Tuesday, 31 December 2013

I've Won an ABC Award!

Shehanne Moore  writes sensational smexy historical fiction, with female lead characters who carry more fire in their bellies than a number of volcanoes I could name (and have been known to be just as volatile). On January 17th, she has a new heroine to add to her stable of Lady Fury and Kara McGurkie. Her name is Cassidy Armstrong and the novel is Loving Lady Lazuli.
In a couple of weeks, Shehanne and her cast of characters will be gracing this blog with their presence, but ahead of that, she has just awarded me an ABC.

"What's that?" I hear you cry (well, actually I don't because you're probably a few thousand miles away and things are getting pretty noisy here in Vienna ahead of tonight's New Year's Eve (Silvester) celebrations. But, wherever you are, I'm sure you are curious - and I hope you are also having a great time. Of course, if you are in Australia or New Zealand, this so last year because you've already had it and are probably sleeping off the after effects already. I'll speak softly.

The Award is given for 'Awesome Blog Content'. Well, I don't know about that, but thank you Shehanne. Of course, it comes with rules. The first is that I display the logo and link back to the person who awarded it to me. Job done already. Next, I must work right through all 26 letters of the alphabet (whew!) and select a word or phrase about myself, things I like and/or associate with myself. Finally, I must nominate some other bloggers and pass on the award to them.

OK, here goes. It may not be pretty. I may bend some rules. It may not always be in English, but I'm going in...

A is for Austria. My adopted and spiritual home. I was always fated to be here .

B is for Beethoven Frieze. An amazing picture, painted directly onto the walls of the art space known as the Secession building, in Vienna. here, in the 19th century a group of artists rebelled against the artistic establishment and created the movement they named Sezession. The building of the same name was intended to display their work. A leading light of the movement was Gustav Klimt (more of him later) and he painted this incredible picture directly onto the wall.

C is for Coffee Houses. I love to linger over coffee in one of Vienna's traditional venues, such as the Cafe Mozart

D is for Dinner - my favourite meal of the day

E is for English Theatre in Vienna. This charming little theatre has premiered some major plays prior to their European tours and has a unique atmosphere all of its own.

 F is for Falco. My favourite, late lamented Austrian rapper-singer.

G is for Gemütlichkeit. There is really no adequate translation for this. It describes a joyous feeling of peace and wellbeing and 'all's right with the world' and stems from great food, great wine and great coimpany.

H is for Hapsburg.

I is for Imagination. I love to use it whenever I can!

J is for - well, see for yourself. Shehanne will appreciate this especially.

K is for Klimt. One of my favourite artists, although his best known painting (The Kiss) is not my favourite painting of his. I prefer Love

 L is for Lord Frederick Leighton - and this is another of my favourite paintings 

 M is for Mae West - amazing lady born way ahead of her time, always ready with a witty turn of phrase..

 N is for Norse gods. I'm very partial to a strong Norse god, aren't you? And they don't come much stronger than...

O is for Odin

P is for panthers - sleekest of the big cats 

Q is for Queen Marie Antoinette - born Maria Antonia, daughter of formidable Austrian Empress Maria Theresa. It's true to say she had a sheltered upbringing. It is not true to say she said, "Let them eat cake."

R is for Rock Me Amadeus. Falco, R.I.P.

S is for Seducing Amanda. I admit it, I have no shame! A palpable plug if ever there was one.

T is for Tirol. If you love skiing, mountains covered in snow and looking as if they've been plucked from a fairytale. Or even if the mere sight of a pair of skis gives you the shivers and you simply want to curl up in front of a log fire with a glass of steaming, fragrant Punsch, the Austrian Tirol has it all.

U is for UBahn. It's a quirk of mine, but I love travelling on the UBahn in Vienna. It's fast, efficient and I've discovered all sorts of interesting places just by heading out and getting off at a stop I like the sound of, or which intrigues me. That's how I discovered Gasometer, once upon a time, long ago...

V is for Vienna - my home.

W is for Wiener Schnitzel. It may not really be Austrian, but who cares? I love it!

X is for xylophone - well, I had to put something didn't I? 

Z is for zither. Remember the Harry Lime theme from The Third Man?

And now for my nominations:

Suz deMello 
Milly Taiden 
Tara Lain
Nikki Dee Houston 
Renea Mason 
Rhonda Laurel

Happy New Year!


  1. Loved Falco and that song. Really takes me back. Fun post!

  2. Antonia you are too kind. Loved your post. All these lovely pix..a certain one especially. But the little theatre is gorgeous to see. If you ever come to the UK, there's a similarish one in Richmond. Happy New Year. I bet Vienna is lovely today xx

    1. Thanks, Shehanne. Yes, the sun is shining. Lovely way to start the New Year!

  3. Antonia, please forgive my extremely late reply to your lovely, generous act of bestowing upon me an ABC Award. I really appreciate it, however I think that my poor little blog is hardly inspiring. I'm late because whilst all of the US and parts of the UK - I'm not sure about Europe - are being hammered by snow, ice storms, and in Canada where Anne Lange lives, minus 23 degree temperatures (that's C), here in Australia we are having a heatwave. It's hot, muggy, uncomfortable, and sapping. So thank you again for your lovely bestowal, and I'll get my responses up straight away. I just love hearing about Vienna through your eyes. A truly lovely city. Happy New Year.

    1. My pleasure, Nikki Dee. I'll look forward to reading your list!