Excuse the radio silence for the past week we have been without wifi.
It was time for a break day. Craig headed out to drop back his snow board and Thea’s rented skis.
Evie, Thea and I chilled at home for the morning before heading out when Craig returned to the Meet and Relax Cafe in central Zell Am See. I was still on the hunt for a soy decaf latte and had not yet managed to find one in Zell am See.
Once we’d parked the car, we wandered up to the cafe. The waitress ushered us into the back area where there was some tables with booths and away from the bar where the locals were watching the female ski championship. A proper barista coffee was ordered for Craig, a peppermint tea for me (no soy decaf again 😦 ) and a hot chocolate for Miss Thea. A fresh pretzel also arrived which was the best we had eaten so far.
After our refreshments we headed for the lake. We weren’t clear about where it was but thankfully around the area there were signs which said “Zum See” which translates as this way to the Lake.
It had freshly snowed that morning so the icy lake was smothered in a fresh blanket of snow. On the way we saw what we thought was a playground until I realised and pointed out that it was actually a waterslide. The giveaway was the icicle encrusted waterfall off the edge and swim ladder close by. We did not try and slide down it.
A little further on was a playground and a portion of the esplanade. Evie and I admired the snow encrusted trees and had a cold feed on the bench seat.
Craig and Thea jumped onto a frozen pontoon and had great fun breaking the ice layer on the lake with a large wooden plank they found. It was also very exciting to skid snow balls across the icy surface.
Evie was fairly exhausted and grumpy with her sore teeth so we headed home for a lunch break and nap. After we had satiated our nap and hunger needs, the pool in Zell am See zentrum was our next stop. It was Evie’s first swim!
It was a very expensive swim at 29 Euro ($50NZD), especially as there were really only two pools and a water slide. We figured the extra cost must have gone into the underfloor heating and fancy shower facilities. Needless to say Craig was totally livid to discover a parking ticket on our windscreen when we excited the pool for an additional 24 Euro. Turns out despite the hefty price tag for the pool, they didn’t have free parking and we had omitted to realise this and pay for a ticket.
Craig strode off to the pool to complain, and was told to talk to the Polizei (Police) next door. As there was no-one there and Evie needed a nap, Craig strapped on the front pack and had time to cool down before he actually got to speak to the police. This worked in our favour as we were let off the ticket with a warning to pay next time!
We have made very sure to pay for our parking since then.
There was a beautiful sunset as we arrived home that evening. It’s very easy to be grateful for this opportunity in such a beautiful place.
It was extremely cold on Thursday morning, approximately -9.5 degrees to be exact. After the 59 Euro price tag for a 4 day rental for Thea’s skis, we decided it would be best to invest in some REAL skis of her own. We got out as early as we could given that we had to clean the snow off our car and dress in at least 3 layers each.
After a quick breakfast at a bakery in the centre of Zell am See and getting Evie to sleep in the front pack, we headed for Intersport (a local snow sports store). Craig and Thea found some super cool red racer skis on sale there and then found some ski boots for her as well. We figured that we should probably shop around, and managed to find another pair of boots for her for 40 Euros cheaper. Go us!
So of course that afternoon and the next morning we headed to the Aerit Express beginner’s area to practice our skiing.
Our pram has turned into a ski transportation device as Thea is now refusing to ride in it.
To be honest with the amount of equipment and small children we have to transport, 2 front packs and a pram are required for most of our adventures to the snow.
On Friday morning I managed to book an hour private lesson. My instructor, Anna, had actually been to New Zealand before so knew where I was from.
Craig, Thea and Evie played in the snow while I learnt how to turn on my skis.
I mostly successfully skied down the hill except for one crash into the side of the conveyor belt. It was pretty spectacular. I went a bit fast and hadn’t quite figured out how to turn to the right. You see when you ski you have to place pressure on the opposite leg to turn i.e. if you want to turn to the right, you need to place pressure on your left leg. I’m better with my right leg which means I’m really good at turning left, and it just so happened that the left was where the conveyor belt tunnel was. The drinks at the apres ski bar were most welcome after an hour on the slopes.
After my spectacular crash I decided that a real coffee was in order. We had seen a little food truck style cafe the day before which offered all sorts of real coffees. You could get Baileys Coffee, Irish Coffee, Jaga Tee, Whisky coffee, caramel lattes, white chocolate mochas and the list goes on. But best of all I could get a soy decaf latte, YES!!!
We took our coffees down to the lakeside and had an amble along as Evie slept.
A quick trip to the supermarket to pick up some more himbeeren (raspberries), waffles and heidelbeeren (blueberries) for breakfast ended our day of exploring. We got the girls to bed and then got packing so that we could be out of our accommodation by 10am the next morning.
We’re off to Krimml (another ski field)to meet up and stay with Andy and Steph tomorrow morning. More on that later.