Who loves skiing?

Yeah who? Posting this in the middle of the year when it’s summer (well for the northern hemisphere anyway) seems odd?

For tropical folks facing the sweltering heat every day, sliding on snow and ice is surely not something usual. But you see, some things in life one needs to try out. Even if one is getting on age. Active ageing, yeah that’s it. Of course we weren’t that aged when we first skied, but it was surely not encouraging when we got off the aircraft.

Why? Read all about that here. Btw we actually enrolled in practice classes in Amsterdam before heading out.

And if you should have read the story in the link above, you would have known that we ran out of gas after 3 days of hitting the slopes. The ‘baby’ ones actually. We cannot imagine folks skiing all day for 7 days in a row… too much stress on the knees… moving on! But of all things we had to do was to go sliding down a mountain in the dark. Have you done night tobogganing? Looking back now, darn that was risky.

In winter it gets a little harder to do touristic things. Places open later and close earlier. Accessibility becomes an issue in some cases. But we took that all in stride and had a wonderful time exploring the city of Innsbruck.

Fortunately for us it did not cost an arm or a leg when we were skiing in the mountain sides of Innsbruck. Do you enjoy the exhilaration of skiing?

Salt mountain city?

Salt.

Chemically NaCl (aka sodium chloride). It is both essential yet detrimental to life, depending on how much or how concentrated it is. You might know Mel’s a history buff. But history is not just about political events or wars. It is also about economics and social development.

Did you know that in ancient days salt was considered a controlled commodity?

In fact, it was considered so valuable that it was taxed and in some case (such as dynastic China) its manufacture was managed as state monopolies. Take note, panning for your own salt was a crime punishable with a fine, confiscation and imprisonment! Can you imagine that?

The situation in Europe was perhaps slightly different, though it too was taxed while it made its way to the consumer. Now you know why cities in Europe would get wealthy from the salt trade. And this was no different for the city of Salzburg in Austria. A lot of the beautiful buildings in the city was funded by the trade and tax on this now common commodity.

But enough about salt already. For the hills did come alive for us, or at least we did as we examined the sites (and story) that inspired this movie. Read all about our super long weekend to Salzburg here, where had great fun and ate potato dumplings too (no photos unfortunately).

Can you hear the sound of the music? What did you like about Salzburg?