Opera House

Today we leave for Milan, but our flight is not until the evening so we have plenty of time to wander around on our final day in Vienna. The highlight of the day is probably a visit to the Albertina Gallery on the Ringstrasse. The building is named after Prince Albert for whom it was built. The upper floor is an art gallery, on the main level it is possible to visit the building lived in by Prince Albert and his wife. He lived in comparative poverty as the Hapsburg family considered that their daughter had married somewhat below her station. Prince Albert and his wife apparently only had about 400 servants, I can hardly bare to think how they managed in such hardship. The Albertina Palace must have seemed very cramped compared with the Hofburg Palace just a short distance away.

Having seen how the Hapsburgs lived I can certainly sympathise with Queen Victoria’s feeling when she said she had nowhere decent to live. Her own Prince Albert must have been horrified when he came to England and saw how the British monarchy had to live in such impoverished conditions compared with their European counterparts.

We got our flight over to Milan without difficultly. The same cannot be said for our luggage, as one of the bags was unable to make it onto the plane. When we enquired at “Lost Luggage” in Milan they informed us the case had never left Vienna. After a bit of a wait we got the shuttle bus over to out hotel where we managed a glass of consolation wine at about midnight, and went to bed in the expectation the case would be over to Milan on the first flight Sunday morning.

The photograph shows the Opera House in Vienna. Apparently when it was built Franz Josef said it looked like a station. One of the architects was so upset he committed suicide. The outcome of the comment may have been tragic, but I am inclined to agree with the Emperor.

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