Getting on the BRAT

We leave the Ethnography Museum and backtrack towards the hostel through the Naschmarkt again. There are some good looking places to eat and drink in here too, it’s a great market. But due to our assfliction we’ve got our minds set on the Brat: Bananas, Rice, Applesauce, and Toast. “You know what might be good for that?”, “For the Brat diet?”, “Yeah. The Chinese restaurant near the hostel”, “That’s true. If you’re gonna eat rice we could at least make it good”, “And everybody comes to Vienna for the Chinese food, right?”, “Ha ya, so I’ve heard.”

We quicken our pace towards the restaurant we’d passed on the way to the Museum Quarter earlier. On the way we pass by a Billa grocery store and pillage it for more Brat supplies: Gatorades, Waters, Bananas, some toast-like thing and a couple bags of Kettle salt and vinegar chips to melt our taste buds off with later. “Brat part one!”

We find the Chinese restaurant just a block away from Wombats. Lots of Mandarin on the red signs outside that we can’t read but it says Dim Sum Restaurant. It might be called Chinazentrum. “Dim sum. What do you think?”, “You win some and Dim Sum you lose”, “Ok.. and what does that mean?”, “It’s just a line from Rumble in the Bronx. Let’s go check it out.”

We go up some wooden steps and find a very simple room with nondescript brown tables and chairs. We get some funny looks when we come in. I think it’s obvious we aren’t from around here. We’re also the only non-Asians in here now. Not sure if we seat ourselves or what so we go up to the main counter. There’s a tiny old Chinese lady there who looks us up and down and says, “Reservations?”, “No. No reservations”, “Ahh hmmmm.” She seems distraught. This wasn’t part of the plan and she’s panicking a bit but wants to make it happen.

She grabs two menus and takes us to the end of a long table. “Here. Just here”, she motions at the two chairs at the end. “Just here. Ok, thank-you”, “Drink?”, “Ginseng tea, please”, ooh MacKay nice choice, “Two of those please”, “Yes.”

Menu looks good. It is kind of funny to be going to a Chinese place in Austria but actually it will be nice to switch things up. We’ve just been eating traditional Eastern and Central European cuisine mostly. This will be a nice change of pace.

The old lady comes back to get our order. She’s a cracking the whip, no nonsense type that feels cartoonish because she’s so super serious. “Yes. Food?” We put in for fried rice, spicy eggplant and a chicken w honey and mushrooms dish.

While we’re waiting the place totally fills up. Everyone had reservations. The rest of our table fills in with 8 people here for a kid’s birthday party I think.

Food comes in and it looks great. The spicy eggplant is actually incredibly spicy. Nostrils running. Eyebrows sweating. It’s super good though.

But this honey chicken and veggies dish is insanely good. The sauce is the perfect mix of tangy and sweet. We use it to liven up the otherwise mundane fried rice dish. “Dude. You gotta try the spicy eggplant with the honey chicken”, “Holy shit! No seriously!”, “I know, man. I know!”

Come on Chinese food, do the trick. We get back to Wombats and chill in the room for a bit listening to Spittin’ Chiclets and looking into Slovakia. Time to get on to Plan B, starting with Bratislava. Looks like a cool spot. I find us a hostel near the majority of attractions and book two nights there. We’ll start with that, if we’re having fun we’ll just stay longer.

MacKay holds up the drink tickets the Calgarian hostess gave us earlier, “Down to the bar for our free drinks?”, “Oh heeeere we go. ‘There’s no way I’m going out tonight’, ‘He says before ooooone beer'”, “You’re right, maybe we should just pass”, “Oh no. We’re going. 100%”

Down to the Wombar and the place is half full already. A couple of people move from the bar just as we get there so we snake the seats and get situated. The bartender asks what we’d like and we hand her the tickets. She comes back with two small, thin glasses of beer, “Now be careful with those”, “We’ll try not to get tooo drunk”, “Nah these aren’t gonna cut it. We’ll get two gin and tonics, please”, “Haha ok. Those are on special!” She hands us a nightly specials menu with drinks and shots for every day of the week.

“Do you want a pink gin and tonic instead?”, “Pink gin and tonic, what’s that?”, “I don’t know. The gin is pink. It makes pink drinks”, “Sure we’ll get girl drink drunk”, “Hehe Together or separate?”, “Together please, he’s my sugar daddy.” This twelve year old bartender is giggling at everything we say. Yep that’s a pink drink alright.

We get another round and hang out. The place is getting lively. Good action on the pool table. People are ramping it up in here. Found another great hostel in Wombats here.

It’s Saturday, they have our trip drinks on special, this place is bumping and there’s talk of a pub crawl. All the signs in the universe are pointing towards us ripping it up and having a blast. But no. We can’t get on one tonight. We’ve gotta stick to the Brat and hope it fucking works so we can get better. There will be lots of nights to send it once we’re feeling better.

Reluctantly we leave the Wombar, grab the lappy, and go out to the lounge to blog up. There are a bunch of folks just chilling on padded platforms out here on their phones.

Everyone is quietly minding their own business when about 25 rip-roaring drunk berserkers come out of the Wombar in all manner of silly get-ups. Looks like a pub crawl is starting. They’re yelling and chanting sing-a-longs trying to rally everyone in the lobby to join in.

“Pub crawl?”, “No way dude”, “Haha. Wow they are Saigon style fucked up.” This goes on in the lobby for a good five minutes. This is the start of the pub crawl? That’s gonna get messy in a hurry. Finally they exit and their rambunctious stomping and chanting fade away down the street.

Soon after this a Spanish girl sits right next to me and starts talking on her phone. She’s facing right at me and just yelling at my head in Spanish. Sensing my annoyance MacKay looks over, “Call ‘er a night?”, “Bueno.”

This may be the earliest either of us have gone to bed on a Saturday in a decade. “One more banana before bed?”, “Do your thing you banana bitch!” Bananas tickle fight. Lights out. C’mon Brat, please work.

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