Thursday morning last week, I woke up alone in a two-star hotel by the side of the highway in the middle of nowhere. The hotel was at least superficially aspiring to a third star, but a fresh carpet, a thin coat of paint, and a waffle iron can only hide so much. Its two-star standing … Continue reading Alone in a strange place, wondering if I’m crazy
After last night’s film, we finally got back to the hotel at about 11:30 pm. The hotel lounge apparently closes at 10 pm, and our room doesn’t have a minibar, so we walked down the street to a local Irish pub for a nightcap. I entered the pub fully expecting to order a typical Irish … Continue reading Nightcap of Legend Brown, first night in Richmond
When I got back to work Monday morning after the weekend road trip to Mexicali, one of my colleagues almost immediately asked, what do they drink for beer down there? What an excellent question! The short answer is not a surprising one: Tecate. Mexicali is one of the most populous cities in the Mexican state … Continue reading Beer in Mexicali
This bar in the square beneath our apartment in Montpellier had a three-hour happy hour. Oh, the people-watching!
Shortly before the arrival of our main course at Gordon Ramsay Steak in Las Vegas, my wife Kathryn leaned over to me and said, “This has been a very weird experience.” She was right. The service had been weird. Quite weird. However, the food was more than worth the weird.
Kathryn and I were fortunate to spend an afternoon at Oktoberfest in Munich in 2007. Everyone has a favorite from among the major beer tents at Oktoberfest. Mine was the Hacker-Pschorr tent. The theme is charming and simple: Bavarian heaven.
Our weekend trips to Las Vegas tend to be busy. We usually cram everything we possibly can into the less-than-48 hours we’ll be here. Sleep comes only out of necessity. So it’s a little weird that I’m starting a new post at 6:20 am, after getting a full night’s sleep and then some. I think we were in bed by 9 pm. That’s pretty lame.
My typical Sunday evening is spent with my wife and my parents, who have us over for dinner regularly. Today, however, my wife is in Chicago, and my parents are in Key West. It seems like everyone is traveling but me.
Immediately upon leaving the customs area, we were forced to walk through a narrow corridor, maybe 50 feet long, with white desks and video screens on both sides. I now refer to this as the gauntlet. In the gauntlet, roughly a dozen men and women with official-looking badges work over the fresh arrivals, trying to convince us they are our ride to our hotel. They’re not.
We’ve been gearing up for Hurricane Juvo since Monday, but it’s taking its sweet time getting here. The latest report is it’ll come ashore as a category-three hurricane much further south in the state of Jalisco, then follow the coast north toward us, probably having weakened to a tropical storm by then.
Christian let me know that I had to order the right beer for the city I was in. In Düsseldorf, they brew Alt, so that’s what they drink. In Cologne, they brew and drink Kölsch. I would be frowned upon if I ordered a beer in the wrong city. Those fortunate enough to live in Monheim am Rhein could order either, when in Monheim, of course.
Here’s a list of things you probably don’t know about me. It’s in no particular order.
Usually when I talk or write about St. Mary’s Basilica, I’m referring to the beautiful Spanish mission style Catholic church in downtown Phoenix, Arizona. I was looking through some of my old photos recently, and I found a picture of another, much older St. Mary’s Basilica. This one is in Krakow, Poland. It’s also beautiful, built in a Brick Gothic style in the 14th century.
On our recent trip to Las Vegas, Kathryn and I decided to find the secret, hidden, nameless pizza place at Cosmopolitan Las Vegas. I had read about it in our local paper some months earlier.
We’ve only been home a few days, but Kathryn and I have already heard a lot of questions about our trip. For the benefit of everyone else, I’ve decided to repeat some of them here, along with their answers.
Phew! It’s been about 72 hours since the last update, but we’ve managed to pack an awful lot in. We arrived safely in Munich on Saturday, about six hours later than anticipated, so the thought of doing Oktoberfest that evening was quickly dismissed. My friend in Munich met us at the airport and showed us … Continue reading Oktoberfest, BMW, Rothenburg, Baden-Baden, Eiffel Tower
There’s a certain irony to writing a blog. During those times when you have the most to write about, you have the least time to write it. The year 2007 has been, and continues to be, almost unbelievably good to me, and for several months I’ve been maintaining a hand-written list of all the things I want to write about.
I had two specific goals for my recent visit to Las Vegas. I wanted to see Celine Dion, who was sick when I visited in December, and I wanted to learn how to play craps. I’m happy to say I accomplished both goals, and I did it while fighting a cold. In retrospect, I probably should have spent the weekend in bed, but I really did have a great time.
I spent last weekend in Pasadena, visiting the same buddy I saw in August. I’ve spent the time since then sobering up.
I made a last-minute executive decision this morning to do an overnight trip to Vegas. I got in the car at 8:10, and thanks to the miracle of time zones, I was at my hotel at 12:20. I’m going to see how much trouble I can get into by myself in less than 28 hours. I’ve already wandered off the Strip, and I’m settling into my second beer.
One of my friends, who goes all the way back to junior high with me, finished his PhD a few months ago and is doing a residency at UCLA. His wife was out of town on business, so we decided to do a guys weekend. I arrived early Friday evening. My friend and his wife are living with her parents, and her father cooked us a great dinner. After that, my friend and I proceeded to Old Town Pasadena to do some serious drinking. However, neither of us Einsteins considered the fact that we had already done some serious drinking during dinner, so the evening rapidly devolved into sloppy drunkenness.
I toured the Guinness Storehouse here in Dublin today. I won’t elaborate much about this tour. It goes without saying there was a pint of Guinness at the end of the tour, which is of course said to be the world’s freshest Guinness. However, to their credit, they served it in a top-floor bar with a 360-degree panoramic view of Dublin.
I’m in Ireland, and for the first time on this trip, I’ve rented a car. I left the airport in Dublin maybe an hour ago, and I started driving north until I found a little roadside pub. I’ve had a pounding headache all day.
I had a discussion with a cousin of mine a few days before I started this voyage. He was joking that I might gain 20 pounds during this trip because of all the beer I’d be drinking, which is perfectly reasonable.
I’m waiting in a bar near where my friend lives in Munich. She had to work late, so she’s not home yet. I thought I’d have a beer while waiting for her. Until just now, I had forgotten how good Bavarian beer is.