It is just the ripening moment in the rose patch at the VolksGarten in Vienna. Everyone is likely to find a favorite color, or hybrid, or sense of the floweristically absurd. Through much of the garden, photographers have become the natural extensions of every bloom. Their zoom lenses are the new fertilizers and nectar collectors, pushing so close to the honeyed petals.
The world seems happy here. Dogs parade with their tails so high they might fly Austrian flags; children tug their nannies towards the red and white ice cream stand just off behind a hedgerow; the remnants of power–all those Hapsburg in-town palaces–lie just beyond the garden where they courteously allow themselves to be rechristened as museums. Among Vienna’s many features, one looks in vain for shyness in its public face.