Sunday, June 16, 2013

Sankt Marxer

I finished my German course this week. On the final test I scored a 76 out of 80. I lost one point on the speaking part, two on the listening, and one in the reading section on a trick question that I'm still not convinced I got wrong. I tried to argue it, but then I remembered that I've technically finished my formal education and it doesn't really matter in the long run whether I score a 95 or 96% on this test, so I let the teacher win.

We spent our last class having dinner in the university pub. I attempted a slow and painful discussion about hobbies with a guy from Poland. Whenever one of us asked a question, I'm pretty sure the other answered a different one. I also spoke with a girl from Bulgaria, who said (in English) that she'd just had some friends come to visit, which was nice because it's just not as fun doing things on your own. I tried to ask her about what she's enjoyed so far in Vienna, but it didn't sound like she's done too much.

I have to agree that it's a bit lonely living in a country where you can't speak the language. But as someone who has spent her life holding down the introversion end of the personality spectrum, I often find myself alone anyway, and I decided long ago that I would rather do things by myself than not do them at all. Which is why I start watching the weather forecast around Wednesday each week. By Thursday, I'd like to know whether I should be looking forward to a weekend of museum visits or a biking or hiking excursion.

I lucked out this weekend with two days of summery sunshine. Saturday morning, I packed a picnic lunch and went to hang out with old Wolfgang.

Mozart's final resting place is at the Sankt Marxer Friedhof - not the Zentralfriedhof, where Beethoven, Schubert, Brahms, and Strauss are. Sankt Marxer is much smaller and well on its way to becoming a nature preserve.

Most cemeteries, in my experience, comprise a scattering of grave markers interspersed with stretches of regularly trimmed grass. Often, the grave markers are placed in neat rows. There are usually some trees and shrubs here and there; maybe a flowerbed or two.

There are neat rows of graves at Sankt Marxer too.

Trust me - they're there.

See? Some of them are all but overtake with ivy. Others are partially or completely collapsed. Several had fully-grown trees standing approximately where their inhabitants' livers would be. In contrast to the rest of the cemetery, Mozart's little arena is nicely kept. I figured he wouldn't mind if I sat on his bench and kicked up my feet and had my lunch, so that's what I did. I'd brought my Kobo for lunchtime reading, but it needed charging, so I tried to turn my mental soundtrack to the Mozart station instead. 

Unfortunately, I kept coming back to that pesky preposition song we did in German class the other week. Eventually, I had to give up the battle. Old Wolfgang would understand about earworms, right?

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