Last night we observed a very different Vienna. The normally reserved Viennese started celebrating the arrival of the new year pretty much as soon as the first shadows of evening appeared, sometime around 16:30, and the steady snap, crackle, and pop swelled until almost 1:00, at least around our house.
Earlier in the evening we celebrated with friends, and returned home in time to ring in 2013 from the vineyards with the children. Surrounded in almost 360° style with individual displays we could not discern the “official” display in the Volksgarten ushering in the new year, and wondered why the city bothers at all to put on a display when its citizens were preoccupied with their own poppers, sparklers, and Roman candles.
This morning all is quiet, tattered paper and the scent of gunpowder the only reminders of the festivities.