "Symphony Liturgique" and the Bruckner Mass No. 3 in f minor (apparently there was a theme on the number 3 and liturgical pieces that night...). I hadn't heard either piece before, and I ended up liking the Honegger much more than I expected to. I'm probably biased because there were some awesome horn parts and I was listening to a Vienna horn section live for the first time in my life. The Bruckner mass was beautiful; the alto and baritone soloists weren't what I was expecting, the timbre of their voices weren't as rich and full as the soprano and bass. I've gotten spoiled with the singers at the Narodno Pozorište, we have excellent soloists.
For more pictures of our trip, here are the full albums on Flickr: http://flic.kr/s/aHsjF3EaE4 - Vienna 4 part 2 http://flic.kr/s/aHsjEToSDU - Vienna 4 http://flic.kr/s/aHsjERnDCp - Vienna 3 part 2 http://flic.kr/s/aHsjEQrsp5 - Vienna 3 http://flic.kr/s/aHsjEPh77z - Vienna 2 part 2 http://flic.kr/s/aHsjENYumG - Vienna 1 part 2 http://flic.kr/s/aHsjEQ8gaj - Vienna 1+2