I arrived in Innsbruck after nightfall and walking around town I couldn’t help but think it seemed like a movie set. The cobblestones shone in the moonlight with a cleanliness I had never seen, even in the tourist areas of Latin America.
The next day I noticed all the tourists unabashedly walked around with their DSLRs as necklaces, none feared being robbed and were oblivious to the idea of pickpockets.
The town is filled with bike lanes with more bicycles than motorists, but those that do drive stop immediately for crossing pedestrians.
There is order here.
And then I realized that Innsbruck was different. It is as if we had achieved world peace, learned not to litter, to take care of ourselves.
It made me uncomfortable.
Innsbruck is a very pretty city. It’s safe and families have a wonderful time wandering the colourful streets.
It is too perfect.
But it’s a bit too sanitized for me. There’s no one yelling in the street, no couples kissing so passionately you would swear they had been separated for years. It has no personality. Like a pretty box with nothing inside.
A friend from Buenos Aires who had been here said it had no onda.
Sure I appreciate the cleanliness, and being able to walk around with my iPod Touch to connect to the free wifi and not having to grip onto my bag with fear. I miss the grittiness of Latin America. Even a walking tour of Innsbruck couldn’t change my mind.
And maybe others are right, maybe I am a drama queen.
But I like my cities to have a pulse, I can’t connect to Innsbruck. The heart feels nothing but apathy.
So Innsbruck, I like you, you are really nice but I don’t see any future. Let’s just be friends.