"“The present was an egg laid by the past that had the future inside its shell.” ~ Zora Neale HurstonBelieve it or not, these egg ornaments are seeing their tenth Christmas on our tree. The past three years they have graced what I call our "international tree" with ornaments that we have gathered in our travels. In the summer of 2000, Nyssa and I visited my brother who was engaged as the house tenor in Linz, Austria. While we were there we took several side trips by train, one to Salzburg that has been made most famous by The Sound of Music, although it is also the birthplace of Mozart. The streets of the town are narrow and were crowed with tourists that day. We happened upon this shop with thousands of intricately painted eggs in the window. While some were painted for Easter and some with simple flowers of Austria and animals and all sorts of other decorations, most were painted with Christmas themes. All of them are hand blown real eggs... chicken, goose.. I even saw several ostrich eggs. I remember one painted like a jester face with a satin hat and ruffled collar of royal purple and emerald green and with attached feathers to match. I looked through my prints from that trip (before digital camera) and wouldn't you know it.. I have NO pictures from inside the store.
Well, I had to at least try to bring some of these home. In 2000, the euro/dollar ratio was in favor of the dollar so the prices were not bad. I picked out two and a half dozen and they packed them carefully in egg cartons, yes, real old fashioned egg cartons.. paper, not plastic or styrofoam. I gingerly carried them back to Linz on the train and then back to the states on the airplane. I am not sure this would even be possible to do these days. Only one broke completely and a few others cracked but are still useable on the tree. And they have lasted over the years. I again carefully hung them on our tree just last week... for the tenth time. My only regret is that I did not try to bring back more... they are so beautiful and unique.
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