5 Postcards from Kitzbuhel — January 2019
By Peter Brooks
You’d like the old town, it really looks dead old, with cobbled streets and stuff. It’s a tourist trap really, with walls to stop visitors leaving. If a shop doesn’t sell Louis Viton then it’s selling jewellery or perfume. I had to look very hard to find a coffee shop, but the cakes were worth it.
You won’t believe what the casino is called; ‘the golden grief’. That’s either bad spelling or something has been lost in translation. OTOH, it is a very honest warning of what’s goes on inside.
I’ll stick to the cakes.
There is a big ski race this weekend. It’s called the Hahnenkamm Downhill (how could they race uphill?) or something. It will be blokes skiing down the hill, and crowds cheering them on. I wouldn’t mind but one of the best pistes has been fenced off all week. Like, how long does it take to get down the hill?
The Swiss supporters were out in force, wearing their flags as cloaks, so that the police know where to send them when the Gluhwein comes out of their ears.
They’ve got a cool parade though. They all march like zombies (and in uniform, to show that no-one should interfere) with huge cowbells that they bounce from thigh to thigh. Talk about a ‘Wall of Sound’. You know my mate Kevs’ band? It’s nearly as good, proper Heavy Metal music.
Kev would write some great lyrics to go with it.
Must go now, Jack.
Here at the hotel the bar is kept by a very pretty barmaid called Katrina, who has her own way of getting attention. Honestly, conversation stops when she comes by. I think that she has an arrangement with the kitchen to over-season the soup every evening so that the lads keep ordering more beers. Even the women in our party look disappointed when she walks away. At least I think its disppointment. They got over it by restarting the conversation about games or skiing.
Will I ever understand them?
Yet another day of the Hahnenkamm circus. The old town is full of stalls selling Gluhwein, beer and sausages. Move down the street a couple of steps and someone wants to sell you sausages, beer and gluhwein. It’s like déjà vu all over again. I need to go for a walk or I won’t be able to get dinner down. It’s quite an event here, with 3 starter courses, main course, and one of those wonderful Austrian deserts to finish. Yummy, so I must make room.
The hotel has an interesting system for tips, with separate boxes for Kitchen, Bar, Cleaners, and so on. I was just about to put a fat tip into Katrinas’ box (I thought of the traditional alternative but bottled out) when one of the female committee members announced that she would be taking up a collection for the manager to distribute to the staff as he thought best.
Funny how it was one of the ladies who thought of that.
See you soon, Jack.