I’m leaving North America

For the first time. But I’m eventually coming back. Heading to Austria later this month, I’m going to spend three weeks as a Knight fellow at the Salzburg Academy on Media and Global Change. The four fellows — two from the USA, two from Jordan — are going to be working with faculty and students from around the world as they create new lenses for media literacy and critical awareness. But my favorite parts so far? The Salzburg airport is apparently named W.A. Mozart Airport, and our classrooms are in the palace where they filmed The Sound of Music.

If you’ve been there or near there, any and all advice is welcome. I’ve begun reading all I can in preparation, but there’s much more to go.

Two weeks out, I’m excited and nervous. My foreign travel experience consists of Montreal, Toronto and Niagara Falls, Canada. My longest flight over water likely involves Lake Michigan. I joke that my brother, jetting off these days to Beijing, Madrid and Sao Paolo for work, is the Cooper most likely to cause an international incident. But really now. We know there’s only one Cooper most likely to fall down the Alps.

Or, as we all learned as children, this could happen…

9 thoughts on “I’m leaving North America”

  1. Salzburg was one of my favorite places in Europe.
    Do not miss going on a tour of the Salt mines, or getting up on the Fortress. Check out my pics on FB.

  2. as a professional travel writer, i suggest that you climb every mountain and ford every stream. if you have time, you should probably follow every rainbow.

  3. Amazing! Congrats on the fellowship and I can’t wait to read about your travels!

  4. Everything from here to the end of that set is from when Mark and I spent the day in Salzburg in ’05. Definitely recommend the tour of the fortress. If you’re feeling up to it, it’s a strenuous hike up. I…harangued Mark into taking the Funicular.

    We skipped out on it since we were only there for a day, but I’m told the Sound of Music tour is highly entertaining if you enjoy that film.

  5. Ooooh, congrats! Be sure to eat some delicious sacher torte — more a Viennese thing, but I’m sure Salzburg has its share of cakes as well.

  6. Spent a weekend in Salzburg a few summers ago.


    Sound of Music Tour was great, but then again I am a HUGE fan.

    So jealous that your classrooms are in the building where several scenes from the movie were filmed! We heard on the tour it is now only open to the public one day a year. :(

    Echo the fortress recommendation, and the hike up.

    Depending on your class schedule you might hop on a train to a nearby city for a weekend. Innsbruck is beautiful.

  7. Thanks all for the pix and good wishes! This is a great start on what to see, and the place looks amazing. Love the salt mines are still open. My mom’s hunting for a pic of her family when they went there in the ’50s, everyone posing with a shovel and whatnot.

  8. Ditto on the fortress and the hike.

    Since you get a kick out of the airport’s name, i recommend going through Mozart’s house and seeing the violin he played on and some *ahem* interesting pieces of art he did that was a window into his mind (i’ll leave it at that). but seriously, seeing his first and subsequent home has totally deepened my appreciation and drawn me in to his music, in a way I wouldn’t have experienced without walking in his steps, literally.

    Also, make sure you check out the market. Yummy food there. Sausage and a giant Saltzburg pretzel hit the spot, but there are other delicious options.

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