National NOT-poon's European Vacation

Whrilwinding through Vienna, Paris and Munich

With Susan Lauber

June 2000

NOT is nothing if not a very chic continental kind of duck. So when he's offered a chance to head to Europe, he jumps at it. Besides, it's a bit far to try and fly with his short stubby wings - so suitcases are fine, though first class is always better. 

His friend Susan was going to head to Europe, and invited the small duck along. What was a duck to do?  First stop, Vienna Austria!  

While there were no zithers to be seen,* NOT did find so called Smart Cars there on the streets. However, they didn't understand his quacks. "How smart can they be if they can't speak duck?" he mused. 

*See Orson Wells' The Third Man.

Though is was a bit futuristic, it had no regal nose, and for a duck, the beak is everything so naturally NOT was not impressed. 

However, he and Susan did find the Hundertwasserhaus in Vienna a bit more interesting, if not full of rocks. Hundertwasser was a famous artist in Vienna, known for his art and his architecture (as well as his naked speeches). "Hundertwasser believes that man should live more in harmony with nature. Our buildings should contribute to our environment and our living space should resemble the environment we evolved in. To that end, he plants quite a few trees to grow out of buildings and the floors are quite irregular - three-dimensional surfaces."*

Off to Paris and a return to the city of lights. Of course, that is a misnomer when you're there in the day, and no lights are to be seen. Since he didn't want to be mislead, he made sure to ask some of the locals where the lights might be. Unfortunately, they must have been hanging around Jim Morrison's grave too long because all they seemed to do was sit in stoned silence and make faces at him.  


Hmm, maybe inside Notre Dame would be the lights? 

Nope, lots of beautiful statues and crosses but no real lights to help NOT find his way. He had to leave before he started quacking "Sanctuary" as the Hunch-Quack of Notre Dame. 

By later on in the evening, it got dark and the pair ascended the Eiffel Tower. Despite having been there before, NOT was delighted - when he went to the top, all around him were lights. It was as if no one in France knew how to turn off the switch!  The City of Lights is right!

But enough of the culture of the French, it was time to drink!!! Well, where better to go than Munich for the beer and Oktoberfest. Never mind that it was only June - that never deterred our intrepid traveler. So the pair found themselves winging their way to Deutschland, to  Munich.


Ahh! Now that's more like it. NOT loves the Hofbrauhaus!

All these colors. All these people. All this beer. NOT fund the Marienplatz a lot more friendly than Notre Dame. I'll leave all those gargoyles to themselves and just dip my beak some more in these fine German hops, if you please. 

"To the Beer Hall!" commands NOT.  

Europe Travel    

Photos courtesy of Susan Lauber

Last Updated March 2001