Posts Tagged With: Recreation

Pay As You Wish? Smack Me Amadeus!

With a very relaxed atmosphere, Der Wiener Deewan is frequented by university students, locals and travelers on a budget.

On my first trip to Vienna,

I learned about a restaurant

that sounded

too good to be true.

The restaurant, Der Wiener Deewan, serves buffet-style Pakistani food – to my taste buds and olfactory perception – no discernible difference between it and Indian food. At Deewan,  diners eat all they can eat – as much as they wish to eat – and pay whatever they wish to pay. Eat as much as you like, pay what you want. How could this be?

My first reaction was how could any restaurant stay in business with such an off-balance policy? What if I ate a ton and wanted to pay a penny? No problem, said the cashier. It’s as stated: Pay what you wish.

So off I went with Xin, my Viennese host who told me about Deewan. This I had to see for myself. Of course on our way there I asked if the food was of low or poor quality. Was it good? Was it fresh? Was this place some sort of roach-infested dump?

None of the above.

First, the food was pretty good. It was so good I wish I had the stomach to go back for a third helping of rice and potatoes and the curried stew. Even the vegetable medley was cooked to perfection. But with seconds, I was stuffed. I don’t eat much. Never have been able to stuff my face silly at those all-you-can-eat joints while my friends got their money’s worth – and then some.

If you can imagine Indian food, you will have a sense of Pakistani food. And my dear Indian and Pakistani friends, I know you will argue I just committed heresy by suggesting there’s no difference between the two. Again, the only difference to me is in the nationality of the hands preparing it. Needless to say, because Deewan is so cheap, it draws lots of university students who have better things to spend their money on than food 😉 and budget travelers. But it’s a well-known local spot. Most people know it. Well, most people under 30. It caters to the young and hip and hipster. I’ve been to Vienna twice and each time I’ve paid a visit to Deewan. It’s, of course, worth it.

Here is its website with more photos and location information. If you do go, yes, pay as  much as you wish, but don’t be

a total jerk! 😛


pay1 pay2

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Along The Journey, A Sharp Curve

UPDATE: The tests say -nothing to worry about!!! – all clear!!! 🙂

Ever feel you’re not fully in control of your destiny?

I’ve  been feeling that way lately with some unwelcome news from my doctor. Whether the news is serious or absolutely nothing is still to be determined.

Emerging on South Beach

The news I received? X-rays have confirmed that there’s a suspicious spot on my left lung. Whether or not this blotch is malignant or benign, I won’t know until more tests. First up, a CT scan.

So with that phone call from my doctor’s office last week, my mega road trip around the world has screeched into park. No Europe. No Asia. No Africa. No new adventures. That is, none beyond trips to the hospital.

When I received this news, I was composed for a few moments, until I started to talk about it with a friend. Then I lost it. Natural human response to such news, she told me. And while I have lost some sleep over it, for the most part I’ve not allowed it to turn me into a complete basket case. What’s the point in that?

So I will wait to see what’s around the bend in that curve. I will hang on tight as I negotiate this potentially tough curve. I will try not to speed.

And so for those in Miami Beach, where I am currently house-sitting, slow down with me and let’s have a beer sometime. For those farther away, I’ll take the power of prayer, if that’s what you believe in, or just send some positive energy into the universe. It would be much appreciated.

Onward I go. This is some trip, huh?

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“The difference between a tourist and a traveler is that a tourist seeks only comfort while a traveler seeks discovery.”

A few days ago I saw the above quote on the profile of a fellow Miami couch surfer – unattributed – but I immediately recognized it as the words of writer and solo traveler Lea Lane.

I am no travel snob. I respect anyone who travels, be it seeking out creature comforts or roughing it. But by Lane’s definition, I aim to be a traveler, to discover, to connect with people.

Since I returned to Miami, I have been discovering new things about a city that I called home for at least a decade. I’ve been traveling, meeting new people, discovering things about Miami and about me. Proof you don’t have to travel far to find your soul. Lots of time to think, lots of time to discover, even in urbane Miami. Go out and discover.

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