Schloss Schönbrunn / Vienna, Austria
It was a cool misty day in Vienna - typical of mid winter in central Europe. While strolling the grounds of the Schönbrunn Palace, we passed by this lonely, little backhoe which looked humorously out of scale in relation to the massive palace and grounds. The original palace, named Katterburg, was built on the grounds in the mid-1500's by the Holy Roman Emperor Maximilian II to serve primarily as the court's hunting grounds. During the Turkish Siege of 1683, Katterburg was destroyed and not rebuilt at the time. By mid-18th century, a decision was made that the grounds should become the imperial summer residence and the existing palace was built on the site, together with the extensive gardens, in the new Rococo style. From the main palace, the garden axis points towards a higher hill, which is crowned by the Gloriette structure (seen in the photo). The Gloriette is an open pavilion and served primarily as a dining or festival hall, offering excellent views of Vienna - just not the day we were there.