Thursday, April 14, 2011
In case you don't know what the Great Urban Race is... it is similar to the TV show The Amazing Race. Each team is given 12 clues to solve that require you to solve puzzles, perform challenges, and physically run your heart out in the city of your choice.
Next we hiked it back down Richmond to CVS where we met the Houston Food Bank, we donated a few items and were on our way to the Timberline Fitness Center. Terence hopped on a stationary bike and went to the distance of an alegrba solution that we had solved earlier. We took a picture and headed over to St. Dane's bar to shoot some hoops.
After making a basket, we stopped at a Florist for some arts and crafts time. We made a rose out of tissue paper and a pipe cleaner we were off to the House of Dereon Media center. We got to load up on tons of promo CD's (glad we went towards the end of the day) and our last location was at Aerosol Graffitii studio. Terence and I got to spray paint our team name over one of their canvases. We completed all 12 clues with no penalties and we ran it into the finish line, which luckily was at the bar!
Friday, March 25, 2011
Here's a shot from below the Eiffel Tower as Deb and I drank some fine French wine...
Only a day left, Texas is already knocking!
It was sad leaving Germany because we had so much fun there. Had an awesome time at Augustiner for Starkbiefest...we were the only tourists there...drank with two young Germans for a few hours and definitely felt the strength of the beer in the morning. We talked culture, tv, movies, and life...awesome. It was different the next day when deb sat next to a big german ladies man at a outdoor biergarten. Germany was great.
Now time to explore Paris!
(stories are brief as it's hard to blog on the iPhone!)
Tuesday, March 22, 2011
Arrived in Fussen and spent last night and tonight here...and once the sun sets the tourists mostly leave, us excluded of course! Enjoyed some great Bavarian food and more great beer! A great little town in south Germany.
Today we ventured into Austria and hiked to one of the Ehrenberg Castles...up in the Austrian alps, absolutely gorgeous. Snow all over the ground, and the lakes were still somewhat frozen over...which made us feel better about getting those snow tires! Afterwards we traveled to and toured King Ludwig's castle at Linderhoff, then to Oberammergau, and finally to a catholic church in Weis that was, and still is, a pilgrimage stop...we did so much and are quite happy with our decision for the rental car...
Tomorrow...Neuchwanstein Castle then to Munich!
Monday, March 21, 2011
The car experience was something...we did great communicating, finding it, and getting out of Frankfurt. But we took a wrong turn that turned into a number of corrective exits and turns. Some German guy even honked at me! Autobahn lived up to the hype...fast!!! We didn't go past 105 mph, though...some were easily 50+ that!
Tomorrow: Romantic Road down to south Germany
All in all, we definitely enjoyed our time in Belgium. Currently we are on the train to Frankfurt...almost missed it actually. Firstly we had tickets and didn't need to wait in the long queue, then we watched the first metro leave the station as it stopped on the other side of the platform. Then the transfer we had 7 minutes...we made it...so our trip continues, "amazing race" style...we are definitely running too much in these stations!!!
Just realized we're traveling at 292 km/h, nearly 190 mph...
Anyways, our adventure continues today as we get our rental car. We are going to see how that goes...been a few years since I drove a manual...
Saturday, March 19, 2011
Met up with family (we coordinated trips for a rendezvous in Belgium)...and started seeing the sights of Brussels, including centuries old brewery. Have enjoyed some awesome beer, chocolate, and beer! The language spoken is primarily French, so our lessons are coming in handy...sort of. They speak so fast!
Day one was awesome, today we are heading to Brugges...
Wednesday, March 16, 2011
So, with our Europe trip merely a few hours away, I figured I should probably blog some sort of transition blog between our last blog and the mobile blogs we anticipate doing across the pond. Best way to do it, why not do a bulleted list. I'll do it as utilitarian as I can, who cares for entertainment value anymore...it's about information! Ha...well here goes...in no particular order:
- Debbie's long-delayed shuttle flight finally took off! Two weeks straight of overnight shifts accompanied the flight. In that two week span, we didn't get to see each other very much, or talk that much. When we went out to dinner the first back-to-normal evening, it was like we hadn't seen each other in forever...which it had been!
- Softball started! Last summer I started filling in for a team down in Clear Lake, which turned from a part-time role to a full-time role late in the Fall. This season I've joined a new team and games have kicked off! We are 4-4 so far, with late games tonight. The plan was to miss these games with our impending trip tomorrow, but I got all my chores done early and justified accepting to play tonight! I have homered in my first at bat in the last two games...let's see if I prolong that streak tonight, or go down striking out (because I'll be swinging for the fence)! Pearland Softball kicks off next week, so two nights a week (once we return) will be filled with my favorite rec activity!
- Roma's getting into trouble. Yes, Roma...the blog was on a road to being renamed Roma and Kitty, with Deb and I as mere supporting characters. Anyways...got word Roma was not behaving with the big dogs at day care. Apparently she decided she was going to become an adolescent (which our calculations peg her as right now) and she'd start rough housing...the funny thing is, she still knows when she's doing something wrong, as she still listens to her commands. It's kind of like at home, often times she'll push our patience, especially when her and kitty are playing, until one of us send her to her kennel for timeout.
- Trip planning...it's been long and tedious...but we are definitely ready. Aside from a few hiccups that will undoubtedly cause issues in translation, such as, "the credit card these tickets are reserved under was stolen, so this is our new card." We are ready though, we still have the stolen cards to present. Cross your fingers on this one...otherwise we might be walking from Munich to Paris! Ha!
- Overnight in the hospital...not quite what it sounds like. I have an ongoing job at a nearby 24/7 hospital/clinic and due to their constraints, we weren't allowed to do our testing during normal business hours. We set up containment rooms which included plastic sheathing on the floors, walls, and ceilings...it was very Dexter-like.
- Opening Day is coming! Houston's opening day is on April 8th...woohoo...going to make this 5 years in a row attending the Astros opening day. I wish I were able to be in Cleveland this year, it's going to be the year they win it all! HA. Hopefully after we get back I have time to put together my sham predictions for the upcoming MLB season.
(Next stop Paris, Brussels, Frankfurt, and more! Goodbye!)
Sunday, January 23, 2011
Monday, January 17, 2011
This weekend we finalized the plans, finally. As a planner and an engineer, we definitely worked through all the kinks and were able to optimize our time. We even booked the remaining hotels for our trip! So it now looks like we'll be taking 2 days in Brussesl, Belgium, 4 days through Germany by train and rental car (Frankfurt, Rothenburg, the "Romantic Road", Fussen, and Munich), a day trip to Reutte, Austria, and 2 days in Paris, France. That'll be 3 new countries for my list...a mere 1 for the more-well-traveled Deb...(this is her 4th trip to Europe...first time to Belgium).
I think the hotel that we've talked about the most is Hotel Gasthof Goldener Greifen in Rothenburg ob der Tauber . Reason is we keep calling it Gryffindor, thanks of course to Harry Potter. The funny thing is, I had to look up the name of the hotel because I only know it as Gryffindor.
Deb got me a good book for Christmas, which is very different from the political thrillers I enjoy most...it's a book on the Eiffel Tower written from the construction, feasibility, etc stand point. Never knew there was so much controversy behind it, including Parisians not wanting it... I am enjoying it thoroughly and learning much about it's construction. They started talking engineering and I couldn't help but be intrigued! I'm sure when we are in Paris in two months I'll be quite ready to start telling Deb how the tower was designed for wind! Dorky engineer, I know...
Book: Eiffel's Tower by Jill Jonnes
We kicked off the new year at our friends' black tie party...I even pulled out the tux for it...why not, considering we bought it for the wedding. We had a great time that night..