Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Random Tuesday - Moving edition

Well, I gotta tell you that I'm feeling the relief of having all my "shit" in the same place.

This past weekend was "the big move" where most of our things made it from the old place to the new. I learned a few things in the process:
  • Polish workers may be cheap, but they could use a watch and a calendar - They were supposed to be there on Friday at 10.00. We didn't even THINK about calling them until 11.00 simply because they are ALWAYS late. When we did call at 12.30, the team leader exclaimed, "You mean it's FRIDAY? I thought it was Thursday". Two ours after that... they showed up. They were due back last night at 8.00pm to fix a shower door. You guessed it, this morning was day three of showering without a door.
  • Deutsche Telekom sucks no matter what - Yesterday was the day they were supposed to change the service from one house to the other. Ahem. No. It is certainly off at the other house... but let's just say that switch didn't make it to the new place. And we are paying 45 EUR for this fantastic switch service...
  • When you tell the electric company in Germany to shut off electricity, they do it without fail... even if you weren't smart enough to vacuum the place before it was shut off.
  • While using packing tape and tearing it with your teeth instead of the sensible way of using scissors, DO be mindful of where the sticky side is in relation to your lips... argh...
  • On the bright side, numbering all boxes and having a sheet of paper with the basic contents listed for each box is freaking genius!
We had over 50 boxes moved in the last two weeks. Only 20 boxes remain, of those 10 are waiting on a new cabinet. Yippee!!

Changing tracks...
Choo choooooo...

Does anybody else wonder why in the world we don't have these stockpiled somewhere ready to send out to people in a crisis? Heck, even to those people who are just not near clean drinking water.
Michael Pritchard's water filter turns filthy water drinkable Take a few minutes and watch, I promise you will have the same attitude.

Changing tracks...
Choo choooooo...

OK, this House thing... I don't get it.
First you have to know that I don't receive American television, and haven't in some time.
But so many of my friends were crazy about House that I bought season one and watched two eps. Um... I don't get it. Did I get the wrong season? I would rather watch re-runs of Monk all day long than what I saw on the first two shows. At least Monk you have a CHANCE of figuring out what the solution is. How am I supposed to know that the person is sick from some strange disease that I've never heard of? Plus the character development... I don't really like this House guy in these eps. What's the big deal?

Changing tracks...
Choo choooooo...

Is anyone else in love with iGoogle like I am?

Changing tracks...
Choo choooooo...

OK, that's random enough for me. Head over to Keely the UnMom for more zaniness.

Been reading:

And finally... a video that almost made me spit my morning coffee all over the screen.

post signature

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Random Tuesday - Slaving

It's time to play the music
It's time to light the lights
It's time to meet Snooker with Random Tuesday Thoughts.

It's time to put on makeup
It's time to dress up right
It's time to raise the curtain on Random Tuesday Thoughts.

And now let's get things started
(Why don't you get things started)
It's time to get things started
On the most sensational inspirational celebrational Randomational
This is what we call Snooker's Random Tuesday Thoughts!
(Sung to the tune of the opening song from The Muppet Show)

OK, so if you don't want to sing along, or if you are confused, head over to Keely at the Un-Mom for some direction. Otherwise sit back, let go of the mouse and let the randomness flow over you.

Let's start with a WTF moment.
Does anyone else see what is wrong with this picture?

Slave to fashion my ass.
He looks real cool, eh? I know guys like this.

We still haven't gotten moved yet. (How long is this going to take, Snooker?) FOREVER!

Snookie's been busier than a one-armed paper-hanger. My life has been sleep, work, move, sleep, work, move. But tonight that gets changed up a bit. A friend and I are going out for WINGS GLORIOUS WINGS! Yes, Snooker gets a breather.

May I just say that dealing with handworkers here in Germany really isn't fun. I will take Friday off (I love socialism - it is standard to get one free day off to move) to oversee our Polish dude as he and his crew move all of our heavy stuff. Of course he speaks no English, of course I speak no Polish. We will need to communicate in German. Let's just say that I assume that he and I will be doing lots of pointing and moving of hands.

Speaking hand movement. Last week I had to speak on the phone with lots of folks in Milan, Italy. I could almost hear the hands being flailed about. "You-a hafta call-a back-a later".

We're in the middle of Indian Summer here in Berlin. I'm lovin' it in about 40 ways. The weather is fantastic. Cool evenings and warm days with just the hint of chill in the air.

I always know when fall is really here by feeling the air coming up out of the subway tunnels. If the air from below is cooler than above, it is summer. If you walk past a subway grate and feel a blast of warm air coming up then you better be wearing a jacket.

We took a bit of time to watch the Berlin Marathon on Sunday. There is nothing like standing along the sidelines as thousands of sweaty bodies run past to make you feel like a class A lazy slob.

Back to the move - darn it, that is all I can think of! As far as I'm concerned, we should be all moved in... the alcohol is in it's cabinet.

May I say that moving into a kitchen which is roughly twice as big as the last one is a FANTASTIC thing!

Woot Woot! Met one of the new neighbors last night. As I backed out of the door carrying empty boxes I almost tumbled over an innocent woman just trying to climb the stairs to her apartment. She looked at me all startled like but didn't say anything (pretty standard German behavior, I'm afraid).

I apologized when I realized what had happened and noticed that she was "dykey bike girl" we had spied about two weeks ago. Since I figured she might be a "sister" (we lesbians, we stick together) I wanted to try extra hard to strike up a conversation with her. She was in full bicycle regalia and carrying expensive bike bags, so I commented on that and we continued into a nice but short chat.

It wasn't sparkling conversation, but she was nice and said that "we all" should meet up again. (sounds like she has a girlfriend hidden up in that apartment, eh?) Oh well, at least we know her name and that she can speak. YEA to new neighbors! ANYTHING has to be better than "Pregnant Russian Whore and her Three Unfortunate, but STUPID Brats".

Oh and ya know what? In late October we'll be going on holiday. Yup, Tahiti and New Zealand for a bit over three weeks. What you ask have you done in preparation for this trip, Snooker? NOTHING. All I know is that we have airline tickets and will stay with a friend on Tahiti. Nothing like "winging it", eh?

OK, that's enough. Want more goofy randomness, drop by the UnMom for a list of crazy folks who are doing exactly the same thing.

Been reading:

Is the Internet melting our brains? - Well, duh.

Prince Needs, Refuses Double Hip Replacement - OMG! WHAT could that man have been doing which requires a double hip replacement. It seems that he is going to refuse the need on a religious basis. I wonder if the pain drugs he must be taken are OK with the Jehovah's Witnesses too?

How about seeing "Tainted Love" in a whole new spirit. We are going to give Betsy of Blog Ness Monster full credit for finding this rocking little gem.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Just do it... but in moderation, of course

Spotted at one of the major German retailers, Karstadt.

I'm not sure just how I should take this.

Is it a smile ONLY once per day, thus showcasing the great talents of the average Berliner?
Or is it saying that you should smile AT LEAST once a day?

Either way it made me giggle so much the guy working the counter nearby was giving me some strange looks as I pulled out my Blackberry for a quick pic.

Just once a day... no more.
Berliners aren't allowed to smile more than once.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Photo Friday - Plants

Photo Friday - Plants

Well, another Friday has rolled around. What a lovely day, eh? The weekend is coming and like every other week I get an e-mail inviting me to participate in Photo Friday.

The theme this week is "Plants". Hmm... I started to go through my Flickr account and found some quite reasonable possibilities, Bleeding Hearts, and even a quite seasonable Sunflower.

Why did I end up with this not so enchanting choice? Hmm. Possibly more because of the memory behind it.

July 2008 Snooker and Sweet No took off in the car for a driving vacation. First stop was Amsterdam and a k.d. Lang concert, then to the Alsace region of France for a visit to Strasbourg. After drinking in the wine groves we were to make our way to points unknown, perhaps in the Black Forest back in Germany or thereabouts.

But it was the short visit to Amsterdam which charmed my heart so. We did the normal touristy things of course, the cafes with their "special" brownies, the Van Gogh Museum, the Anne Frank House.

What had me completely beguiled was the feeling of the city itself. There might not be a way to describe it, other than to say it was .... unconstrained.

Crazy bicyclists are everywhere with what seems like no rules whatsoever. Alongside the bikes are scooters which are a free-for-all going wherever they please. And what few cars are allowed in the old town area have obviously made a deal with the devil to get a parking spot.

In the old town, the buildings are all situated close and tight, each one standing tall like a soldier protecting the canals. When I say tall, I am not thinking in mere height. The architecture doesn't really strike me as taller than Berlin buildings, they are simply much more tall than they are wide. Simply put, they are impossibly narrow. Each one of them are only about three small rooms wide maybe four flights high, with crazy-narrow staircases taking you always up, up, up. They all just look super cozy all huddled up together.

As I was having my fill of "space muffins", I could easily construct the illusion of the buildings standing alongside those canals with windows like eyes... watching, observing what was happening under them as the boats would drift peacefully by. No matter how my imagination would carry me, I never considered the buildings menacing as they loomed overhead. My thoughts assumed they would be looking down on the humans with loving, caring eyes which had seen much, but had never become indifferent or callous.

Amsterdam is a place I could live, and I don't say that about a lot of cities.

This picture was taken as we strolled along yet another bridge covering one of the canals. We noticed the flowers and stopped for a moment to enjoy the view. While holding hands we casually moved in closer together, supporting each other yet each standing on our own. After a few moments we wordlessly moved apart and continued on our way. Out came my always close at hand camera. Snap... and there you have it.

For most it is a OK picture of a canal, some trees, boats and of course the flowers. For me, it is a warm memory of a wonderful place shared with a very special person.

More pics of Amsterdam.

See more entries or participate yourself by visiting Photo Friday.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Random Tuesday - Fall is in the air

Whoo Hooo! Let's take another magic carpet ride on the Random Tuesday Thoughts trolley. Ding Ding! Everybody on? Let's Roll!

OK, OK, I have decided to "rock" the gray hair. (grey or gray? why do these two words always confuse me?) I'll leave it alone and let it do as it pleases (well, unless it decides to stick straight up, I think I'll draw the line there). As for wrinkles, I haven't noticed any yet. But then I'm a tubby one, real wrinkles will take more time and probably weight loss. (HA! Another reason to not get my panties into a bunch about losing weight!)

"Honey, time marches on and eventually you realize it is marchin' across your face."
Bonus points to the commenter who can name the movie AND the character who uttered this awesome line.

Autumn is coming to Berlin and I'm soooo excited! Give me crisp clean air, leaves flying about underfoot, and generally cooler temperatures. LOVE IT!

Moving still sucks... 'nuff said.

Yesterday as I was walking down the street I spied a semi well-dressed man acting suspicious, looking all over the ground in a weird way then quick looks up to see who might be watching. There is no way I expected what came next. He finally spied what he was looking for, walked 12 steps and picked up a cigarette butt which although long I'm pretty sure was NOT his, put it in his mouth and lit it! THAT is addiction, people!

There is nothing so satisfying as a window cleaning job well done.

Ha HA! The boss's (too many s's there?) puppy has one-upped himself. Two weeks ago he was in the office and left a lovely puddle in one of the divisions. Yesterday he made another "oops" in a different area. The second boss (my actual boss) is not one for animals in the workplace, but hey... the dog is owned by the guy who owns the joint. I don't think that anyone will be complaining any time soon.

Sunday I was tapped to take pictures of an event for work. It was a lot of fun and I could really see myself doing this professionally. The bad part, it is a serious investment in equipment for it to be reasonable. Am I willing to invest like that? I don't know. None the less, it was fun.

Stomp opens tonight here in Berlin. Tix aren't tooo expensive, maybe I could talk Sweet No into taking a night off of "THE MOVE" to enjoy what is supposed to be an awesome performance.

Speaking of Sweet No. She's been a darling about this move. Working her sweet heart out to make things as nice as possible. The worst part of moving in the German bureaucracy is the paperwork and dealing with the handworkers. Since it is her language, she's been stuck with this part, and I really pity her for it. Thanks No (BTW, it is not like she actually reads this rag)

Sunday I managed to break two nails within 15 minutes. I was deep in the middle of cleaning and in a moment of true exasperation I decided to bite the rest off... down to the quick. I don't keep long nails, never did fake nails, but I have always kept at least an 1/8th of an inch above the quick. Let me tell you that now it just feels weird! How long will this last? I want my nails back!

Recently I managed to watch "Julie and Julia". No, it is not cinematic history. No, it isn't a must-see movie. BUT, the premise is cute and I've always loved Julia Child. Having Meryl Streep play her was fantastic. Personally I wish it had just been a movie about Julia, that would have been great. But I am a realist, who would have gone to see it? Yes, Nora Ephron needed the modern-day love story to tie back to Julia's story. The tie-back story was decent, a young woman lost in life decides to start a cooking blog, taking a year to go through Child's book "Mastering French Cooking". It was an OK movie, don't let me put you off, just not Ephron's best work.

The thing that jumped out at me was that HER MOTHER READ HER BLOG! Now technically if my Mother was as negative as her Mother, I would NOT want her reading my blog. But hey, I started this blog for my family so they could keep up with what I am doing on the other side of the pond. As far as I know, I have one cousin who drops in once in a blue moon, and that's it.

Nope, I still haven't read the instruction manual for my camera. I think I need to take a work lunch and sit down with it, dammit.

Been reading:
And a final thought on Patrick Swazye's passing. He was a very special man, a talented actor, a wonderful husband and unknown to most people he loved horses. I once had the pleasure of watching him compete while riding one of his prized Arabians. The man looked like a natural extension of the horse, all of that style and grace translated perfectly to those of us in the crowd.

So to Patrick, also known as Johnny Castle. You will dirty dance forever in our memories. Dalton in "Roadhouse", Jed in "Red Dawn", Sam in "Ghost", and Vida Boehme in "To Wong Fu".
I hope you had the time of your life.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Yankee or Dixie?

So are you a Yank or does Dixie blood run through your veins?
Perhaps you are an expatriate from the U.S. and you're like me... been away so long these lines are not so clear.

Maybe the American readers would take 3 minutes and visit the Yankee/Rebel site for a short quiz.
Answer from your gut, the first relation you have.

As a person who is living outside of my native tongue I am frequently assaulted with the incredible differences we have in language usage. This little test just highlighted that I am a product of a great mixture of such "slang".

Personally I am 38% Dixie. I may have been raised by a Missouri Irish woman, but I guess that didn't sink in. You should see my answers though... ALL over the place.

Please if ya'all take the time to do the test, I would love to read a bit the results in the comments. (note that I threw in the ONE word which got me some points for being from the south).

Friday, September 11, 2009

Where were you?

Eight years later ... and still I cry.
On this day it doesn't matter to me WHO did it, WHY or HOW...
What matters to me are the senseless deaths of that day,
and the deaths of so many innocents since that day.

Been reading:

9/11 as a Lesson, Not a Memory - Where were you when the world stood still? The first set of kids who must be taught about 9/11 are in our schools. What do you teach them? How can we explain to them the pain we felt?

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Rings around the barrage

Swiss artist Felice Varini and his team have created a work of art which must be viewed from one specific spot to get the "whole picture"

Three ellipses have been painted onto the working pieces of the barrage, and when viewed correctly, everything comes together. If viewed from the incorrect area, it simply looks like a jumble of random yellow paint.

Images of the work seen from various angles can be viewed here. I strongly suggest that you visit the previous link to get an idea of the scale we are talking about. There is no way for me to get pictures of it, so I defer to them for more pictures and "the rest of the story".

While you are on that site, check out their other offerings. I especially like the Black Dot thing.

I've often wondered about artists like this. WHERE do they get these ideas? I would have never had such an idea. But once someone does it... I can completely see the art in it. It's all about the perspective, and what a message.

Been reading:

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Random Tuesday - To Infinity and Beyond... and Back.

It's another Random Tuesday, and it's a good thing because my brain is waaaaay tooooo scattered for coherent thought right now.

If you are of a like mind, go check out Keely... she shows us how it's done.

Let me just say that moving sucks and we aren't even really starting yet. The floors have all been sanded down to the beautiful wood and now the staining begins. My gawd it seems to take forever for stuff to dry. One room's walls have required three coats of white to cover up the brightest/ugliest/saddest green you have ever seen!

Tonight we get our new basement cleaned and set up for the big move. Hopefully we can get everything shifted over as well. Let's just say that I'm increasingly surprised exactly how much SCUBA diving CRAP we have. But this cellar space is larger than the last one, so we'll be able to spread out a bit and hopefully have more than an area 6 inches wide to park my bike.

We had a fantastic time in Munich for the Whiney Expat Bloggers Meetup 2009. A great group of friends in a beautiful, clean, if a bit stuffy city. Munich has many claims to fame of course, but the one I found the funniest was the "We built our opera house on the world's first beer tax" to be a bit over the top. I had my first Maß which as far as I can tell is just a HUGE mug of watery beer. Give me a Guinness any day.

The more I travel, the more I realize that cool/sexy/poor Berlin was the right choice for me. But the people are great in Munich and I would go back for a visit any time.

As of this moment I haven't had enough time to read the instruction manual for my new camera. Unfortunately I think that this will be required. I've started twice but the thing is almost incomprehensible. WHY can't someone actually write a manual that is in simple language and actually gives the owner some value?

Today Mimi and I turned over 3,500 KM on her odometer. I'm really loving the sweet little scooter and will really not be happy on the day she needs to be put away for winter. :(

I didn't get the filing gene - no matter what, I always need to go back to find things and am continually surprised by where things end up. If something were to happen to me tomorrow, I pitty the person who has to find things in my work filing system. Let's not even get into what the folder with my photos looks like.

Now that gray hair has finally started to make its appearance on my head I don't seem to be too happy about it. In fact, I caught myself standing at the bathroom mirror this morning pulling individual hairs. Am I crazy trying to fight against something which is going to happen no matter what?

Been reading:
Priorities Are Clear as Mud in Germany - With elections coming up it is interesting to see what Merkel's administration is up to... or not up to.

Deutsche Bahn to Cut 75% of Berlin Train Services - There must be some nasty politicking going on here. WTF? This is the second maintenance "emergency shutdown" this summer! Somebody should hang pay! Where is our Mayor? Partying in Fuerteventura?

Astronauts pack Buzz Lightyear for ride home - OK, so he didn't quite make it to "Infinity and Beyond"... but he was on the SPACE STATION! He's probably my favorite cartoon character of all and knowing that astronauts think he's cool too is a like a rocket boost for me. :)

OK, I'll leave you with the Mean Kitty Song!
Every time I pass a "Sparta Bank" this song starts playing in my head.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

For the Book Freaks

I'm stealing this idea from Michele of Jeweled Concrete who in turn stole from G.
It is a list of books obviously loved by the British.
In bold you will find the ones I've read.
It seems I have a way to go on the British list.

The BBC list of the most beloved books:

1. The Lord of the Rings, JRR Tolkien
2. Pride and Prejudice, Jane Austen

3. His Dark Materials, Philip Pullman

The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, Douglas Adams
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, JK Rowling
To Kill a Mockingbird, Harper Lee
Winnie the Pooh, AA Milne
Nineteen Eighty-Four, George Orwell
9. The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, CS Lewis

10. Jane Eyre, Charlotte Brontë

11. Catch-22, Joseph Heller

12. Wuthering Heights, Emily Brontë

13. Birdsong, Sebastian Faulks

14. Rebecca, Daphne du Maurier

The Catcher in the Rye, JD Salinger
The Wind in the Willows, Kenneth Grahame
Great Expectations, Charles Dickens
Little Women, Louisa May Alcott
19. Captain Corelli's Mandolin, Lo
uis de Bernieres - Hated the movie... do I really NEED to read the book?
20. War and Peace, Leo Tolstoy
- OMG -This really was a good read
Gone with the Wind, Margaret Mitchell
Harry Potter And The Philosopher's Stone, JK Rowling
23. Harry Potter And The Chamber Of Secrets, JK Rowling
24. Harry Potter And The Prisoner Of Azkaban, JK Rowling
The Hobbit, JRR Tolkien
Tess Of The D'Urbervilles, Thomas Hardy
27. Middlemarch, George Eliot

28. A Prayer For Owen Meany, John Irving

29. The Grapes Of Wrath, John Steinbeck
- How similar to today's world is all of this?
30. Alice's Adventures In Wonderland, Lewis Carroll - How similar to today's world is all of THIS?
31. The Story Of Tracy Beaker, Jacqueline Wilson
32. One Hundred Years Of Solitude, Gabriel García Márquez

33. The Pillars Of The Earth, Ken Follett
34. David Copperfield, Charles Dickens
Charlie And The Chocolate Factory, Roald Dahl
Treasure Island, Robert Louis Stevenson
37. A Town Like Alice, Nevil Shute

38. Persuasion, Jane Austen

39. Dune, Frank Herbert

40. Emma, Jane Austen
Anne Of Green Gables, LM Montgomery
42. Watership Down, Richard Adams
- Need to read this one again.
The Great Gatsby, F Scott Fitzgerald
44. The Count Of Monte Cristo, Alexandre Dumas

45. Brideshead Revisited, Evelyn Waugh

Animal Farm, George Orwell
47. A Christmas Carol, Charles Dickens
48. Far From The Madding Crowd, Thomas Hardy

49. Goodnight Mister Tom, Michelle Magorian
50. The Shell Seekers, Rosamunde Pilcher

51. The Secret Garden, Frances Hodgson Burnett
52. Of Mice And Men, John Steinbeck

The Stand, Stephen King - I re-read this about every decade.
54. Anna Karenina, Leo Tolstoy
55. A Suitable Boy, Vikram Seth
56. The BFG, Roald Dahl
57. Swallows And Amazons, Arthur Ransome

Black Beauty, Anna Sewell
59. Artemis Fowl, Eoin Colfer

60. Crime And Punishment, Fyodor Dostoyevsky

61. Noughts And Crosses, Malorie Blackman
62. Memoirs Of A Geisha, Arthur Golden
A Tale Of Two Cities, Charles Dickens
64. The Thorn Birds, Colleen McCollough
- I just wanted to slap Father Ralph and tell him to wake up!
65. Mort, Terry Pratchett

66. The Magic Faraway Tree, Enid Blyton

67. The Magus, John Fowles

68. Good Omens, Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman
- Read on suggestion of a friend... now I have MANY more books to read... such as number 69
69. Guards! Guards!, Terry Pratchett

Lord Of The Flies, William Golding - Heard lots of wonderful things about it, had it in my hands once... just need to get it all together for this one.
Perfume, Patrick Süskind
72. The Ragged Trousered Philanthropists, Robert Tressell
73. Night Watch, Terry Pratchett

74. Matilda, Roald Dahl

Bridget Jones's Diary, Helen Fielding
76. The Secret History, Donna Tartt

77. The Woman In White, Wilkie Collins

78. Ulysses, James Joyce

79. Bleak House, Charles Dickens
80. Double Act, Jacqueline Wilson

81. The Twits, Roald Dahl

82. I Capture The Castle, Dodie Smith

83. Holes, Louis Sachar

84. Gormenghast, Mervyn Peake

85. The God Of Small Things, Arundhati Roy

86. Vicky Angel, Jacqueline Wilson

Brave New World, Aldous Huxley
Cold Comfort Farm, Stella Gibbons
89. Magician, Raymond E Feist
90. On The Road, Jack Kerouac
- How wonderful!
91. The Godfather, Mario Puzo
- Didn't read, but I did love the movies.
The Clan Of The Cave Bear, Jean M Auel
93. The Colour Of Magic, Terry Pratchett

The Alchemist, Paulo Coelho
95. Katherine, Anya Seton

96. Kane And Abel, Jeffrey Archer

Love In The Time Of Cholera, Gabriel García Márquez
98. Girls In Love, Jacqueline Wilson

99. The Princess Diaries, Meg Cabot

100. Midnight's Children, Salman Rushdie

How about it? Am I missing out on some awesome books here? What is your favorite from this list? What should BE on this list.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Random Tuesday - Cool Weekend Edition

Hey There! Thanks for dropping in. It's another Random Tuesday Thoughts complete with semi-scary graphic. If you want to know what that thing is all about... head on over to Keely the UnMom, she started it all. Ham? HAM? Dinosaur head? Pink star? Oh, and WHAT is that grey blob on the left side?

Let's take a ride on the bullet point express, shall we?
  • I learned a few things in Kansas folks, never dally while passing a semi truck hauling pigs or especially cattle. Perhaps you can imagine what might happen. Those holes on the sides do more than let fresh air in and teh stank out.
  • You should always live to the east of your work. This way as you drive into the office, the sun is at your back... same with coming home. Much more convenient this way, don't you think?
  • This past weekend was a lovely one for me. Jul (of This non-American life) and hubby popped into Berlin for some museum hopping and general sucking up of the Berliner vibe. Although I've been reading her blog for years, meeting her in person was still a surprise. She is very much as I would have assumed, but still there are many aspects I would never have dreamed of - leading to pleasant surprise after pleasant surprise.
  • This weekend we also got the keys to our new apartment! Tee hee hee... Let the work begin! Gosh, I could write an entire blog series on what it is like to change apartments in Germany. Let's just say that it is not so easy.
  • OK... and to top off THAT wonderful news... I finally got my dream camera!!!! The Nikon D90 has been calling to me since it came out, complete with video capabilities and live action view. Tee hee hee!
  • Sweet No and I are headed to Munich this weekend for We-Bum 2009, which is a yearly get together of expatriate bloggers. Interested in attending? It's never too late to join. Drop a line in the comments and let's talk! Watch out Munich, lots of crazy folks are on their way... and I'm not talking about Oktoberfest!
  • My Parents-in-Law are great. They love our cat Frank so much that in order for him to be more comfortable while we are gone, they have offered to move into our apartment (amongst the boxes - I don't envy them) during the weekend. Sweet, eh? I wonder if I could ask them to box up the kitchen while they're there? Too much? OK, I won't do it. No, I won't... ahem... NO.
  • Our hotel in Munich has Wi-Fi... but it costs 8EUR an hour. WHEN are hotels going to realize that this is a MAJOR selling point for geeks and just give it to us for free? If I had gotten up off my ass and booked sooner, I would have had my first choice in hotels which had FREE Wi-Fi. But ahem, alas... I didn't get a round tuit until this last weekend. We had airline tix months ago, but only because that part fell under Sweet No's job description.
  • The teachers union in Kent, WA are on strike. I was a Kentridge Charger for all of about four months in 1984. Seeing this in the news reminds me of my culture shock at this school. I was side by side with Asians and Philipinos for the first time in my life. They had a school-sanctioned smoking area, and covered walking paths between buildings. This is the school where I was first "outed" as a lesbian. Until I moved to the Midwest about two months later (unrelated) I was pointed and laughed at by the students and teachers alike. Nice school, eh? It was a different world. Today I would probably have more friends just because it is now so COOL to be a lesbian. (sarcasm intact)
Been reading:
Taxpayer Funded Religious Bias - Father Geoff is at it again, explaining the truths of the bias of the church and how they get away with being bullies while using your tax dollars.

Been surfing:
Following The Trail Of Toxic E-Waste - 60 Minutes is still doing hard-hitting, in your face news reporting I see. But I guess it is better if they do that OUT of the country. Nonetheless the story has me thinking about how many computer monitors I've been through in the past 10 years. Yes, feeling guilty now.

Alright ladies and gentlemen, that's enough for today. Thanks for reading my rambling.

OK, and because I just think it is sooo cute...
I offer you the Durex Bunnies.
Quite possibly NSFW. Oh, and you should have sound.