ladies gone mild

Ah. Trieste!

Ah. Trieste!

All right all you spring breakers, let’s get civilized, shall we? Before all you ladies (and I use the term broadly) bared your midriffs, shaved your privates, and boarded a plane bound for depravity, there was a much more elegant way to spend a holiday. It was known as the rest cure.

I’ve been much maligned for my tendency to slip away from Court during frigid or rainy weather to partake in the tepid waters off the coast of Corfu, or feel the sweet warm breeze from a Triestian turret. But I ask you. Is it fair to criticize a monarch for her forays into radical self-care? Would you rather see me pale and anemic, coughing up a lung whilst stuffed into one insufferable gown after another?

If it were up to the men, they’d rather we stay chained to the throne, as it were. Or if we do dash off on holiday, freshly Lipo-lifted and salon-bronzed, we must be available for their continual ogling. On display in a drenched t-shirt, or, heavens, with a strip of cloth bisecting our buttocks. This is not vacation, ladies.

I propose that we rethink this girls gone wild thing, and take back our holidays. Instead of parading about like a cow at auction, consider this age-old alternative. Yes, yes, sometimes there’s a bit of electroshock involved. And stiff Nurse Ratchet types administering to your bodily functions, but my particular version has a few more goodies. The “Sisi Rest Cure” has several components:

  1.  warm to hot mineral water in which to bathe free from lecherous eyes
  2.  freshly squeezed juices served chilled thrice daily
  3.  beauty cure ointments available for a variety of ailments
  4.  musicians with soothing instruments
  5.  freshly caught seafood for the evening meals
  6.  rubdowns and oilings. preferably executed by handsome young male attendants

Really, ladies, would you rather shake your booty or awaken your inner goddess?


my adriatic haven


Ah, Trieste. The little Italian refuge from the pomp of Vienna. Rest cures. The sea. Warm breezes and dry air and lack of prying eyes.

Empresses need their rest cures, you know.

This hauntingly lovely place built by my brother-in-law, Ferdinand Maximilian, and the family often vacationed here before and after his death. It was here, at Miramare, that I recovered from tuberculosis. It was here that I returned, time and time again, to settle my nerves and the bouts of depression that plagued me in stuffy, cold Vienna.


All was not perfect in this Adriatic paradise, however. There was this one time I had it out with my sister-in-law, the whiny, pretentious Charlotte (my mother-in-law’s favorite daughter-in-law, it must be said). It involved Shadow, my airedale, and a yippy little spaniel belonging to Charlotte. There was a scuffle, and some growling and that was the end of my sister-in-law’s dog–which had been a gift from Queen Victoria I found out later. Oops.

Charlotte, of course, held it against me for the rest of her days and I made sure that I never visited while she was in residence again. 

I never did like little dogs.