The collection spans Poland, Austria, Slovakia, Czech Republic, Ukraine, Romania, Hungary, and Bulgaria. I may have a small addiction.
The last week was long. AISV hosted the varsity girls basketball tournament, meaning my attentions were otherwise turned to preparing to house, feed, and chauffeur four athletes for three days, plus pulling double duty at Boosters, flipping burgers for the 130 hungry visiting athletes. Thankfully we housed four remarkably polite and engaging, and incredibly tidy, girls from Cairo American College. And the housing gifts perhaps set a new standard. Fresh dates, wooden items, notebooks, and lightly scented handmade Egyptian soaps and towels. 
Tony was off in Basel for the duration, cheering on Anna Grace’s team in their tournament, so by the time the students departed and the family returned Saturday evening, it was necessary that I get. out. of. the. house. While lingering over coffee on Sunday, I discovered the first of the Ostermärkte in the area had opened at Schloss Marchegg, more or less an hours’ drive from Vienna. Perfect!

 Smoked fish, to eat at the picnic tables or to take away. But not until noon.

At noon the doors of the smoker were opened to reveal the goodness of smoked salmon.

Lots and lots of Easter eggs were available for purchase. As the top photo reveals, I have a penchant for the painted egg, though only one came home with me on this visit.

Beer taps. Absolutely no event in Central Europe is complete without the beer.

 The aroma of sugar filled the air and although tempting, a more substantial lunch was in order than sugar roasted nuts.

Not in the mood for Austrian cuisine offered at the little taverns near the schloss, we walked into the small village of 2.900 people hoping to find “some place else.” As I paused to snap a photo of this retro-style storefront we spied a Gasthof bearing a sign: “Thai & Austrian Cuisine.”

Tony and I exchanged wary glances and casually peeked inside to see a rather full restaurant. Once inside, even more curious was that the “Nicht rauchen” (non-smoking) rooms (Yes! In the plural!) were more crowded than the smoking rooms.  So we sat for what turned out to be the absolute, very best Thai food we have enjoyed in a restaurant since hopping across the pond. Perhaps the spring rolls were prepared elsewhere, and chopsticks were not an option…

 …but the Kapow was AMERICAN-SPICY!  We did stop short of licking our plates, in case you’re wondering.

This “some place else” was a perfect finale to a perfect outing, and just the refresher I needed. Soon the storks will arrive in Marchegg, which can only mean a return visit, for which we’ll be sure to bring along the proper walking shoes, camera lenses, and now, an appetite for lunch.