The Time Capsule

Apple iPhone 12 Pro Max (5.1mm, f/1.6, 1/50 sec, ISO250)

Last Saturday I went to Vienna to visit the Apple Store. I have never been there but inside they are all the same no matter if in San Francisco, New York or Vienna.

The reason I went there was the Apple Watch 7 that just has been released. I simply wanted to see the thing before I decide which one to order. The pictures on the internet can’t tell the whole story. I tried out the different versions and ended up with the 45mm stainless steel with a leather strap and a sport strap. Of course it wasn’t on stock but now at least I knew what to order.

This is my first Apple Watch but not my first smart watch. About a year ago I got a Garmin Venu and wore it ever since then more of less day and night. It was good but recently the knobs got extremely hard to operate and a couple of days ago the sensors went all crazy and the battery lasted less than a day. I will send it for repair but I already decided that I want something else. More reliable and something that works seamlessly with my iPhone.

Right now I’m back to my beautiful mechanical watch. Beside the day date this watch has only one feature: GMT. Before Covid-19 I traveled a lot so the second time zone always indicated my time at home. And when I was at home it showed the time at my next destination i.e Japan.

I hope I get not used to the beauty and simplicity again because I don’t think that I can cancel my order. A mechanical watch is something special. There is no need to charge, it shows the time without turning my wrist around at a certain speed and it doesn’t notify me of messages or tells me that my laundry is ready. I guess I have to cancel my order!

Apple iPhone 12 Pro Max (1.54mm, f/2.4, 1/50 sec, ISO640)
Apple iPhone 12 Pro Max (5.1mm, f/1.6, 1/50 sec, ISO250)
Apple iPhone 12 Pro Max (5.1mm, f/1.6, 1/25 sec, ISO500)

Maybe you think “Hey, those images don’t show an Apple store or an Apple Watch!”. You are correct! They show an old coffee house in Vienna. Not the most fancy one but it is authentic and within the last 30 years it hasn’t changed.

Why do I know that. Almost 30 years back I visited the evening school nearby. Every evening after work I went there to learn. And almost every night after school we went to this Cafe for a drink. Most nights I came home just before midnight and went to work again the next morning. I did this for five years. Today I ask myself where this energy came from. Today I’m so tired after work that I can’t imagine to go out for a drink most of the time. Back then I went straight to evening school and when we went for a drink it was already close to 10pm.

But the answer is simple: Back then I was young and now I’m old.

Apple iPhone 12 Pro Max (5.1mm, f/1.6, 1/50 sec, ISO125)
Apple iPhone 12 Pro Max (5.1mm, f/1.6, 1/50 sec, ISO200)

As you are getting older everything around you seems to change. The only thing constant in life is change right? So those rare time capsules are a very special place. This Cafe still is the old, a little shabby establishment it was back at a time when there were no smartwatches or even smartphones. Back then when you took picture you had to use a camera. And only after you took 35 more pictures you could bring the film to a shop to get the images developed.

This place still looks exactly the same but most of the inner city of Vienna has changed dramatically. The old shops are long gone. It’s all Gucci, Prada and the likes now.

I remember a shop where three very old ladies sold board games, pipes, tobacco and cigars. Of course all three of them smoked all the time in their wonderful shop that looked more like a museum. A fantastic place! Back then I smoked too so I went there often for tobacco. The old ladies are dead now, but not because they smoked, they are dead because they were already in their 70s or even 80s 30 years back.

Or the wonderful Cafe Havelka where I often went to meet friends. It was always full, no empty tables at all but that wasn’t a big deal. It was either Leopold Hawelka or his wife Josefine who just said “Sit here” and there was no way for you, or for the people already sitting on that table, to say something against it. Both opened up the Cafe in the year 1936 and she worked until she died (on her only day off – a Tuesday) at the age of 92. Her husband died in 2011. He got 100 years old. For over 60 years they both worked in that crowded Cafe, day in day out, where the smoke was so thick that you couldn’t see from one side to the other. The Cafe is still there but of course it is not the same.

Of course this little Cafe never was that famous. It never was an institution like the Hawelka but it also never changed just like the Hawelka. The only two things they have changed was the menu und the sign outside the restaurant. Problem is: according to the sign outside it is 100 years old but according to the menu it’s only 97. Of course that doesn’t matter too much but it shows that change can be tricky!

Btw: All images taken with a telephone. Can you believe that!?

Apple iPhone 12 Pro Max (5.1mm, f/1.6, 1/1250 sec, ISO32)