marriage in mariahilferstraße

by erinohsays


today isabelle and i went shopping in mariahilferstraße, a beautiful, old district that recently became pedestrian only. as we were crossing the street she pointed out how the pedestrian stop lights show couples walking together with a little heart between their heads. i thought this was so adorable that i took a photo. there are female couples, male couples, and male/female couples.

later in the day as we were walking out of a shop, a couple greeted us with a tape recorder and asked, “what do you think about marriage?”

without missing a beat, isabelle explained that she feels no need to get married any time soon but that she can understand why people feel the need to get married, especially if they are raising children.

i told them that i consider myself to be married currently but with less of the state, religious, or gender roles that so often come with marriage.

we asked them what they were using the interview for and they said simply, “an art project.” unfortunately there is no website yet. it would be interesting to read what other people in vienna have to say about marriage.

immediately after this interaction, i went to buy a coffee and while i was waiting in line i began chatting with the couple behind me. the man and woman, who were about my age, told me that they are getting married on wednesday this week. when i told them congratulations, the woman rolled her eyes and excused herself to the bathroom.

the man then said to me, “marriage. welcome to the beginning of the end.”

he said they were getting married in a huge old castle in vienna and that they had spent a ton of money and time planning it. well, he admitted, actually she has spent all of the time planning it. he said they are both extremely stressed out now that they are down to the last few days before the wedding.

“i’m sure it will be beautiful!” i said. i mean, really, A CASTLE WEDDING?!

“maybe.” he replied.