A very long time ago, she fell madly in love with his dark hair. It was one of those accidental relationships, the kind that only happen in the movies. Well, to be honest, she was a huge movie fan, a fan of the most significant kind, she loved black and white, WWII era sagas. Many that were made during the war, with strong heroines and brave escapades, were her favorite.
There was something hideously dangerous about that ride up to the top of the Grossglockner. She had heard the others talking about it, many had already been up there and seen the marvelous view. She had not. She did feel like she had missed something, so even though there was now snow and the passage about to be closed off for the winter, her adventurous spirit allowed her to say yes, once more. One more time to this man, this striking Austrian, this musician who played on her heart.
They rode in a red car. It was an early Citroen. The car never had seemed too sturdy to her. Cars, however, were not as common place as in the U.S. at the time and this one felt like a little tin box that rolled down the road. He was proud of it none the less as very few people had a car. He had been given the car as a gift.
Well, it seemed to be in decent working order as they switchbacked their way up the mountain. At one point he told her that the people who cleaned the roadway were not responsible for any falling snow or rocks, that was the drivers responsibility if they took the road. That was an interesting detail that might have been good to know before they were halfway up the mountain.
As they climbed higher and higher, it was obvious that snow had been accumulating. It was certainly cold, yet the sun was almost blinding. They passed a bus full of tourists on the road.
The driver had glanced at her with recognition, of course, it was the same driver from her first two weeks in the country. The very same one who had driven her friends on a tour of Germany before arriving in Salzburg for their studies.
He had a bit of a smirk. She wondered if he knew. No, she was just imagining it. How could he know that the two of them were together since that time in Prague, when all hell had broken loose with a bottle of wine.
Finally, they were nearing the top, and then suddenly in a kind of flat area, they parked. They alighted from that little red beast and stood on the top of the mountain. It was breathtaking. They were standing on what appeared to be glistening ice.
She remembered no railings, no bars, not then. One quick shove and someone could go skidding down the side of the mountain. Yet, she did not consider that. Not at all.
She looked into his dark eyes and felt his soul touch hers in a way that was not to be challenged. She felt his gaze hug her to the very rim of existence and then she decided that wherever this road would take her, up the mountain, down the mountain, to its peak, or over the side, to her demise; she was along for the ride.
About the Grossglockner:
From the website:
" At 3,798m the Grossglockner is not only the highest mountain in Austria, it also counts among the highest peaks in the Alps.
The pyramid-shaped Grossglockner lies behind the slightly smaller Kleinglockner (3,770 m), separated by a saddle-like formation known as the Glocknerscharte. The first ascent was in 1800 but victory and defeat accompanied other expeditions. The Pallavicini Trough is named after Margrave Alfred Pallavicini, who met his death on the Glockner in 1886.
The Grossglockner and Pasterze Glacier have been owned by the Austrian Alpine Association since 1918.
In 1951, Oskar Kühlken, author of the "Glockner Book“ described the myth behind the mountain as follows:
"The Grossglockner is more than just the highest mountain in Austria. It is enveloped in the aura of an extraordinary personality, cast on all who fall under its spell.“
With the building of the Grossglockner High Alpine Road, the majestic peak acquired a new dimension. As a popular excursion destination it is the epitome of an impressive natural experience for many people: size and power can be felt here, one is subject to the fascination of the eternal ice and the elemental force of nature."
Effects of Global Warming
Above: The Glocknerleitl 1863 in the summer, below: In 2007, early May
" The most famous alpine road leads you into the heart of the Hohe Tauern National Park, to the highest mountain in Austria, the Grossglockner (3,798m) and its glacier, the Pasterze. You will have a driving and nature experience of a special kind on 48 kilometres of high alpine road with 36 bends, and an altitude ascent to 2,504 metres!
You pass through a unique world of mountains with blossoming alpine meadows, fragrant mountain forests, massive cliffs and eternal ice to the foot of the Grossglockner, the Kaiser-Franz-Josefs-Höhe." http://www.grossglockner.at/en/hochalpenstrasse/
"A panoramic view of Grossglockner High Alpine Road, close to Kaiser Josefs Hohe (The road descends across the left peak, passing the center buildings, and winding back downhill at the end of the lake, to follow along the right bank.)" Wiki http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grossglockner_High_Alpine_Road
Copyright 2011 by SheilaTGTG55 - story
All photos and descriptions attributed.