It's been awhile since I joined in Postcard Friendship Friday, aka PFF, but when this postcard was included inside the holiday card I received from my wonderful friend, Francessa, I thought it must be a part of PFF this week.
Francessa lives in Vienna where this scene was photographed, as noted on the back of the card, by Carl Anders Nilsson. The back of the card has only this short description: ALTWIENER CHRISTKINDLMARKT AUf dER FREYUNG/WIEN, or Old Viennese Christmas market at Freyung. I think it looks like a magical place for Christmas/holiday shopping.
Francessa feels as close as a sister to me yet we still haven't met in person. So how did our friendship begin? you might wonder. Blogging! I have high hopes that our intentions to meet will be realized in the future. It's one of those things I expect will happen, although I can't see how or when at this point. Even if a summer visit to Francessa's beautiful home village in the Alps or a holiday stroll with her through the Altwiener Christkindlmarkt didn't happen in 2009 our friendship has grown in richness as we've shared our lives through long, long emails and exciting real mail. We even have one of those stories that will be fun/funny to recall years into the future, the kind that old friends seem to always develop along the way. This vignette is topical, being holiday-related.......
Austrian Customs actually confiscated my Christmas present to Francessa in 2008 and it took some months before all was settled to their/her satisfaction. It was only then that she emailed describing the hassle she had been through! What a great friend; she didn't want to worry me. There's a lesson here: do not send anything made of crystal to a friend in Austria, the land of Austrian crystal which, according to wisegeek, "is not a trademark in and of itself, but it might as well be. The generic term is indelibly linked with Swarovski crystals, produced in a factory in Wattens, Austria." Here's some additional info from the wisegeek article:
. . . (Swarovski) entered the American jewelry market rather late, in 1977, but has emerged as an icon. Austrian crystal has a reputation for fine worksmanship but is also less expensive than jewelry made from precious stones. Austrian crystal also earned international attention during the 1976 Winter Olympics in Innsbruck, Austria, when a mouse figurine crafted by Max Schreck from chandelier parts morphed into the mascot of those games, as well as launching a new product line of Swarvoski figurines. Swarovski's own corporate symbol has evolved from an edelweiss flower to a swan.
The Swarovski empire has also proved a boon to tourism in Austria. Kristallwelten (Crystal World), a museum and showroom devoted to Austrian crystal, is the second most-visited attraction in the country. . .Now that you've seen a sample of Francessa's great taste in postcards you may want to visit her blog, Francessa's Thinking, where you'll learn more about this teacher, researcher, and bilingual commuter/traveler. You already know that she is not in the international crystal trade!
To my dear friend, Francessa - thank you for the beautiful postcard!
To all of you - happy PFF!
And to me - a long-time favorite song, ever since I was a crazy child
(actually, a crazy 25 year old).......
And you know that when the truth is told
that you can get what you want or you can just get old
You're gonna kick off before you even get half through
Why don't you realize,. Vienna waits for you
When will you realize, Vienna waits for you?