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Margaret Powling

Oh, thank you so much Danielle for handing over your post on this occasion to Elizabeth Wix. When you mentioned this book before I knew it was for me, but perhaps not quite yet. I put it on my Wish List but now I must order it, knowing that it's very much rooted in fact, as this really appeals to me.

I would like to add I just love the cover photograph of this book - what a delightful room, so very much of the period.

Thank you both, Danielle and Elizabeth, for a lovely post.

Merisi in Vienna

Thank you, Danielle and Elizabeth, for filling in more details about Elizabeth's story!

ewix

Margaret,
So thrilled you like the photo of Mall House/Fairleighy Lodge drawing room - my grandparents' house. Photo shot in about 1952 when the house was about to be sold.
So quintessentially English, and, if looked at carefully, a little bit shabby with too short curtains - but there are flowers and books and family photos. The Victorian water colors were inherited by my father.

Danielle

I was really thrilled that Elizabeth was willing to share her story here--it is very kind of her! And I love that photo, too. I originally thought it was just a stock photo and how nicely it fit the mood of the book--only to discover that it had been in Elizabeth's family--can't get more authentic than that!

Danielle

Isn't it so interesting to hear about her family's history? I loved the book, but knowing something more about the people who inspired the story makes it such a richer read. By the way Merisi--I have bookmarked your blog--such lovely photos! I lived for one year in Wr. Neustadt and traveled almost each weekend up to Vienna--every opportunity I got. I loved it there (it was quite some time ago now) and have ever since wanted to go back--I will enjoy seeing it through your 'eyes' now!

Margaret Powling

Thank you, Elizabeth and Danielle, for your replies to my comments.
Yes, Elizabeth, I'd noticed the too-short curtains. I have an old photo of my grandfather's house in which the curtains were rather short, too. But things were used and re-used and if they didn't quite fit, they didn't lose sleep over it.
And yes, Danielle, I love Merisi's blog - I had to have a look-see when you said you'd bookmarked it. I don't know how to do this, but I just make a note of it. I love the Viennese breakfast! And I have noticed from TV programmes, when people visit the cafes in Vienna, that when they have coffee brought to them, there is always a glass of water, too. We don't do this, and I wonder why the Austrians do it; or rather, why we don't do it! It's a lovely idea.

Danielle

Now you have me curious about the water with coffee in Vienna and some people think it is to counter any dehydrating effects of coffee or simply to help with aftertaste. I also read:

"The reason why it was established had something to do with the tradition of coffeehouses and coffee. It wants to say that you as a client are welcome even if you don't purchase anything - it shows real hospitality. This tradition is obviously based on an Arabic background where water was more expensive then coffee."

Haven't a clue if either is accurate, but it is a cool tradition!

Stefanie

This was so interesting! Thanks for sharing it.

Danielle

It was very kind of Elizabeth to write about her family history--it's so fascinating to hear stories like that!

Caroline

This is fascinating. Thanks so much for sharing - and I love your New York blog, btw.

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