Friday, November 20, 2009

Coming along.

Well,  I'm in the pub downstairs,  and the night dude has very graciously allowed me to plug my computer in since well,  turns out my battery sucks,  and the damned thing doesn't hold a charge any more than about 15 minutes.  Just the same,  don't want to abuse it too much.

Turns out this fellow played for the football (i.e soccer)  team in Enschede.  See?  All those lessons I learned way back when I tried my hand at selling Life Insurance do pay off once in awhile.  Something to be said for some sort of commonality.
This may be the beginning of a beautiful friendsship.  Or something like that.
We should have internet in a couple weeks anyway,  but I'm sure I'll still come down for the odd beer now and again,  as I have no problems with someone bringing them to the table. 
Now,  one of our daughters did want to see a pic of me washing dishes in the bathtub,  so I'll oblige.  But that's it!

The Executive Plan...Tuesday November 17,2009

 I'd hate to see how the plebs get treated, but we have to remind ourselves that we are in fact living in Vienna. I mean, really.
Just because the kitchen is no bigger than what I had as a poor student in 1979, and bears no resemblance to the wonderful drawing that we were shown.

But we're living in Vienna.

I just have to be like Dorothy, but instead of repeating “There's no place like home.”, I have to simply say, “we're living in Vienna”.....

Over and over.

I'm writing this using the texting/saving/copying/then later pasting into Blogger program, so I'm not even sure when I'll post this, but I figured there was not much else to do, so here I am.
The kitchen boys have packed up and left, and the “plumbers” have come in. Why there are three of them I have no idea, but Curly Larry and Moe come to mind.
So after several minutes of consultation, they've once again left, since they have to go over to a hardware store here in the neighbourhood somewhere and pick up a couple bits.
Now, I hate to split hairs here, but any time I've hooked up a dishwasher or even a kitchen sink, I always made damned sure I had all the bits and pieces I thought I might need, along with a few extras just in case. Mind you, one does tend to end up with a few extra bits over time, but the time saved not having to go shopping makes up for it.

I think I now understand why we have a leaky drain in one of the washrooms. I think I'll just fix it myself. I don't think I can bear to watch the three stooges try and solve that one.

And who knows? Might not even be their deal. I mean, I thought when the blind guy showed up to fix one of the doors, that he was somehow a regular maintenance dude who looked after the building.

Oh no.

Not this guy, he was only the guy who installed all the doors. It then all made perfect sense.
Not only was he missing part of a digit (some sort of sawing accident?) but his glasses were so thick he could barely keep them on his face. Even with the help of the coke-bottle glasses, at one point he was trying to fit a hex key into what I could clearly see was a phillips screw.

I went and got him a screwdriver.

In a nutshell, these are the reason why, 1) We bought a house. And, 2) I don't let any trades people in the door, unless under extreme duress.

But apartment life is different.

As it is I have a little electrical mystery and no light in the “dining” room. I think I know what the problem is, so I'll just figure it out.
I have a meter. I have eyeglasses.
A brain in my head.

We still haven't managed to come up with some sort of a choice for internet. I asked our relocation lady for “some ideas”, and she sent us one choice.
Coulda done that myself.
It also looked pretty pricey at around €40 per month.
Yes Boys and Girls, that's Forty Euros.

We'll keep looking.

Haven't decided if we want phone or not. Probably going to do it, although I'd really sooner just go with either Sitespeed or Skype. Even the free versions are somewhat acceptable, and there are versions one pays for that are just fine.
Of course, have to get internet first. Don't really want to do the TV thing since, there's nothing but crap on, and there's that whole TV tax thing. Don't want to pay it.
I'm sorry, but Homer Simpson needs to sound like Homer Simpson. Not some generic German speaking dubbing guy. And don't get me started about Side-Show Bob. I mean, seriously! Kelsey Grammer is the only voice I want to hear doing that guy.

If all goes according to plan, I may be able to heat up a pot of gruel tomorrow on the new range. Got one of them damned ceramic things again. What's with that? Had one in Puerto Rico, then once again in Delden, and now here we go again. The boiler runs on gas, so it's not like it doesn't exist, but I guess they figure people here are too dim to safely use gas to cook with.

From what I've seen hear abouts on the roads and well, the plumbing brigade, it's probably best to keep them all far away from anything that dangerous.

That's about it I guess.

The Three Stooges are back, only this time they've replaced Curly.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Snippets from Gmünd

If you check yer map.  You'll notice that we're really,  really close to the Czech border here.   I guess that once upon a time,  this was like any other border town,  where people would cross from various reasons,  the way we used to do in some smaller towns between Canada and the US.   That is,  before they got all paranoid and everything.

Funny thing too,  since the Yurpeens have been dealing with folks who want to blow stuff up for a long,  long time.

But let's not get side tracked here.

That's about it for today.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Just a quick update.

What day is it?


Monday, so we must be in Shrems.

OK well, I'm being a bit of a knob here, but I somehow suspect this is the way things are going to go for the next little while.
Gabe has a lot of places to visit, and a few people are going to have some “splainin” to do. Tomorrow or the next day I'll be running her up to some place in the Czech Republic which is about a twenty minute drive from here.
Then sometime next month there's a trip to Romania, and in a couple weeks she has to go back to Hengelo. She can take back a couple of the little items the movers packed by mistake. I don't think the landlords actually want the stuff, but there's no damned way I want to keep someone else's crap.

Got my own.

The apartment is slowing coming along. There's still that huge space where the kitchen should be.
I did put together a glass cabinet that we bought at Ikea, so we have a temporary place for some plates, cups and such.
Functionality is certainly something one must keep in mind when it comes to Ikea, since it certainly is crap. Wowsers.

But hey, if you have minimal tools, and I'm pretty sure, minimal intellect, it's just peachy keen.

Even when we lived like Hillbillies back on the farm, I'm pretty sure we had more amenities. I'm reminded of a visit a number of years ago with one of my then brothers-in-law to Ludlow, New Brunswick, which he lovingly referred to as “Dogpatch”. It's that whole, “everything on the table within easy reach” program.
In our case however it has more to do with having no other place to put anything.

Just the same, even though I haven't come close to figuring out the thermostat (hey, I have some issues with the one at home, and it's in English!) it sure is nice to have as much or as little heat in every single room. Man oh man! I mean, I'm sure we'll miss the Netherlands, but I definitely won't miss shivering in the mornings. (or most of the rest of the day, for that matter)

I'm currently at the Goldener Stern in Gmund, which you may recall was where we stayed when we were in the area back in September, just before coming home. This time however, since we have a set of wheels that we needn't return to the airport, I've done a little shopping this morning. Just a couple things for the apartment.

No big deal.

I think the next chore will be to go down to the desk and ask about an iron and ironing board. One of the joys of living out of a suitcase. Things get wrinkled big time.
That and I'll pony up a couple Euros for some internet, so I can post this. We're doing the “text and post later” plan. Means being on the net just that much less.

There won't be much fancy business other than that, since I managed to forget my wireless mouse back “home”. I'm just about crippled without it.


Thursday, November 5, 2009

Yes, I'm alive.

Sorry to leave everyone in blogging limbo,  but we're in the apartment.  Everything was straightened out for a Monday morning move.
Haven't completely unpacked, since there's that whole "no kitchen" thing.

Bought a hotplate.
Have yet to use it.
A fridge was delivered Monday morning.  This is good.
Gas was turned on on Tuesday. 

Um,  I had already booked the hotel through Monday night.  I ain't that dumb.

Oh....and there's heat in every room.   Oh my God!

There will be pictures when I'm not blogging from a cafe somewhere.


Monday, November 2, 2009

Miracle of Miracles.

Well,  we're in.
Unfortunately I'm too damned tired to even make my fingers do anything.  So this will have to do.   I'll post some pics and commentary tomorrow when I have a few minutes and my eyes aren't crossing ever few seconds.

Play nice.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Presently Homeless.

OK,  so that sounds worse than it actually is,  and we're not exactly living out of our car or anything,  but we really don't have any keys to an apartment just yet.
Not too sure what the difference is going to be on Monday,  since the banks aren't open over the weekend.
I think I'm just going to leave it in the hands of the relocation lady,  since I'm pretty sure I'll end up just pitching someone off a sixth floor balcony at some point.
On the plus side,  this means I don't have to stress about getting back into Vienna after taking Gabe to work in the morning.
Got no place to go.
Seems the driver has been contacted and told to cool his heels in Bratislava.
Um....ya.   Bratislava.   I guess that's his home base?
Danged if I know.

I just decided to upload the pic I took yesterday (well,  Friday night)  of the bed at the Sheraton in Nürnberg.   Nice place that.  Any time they put a chocolate on your pillow,  that's a good sign.
The place we're at here in Vienna isn't quite so nice,  but will have to do.  They had a decent breakfast at least,  but the breakfast deals on this side of the pond are rarely worth what they charge.   It's €18 per person here.  Do the math.
Having experienced this type of place before,  I made sure of a couple things:  brought my own facecloth and shampoo and brought along extra pillows.   See,  the Sheraton always provide plenty of pillows, along with all kinds of goodies,  but that can't be said of all places,  so we just happen to have our "smart" pillows with us.   Not sure just what makes them "smart". Something to do with warm in winter and cool in summer,  but the jury's out on that one.   Main thing is,  they're huge and they can make all the difference.

For anyone remotely interested,  you can see where we are here, which is within walking distance of the new digs.  Whenever we get to move in of course.

For those following along on Facebook,  I'll put some pics up that I took yesterday in Nürnberg.  Neat city that.
We stuck around until around 1:30 since well,  there was no hurry getting here to Vienna to pick up any keys or anything.

Once again we couldn't rely on the stupid GPS since,  as with the situation in Paris,  finding an actual address that is usable is a bit of a challenge.   At least we had been here before,  so it was a matter of getting on the Gürtel once in Vienna and then finding our own way.  Honestly,  worse GPS I've ever experienced in my life.  When we were about to leave Nürnberg,  I plugged in the saved location for Vienna and hit "start",  and the stupid thing said we were "off road".  Huh?   We were in the middle of Nürnberg!
So in typical fashion,  just had to figure out how to get out to the highway.  Eventually the thing woke up and started giving instruction but man,  I can only hope that BMW has a better handle on installing GPS software,  'cause Audi sure dropped the ball on that one.

Maybe has something to do with the thing being built in Belgium?  Seems that's where those "very smart" lawyers are also from.

Just a theory.

Oh,  and for fun I thought I'd put in the pic of the half way loaded truck....

Too bad you can't see the plate on the truck,  since this guy was from Hungary.  And....I didn't actually get a picture of the finished load,  since they filled it right to the top.

Gee,  I wonder where it all actually is?

We'll see how Monday goes.