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📷 An Eye for Life #18 🇦🇹 Let's go to Austria

Thank you so much for joining me for the 18th issue of my bi-weekly newsletter, designed to be informative and inspirational. This issue I’m taking you with me to the region of Vorarlberg in Austria…

If you've never heard of Vorarlberg,
you aren’t alone. In fact you have as company some 80% of my followers on Instagram who must have missed the last time I visited in 2017 when I shared posts such as this and this.
It’s a state in westernmost Austria, bordering Switzerland and Lichtenstein; with soaring mountain peaks and deep valleys into which picturesque villages filled with wälderhaus are tucked in between emerald meadows home to grazing cows and alpine streams whose watery melodies echo amongst the streets and walking paths. A place where locals are proud to welcome visitors for hiking, skiing, culinary experiences, spa time, themed walking trails & more. Where views from the ground are nearly as good as the views from Vorarlberg’s many cable cars. If it sounds at all similar to Switzerland or Germany, that’s because it certainly can be. As one example, you can find delectable Käsespätzle not just in Vorarlberg but also in Swabia, Baden, Allgäu, Tyrol, Liechtenstein and Switzerland.
looking out over Mellau in Vorarlberg, Austria
looking out over Mellau in Vorarlberg, Austria
While Vorarlberg shares similarities to other areas in Europe, which were once part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, the people and the place have qualities and facets that are singular onto themselves and not as easy for a storyteller such as myself to encompass with words or images. Both must be experienced firsthand to be understood fully. It’s that unquantifiable quality which begs the storyteller in me, to return again and again.
I thought I would let the Mayor of Mellau tell you in his words about one of my favorite aspects of Vorarlberg, Umgang, which is related to architecture and the history of buildings:
What is UMGANG?
What is UMGANG?
I was in Vorarlberg for the second time this past week for a very small blogging conference in Mellau that went ahead with plentiful safety measures, regular testing and the wearing of masks whenever required. Stay tuned to for more about this part of Austria in the coming weeks.
This visit to Austria coincided with the 10 year anniversary of my first ever trip to the country, to Innsbruck and Seefeld in Tyrol. Since then I have returned to cruise the Rhine and Danube rivers, trace the Sound of Music in Salzburg, shop at the Christmas Markets in Vienna and weep at the sound of Mozart live in a former palace dripping in gold leaf. No matter how many times I have returned, I still find my soul wanting for more.
Have you been to Austria? To Vorarlberg in particular? Or did you just learn about it for the first time? Hit reply and let me know.
and for my fellow USA residents: we have a little piece of Europe with us right here, in the form of multi-day-trekking that includes luggage transport and comfortable inns to bed down in each night. read more about it on cntraveler.
Elsewhere online since I last wrote
Strandbeest Evolution 2020
Strandbeest Evolution 2020
Dutch artist Theodorus Gerardus Jozef “Theo” Jansen has been creating incredible strandbeeste [“beach animals”] since the 90s but I only discovered the video above, this week. His often wind-powered, moving kinetic structures resemble walking animals. Subscribe to his YouTube for more.
Seraph, by photographer Laura Sheridan in Belgium
Hey! Dip Your Toes In
If you enjoy soft adventure, check out the #GourmetGardenTrails Tour. You can explore, eat, drink and stay and experience some of England’s finest food and glorious gardens through carefully curated itineraries.

*New* #SummerinWestSussex #TravelTuesday
⬆️ that was for my UK readers, can you do this so I can live vicariously through you?! 💛 [it sounds and looks terrific!]
Justin Snead
I often find myself asking what kind of legacy am I building in life. This single question keeps me grounded as I continue my growth in photography and storm chasing. The question is now yielded to you all. What kind of legacy are you building? #StormHour #wxtwitter @NikonUSA
Let's Care Together
about People: by making a purchase from a super small business this week. Like maybe these gold oyster shells to hold flaky salt made by Alicia’s mom? Or these sassy stickers made by my friend Dani! Check out these 13 ways you can advance social justice and read + ruminate on this ⤵️ [sometimes the lessons we need most, are the hardest to hear]:
Imagine thinking *YOU* need to be the voice of the voiceless. Imagine thinking people are actually “voiceless” and not systematically silenced. Our work is not to be other people’s voice. It is to question how and why we got access to spaces others couldn’t, and to pass the mic. [source: @aliciasanchez]
about Planet: pre-order the new zine from Intersectional Environmentalist, subscribe with me to Tomorrow’s Air [yes, I mention this one a lot but it’s because I really do believe it’s one small thing that makes a big difference], and check off some of these actionable items.
Muraho! ລາກ່ອນ! Merci for reading. I hope to see you back here in two weeks for the 19th edition of An Eye for Life. 💛 ✨
To let me know you enjoyed this, or anything else I create: please, click ‘Yes’ below where it asks ‘Did you enjoy this issue?’ or share it with a friend encouraging them to subscribe. 🙏
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Kirsten @kirstenalana

A periodic newsletter that helps you discover the work of creatives around the globe and ways you can help people + planet. Also includes notable online moments, photos, and an original short essay by Kirsten Alana.

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