All is quiet in the Tyrolean village of Ischgl when Emil Zangerl starts his shift at the Silvretta cableway parking lot before dawn. The bars and boutiques along the narrow streets are dark and deserted. The hard-drinking après-ski partiers and go-go dancers in short dirndls have called it a night at Schatzi’s bar, leaving just a single cocktail to freeze on the curb.
Mr. Zangerl slowly gets out of his car, pulling on a pair of thick gloves and grabbing his signaling disk. The 83-year-old has been on time for his shift for the last 17 years. Except on Mondays.
He’ll be directing thousands of tourists to parking spots once again this ski season, which began earlier this month.
“Always in five or six rows or chaos breaks out,” he says.
The thousands of tourists he meets on his job at the Austrian ski resort likely have no idea that they’re encountering a walking museum, though.