Monday, February 16, 2009

Do ducks who miss out get counselling?

Cate got back from Moscow on Friday afternoon and we had to go to the Tropical Medicine place to get her final injections for Zambia. The clinic is behind the Rathaus (sort of) so we walked down the Ring to get there and looked at likely spots for dinner on the way.

We found a delightful place called Martinjak on Opernring (it is named after a town in Slovenia). The food was outstanding – and not so expensive. Cate said she would go back there – high praise indeed!

I will hold her to that if she survives Zambia – which starts next Saturday.

We weren’t so successful on Saturday as we had not realised that Austrians take Valentine’s Day seriously and would go out in their droves. So we had quite a trudge before we found a place that could fit us in – in fact we were the only two people in the dining room – but there may have been another smoking section that would have been packed to the rafters.

Once again we ended up in the area near the Rathaus and there are hordes of restaurants there which we can try.

We walk everywhere in Wien – not that we venture that far – but I have been on a tram only twice (the last time was last October) and haven’t used the U-Bahn since last November.

Cate is really looking forward to Zambia. She loves snakes (joke!) and is really looking forward to seeing an African Rock Python – which can apparently grow to a length of six metres.

Muffin and I will be left to our own devices again and are planning what mischief we will get up to.

I am thinking that I may start dragging my food out onto the rug and eating it with Muffin. She does this a lot so it must make it taste better.

I would like to take her to see the ducks but don’t think I can rely on her not to try to catch them so would have to put her in a cat harness and she would be so embarrassed she would just die. So she will just have to watch the video.

We went to Wein and Co and found the same type of Gruner Veltliner that we had in our night at Indochine 21. It is a 2007 vintage rather than 2004 – but is delicious just the same. It is of course a bit expensive at €29 per bottle but we have bought some for special occasions – like Friday nights.

I thought I might see if I could count the ducks because I am keen to know how many there are. This way I can see if the population increases or decreases when it gets really cold and icy. (You can tell that the cold weather is affecting my ability to think rationally).

It is very difficult because they keep moving around so you don’t know if you are double counting – given that they all look much the same – except I guess to each other.

I told Cate that I could catch them and put chalk marks on them to eliminate the double counting and she thought this was a very silly idea and would be bound to cause all kinds of problems. I might try it when she is away.

Cate says the ducks are all in pairs preparing to have baby ducks. There are certainly many in pairs but there are also singles and groups of three. Do ducks mate for life? What if there is an uneven number of ducks? I hate to think of those single ducks not being able to satisfy their need to be parents (and I bet they are all boys).

Do they have counselling for the ones who miss out (I bet they do in America - and they also probably get to go on Doctor Phil or Oprah).

There is a whole bunch of new stuff for me to worry about now.


  1. Hmm, i think muffin might be on to something! With mum's cooking, anything is worth a try, right?(joking!...possibly)

  2. How's this for a solution to the duck counting dilemma? Take a photo and then count the ducks in it! That way, you can even name each one in the photo. It's much better being worried about ducks you know by name, rather than all ducks in general. What do you think, if thinking is still possible in winter in Wien?

  3. You are very cruel K - I have tasted your mother's cooking and it is - well - interesting - but always enjoyable if accompanied with lashings of red wine.