Today was an unexpected day trip. We always planned to bring Jake and Eli here, just didn’t realize it would happen so soon!  But with the cold and rain our options of things to do were limited, and then we looked at a map and saw the salt mines were only about an hour away.



We also didn’t realize this experience would give a whole new meaning to the game MineCraft…..



Mike and I both have memories, now over 20 years old, of going to the Salt Mines in Salzburg. They are actually in Germany, not Austria, so we crossed the borders to another country today.  We barely noticed. Border crossing is so much easier here than it was in Africa!  It was wonderful to find that those glassy memories of slides and boats and subterranean lakes really were as magical as we remember them to be.  The salt mine tour has become more modern with lighting and special effects, but it was every bit of fun the second time as an adult. The kids thought it was fun to get dressed up in the uniforms and ride in a real mine cart!


Jake and Eli know that if they do their homework, clean up their toys, and don’t fight with each other, they will get 20 minutes of Minecraft.  Sometimes longer if Mike and I are enjoying the peace and quiet so much that we forget to watch the time.  Today when we got home, they went right to work on their new “worlds,” adding salt crystals, underground lakes, power lines, and “safety videos.”  It was sort of poignant to think that we’d been missing this creative and reflective element of Minecraft all along, that it was not just a kids’ game but actually something they could learn from.


I expect this is just the beginning of what our kids are teaching us.