Is Malta a better place than Austria? That’s an impossible question to answer, but I’ve been in Malta for over a month now, so it’s time for a little comparison.
Malta: It’s hot. Always. At least in my experience. For me, there’s no too hot, so nothing to complain about.
Austria: 70% of the year it’s cold and rainy. But at least there’s snow at Christmas (and sometimes even at Easter), and some summer days are nice and sunny as well.
Winner: Definitely Malta. It’s impossible to beat 20℃ in October nights.
Malta: Renting apartments and houses is quite cheap here, apart from Sliema and St.Julians. But since Malta’s a tiny island, you can just live in another “town” and still be within walking distance of those prime areas. The standard of living isn’t that high, though, especially in cheap places, and from what I’ve read, heard and experienced, landlords don’t give a shoot (sorry, can’t get myself to swear properly) about their tenants, and they have all the laws on their side.
Austria: Vienna is expensive. Electricity, gas, rent, insurance, it all adds up. It also takes much longer to find a place as there’s less available. On the plus side, tenants are protected by law against crazy (and even normal) landlords and the standards are pretty high.
Winner: No real winner here. It depends on what you’re looking for.
Malta: I’ve only played at one club over here, and I don’t really care where I play, as long as I can play at all. Still, the Maltese clubs (speaking in plural because I visited a few before I decided to go for Pembroke) are nothing compared to Blau Weiss. They consist of a few courts, a tiny “club house” (bathrooms, showers, vending machines and that’s it) and – actually, there’s no and.
Austria: I’ve played at many different clubs, and all of them have some sort of club life with people sitting on the terrace most of the time, a canteen that’s open all day and different events and parties (and the Crazy Tennis Session at Blau Weiss) for all age groups.
Winner: 100% Austria! And Blau Weiss is simply the best tennis club ever!
Malta: The big supermarkets sell everything at normal prices, especially if you buy Italian products. You might not always know exactly what you’re buying, but it’s worth the savings compared to German or English products. Apart from Lidl, Tower and Scott’s, Malta also has tiny shops selling just about everything as well, but in 1% of the space. No idea how they do it… Fruit vans, confectioneries, butchers – there’s no “Greißlersterben” here. The prices are good, the owners friendly and the vegetables perfectly ripe, so I love those shops.
Austria: You shop at the big supermarket chains. Wherever you live, some Billa, Penny or Merkur is always near. Unless you live at Stock Im Weg or on Wolfersberg, in which case you have an amazing view of Vienna, but no shops whatsoever.
Winner: For those who like to bond with shopkeepers, Malta’s definitely the place to go. I don’t really mind, so there’s no winner for me. 1 point for both of them.
Malta: Riding the bus is fun, always a bit of an adventure. Expect crazy maneuvers, bumpy rides and emergency stops. The buses are rarely on time and during peak hours they take ages to get anywhere. However, nice bus drivers often let you get off even if there’s no stop.
Austria: Complain about the Wiener Linien all you want, but they’re mostly on time and the underground gets you around fast.
Winner: Austria. Malta should definitely get an underground.
Result (so far): 4:3 Austria
But then there’s no place like home, right?
Let me know which other aspects you’d like me to compare!