Hinterstoder is the small Alpine village in a valley surrounded by mountains from where I hail. Its remarkable features are its spectacular landscape, shaped by the collision of Africa with Europe millions of years ago. I spent my first nine years of life there. The first two were in the middle of our Second World War. My earliest recollections were the sky darkening from the Allied bombers that flew from England to their targets: Steyr where the Germans made panzers (tanks), and the larger cities including Linz and Vienna. When my mother heard the drone of hundreds of B-24’s overhead, she would scoop me up from my sandbox and take me inside the house, as if I would be safer there. Then the explosions started, which were only thirty miles away but still quite audible.
At the end of the war the Americans came, luckily, we were in the American Sector and not the Russian Sector. The High Commissioner of Austria, appointed by General Eisenhower, chose Hinterstoder as his headquarters from where he ruled post war Austria from 1945 to 1947. That was also fortunate and brought with it all kinds of secondary benefits to the town including my first taste of chocolate. I photographed many of the most picturesque spots for inclusion in this book in the summer of 2017.
Additionally, there are accompanying tales that have historic significance which have affected many people including my life, and are worthy of being shared with you. Finally, I believe that the town and I learned some life lessons that need to be memorialized so they will hopefully never echo from the walls of our surrounding mountains again.
Softcover & E-book
8.5 x 0.4 x 8.5 inches