amazing what you find on flickr sometimes.....I can't stop giggling every time I even think of it. I so deserve this as today was kind of....meh.
Monday, March 31, 2008
- Thank you English David for pointing out this website to me. Like I didn't already have a reputaton for being a nut case at work, now I TOTALLY want the Glass is Half Empty mug.
- I think Rich should have one too.
- BTW David, quit reading my blog. It's bad for you.
- I'm EVIL remember? I'll put bad ideas in your head. (heh)(too late)
- Tomorrow is April Fool's Day. I want to do something for it but am not sure what.
- Ideas are appreciated. I'm open to everything that is legal and goofy.
- I am actually wearing heels today. So far so good. No ankles broken.
- I feel very girly, I keep wiggling my ass. Though that might be the tight skirt as well.
- Maybe not the best thing to do at work, wiggling your ass, though I do work with mostly men so I guess they don't mind.
- Heehee, thinking back on lunch conversations I am quite certain they don't mind.
- I'm still trying to find the dongle.
- Freudian much, Karla?
- I can't BELIEVE it's almost April. Like, holy shit where did the year go and WHERE THE HELL IS THE NICE WEATHER?
- I really want to wear sandals. And skirts without tights.
- I need a tan, though. And to shave. And a pedicure. And possibly a knee lift, they seem to be frowning lately.
- Girls of a certain age, you know what I mean.
- And if you don't screw you. I don't like you anymore.
- I forgot my cell phone today.
- Felt like my left arm had been removed and nobody told me. I kept reaching for it but it wasn't there! Ack!
- If a cell phone tweets and nobody hears it, does it exist?
- Last night I made quinoa and black beans for dinner.
- My advice: leave a window open after a meal like that.
- Seems like I either eat REALLY healthy (black beans and quinoa) or really crappy (Krizpy Cheeze Kruncherz and a cherry vodka).
- Need to strike a balance there, somewhere. (Cheeze Krunchers and back beans?)
- It felt good working out yesterday. I'm not all that sore, just a bit through the back and the chest from weightlifting.
OMG, Sweet deal for Yahoo! users/friends: Get A Month of Blockbuster Total Access, No Cost. W00t
Sunday, March 30, 2008
I'm uploading some photos from previous travels to my Flickr.
This one is from a trip to Laos/Thailand/Cambodia I took in March/April 2006. In Laos we went to these caves along the Mekong, Pak Ou, where they put retired Buddhas (you are not supposed to keep damaged Buddhas in your house).
These caves were filled with THOUSANDS of Buddhas placed there over hundreds of years. AMAZING. of course now some bastards are stealing them, but there are still so many left.
Anyhow, there are two caves, the lower cave and the upper cave. The Upper cave is a fair hike away, and very dark. When I was in there I just sort of set my camera on a rock and pointed it at these two monks looking at the Buddhas in low light...and the picture turned out surprisingly beautiful (to me), rather haunting and mysterious. I love the light.
Whenever I am a bit down, as I am on this rainy dreary SHITTY day, I look at this photo and it reminds me of the really cool things I have done. The light and the colors somehow warm me.
- 1000 Homo DJ's song "Supernaut" playing on iPod through the stereo. Very old song from Trent's early days. Fucking RAWKS. You can't stay still when that is on.
- Yesterday the Airport conenction to the internet worked like gold. Solid and beautiful.
- I was so happy I downloaded around 75 songs off iTunes.
- Even so I saved about 400% of what it would cost to buy them here.
- An entire album off iTunes costs around $10., which is around 52nok.
- An album bought in a store here would be around 150-200 nok.
- 'nuff said.
- Among the bands whose music I bought:
- Godsmack (they aren't a religious band are they? I love that "Serenity" song. It would be ruined for me if they were a God Rock band)
- Soundgarden (Superunknown, LOVE that album and have many fine memories of nights headbanging to "Spoonman")
- Nirvana (In Utero, ditto fine memories above)
- Moby's Best Of (yes I am the target audience for Moby: An old fucker who wants to dance)
- A3 (Power in the Blood might be my new favorite song)
- Red Hot Chili Peppers (Uplift Mofo Party Plan, with Fight Like a Brave and Special Secret Song Inside, I have it on vinyl from way back when. I way prefer early Chilis to later.) (Bookhart, I can't hear this without thinking of you, fyi.)
- Old Goth stuff such as Type O Negative, Clan of Xymox, The Bolshoi, and my old favorite Shriekback.
- It's hard to type and dance at the same time.
- I wore my favorite work out t-shirt to the gym.
- It makes people nervous.
- On the front it says "MEAN EYED CAT, Austin Texas". With a picture of a snarling cat.
- On the back, one big word, MEAN.
- It's black. The t-shirt, I mean, the lettering is white.
- It's one of my large collection of attitude shirts.
- One of my other favorite workout shirts is my NIN t shirt.
- Or my "Clowns are Scary" t shirt.
- People at the gym leave you alone when you wear an attitude shirt, but they are also fascinated with you.
- They stare.
- I don't really care, but at the gym I SWEAT and I don't like to have an audience when I sweat.
- Unless I am doing a table dance, of course.
- The Airport card is NOT working today. It crashed the computer three times and we are back to square one.
- I really don't know what to do anymore.
- Back to having to use ethernet cable.
- Is 2 pm too early to have some cherry vodka? I mean, I WAS good and worked out, right?
- Und now vee dance......Touch my monkey, FEEL HIM!
Saturday, March 29, 2008
I managed to get my backed up files restored. That took some time because when I did the erase and install, the Backup software that I thought came with the OS was, in fact NOT included on the reinstall disk. WTF? I NEEDED that! Where did it come from, then? Then I discovered it wasn't freeware, it was only available with a renewed .Mac account, which I don't want to renew. (I let it lapse over a year ago as I never used it.) So I caved and did a 60 day trial just to get the damned back up software. Why the hell isn't it included in the OS? Who's great idea was that?
This became a circular argument, as I backed up all my files with that software, but couldn't have full use of it as it was now only a trial version with 100mb limits while i was trying to restore about 18 gig worth of files. Then it didn't recognize that it had been Backup in the first place that did the backups (because the history was deleted!) so it kept trying to tell me it couldn't restore as it wasn't the software that originally did it! GAH! And around and around. Something finally happened, though, and it twigged and finally started working. I will say, once it DID restore, it worked beautifully and it's almost like having my original system all back in place with very little tweaking on my part.
Was endeavoring to download the necessary updates, etc, that it tells me I need to do to get the OSX up to scratch from its original state when....the Airport crapped out and the download was aborted. SAME FUCKING PROBLEM AS BEFORE. Freeze, no worky, no reception on airport, must restart computer to get it to work.
Which means my deleting my ENTIRE hard drive was for NOUGHT.
Angry doesn't begin to cover it, people. Not even close. This mac is going back to the shop and they either need to fix it or I am making them give me a new one.
So WHY do I hurt so FRICKIN' bad today? Like, I think I have a migraine. I've got the little flickery edges going on in my eyesight to back that theory up.
Dave is on his way back to the US. It's been nice to get to know him. I mean, if you've kept up with someone's life for 4 years, it makes sense to get to know them in person, doesn't it? It was cool of him to include us in his birthday travel plans. Friends can come from many places, I think you should always be open to new ideas and people. (And what a brave dude to throw himself into the mix on our Friday nights.)
That doesn't mean that I didn't sort of wrangle him into taking a look at the wayward Mac last night. He gamely took a gander and I was mighty impressed by his mastery of my ornery white bitch. (THE MAC NOT ME!) He's truly a Mac Whore. Anyhow, he is pretty sure that the airport is not connecting with the drivers and software somewhere. Looks like a clean reinstall is in order. Shit. How much do I not want to do that?
FUCK FUCK FUCK the mac just froze mid post. Luckily blogger had just done an autosave so I didn't lose the post but I had to restart and connect to a cable. Bastard crap hell! I HATE this.
Today is rainy and gross. Rain on top of snow = broken body parts. I know of three people at work that are out with broken knees, ankles or legs from falling on ice. I am dying to go out and exercise or go for a walk but I'd rather be fat and whole than skinny and broken.
Bath time and then to tackle the mac reinstall. Hmm..maybe hair of the dog will help me in my efforts. Tequila anyone? (Ew, I think I just threw up a little in my mouth.)
Friday, March 28, 2008
...Tyler Durden, Fight Club
Thursday, March 27, 2008
I don't want to do a clean reinstall of the OS but it looks like I am forced into it. Grrr......that really is my last resort.
Tomorrow we'll have Dave over for a look-see of our 'hood. We've got some interesting historical stuff around here so if the weather holds we'll check it out. Iron age burial mounds, old church and graveyard, etc. I'll make him some quesadillas and then throw him to the snapping jaws of the wolves that are the crowd I hang out with....eh, Dave's travelled alot so I am pretty sure he can hang with a rough bunch such as ours. I'll just be sure to keep him hooked up with the Smash chocolates and I am sure he'll be fine! I can already see he will need monthly shipments. Otherwise he's sure to go into withdrawal. I stopped eating them because they are SO good want to rub them all over me and wear them.
...Tyler Durden, Fight Club
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Wednesday, March 26, 2008
Tuesday, March 25, 2008
The trains did not fuck me over today, that made me happier. However, my iBook is TOTALLY fucking me over AGAIN, in fact it just went offline now and I don't know if it will even be online long enough to post this.
When I took it in to the "shop" they put a new wireless card in, but now we are having the same problems again and for the life of me, I DON'T KNOW WHAT TO DO TO FIX IT. It freezes, it crashes, it stops working ,and it is all tied in to being online but I DON'T KNOW HOW. It's enough to make me give up on the whole Apple experience, except that Dave* would be so disappointed (as would my dad, a total Mac whore) and I am TOO ORNERY to let this thing beat me down. However, my 6 year old Gateway laptop is looking better and better, especially as it WORKS online! I've restarted this little fucker about 6 times now and I am NOT cool with that.
In other news, when I was on the train today someone forgot to turn on the train lights and we went through a tunnel and it was PITCH black and I got a little freaked out by the blackness. Not enough to hoot and holler, but just enough to turn on my phone so the phone light was on and casually text my friends as fast as I could, whatever I could do to keep the light on. I noticed, however, that everyone else was doing it too. It was really dark. Really. Dark. I never noticed how long that particular tunnel was...until I was worried about being killed in the inky blackness.
*Dave, my new BestFriend, who gave me the very tequila I am buzzed on now and yummy snacky foods. I heart Dave. Dave ruuuules.......
Monday, March 24, 2008
The red eyes and the bottle of booze give it a whole new edge. So close is the line between good and evil.**
Anyhow, Dave is awesome to hang out with. I immediately felt comfortable with him, even though he is taller than I imagined. I dunno, I guess I figured he'd be sorta small like his cartoons. Luckily he left the monkey at home.
We had lunch at the hard Rock (the margaritas at the one here are WAY weaker than the ones in Munich. One in Munich had me giggling into my hat, two here did...nothing.) After lunch we wandered over to Akerbrygge (the harbor) in a steady snowfall and I showed him the castle and the older part of central Oslo (and coincidentally also where he could get a hooker if he so chooses). Then I went back to catch the train (more on the amazing goodies he brought in next post).
I can only say this about catching the train: I could have flown to Amsterdam in the time it took me to get home today. TWO FRIGGING HOURS it took me to get home. The trains were "stor forsinkelt eller instilt" because of a fire somewhere. Well, ok, but how about 1) announcing this in ENGLISH for your tourists and 2) having someone around to answer questions about WHAT THE FUCK TO DO NEXT? Instead everyone had to rush into the line for tickets to ask questions. The lines were long and the chaos was large. I got stuck with a guy who could not think and move at the same time. He'd move... stop..... think...stop.. .move...stop... think...listen.. talk...think. I started making little "keep it moving" motions with my hands, like, "C'MON already guy!" He was horrible. He knew less than I did about what was going on.
He sent me to a train on track 9. Got on train. Train cancelled. Got off train. Back in line. Oh shit not HIM again. Sent me to train track 11. Train cancelled. BACK in line. Karla getting cranky. He SWORE the next train would go, though I asked for a taxi voucher. Train didn't go. Feet starting to hurt. Back in line. Him again. No effing way. I let another guy go ahead to have him and I waited for someone else, ANYONE else.
Finally got a different person and just said, "I want a voucher for a taxi please." She said, "There is a train on track 9". I said, "No." And looked at her. With a Clint Eastwood-like glint in my eyes. In the background I could have sworn I could hear the music from "The Good The Bad and the Ugly" playing. Karla wasn't fucking around anymore.
She wrote me a voucher. Quickly.
I am home. I cost NSB 700 kroners for the cab ride, and I wanted to ask the driver to go around the block a few times just to rub it in a bit, but I was too eager to get home and open the goody bag Dave brought me.
I just spent the afternoon w/ birthday boy Dave! A cold snowy and awesome day! And now, as always happens, the trains home are late or cancelled and i am stuck at Oslo S. I always get into Oslo ok, getting out seems to be the hard part!
Sunday, March 23, 2008
Saturday, March 22, 2008
I see articles like this and I get really annoyed at myself. I could have made so much damned money if I had just sold my quesadilla with Jesus on it on Ebay. I mean, seriously? That is WAY better than a lame corn flake in the shape of Illinois. Who CARES about Illinois anyhow?
Granted, if it were Texas shape that would be a whole other matter. A Texas shaped corn flake is worth something.
But a Jesu-dilla is still even better than that. No matter how good it tasted.
Anyhow, I'm in line (using the term loosely as Norwegians couldn't queue if you stapled them together) waiting my turn when this woman comes and stands right next to me, about 1 foot away, FACING ME. I am wedged between her and the counter, no where to go. And she just stands there. And stares, sort of at me, but also maybe at a point about 6 inches to the right of my head. She didn't look crazy or anything. Just sort of...there. I'm all, uh, huh? (squirm, look up look down, look at her, look away.....squirm). She just stood there. In MY space. STARING. There are people in line behind her. People in line in front of me. Why is she standing just there, staring at me? Do I *look* Like I am going to let her in? Well, no, I am not. Bitch BACK THE FUCK OFF! Get out of my space and quit staring!
I look at her again. Narrow my eyes at her. Make a cranky little "hmph" noise. Stand taller and take up a bit more space, which only succeeded in making it possible for me to smell her breath. Ew. Bad idea. Finally, last ditch effort. I turn around, step backwards to her a tiny bit, and present her with my back. So her nose is about 4 inches from the middle of my shoulder blades. Take that, bitch. Texpatriate backin' it up on your ass. How ya like me NOW?
Apparently she did like it because she did not move.
Finally the line moved ahead and I got away from her, and she just stayed there and stared at the next person on line. WTF???? She eventually blended into the line after about three people. But really, how hard would it have been to just GET IN THE DAMN LINE IN THE FIRST PLACE? God, sometimes I just don't get Norwegians.
In other news, when did the 80's come back? and how can I get away from it? As I already lived through it once, I don't really want to do it again. But there, in the shops, are jeans paired with suspenders AND double wrap belts. Even in the 80's we knew not to do both at once.
I'm going back to bed, even if it is a lovely, sunny and very BRIGHT day. BRIGHT because the sun bounces off the snow like sun off the Sahara, but a damned sight colder. I'd go for a walk, but hello, snow? These boots are made for walkin', not skiin'.
Happy Easter everyone! Two days til I meet the famous (or is it infamous) Dave. Will Oslo ever survive it? I haven't found the marching band to meet him at the airport yet. Apparently their union won't allow it or something. I dunno. Something about not working with the forces of E-Ville.
Friday, March 21, 2008
Ok, so here is a skirt I bought in 1985. I got it at Loehmann's in Houston (is that still around?) and it is from the much ballyhooed Back Room. I don't know what designer it was, but judging by the price back then and the positioning of it in the store (I remember where I bought almost every item of clothing I have, which makes my memory very impressive when it wants to be, yet oddly selective) it was a very GOOD designer.
The skirt is almost ankle length, a houndstooth print, in a very heavy wool. Why I bought a very heavy wool skirt in Houston is a whole 'nuther question. But I HAD to have it. I have always had a thing for long A-line skirts, and if you were of clothing buying age in 1985 I can tell you that they were NOT easy to find back then. This skirt has pockets and some very clever pleating and it is beautifully made. I would always wear it with a simple tight black sweater and flats, very 50's New Look, dontcha know. A look that always suited me well.
Should I keep it as a memento of happier, wasp waisted times? Or give it away and risk it not being appreciated for the thing of (now vintage! gah!) beauty it is?
I am the voice of doom, people. When everyone around here was saying that we would have an early spring and even the kommune was getting into the act and sweeping up the grit and gravel off the sidewalks, I was all "No we will have another snow yet, too early for your optimistic spring fantasies". And lo, it hath snowed.
It hath snowed its snowy ass off. I AM the power and the evil.
If it quiets down a bit and stops being quite so thick and breezy I might go out later and take some pics, I love the way snow clings to things when it is fresh and gives you a whole new vision of them.
Then again I might stay right here inside in my fuzzie jammies and slippers and just make raspberry farty noises at the cold wet weather. "Nyah nyah I'm inside you can't get me myah myah!"
Today is officially Lazy Day Two, Movie Viewing Day.
Thursday, March 20, 2008
Seems like most of our photo files involve buildings, historical things, monumental things, big heads, trees or funny people doing silly things. Not much in the way of flowers. Yes there are gardens, but we never seem to catch them in the full fig of spring floweryness.
I KNOW I have some flower pictures somewhere, but for now this will have to suffice. It's from a trip to England in April 2004, at least that is what the photo file says.
Today is the first day of spring and also first day of LazyPalooza 2008. For Easter pretty much all of Norway is closed from today (Thursday) straight through til Monday. Back to work Tuesday. This gives me FIVE FULL DAYS of not having to do anything. Not having to go anywhere. Not having to count time. Not having to do anything that involves anything business or money transaction or anything because EVERYTHING is closed. Sort of enforced nothingness, which really removes any latent guilt one might have about being a lazy good for nothing roustabout.
Admittedly, it's kind of freaky, knowing you can't get groceries, medicines, daily necessities, or WINE (except 711 type stuff) for such a long time. We have buggered off out of Norway every year because of it. Too...claustrophobic, all those days of silence. This year was to be no exception. All sorts of ideas were kicked around, including going to Tunisia or to Jordan to see Petra (still very high on the list.)
Until I got the flu. I am STILL tired from that, and it took away alot of my "get up and go". Rich was all eager to book a trip to SOMEWHERE, anywhere, but I really just didn't want to go anywhere anymore. After Amsterdam and Munich I am just plum tuckered out. He was getting more and more annoyed at my hedging, and I was getting more and more annoyed at feeling pressured to go somewhere yet again, so finally I told him, look, just go somewhere already and I will stay home.
He wasn't sure about it, but I explained to him that maybe it's better that we split up for a few days. That way he can travel and not have me being all lazy and draggy on him, and I can have luxurious slackerness without feeling guilty that he is bored.
So he is in Poland drinking cheap beer, on the strict promise he bring me back my yummy Cherry Vodka, (and it's a helluva lot cheaper in Poland than on that website, let me tell you!) and I am staying home, reading, snoozing, possibly doing some reorganizing and cleaning out, and we both get what we want without having to piss off the other.
I slept REALLY well last night.
After 15 years (as of June) of marriage, you learn that it's ok to tell your partner to fuck off every once in a while.
Tuesday, March 18, 2008
Anyhow, the leftovers are my favorite part. Tonight I took them and spread them over a homemade pizza bun (shit I am think in Norwegian...Pizzabun....um...pizza dough, yeah that's it) and then doused that in cheese and ended up with a really good and tasty (almost juicy, which is wierd but good in a pizza) pizza.
Let the farting begin!
Next week Oslo (and parts of Sweden) are going to be honored with a visit from a Real Live Internet God. Yes, be jealous all you people who live elsewhere. DAVE is gonna be in da hizzouse! I mean, holy crap! DAVE will be here, in humble little Oslo. I've notified the street sweepers, torch bearers and banner hangers, but in true Norwegian fashion they just said "meh". I don't think they get the magnitude of a DAVE visit. But then, maybe only the cool people get the Dave mojo. All I know is he is one of the bloggers I've read long term who I really REALLY want to meet. (Badger being another, and I totally met her and I HEART her, yo', but not in a gay way or anything.)
Who knows. Anyhow, I am totally PSYCHED to meet him and hope to have at least a few margaritas with him at Hard Rock. (Dave, are you going to be on expenses? Just wondering......) I may even venture to invite him to Casa Texpatriate so he can see how we live. We even promise not to fart. Out loud, at any rate.
OMG! What will I wear?
Sunday, March 16, 2008
Our neighbor asked us to take care of their beta fighting fish over Easter. Meet Redzer the Norsk Irish fighting fish. I hope he doesn't die. He was a birthday present for their son a mere 6 days ago. I know where the pet store is just in case I need to replace.
It's kind of nice having a fish in the house. This is the sort of pet sitting I am really good at. Low maintenance and he matches my decor.
Friday, March 14, 2008
...Tyler Durden, Fight Club
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Thursday, March 13, 2008
...Tyler Durden, Fight Club
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Wednesday, March 12, 2008
...Tyler Durden, Fight Club
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Sunday, March 09, 2008
Sweden is taking it a bit farther, it seems, with what is offered in their Apoteke.
Imagine that shopping list....
"Hmm. I need bandaids, some acetaminophen, cough medicine, oh....and a nice big dildo."
Saturday, March 08, 2008
I sort of feel that way about spring and the onset of warm weather. It's months away, but I have that itchy feeling like I need to be in it NOW. I am the horse sensing the barn is not far away and I want to RUN FOR IT.
The shops are FINALLY starting to show some spring/summer clothes. Light colors, linens, floaty soft things and pretty dresses are starting to show in force. H&M had a lustworthy display of very simple, beautifully cut cottons in dove greys and soft taupes that just made me feel like buying the lot and then running away on safari.
This first appearance of spring clothes always makes me giddy for summer when I can wear loose linen pants and SANDALS and NO SOCKS. I have some AWESOME sandals. For reals. In summer I can get dressed in a minute by the mere expedient of shoving some cute little strappy dress over me and popping sandals on my feet and running out the door, as opposed to now when I have to think about how to dress...rain? Snow? Ok, if I wear THAT skirt I need THESE leggings or tights and THAT pair of boots and oh holy SHIT I am SICK OF IT. I'm SICK of drying my hair before I leave the house so I don't get sick or so my hair won't freeze on my head (yeah, that has happened). I'm sick of ugly black boots and wool socks and those fucking leggings and tights. I would happily never wear another scarf again for the rest of my life. I want to stomp on and then burn my long black hooded duvet coat. Yes it is warm and cozy, but it is also a walking blanket and it just makes me think winter, cold and dreariness. NO MORE COATS!
I haven't bought a single scrap of clothing in over a month (well, ok I got ONE dress in Amsterdam, but that is it and it was a necessity, that dress, it was SO me and I was SICK and I needed something to cheer me up and dammit I dragged myself out of bed to go shopping with a FEVER and I was NOT coming home without at least one item of clothes from that damned shop if it killed me, which honestly it almost did!). I haven't bought a par of shoes in two. (YIKES! A record!) Nothing has appealed to me.
But I think I might be coming out of my retail depression. I saw a pair of trousers today at Noa Noa that might have to become part of my closet....and a white linen top that just screamed "floaty summer picnic by the fjord!"
Then I remember...this is early March. In Norway. There's still snow on the ground and coming down. I'm minimum 2 and a half months from even THINKING about not wearing a sweater, must less going sans socks.
Friday, March 07, 2008
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Thursday, March 06, 2008
This is what happens when you venture off on your own at the Nockerherberg in Munich to video the winding down of the night. You get attacked by a crazy drunk German tickle monster guy. (Watch for the guy in the hat on the left side of the video.)
The hall was HUGE and easily sat a few thousand people. It looks like it's not that full but there were at least 1000 folks bouncing around there. And they were ALL drunk.
More photos on my flickr page.
Note: No Karlas were harmed in the making of this video.
Wednesday, March 05, 2008
No, really, the beers were as big as my head.Back from Munich. The trip can be described thusly: Beer. Castle. Rain. Beer. Castle. Wind. Beer. Castle. Wind and rain. Beer. Beer. Castle. Beer.
We had a great time, weather notwithstanding. On Saturday we had some seriously wierd weather, with winds gusting to about 70 mph, thunderstorms, hail, sleet, snow and rain....all in an hour. (We retreated into the Augustiner restaurant for a beer (the first of many) while the sky fell.) Grant was en route from Oslo Saturday morning and his plane, after attempting to land twice, was rerouted to Milan. Poor guy was supposed to get to Munich at 10am but didn't arrive until closer to 4pm. He said the landing attempts were seriously scary, and this from someone who travels ALOT. We never really got a break from the weather, except Monday when we went to Neuschwanstein, where it was merely overcast.
Saturday, after the strangeness of the weather subsided (my expensive Gap umbrella was twisted so badly by a windgust it would neither open nor close...it looked like a strange vampire bat with a stick up its ass) we went to the Residenz, the main palace of the Bavarian rulers. It was a great palace, huge but somehow manageable, and it had a Schatzkammer (treasure house) that rivaled that of the British Crown Jewels. Holy crap what bling! After that we hit the Hofbrauhaus.
Rich and I went to see Schloss Nymphenburg (and its gorgeous rococo corollary 'summer hunting lodge' Amalienburg) on Sunday. Nymphenburg was cool, but Amalienburg took my breath away. SO gorgeous, SO over the top, but its very small size made it seem eminently livable. And the kitchen...oh the kitchen. It pushed every interior design button I have and then a few more after that. The TILES! The painting! AAAAGGGHHH! I adored it.
I am amazed that the little building has survived, it is such a specific example of a time and style of design that did not last all that long....it's truly miraculous that someone did not rip it all out and start afresh.
After the palaces we met for more beer. The Lowenbraukeller was alot of fun...but that beer knocked me on my ass. A litre of 'strong beer' is the equivalent, alcoholically, of 4 beers in Norway. The first one tastes great and goes down smooth, and then suddenly I am snorting with laughter and hugging everyone who comes near. The boys were laughing and I will be teased for the rest of my life for being a lightweight who can't hold her beer. That night we also went to the (Schneider Weisse) Weisses Brauhaus for a post Lowenbrau restorative weiss bier. Seemed like a good idea at the time!
Monday Rich, Grant, Hans and I went to Neuschwanstein Castle. We joined a little tour that involved a two hour train ride each way.
The whole train ride you could see the Alps in the distance, getting closer and closer...until we were right at the foot of them. And there, on a promontory right at the beginning of the Alps, is Neuschwanstein, the fairy castle itself. I'd been there before, in 1986, on my crazy summer trip with my buddy Julia. But I honestly can't say I remember much about the interior except one chandelier, and I only remember that because all the tour guides (even now) always tell you that it weighs over a ton.
The interior is worth remembering, a masterpiece of craftsmanship and creativity. The interior is very Victorian Gothic, but with that nice twist of a William Morris feel. A very cozy castle, to be honest. It was a helluva hike to get up there (I DO remember that) and then even more stairs once inside, so definitely NOT for anyone with bad knees, or reduced mobility. The views from the top were stunning, and I remembered some silliness that Julia and I got up to when I was 17 and wild and free in the mountains of Germany.
And after the trip to Neuschwanstein, we were all hungry and tired and so we headed over to Paulaner am Nockherberg. This is the epicenter of the starbierzeit, the holy grail, as it were, of knock-you-on-your-ass beer. I managed to drink one and a half litres, the boys ordered three each but honestly only drank about 2 each. I ended up dancing on the table at one point. (Hey, everyone else was too!) I've got a couple of hilarious videos on my phone of us drinking beer and me being attacked and tickled by a very drunk German. I will download them and post them once I figure out how.
Tuesday we came back to Norway after some shopping and sightseeing. I think Grant got back without having to go to Milan this time, and Rich and I had an uneventful flight except for a whining child that had the MOST annoying voice I have EVER heard. The kid was about two years old and a bit too old to act the way he was, but his mother completely ignored him and he whined and whined and WHINED in this wierdly timbered voice that sounded like buzzing bees and nails on chalkboards all at once, until you could see everyone sitting near him shifting in discomfort. The plane landed and we all buggered off but FAST, just to get away from that horrible kid. Usually I feel sorry for moms having to travel with testy kids, but this mom did not give a crap and just ignored the little bugger....which sort of exacerbated the problem.
I was glad to get home.
And now...I am going to take a bath before Ugly Betty comes on TV.