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Thursday, August 01, 2019

June 29th: Mondsee Strandbad

When I first visited the Salzburg lakes in 2008, Mondsee made a deep impression on me as being the prettiest, as well as having the best riding. It's a 40 mile round trip from Salzburg, but it's all uphill in one direction and all downhill going home. I proposed the ride to Bowen and he said: "Let's take the bus instead."
It turned out that Uber had recently introduced service to Salzburg, so using Xiaoqin's phone we snagged an Uber and got to Mondsee superfast using the freeway, which was a good thing, because by the time we arrived there was already a line to get into the Mondsee strandbad, which had multiple slides, a ton of water toys, an in-house restaurant/cafe, a swimming area, and even diving stations. Unlike an American park of equivalent size, there were very few lifeguards, and most of the slides and water toys were self-regulated or automated, with lights telling you when it was safe to use it, with many locals blatantly ignoring the rules with no repercussions. It's amazing how cheaply you can run things when the country isn't full of liability lawyers.
It was warm, but since the elevation was higher, it never got really hot until around 3:00pm, at which point the boys were pretty much played out. Boen discovered that one of the lower slides was so much fun that he repeatedly did it over and over, and Bowen made a bet with me about jumping off the highest diving board. It looked scary but of course, once you get to the top with 8 year-old girls jumping off it in front of you there's no way you weren't going to jump!
We got out of the park at just the right time to catch a bus back to Salzburg downtown, where we ate dinner at the Italian "Wasserfall" restaurant before heading back to our apartment to deal with the heat, which the fans barely made bearable. I was glad I had the foresight to book a hotel with AC for the last 2 days in Salzburg, as it was forecast to get even hotter. Forecasters were comparing the heat-wave to that of 2003, where thousands of elderly died from the heat. Despite that, the AC is still not prevalent in Europe, which is always a surprise to me.

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