Monday morning, what a great day to start an adventure…
After managing the last little necessities including a second safety insurance for us and the car,
(Dear travelers no matter how good you might be or how safe you think you’ll be driving/ traveling having an insurance or a safety letter is the best travel companion you can ask for – and we will find out why in just a second 🙂
we are ready to roll. As we will travel most of the time trough Austria today, we decided to make a small break in Graz on our way to Maribor. Graz is not only the capital of Styria, it’s also the second largest city in Austria and a very nice one as well.
So after arriving in this stunning city we wanted to explore it and so we went up to the Grazer Schloßberg from which you get an amazing panoramic view over the whole city. On our way to the mentioned mountain we wandered trough the small streets of the old town, listened to the very talented street musicians and inhaled the fresh air with a very tasty note of pastry 😉 till we finally reached the foot of the mountain. It was a tough climb but totally worth it. The amazing view over this city with its copper red roofed houses and the mountains in the background just makes every step up there worth the climb.
The huge clock which you will find on the top gives you a bit of a time traveling vibe. A big old clock as roof of an old city. It’s like Father Time is preserving the beauty of the landscape he’s watching over.
And as we are talking about time, we realized that our time was limited and our final goal for the day not reached yet. So we decided to go back to the car (or at least try it as it is not that easy to find our new car in a different city) and continue with our path, quite positively surprised that there was no issue with our car so far…
Just 10 minutes later we will be learning otherwise…
As we arrived at our car we didn’t got a ticket and it was still unharmed and standing where we left it. So sit down, fasten your seatbelt and on we go… HaHa not so fast… The key is in the ignition – turn to start – nothing happens – and again, and again, and again…
so what do we do?
Plan 1 – PUSH THE CAR TO START THE ENGINE
So we pushed the car on the street and forward to get the battery running which didn’t work at the first try and sadly didn’t work at the 33rd try. And as luck was obviously on our side, it also started raining… So time to change the plan
Plan 2 – FIND A MECHANIC
As searching for a close mechanic sounded like the best idea, we went to find one on foot. Half way over to the other side of the river that passes through Graz (die Mur) we saw that a parking sheriff is approaching the area where we’ve parked the car and we instantly realized that we’ve forgotten to put a new ticket in.
Here we can say that we gave Graz a scene they will never forget. A highly disturbed Daniel running like a manic in the direction of the parking lady jelling PLEASE NO TICKET, PLEASE NO TICKET.
And it payed off. After explaining the situation and instantly getting a new parking ticket she deleted our fine. The sad news was that she also told us that all mechanics are already closed… So we were back where we started.
But then it kicked in, didn’t we got a safety -letter this morning?, and didn’t we saw one of their offices while driving into the city? So we called there and after 15 minutes our angels in yellow arrived to fix our battery free of charge and we finally could continue or journey. (I think both of us didn’t go through such an roller coaster of emotions as we had had in an hour since our puberty.)
The rest of our drive worked quite well and we didn’t had any problems anymore, so that we could reach Maribor by late evening. In our hostel we couldn’t find the staff but a very nice girl from Switzerland who was also traveling through Europe. She gave us some tips on what to see in Maribor tomorrow as she did already did that toda
After having some local dinner and beer at a very nice restaurant on the Main Street (Here needs to be mentioned that this was the only street where we saw people walking. Sure, it was Monday night but still, no one there?), where the locals had a late night outdoor Latin dance stage. Now with a stuffed stomach and and a sleepy but happy mind, we could successfully end day one of our trip from Vienna to Russia.
After a good night sleep we started our day in Maribor by exploring the city center. The plan we had, to visit a wine-cellar failed due to the late opening hours of the one desired. But one little failure could not stop us and so we decided to do what every sane person would do. Let’s visit the wine mountain – because just the fact that we can’t drink wine at this time doesn’t mean we can’t visit its origin. And it was totally worth it. Not only is the fresh, wide, green and traffic free hill a welcome change to the surrounding of a highway in our car, but it also offers a beautiful view over Maribor itself.
The hills even have a festive touch with chains made out of lightbulbs leading downhill from the top. (I bet this gives the perfect lighting for late summer outdoor wine parties or festivities of this kind.) In total I would say the perfect start into a long day. And we needed a perfect start as we will spend the next hours on the way to Zagreb in Croatia.
On the was to our car (Ursula) we even managed it to become photo-models for an instant coffee brand – I mean probably not models per se but the nice girls who gave us some samples of their instant coffee powder wanted a picture of us – or the powder and we were just the recipients – it’s a perspective thing isn’t it 😉 (So we’re models now, haha)
And now I want to end this blogpost with some useful and some might find interesting informations about Maribor…
Maribor is a city in Slovenias wine region and the second biggest city in the country. The largest city and also the capital of Slovenia is Bratislava. Right through the city Maribor flows the river Drava (the 4th longest tributary of the Danube). First mentioned we find the city of Maribor in the 12th century.