Sunday, August 21, 2005

On My Own Schedule

So, I haven't written anything for a couple weeks, by far the longest drought on this blog since I started it several months ago now. My German blog has been idle for about twice that long, maybe longer. There is no particular reason for it. I used to blog a lot at work. My old work had long since failed to be exciting or challenging, so blogging was part of my way of filling my extra time with something else. Now that I have a more rewarding job, it is less of a priority. Also, months ago when I first started with this blog, politics was really starting to frighten me, and I just needed to make myself heard. It seemed that there would be no end to the power that conservatives would wield. I have seen their power start to wane now, and the pendulum is slowly swinging to something approaching normalcy. After a number of bad policy moves and public policy overstepping, the president and his party are rapidly falling out of favor with the public, and I feel the cool breeze of change in the air. Regular people are starting to stand up to the "turn back the clock on science and everything else we don't like or understand" types. It will be a little over a year before we know whether it is really a solid trend or not, but I am less concerned than I was, and therefore less motivated to write about politics. I'm sure the mood will strike me again, and probably soon, but not as often or as urgently.

Some quick movie reviews. I have seen several movies in the last few weeks, much more than usual. Charlie and the Chocolate Factory was very clever and very funny. It definitely beat the original in my mind. I give it 8 out of 10. American Wedding, extremely funny, laughed through much of it, some implausible parts, but hey, it's comedy, 9 out of 10. Meet the Fockers, 10 out of 10, and I rarely put a movie there, one or two a year at most, laughed out loud through most of it. By the way, I think I'm in love with Alyson Hannigan. Hahhah! Can you blame me, really? No, not the nympho character she plays...she's kind of dippy in the movie. It's her "real life" looks and personality, cute, but very approachable. Approachability, if that's a word, is important! I'm afraid my wife would probably veto me though. Such is married life.

What else, oh yes, we are off to Europe next weekend. Last September we went on a tour of Switzerland for eight days (went through Globus Tours), including a tiny bit of northern Italy and the tiny country of Liechtenstein. It was my first trip to Europe, and second for my wife, first for those countries for both of us. This year, I made all of the Europe arrangements myself, plane, rail tickets, and hotels. Yes, there will be many pictures on here when I return! We will fly in to Munich, spend two nights there, train to Salzburg, a night there, train to Vienna, two nights there, and then all the way back past Munich to the town of Hechingen, near Stuttgart, where my cousin Jordan, his German wife and stepdaughter live. They have lived in Germany for about five years now I think. The trip will be great fun and the total price for the whole thing is exactly $1,590 each, which includes all transportation, hotels, and breakfasts. It will almost certainly come in under last year's total, and give us more free time. Of course staying at my cousin's helps too, but still it would be quite a bit less. Here is a picture of Schloss Hohenzollern, which is in Hechingen. We'll be taking a tour of that for sure.

The very next weekend we will be flying to Albany, NY for the wedding of one of three people I am still friends with from high school. They live in Boston, but I guess his fiance is from the Albany area originally. That is the aforementioned "flying on 9/11" trip, on the way back. Big deal, I say. Just please make sure the plane isn't going to lose cabin pressure is really all I ask. Oh, and then a few weeks after that I fly up to Rochester for my tenth college reunion. That should be a lot of fun too. I will actually be solo for that one though because Chris has a big event at work that she has to prepare for that happens the next week. I've never flown this much in that short a period before. I guess I'll get more used to air travel. Safer than driving, plus I get to nap. Anyone else got anything exciting going on? Do tell!


DCpunk said...

Alyson Hannigan! *rawr*

Have fun on your trip, bro. hope you guys have safe flights and as much fun as you can pack into 8 days.

Hector Vex said...

What now? Say that again... after the ninjas attacked, how did you get back to the floating castle?

Erik Grow said...

Thanks DCPunk! Yes, I plan on having a great time. As for Alyson, you can't have her! Hah!

Hector, it was the flying monkeys from the Wizard of Oz that whisked me there, after I paid them in beer.

Cro said...

Since you're gonna be in the Munich area...make sure you drop by Dachau. It will be an education in European history you won't forget.

Erik Grow said...

Well, we are not actually going out there this time. I know it's close by to Munich, but it's not on our list. We are going by train, so we need to keep our sightseeing fairly compact, which is difficult to do if we stray much from the city. When we go to Poland at some point, we will probably visit Auschwitz.

Imara said...

Enjoy your trips and safe travels.