Tuesday, October 4, 2011

it's not me

time is really going by faster and faster - the headline:

3 win Nobel for showing universe is speeding up

so don't wait- eat that chocolate NOW!!!! LOL

Still learning

How to make the blog work from the iPad.

So let's practice with a shot TB sent me that he calls "I'm the photographer!".

Ha! That worked pretty well didn't it?  NOT!!! it shows up just fine on the iPad but LOL sideways on the computer - better luck next time... meanwhile I have replaced it with one on the PC and it works just fine- clearly there is a learning curve and I am not making a lot of progress on it-

ten years

of waiting and our friends Mark & Laura finally got tickets to Bayreuth for the Wagner opera festival.  Mark is the opera buff but even Laura raved about how wonderful it was... and that reminded me of the time Jennifer and I took a vacation to the Bregenz Festspiele (HA who knows how to spell that one??? LOL)

we first went to Salzburg and had a couple of lovely days there- we stayed in this really cute hotel that looked like an over  sized Swiss chalet- out in the country but very near a bus line to Salzburg - then we picked up a car and drove around the area- seeing among other things - the salt mine - a scenic route through the Alps and the Konigsee in Bavaria near Berchtesgaden. 

then we went on through Austria to Bregenz on Lake Constance which is also known as the Bodensee.  it sits on the border of Switzerland, Germany and Austria.  the festspiele was wonderful - they have three parts - an opera on the lake (in our case Il Trovatore) an opera in the opera house (Philip Glass' House of Usher) and a concert on the lake (Vienna Philharmonic). 

it was all great and in the meantime we got to explore the area- which is surrounded by mountains.  after the festspiele we left Bregenz and headed to Liechtenstein to celebrate their bicentennial.  from there we went to Innsbruck for a couple of nights - dropping off the car right away.

after a couple of days there we head south by train to Venice... as that was the deal- I would go to Salzburg and let Jennifer practice her German if we could include time in Venice.  it was a really good trip that I hadn't thought about in a while until we saw Mark and Laura on Saturday night and got the run down on their opera based trip...

and here are some photos to illustrate the fun times we had... first Salzburg- everything Mozart- from bridge to eggshells!

then on to Bregenz- through the mountains on the Grossglockner high alpine route

even in the wilderness they provide "facilities" LOL

the opera set during the performance (this was a photo of the poster)

the opera set during the day- a photo taken by me- did I mention they some of the performers arrived on the scene - on stage - in a Mercedes convertible - LOL- it was a BIG BIG stage! during the Anvil Chorus the glass wall was up and that is where the hoi polloi pounded their "hammers" - but during most of the opera the glass wall was down and much of the action took place up in the scaffolds and cat walks... quite exciting staging!

a view from above town, down on to Lake Constance- the opera stage is the red thing jutting into the lake between the cables for the funicular/tram

we took an afternoon boat trip on the Bodensee...

then onward- to the bicentennial of Liechtenstein- and the castle above Vaduz

then Innsbruck - where I bought a new pair of sunglasses LOL

the sign was for the shop- LOL- these were not the pair I bought... mine were more sized for my head/face... and did not clip onto my nose LOL

then on to Venice - La Serenissima!


the doges palace!

San Marco!

the Rialto!

let's leave today- Venice- incomparable - the sound of footsteps on bridges- for centuries...

and a few more fun photos - gondoliers on the Grand Canal

the cafe scene early in the morning before everyone takes their perch

and finally- everyone takes photos and some are more anxious to get that early morning shot than others- LOL- this guy couldn't even wait until he was dressed- LOL

all in all a pretty perfect trip!  but then most of them are overall- the only exception I can think of is Ireland- LOL - see the ha ha ha post of last December 24th ....

more later!

Monday, October 3, 2011


day- of being retired:
got up late- cut my hair

cut up some corn on the cob that I steamed for a sweet corn risotto tonight
cut up some haricot verts for the same dish...
cut the bamboo shoots that were cropping up all over the yard- the plumbago (below) is doing very well

as is the invading ivy like stuff from my neighbor's yard which is now growing under the bamboo

and finally the parkway has filled in (no cutting there!)

did a bit of yard work (looking good)

and I generally had a low stress day until I ran into my neighborhood nemesis.. the destructive grey squirrel of North America- hated all over Europe!

I hate these things- they make me want to take up hunting.  the worst part of it is they have such attitude- this one brought his giant cookie over to eat on the fence just to drive Lucy and me crazy - all the while he is wiggling his tail at us in an "eff you" attitude...

only got one email from office asking a couple of questions- make that from FORMER office...LOL

and that is what struck me - day one- I didn't have the office hanging over my head- I didn't have to have the black berry at my finger tips where ever I went. I wasn't "on call" as the answer woman anymore- LOL

Phil said it will really hit me when we are traveling - because then I can finally be 100% there in the place we are without being tethered to the office. 

meanwhile we are discussing where to go next year--- will keep you posted...

got to get started packing for Phil's birthday trip- coming right up!