Thursday, September 27, 2012

Two out of three.

I can’t quite explain this,  and I haven’t exactly taken off my jacket and looked at the back to see if there was a sign there that said, “Ask this guy,  he might know!”,  but in the last couple days,  I’ve been asked on three different occasions for some sort of help.   Now,  by this I don’t mean the beggars,  including the guy this morning at 6:30 who thought he’d try and put the bit on me for some spare change.   Seriously?  It’s six-thirty!   I’m just out to wander down to the parking garage with Travelling Companion and then pick up one of the free newspapers available on the corner.  I don’t even want to talk to anyone,  let alone fend off a total stranger or try and explain how I’m not about to add him to the list of those whom I ‘support’. 

And no,  I’m never that mean, unless they’re foolish enough to push their luck. Just the same, I’m not one for hand-outs either.

No,  I’m talking about directional help.   This I can do.  Well mostly.

Part of it depends on how far off I am in la-la land as I’m booking it down the street,  and whether or not I can understand what’s being said.  I find I do a certain amount of lip reading in English,  so it takes me a second or two to tune my ear trumpet to whatever someone is asking me in German.  That’s just the way it is.  The comprehension or lack thereof,  doesn’t have as much to do with language abilities,  as with my ability to actually hear.  The tinnitus doesn’t help.

So,  there have been questions about store locations and streets,  that kind of thing.  I can pass those tests with relative ease.  Then this morning,  a guy standing next to me at an intersection asked about where the bus stop was for the “13a”.   So what now?  I have to study the transit maps too?   I’m not even sure how it was possible,  but the answer to that one popped into my head after a brief “deer in the headlights” moment.   And no,  I don’t study maps,  at least not any more than what is needed to explain to guests where they can find places like the Naschmarkt,  or how to get around in the first district.

This afternoon though,  I finally struck out.  Again,  standing at the light (there MUST BE a sign on my back)  and a young lady asks for some “Institute” or other.   She named it,  I don’t recall.   I had nary a clue.  It did sound familiar,  and I tend to think it’s the vocational school over on Apollogaße,  but I didn’t think it would be quite appropriate to follow her up the street to see if that was the case or not.   I’m sure she asked someone who had more of a clue than me.  But really,  there were at that point literally hundreds of people on the street.  Why me?   

I do realise that I can make toddlers smile just by looking at them,  and I think it’s the moustache,  or maybe because to a two year old I look goofy, (don’t go there!)  but I don’t understand the whole deal where I get picked out of a crowd of hundreds to be asked for directions. 

I mean, I sure don’t mind.  Anyone asking for help is always on their best behaviour,  and I’ve “been there and done that”  when it comes to wandering around looking for an address, especially when it comes to any European city.  It’s never easy.  Street names are on the sides of buildings, (if you’re lucky) since sign posts are as rare as hens teeth, and good luck finding a number.  That is all.  There is no “trick” to it. 



Curiously enough,  I’ve walked by this place a few times without really giving it a second look. So thankfully nobody is too interested to ask about this one.

It took another brief “deer in the headlights” moment to realise that it’s the local equivalent of a “Re-use Centre”.   I didn’t bother taking any pictures inside.  Anyone in the Western world,  where we have way too much “stuff”, knows what everyone’s cast offs look like.   A lot of it was clothing, and you could get a really good winter jacket for about €40, as an example,  and none of the items were by any mean shabby looking.  I think they’re kind of picky as to what they will accept. I didn’t bother to look through the clothing racks.  Didn’t care.   Lots of dishes,  nick-knacks and old appliances too.  There was even a “Test dose”  (test socket)  where you could plug in whatever electrical device you were eyeing to see if it worked. 

I won’t be going back.   Well,  unless of course if it’s to take in a couple items that we’ll be casting off when we eventually move.  That might be a plan.  We’ll see.   Means I’d have to lug stuff down the street though.  I’ll have to think about that.


It’s a dull day here in Wienerland.  It keeps threatening to rain,  but nothing has materialised.  Perfect day for being a tourist.   So thankful I’m not one of them.


Keeps those knives sharp.


Thanks for stopping in.



Wednesday, September 26, 2012

More of the same.

Too late to bed and too early to rise as far as I’m concerned.  Not sure how T.C. manages,  since I’m feeling a little pooched today. 


Our guests did manage to sleep in a bit,  but they were out the door by noon time and are wandering about.  If walking is your thing,  all of Vienna is really and truly close at hand.  The weather has been hanging in today,  so they felt it was a good day to be outdoors.  The forecast for tomorrow is somewhat sketchy,  so they may hit a couple museums.  It’s hard to recommend just one or two.  Vienna can be a bit overwhelming on the museum/gravesite/historical building end of things.   We still haven’t seen it all,  and probably never will.

For us, it’s become just another city.  Sounds a bit pitiful I suppose,  but we have managed to get out and do more than the average “Wiener”.  No jokes please.

By the way,  I just did a Google search for an image to illustrate that little quip,  and discovered one of my own blog posts from a while back!  Awesome.

"You may already be a Wiener!"


Of course,  right along with every day city life,  there are those moments when those who like to push the limits of being “civilised”  might need a little talking to…


I was hoping that one came out.  Saw this on the way to pick up Travelling Companion yesterday afternoon.  You can only race down the highway so many times.  Once in a while the constabulary is going to take exception.  I only smirked.  I didn’t laugh out loud or stick out my tongue,  point over to him and go “neener neener!” 

Well,  I’m not really sure how to do that in German anyway.   Although,  it does indeed rhyme with “Wiener”.  Hm,  something to work on.


I really and truly didn’t do a heck of a lot today,  which was why I thought I’d at least motivate my lazy self to make a loaf of banana bread.  Just something to do.  And eat.  That’s usually a good combination.


Still too hot to cut into at that point.  I do get a little annoyed that I have to leave it in the oven until it’s a little too dark on the outside (to me, anyway) in order to have it be completely cooked on the inside.   Such “First World” problems!  Goodness!


We have to sort out our plans for the weekend in terms of our trip down to Slovenia when our guests get back later today.  We think we’ve come up with something.   It’s a matter of being in the right city at the right time.   When I know,  you’ll know.  Well,  maybe.  

There’s one restaurant that I like in Bled that’s closed on Mondays (the nerve!)  so that puts a kink in things.  There’s a chance that I might not get my way.  Logic might actually dictate our itinerary,  and we may end up eating somewhere else.   *Sad* (not) I know,  but entirely possible.


Oh,  almost forgot.   No word yet on the Flax Seed.  Methinks we need a mortar and pestle.  Why does that make me think of Danny Kaye?



I didn’t ask if the tea was fresh or not.  It was wrapped up sufficiently and hasn’t been around for that long,  so it must be fine.   It’s dried leaves that gets reanimated in hot water, so I would think it would keep for quite a long time.   I’d look it up if I so much as cared.  

You do that,  and report back.  I’m sure somebody wants to know.



Meanwhile, try not to nod off.



Thanks for stopping by.



Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Rolling it out!


OK so,  maybe we’re not quite rolling out the red carpet in front of our own front door,  but I just thought seeing these guys rolling out a red carpet this morning was timely. 

I didn’t bother asking if they’d stop by our place.  I didn’t think they’d go for it.

We really only do it figuratively anyway.


There were no problems with the airport run,  although I was beginning to have some concerns at one point before I had even crossed back over the Danube.

These are signs one does NOT wish to see.   Just saying.




I’m not quite sure why that first one didn’t quite turn out.  Maybe I caught it in mid “blink”?  

Anyway,  it wasn’t that big of a deal.  There was an “Unfall”  (accident) somewhere down the road,  but I was able to move along with very little difficulty. 

I do have to say that throughout most of Europe (this isn’t just an Austrian thing)  they do a pretty good job of warning you ahead of time that you just might be headed for trouble.  There’s no shortage of flashing lights and signs telling you to slow down.  Still sucks to be caught in traffic,  but at least you know WHY.   Eases the pain somewhat.  That’s my story anyway.


The flight from Toronto was a bit early,  which was a good thing,  as I was even earlier.   I never like to be late,  so I’ll suffer being early if it comes right down to it.

There’s a cafe directly across from the “point of no return” at the arrivals area,  so I hunkered down with the paper and a coffee.  Could have bought a whole pound for what I paid for that sucker,  but such is life at an airport.  The toilets are free,  thank goodness.


Seems to me it was €4,20.   That’s right kids. 

I drank it really slowly.   Wanted my six bucks worth.

Well,  right now it’s more like $5.31 Cdn.,  but still.   Oh well,  gotta splurge once in a while.  Kept me going I suppose.


It’s not too often that I sort of wish there was a way to share smells on the internet,  since I could smell the scent of fresh pine as I was coming up to this pile of lumber this morning on Neubaugaße.   There’s nothing quite like it.


Well,  it’s a smell I like anyway. 

And no, I guess being able to share smells might not be such a great idea.   I’m not overly keen to smell “horse sweat” or “wet dog” for example.   Please don’t take offence.   I know there are folks who simply love all kinds of those smells,  including “wet dog”.   Good for you!  I’m happy for you.  It’s just not for me that’s all.  I’ll take freshly mown hay and pine lumber for 200 Alex.


So the advise that is normally given to anyone who has come across the pond,  is to take a little nap of an hour or so,  then get up and try and stay up until what would be a more or less normal bedtime.  This is a tried and proven method of trying to get straightened out after flying overseas all night.

Travelling Companion’s brother was good to go with that program.  He disappeared right after we made some tea.  They like their tea,  and I wasn’t sure if I had the right kind,  but it just so happened that “Twinning's English Breakfast Tea”  was a good choice.  It’s been up there in the cupboard for a while,  so now finally it’ll get used up.

There was some reluctance however on the part of his wife to give in to the “nap program”,  and she thought she’d like to sit outside for a while.  She sat there quite motionless for well over an hour.  You don’t suppose she was sleeping,  do you?



I didn’t bother to ask.

After a very short map tutorial,  they are now both out and about,  just to take a look around,  head for a bank machine,  and generally take in a bit of Vienna.   I felt it a good idea to do the map briefing thing,  since there have been visitors in the past who have found themselves turned around,  and end up walking blocks and blocks in the wrong direction before realising that things “don’t look right”.    It happens.  And it tends to happen to those who are initially confident in their sense of direction for some reason.  It’s taken me a while to keep from getting directionally challenged in Vienna, (and I have a pretty good sense of direction) so if you’ve just stepped off an airplane,  it’s best to have a little guidance.

That’s probably the reason why there are free maps in all hotel lobbies in Vienna.  I’ve gone through a few of them over the years.  I’ve lost count of the number of visitors we’ve had.


I’ll be heading out around five to pick up T.C. from the salt mines,  so I’ll once again have the thrill of savouring some of Vienna’s traffic.   It’s such a lot of fun.  I can barely contain myself.


That’s today’s missive.


Try not to get turned around.


Thanks for stopping by.




Monday, September 24, 2012

Those little victories.

Sometimes it’s not just the fact that it’s a foreign language. Let me ‘splain.

I’ll admit,  there have been times when we were going about our daily lives back in Canada,  when finding a particular thing could be a challenge.  Not that often though.

Looking around or phoning around, at least I knew what the heck I was talking about. 

My little Melitta drip cone comes to mind.

Such a precious little item,  and I don’t mean the expense.

Melitta drip cone

Ever seen one of these?   Let’s digress for a minute. 

If you’re away from an electrical source and just want to heat up water to make coffee,  this is the thing.   Coffee filter goes in the top along with the appropriate amount of coffee.  Pour some boiling water through.  Bazinga!  You got coffee.    Just as strong or as weak as you’d like.


melitta with the filtre

The cone filters are easy enough to find.


It seems there are scads of pictures of these things on the net,  but do you think I could find one?   I ended up finding one at the “Reuse Centre”.  No stores had them.  See,  I can still heat up water on our gas range at home if the power goes out.   Need coffee.  Need back-up plan.  That’s all I’m going to say about that.


Fine,  back to today. 

Guests.  Tomorrow. 


For me of course,  that means another trip to the airport,  but it’s close enough that it’s not that big a deal.  Just the same, Travelling Companion has the never ending stream of issues to deal with at work,  so that then means we both have to haul it out of bed early enough to get her to work (which is in one direction, more or less northwest)  in time for me to then boot it back to the airport,  which is way over on the other side of the city.

Fun stuff. 

Which, if you’re remotely interested,  looks like this:

to the airport

Google Maps seems to calculate the travel time as 18 minutes.  I sincerely doubt that.  I’m counting on more like a half hour to forty minutes.  We’ll see.


Anyway,  just yesterday Travelling Companion was on the phone with one of the arriving guests,  and from what I could tell,  there was the admission that they “didn’t want to put us out,”  which is certainly in keeping with the theme of “Bob’s bed and get yer own breakfast”,  but then not that long after that,  there was some talk of what kind of breakfast there was to be had etc.   Oh, there’s supposed to be a choice?

So all of a sudden my task is to somehow find Flaxseed,  which is apparently something that a person can eat for said breakfast.  I suppose “getting your own breakfast”  doesn’t exactly mean you should first go to the store to get the ingredients,  but just the same,  we don’t have any flaxseed hanging around.  Go to your cupboard.  Got a package of flax seed in there?   I didn’t think so.  And if you do,  I’m impressed.  Just so you know.


Well,  I did manage to find it.  This took a bit of research,  not the least of which involved going to four different stores.  Oh,  and none of them were exactly close to each other.   Do you want another map? 

Again. Didn’t think so.

My first choice was the Merkur,  thinking that they just might have everything,  but there’s a very good chance that I was asking for the wrong stuff.   See, the dictionary calls it “Flachs Samen”.   Literally “Flax Seed”.   That would make sense.  Right?  But sometimes the dictionary doesn’t quite cut it, like when I was looking for baking soda.  It’s “Natron”.   I think I just guessed on that one.  Actually no,  I must have found it on line somewhere.  I’m not that intuitive.

See, those were two definitions on two different pages.  There’s no way of looking up “Flaxseed”  as one word.    So I naturally stuck the two together,  thinking I had the answer.

Apparently not.

Asking for “Flachs Samen” didn’t work.  I had a little consultation with a couple different shelf loading types,  and there was nothing of the sort to be found.  The thing is though,  the one fellow did mention that there were some “Bio” products that they didn’t get in.  The rest was mostly unintelligible,  as he was speaking the local Viennese dialect.  I can understand MOST of what anyone says if they’re speaking “Wienerisch”,  but sometimes there are gaps. 

Just for fun,  you’re welcome to listen to some “Wienerisch”  here,  which was taken down at the Naschmarkt.   Go for it.  Even the person doing the transcribing manages to misspell a couple words. 


Did you get that?   Right.



So after coming back home here and having a bite to eat,  I thought maybe I’d head over to the other side of the Gürtel,  where I had seen a rather nice looking little shop last week when I was looking for my nippel.   Remember the nippel? 

I took this last week,  and later realised I had a huge smudge on the lens. 


I’ve since wiped it off with my T-shirt.  I’m sure glad I do my upmost to look after my equipment.



I’m not sure why I’m sometimes compelled to take a picture of that new train station,  but there it is.   I do think it’s rather cool.


So,  although I had a pleasant little chat with the owners,  one of whom was kind enough to even look up some stuff on the internet right there, I still managed to strike out,  as there was a bit more research required.

Anyhoodle,  after checking out a couple companies on the line who import the stuff,  it occurred to me that I was calling it by the wrong name.    Well,  there’s a fine howdy do!  It’s called “Leinsamen”.   All I know is,  when I was surfing around,  I noticed there was another name, did some more snooping,  and that’s what I came up with.

I have no idea where that name came from.  Maybe some sort of Latin derivation?  Don’t know.  Don’t care.


As it happens,  there’s a somewhat large oriental grocery store over on Zieglergaße,  and one of the young ladies there knew exactly what I was looking for!   Of course,  they didn’t have it,  but she told me where to go!  So nice of her to tell me where to go. 

Usually when someone tells me where to go?  Let’s not go there.




So that’s the stuff.  I’ll be interested to see just what the heck it’s like for breakfast.   There was some mention of “using the microwave”,  so that would be the first little hurdle,  as we DO NOT HAVE ONE.  

So,  I’ll let you know.



Oh,  and so where was this store?   Certainly not hidden.  Right out on Mariahilfer,  not much farther than about 100 metres from our front door,  there’s a place called DM.     That’s it.  Just “DM”.

“DM” in this case stands for “Drogerie Markt”.   Anytime I’ve gone in there,  it’s usually to look for make-up removal pads or cotton swabs. There’s a difference between an apothecary, (Apotheke)  and a drug store (Drogerie).    The drug store carries stuff for personal hygiene,  along with a bunch of other products along the lines of a “health food store”.     Mind you, it never occurred to me that they have food.   That’s not why I go in there.

Just so you know, in the Apothecary,  you get your prescriptions filled along with all other things of a medical nature that your little heart desires.   Of course, you do have to go up to the counter and ASK for whatever it is you might think you want.   So, that can be a bit of a challenge too.   I’m sure you can think of salves or ointments that you would just as soon not have to ask for over the counter?  Within earshot of one and all?  That’s always fun.   

Next time you’re in Walgreens or wherever,  just go up to the cashier and say in a loud enough voice,  “Um, I have this blister on my ASS,  whatcha got?”    See how that flies. 

Thankfully I’ve managed to not get a blister on my ass so far in Austria.  That would truly suck.


Go easy on the salve.


Thanks for lookin’.



Sunday, September 23, 2012

Just a little more purging.

Not that we even have that much extra cr*p,  but the more I look,  the more I find. 



That used to be a camp chair.   I’m reasonably certain it got busted by the movers.  It probably got got shoved in with a bunch of stuff, and one of the legs came apart.   I had been meaning to give it the heave, but it was in the upstairs storage with a bunch of other stuff,  and was keeping a low profile.

By the way,  the one thing that we’ve learned over the last few years when it comes to having movers transport your “stuff”? 

If you want to ‘keep it’,  keep it at home.   At least that was our little rule.   For example,  not that it’s anything fancy or anything,  but we did not ship our dining room furniture.  Or any of the so easily breakable crystal ware and such.   I mean,  I’ve busted enough of Travelling Companion’s fancy wine glasses over the years,  I certainly wouldn’t want movers to pack up those things.    Besides, whenever we’re back home,  I want to have a place where we can sit down for a meal.  Our kitchen isn’t designed for that.

What tends to happen though is,  the stuff that’s really fragile gets wrapped up sufficiently, such that it does indeed make it to its destination intact,  whereas the things like that camp chair above get the gorilla treatment.  Quite often with less than ideal results.  There always seems to be some “shrinkage”.   It’s just “stuff”.  But it can be a little annoying.



Besides the chair,  there were some little bits of melamine and such left over from both the kitchen installation,  and from when I needed to make a small cabinet for some towel storage over the washing machine.

I guess you didn’t really need to see a picture of a dumpster.   Just ignore that one.


Oh what the heck,  I may as well take a picture of the towel storage thingy too.




In sharp contrast to the house that we rented in the Netherlands that not only had closets,  but an actual walk-in closet off the master bedroom,   the apartment here had NOTHING.   Hence the expenditure at IKEA, and then the example of “function over form”  that you see above.


And as anyone who has ever put together such a thing can tell you, there are always going to be little bits and pieces left over.   Just can’t throw those things out!   At some point though,  there comes a time.

So our little storage room upstairs is looking a bit better.   There is no “before” picture.  I’m sure you understand.


Yup,  that’s the big excitement for today.   Aren’t you glad you clicked on that link?

Travelling Companion is at work.  (yes, I know it’s Sunday)  It seems there was an issue with her computer a couple weeks back,  it got “fixed”  and returned to her,  but then proceeded to go south earlier this past week,  and didn’t really get totally sorted out at all.  That’s the abridged version.

She was on the phone yesterday with someone in the Company That Cannot Be Named,  and I have to say,  she’s a much cooler cookie than I could ever be.   I had to leave the room,  because I was getting agitated just listening to the conversation.   That’s all I can say about that,  even if I were to change to names to protect the “innocent”.  

I’m pretty sure I would have blown my lid,  but of course,  that’s why she’s doing that job,  and not me.

Maybe some day she’ll write her “Memoirs”,  although I suspect that,  with the exception of an anecdote here and there,  once a person leaves the “working world” behind, it’s just as well that it’s all forgotten.  

I know most of my work related stories have either to do with working with individuals with less than ideal personal hygiene,  or other things of a less than memorable if not repugnant nature.   Who needs to hear that stuff?


Let’s hope your weekend is just peachy keen,  wherever you may find yourself.

Keep that stick on the ice.


Thanks for lookin’.



Friday, September 21, 2012

I couldn’t “Do the News”.

Because I’d start to laugh.  I’m sorry.  There’s some sh*t out there that almost makes me poop my pants.

Have you seen this one?


Leader of Amish breakaway group guilty of hate crime in hair attacks

“Heretics”?   Oh wait no,  “hair attacks”.  OK,  I’m good so far.  But then I start reading.

You can click on the link if you choose, and TRY and read the rest of the article.   I couldn’t seem to do it,  as I was having some difficulty with my concentration.  And well,  the tears from laughter in my eyes.  It would otherwise be a rather sad tale of hatred,  or persecution or something,  except for one small problem.

See,  the “perp”, if I were to be so bold as to use some “cop jargon”,  is one Samuel Mullet.

Heeheee!  I just laughed again!   Oh Lordy.


Yes kids.  This guy named Mullet,  (say it aloud a few times for effect  Mullet Mullet Mullet Mullet…) was convicted of cutting off somebody’s hair. And beards.  Well,  I don’t think the women had beards.  Maybe a bit of stubble? Well, it was he and his followers.  Whatever.  Who cares about the details?   I couldn’t get past “Mullet”!

This is too good to make up, even for my imagination.  Believe me, it’s out there on the net.  Not that I totally believe everything on the net,  but again, it doesn’t matter! 

Thou needst not believeth.  Oops, don’t read that aloud,  unless you’re really dry of mouth.




So just now I did a little looking around,  trolling for images, you know,  in case you were born yesterday and don’t know how the Amish dress or something,  and I found this:


smoking amish dude

Hold on a sec!  Is that dude smoking?   I didn’t think they smoked?  Geez,  I don’t smoke,  and I’m nowhere close to being Amish.   Trust me.  And really, even if they start drinking beer, I still ain’t joinin’ up.   Just so you know.

I had a beard once upon a time.  It gets itchy in the summer.  I used to use “Resdan”.  It helped.  No more beards for me,  thanks.


So now apparently,  if you do a Google search for “mullet”, (Mullet Mullet Mullet Mullet)   you might get a story about some Amish “perps” who went around cutting people’s hair off,  or….you could end up with something like this:

only david spade



or worse,  this:




Whatever you come up with, I’d wager that your first thought would be,  “What were you thinking?”  

That’s my best guess.





Moving on.


This sign caught my attention this morning.  There’s something about that last line that doesn’t sit well.  I do so wish the Austrians would either stick with German,  or hire some actual English speaking people to check over their stuff.  I’m no marketing guru,  so I’m not exactly tooled up to know what to put there at the bottom to entice people to come into the store,  but somehow “successful”  and “shopping”  don’t seem to work together.    I didn’t go in,  so I guess my shopping was “successful”?

Even then, if I can get the hell out of a store without buying anything more than what I intended on getting,  that’s my version of “successful shopping”.  I’d also like to think of it as “commando”,  but that can be confused with something else entirely.   We’ll just say,  I try to be a very “task oriented” shopper, all the while keeping my clothes on.  

So maybe they could have said, “Please come in and browse”?   I think that would work.  Where do I sign up?


By now you’ve no doubt figured out,  after slogging through the previous (what is it now?) 588 words (don’t you love Blogger?)  that there’s not really too danged much going on today.

It’s a fairly normal Friday.  Of course,  we’re expecting more guests to arrive on Tuesday morning,  so I’ll be swabbing the decks,  painting the hull and polishing the bright work between now and then.  And it goes without saying that I strip our bed on a Friday and get that sorted out.   And that’s about it.

Hopefully the weather holds out for our guests,  as the fall can be a little iffy here in Wienerland.   We’ve had a bit of rain over the last few days and now it’s cleared up.  It’s not like they’re having to hang out in a hotel for the whole time,  as we have plenty of extra warm clothes to loan out if need be,  not to mention about a dozen umbrellas.  Don’t ask.  I swear they breed somehow.


Travelling Companion is still in the midst of “Profit Plan”,  so I have no clue how late she’ll be again tonight.  She arrived without any sort of parking garage issues last night,  so the magic box must have been fixed. 


Enjoy your weekend,  wherever you may find yourself.

Keep it between the ditches.


Thanks for stopping ‘round.



Thursday, September 20, 2012

Took another walk.

Not wanting to completely give up on my bike-tire-pumping-up-silliness,  I was off once again to the bike shop on the other side of the Gürtel.  You’re welcome to take a gander at their goofy webpage here..  The place is called Ebyl.  That webpage has some crazy flashy thing going on at the start,  and I find that annoying,  so I don’t recommend going to the page.  But if you have anything faster than dial-up,  I suppose it’s tolerable.

It didn’t seem to be as far today?  That’s probably due to a couple things.  Yesterday I walked past it,  since it didn’t jump out at me even as a sporting goods store,  let alone some sort of half-assed bike shop, plus it was raining.   Today the sun is out in full force,  even though there’s a bit of that wintery feel in the air.  I can handle wearing a jacket, to be honest, as I’m more comfortable being covered up than not.   Is that a sign of getting old?  Older? 

Never mind.

Just to recap,  for those of you who forgot to take notes,  and as was pointed out by Rod over there in Kansas, (why do I always think of a little dog named “Toto”??)  there are two types of valve stems.


Here they are.


WHY we need two different types is just one of life’s little mysteries,  and I have no clue.  I’m sure there’s some sort of story,  but NO,  I don’t really care.

So this time I had a new strategy.  I’d take along a picture of the little thing that I needed to be able to put air into a Schrader valve stem with the goofy clamp on pump that I have.  

Let me tell ya.  A picture is where it’s at!   Yessiree kids!

Not only did the service dude know exactly what I was looking for (after showing him my picture,  see yesterday’s missive)  but it took him all of about 3 seconds to produce one from his little drawer full of goodies and place it in my hand.   Oh,  and the best part.  It was FREE.   *snort*!

Hey,  I offered to pay.  He wouldn’t have it. 

Well, considering I paid €1,99 for the little piece of brass (even if it is that) that I purchased yesterday,  I think they got their mark-up on that whole deal.  These things are worth what?  six cents?  If that?


And there it is.   Ta-daa..


The free one.  Oh wait,  I said that,  didn’t I?

*free*   Such a happy word.

Now,  that doesn’t mean that my pump is any more effective than having a bunch of wind coming out of a horse’s hind end,  but that’s another matter.  At least it didn’t smell as bad.  I was able to eventually put some air in both tires.  I will now put the bike away.  We’re done.

Oohh.  Aahh.  What a sense of accomplishment.  

You may now roll your eyes.


Speaking of horses’ hind ends…

By the way,  I had to look up the proper use of that previous apostrophe.  That’s a very useful website,  and I recommend it.  


We once again have been set upon by the parking  garage gremlins.  

This seems to happen on the order of about every six months.   It’s quite aggravating.

See,  I have a couple garage doors at home,  and if the one doesn’t open for whatever reason,  I have a back up plan.  It mostly involves me having to get my lazy ass out of the car,  walking around to another door,  going in and manually unhooking the thing and flinging it open,  but it does work.  It’s a “plan”.    Here,  if the door doesn’t open,  you have to press a button and wait to talk to some faceless individual,  and hope that you can figure out what the heck they’re saying.   I have problems enough at the average drive thru window anywhere in North America,  and those people are mostly speaking English.  We won’t get into any variations of “teenager speak” here.


Of course,  Travelling Companion gets upset with me,  since I get upset with the faceless voice.  I just want to park the car!   That all!   Just open up!  Here’s my number!   Send someone to fix it!   Not asking much.  Gah!

There’s been a problem for a couple days now,  since the magic box thinks that you’re already inside,  when in fact you’re not.   This morning, there was NO message,  so we couldn’t get out.  I let T.C. do the talking this time,  and when she got to the point where she said,  “I need to go to work!”,  I knew she was starting to get a little testy.   See?   It’s not just me??  Hello!


And you know,  just last night as I was driving around the Ring and admiring all the buildings I thought, “Man,  they sure are pretty damned awesome.  I think I’m going to miss that.”   But the parking garage thing?  Um no.  Not going to miss that.   Not unless it’s similar to the way I miss having haemorrhoids.   Also a bit of a pain in the you know what,  now that I think of it.

I’ll try and settle down now.





Here’s one for you to chew on:



I noticed this last night when I was headed out to pick up T.C. after her dinner.   What do you suppose?  Not enough room for all the bags of “stuff” they bought,  pulled out the clubs and forgot to put them back in?   Oops.

Or,  how about “I’ve been telling him to take out those blank blank golf clubs for weeks now,  well you know what?”  

And then they got left behind? THAT would just be mean.  I think if anyone using my vehicle left behind my golf clubs on purpose?  Wowsers.

Of course, we’ll never know.  They were still there this morning.  Who knows when or if this person will notice that their clubs are missing.  Kind of sad really.   Poor hapless bastard.

*Note to self*.  Take the clubs out and put them in the house after each outing.  Then you’ll know where they are.



So there you go. Keep an eye on your stuff.



Thanks for looking in.



Wednesday, September 19, 2012

I can’t seem to find my nippel.

Now hold on there.  Remember when I said “all grammar and spelling mistakes are intentional”?  

This is a different kind of “nippel”.   Not like a “grease nipple”.  I haven’t seen one of those in years, to be honest.  Mostly these days grease nipples can only be found on farm equipment,  although I do seem to recall there were a couple on the snow blower.  I think. 

My poor snow blower.  It’s been sitting for a few winters now.  I think it might end up being a donation to one of the schools in the area that has an auto shop? 

Where was I?   Right.  Nipples.  Or “Nippels” as the case may be.


Here’s the thing.  We have four bikes with us here in Europe,  two of which we shipped from Canada.  I think I mentioned this.  Well,  bikes here in Europe have a different style of valve stem than those that you’d find on a car.  So after I went out and bought a pump in the Netherlands,  I discovered that I could not pump up the tires on the bikes.  Didn’t matter if they were the Dutch ones or the Canadian ones.  (well,  Chinese ones is probably more accurate)

I may very well have bought the wrong kind of pump,  but when I enquired as to why I was having problems, the guy in the Dutch bike shop knew exactly which little gizmo I was lacking. 

Thankfully there’s a search feature here on the blog,  and I was able to go back to the post I wrote about this in September of 2008 and fetch a picture of this little gem.   This was the item that I needed in order to get the pump to fasten onto the valves stems.


Yes kids,  that’s an “Amerikaans Verloopnippel”.   I’m sure you’re happy to know that.

This is the little guy I’ve been trying to find for the last couple days.  Now that I think of it,  I’m pretty sure there’s a spare inner tube somewhere as well.  In a box.  Somewhere.


You can see here that these valve stems are different.


That’s actually on one of the neighbour’s bikes,  since the one I took from my bike didn’t exactly turn out.


And I’m not going all the way back down to the basement to take another picture, but you get the idea.


So I did a little sniffing around on the net,  and found a quasi bike shop on Mariahilfer,  out past the Gürtel.  There are not as many bike shops here as there are in the Netherlands,  but that goes without saying.  Biking and all things to do with that activity is pretty much the best that anyone could ever hope for in the Netherlands.  There are times when I miss that aspect.


So I managed to explain what I thought I needed,  and ended up with what they refer to as a “Zwischenstück”.  (an “in between piece”)   I was expecting something a little more technical,  in keeping with the way the Germans and Austrians like to ‘over-unsimplify’ things.

But,  if you look at the description on the receipt,  you can see why the store clerks used the simpler term.



Um ya.  It’s a “Reduziernippel von Sclaverand Ventil auf Schrader Pumpe”.  

Right then.  Whatever.

We’ll just call it the “in-between piece”.   That should do it. 


And that’s all fine and dandy,  except for the fact that it’s not the piece I need.  It looked like something that would work,  but it doesn’t.

See,  the end of the pump sort of clamps on the valve stem.  Why it’s that way is a complete mystery to me.


So I guess the good news is, I’ll be able to use my “Zwischenstück” once we’re back in Canada,  when I’d have no other way of pumping up the European inner tubes.  I’m happy for that.

Meanwhile, I guess I have to go back to the store and see what else they have kicking around. 

Or,  I could just shove the flippin’ bike back down in the basement and forget the whole thing.   The jury is out.


Oh,  and by the way,  this is why it’s not a terribly good plan to venture out there right around noon time in a vehicle. 


For the most part,  you can get to your destination faster if you walk, or take the subway.  It’s madness.


Speaking of madness,  I did manage to get the two fluorescent lamps installed.   Let’s just say they’re easier to take out than they are to put in?   I don’t even want to try to describe it,  since I may very well start to cry.  I think it’s holding the mirror, AND balancing on the back of the toilet AND being careful not to drop the lamp,  all the while trying to install some skinny little breakable thing into the tightest fitting place you could ever imagine. 

There’s not even any learning curve.  Even once you get one in,  that doesn’t make the next one any easier. 



Well,  I think I’ve made you move your eyes back and forth enough.  The rest of the day is going to be just about as mundane as the first bit,  with the minor exception that Travelling Companion has to go out to a little celebration this evening.  That means she’ll stop by here long enough to fetch me,  so I can then drop her off and pick her up later.   Such is the reason for my existence.    Well,  that and the use of my highly skilled ability to find semi-useless little bike parts.


Keep those sticks on the ice.


Thanks for stopping by.



Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Making little discoveries.

And I don’t mean the,  “What the heck is that growing on the back of my neck”, kind of discovery.  We won’t go there.

Just a run of the mill, annoying little thing.  Like thinking that all the lamps in the place are actually working, but they’re not.

I took out a dead one a few days ago and recalled that there’s a place on Neubaugaße that sell lamps and light fixtures.

Not a big deal in terms of distance,  and I spied a store that Travelling Companion has been wanting to visit,  although I didn’t get sidetracked.



Something to do with Christmas shopping.   I don’t ask.  They sell “stuff”.  That’s all I know.


Of course, the lighting store (I didn’t get a picture from the outside) appears to be one of those places where they not only sell to the public, but also to contractors,  which somehow always means they’re overpriced and understaffed.  I think I should have been in the lighting business.

Case in point.


Once upon a time,  before I renovated our kitchen back home,  we had two pendant lamps hanging down from the ceiling.  Due to a moment of rambunctiousness on the part of a young relation,  one of them came crashing down to the floor,  and I was very pleased to find its replacement at a garage sale for a for fifty cents.  I thought that was a pretty good price, and probably would have been willing to go as high as a dollar,  especially considering how much these people were asking for similar pieces.   Some of these things were between 30 and 40 Euros!  For a freakin’ globe!  Oy!

I very surreptitiously took that picture while I was waiting patiently to be served.   It’s a good thing I don’t have an actual agenda.


This is the little gem that what I was looking for.


Note the price. 

It turns out that,  even though I could have possibly saved a Euro or two by going elsewhere,  sometimes that whole scheme can be fraught with difficulties.  In order to go out to OBI (like a Home Despot) to save said Euro or two,  I’d first have to drive Travelling Companion to work (so that I could have the car), wait for the stores to open,  and hope that I find the right lamp.

Turns out there are two different “temperatures” to choose from.  Lucky for me that I had written some gibberish down on a piece of paper,  since the young lady who was looking after me was able to give me the right colour lamp.  The last one of these that I installed is definitely the wrong temperature,  although I’m the only one who might notice.  Don’t tell.


Of course,  it never occurred to me to take the old lamp along, which I should have done,  since they had a bucket there for the disposal of old lamps.  These things contain “Quecksilber”,  (Mercury) and really shouldn’t go into the regular garbage.  I knew that.  Silly bugger.

So I asked if they wouldn’t mind if I brought the old one along tomorrow,  and that wasn’t any kind of a problem. 

Well,  it turns out I’d better go to the bank machine before I head back there tomorrow,  since I started seeing dark spots where I swear there had been working lamps before.   When we leave here, all the lamps have to be in working order,  so hopefully they’ll all hang in until then.  Not holding my breath.


Dark spot:


Dark spot:


It’s all fine and dandy that some very clever architect or interior designer came up with this really cool and oh so sexy way of having lights in the bathrooms,  but the thing is,  when it comes to the practicality of changing a lamp,  the whole arrangement is just DUMB.  

Somewhere in my bag of tricks,  I have one of those little mirrors “on a stick” that mechanics use.  Travelling Companion’s make-up mirror was closer at hand.



Hey look!  There it is!


Short of sticking your hand up there,  this is the only way of knowing if there’s actually a burnt out lamp causing that dark spot.


Oh,  and by the way,  it’s SUCH A PLEASURE trying to install a lamp with the use of a mirror!  Why isn’t it going the right way?  I have problems enough controlling the movement of my appendages as it is.  Trying to rewire my pea brain on the fly is a huge challenge.  Trust me.

It’s kind of like rubbing your belly and patting your head at the same time.  Try it.  (I’ll wait)

OK,  now switch hands.   See?  Not so easy, is it?


So now at least I have a good reason to go back to the lighting store besides taking back a mitt full of dead soldiers.



Isn’t this fun?

I suspect that in six months,  I won’t even have the time or energy to write down this kind of gibberish.  The projects may very well turn out to be overwhelming.  I’m too scared to make a list. 


Keep those tools handy.


Thanks for stopping by.



Monday, September 17, 2012

And so it begins.

Not that we’re wanting to get ahead of ourselves or anything,  but we’ll now start to slowly sort out some of the little jobs that we’ll need to take care of between now and Christmas,  and beyond.  

The likelihood that we’ll just get off the plane in the New Year and have to turn around and get right back on are pretty darned slim,  but it’s kind of fun to get in little tastes of that ‘going home’ excitement.  Helps to break up the boredom too.

There’s never any shortage of papers that get squirreled away in a drawer (or two, or more) that really and truly have no business hanging around.  The bag there,  with the exception of the egg carton and a couple catalogues (don’t think I’ll be going to Ikea too much any more)  is all the paper cr*p that can go.  There will be more I’m sure, and some of it we do have to hang on to,  like tax cr*p and such,  but old opera tickets,  notes from Travelling Companion’s foray into learning German….?

I even parted with all the wonderful type written summations from the lessons I had taken.  I either learned it or I didn’t,  and if I haven’t figured out how to say something one way by now,  I can always work my way around it.   Keeping notes isn’t going to help.


When you’re running an old processor like mine well,  you’re only going to get so much ‘random access memory’.   Just sayin’.


Then there are a couple other little issues.   The bikes (we have four of them)  have been down in the basement for a wee while.  It’s a bit of a hostile environment,  and although I know we could have the movers pack up and ship dirty bikes,  something about that bothers me.   So I’ll see if I can get them cleaned up over the next few days/weeks.   I started with the worst of the bunch.


I don’t know if you can see the filth on that thing,  and it’s probably just as well if you can’t.  This was the bike I thought I was going to ride once upon a time,  and had shipped over from Canada.   That was dumb. 

First of all,  it’s not really all that great a bike (I’m tempted to say it’s a piece of junk,  but I won’t go that far)  and I soon discovered after we moved to the Netherlands,  that the bloody thing was just too small.   Oy!  That was uncomfortable.  I’m not going to venture into any details here,  since I wouldn’t want to upset the sensibilities of any lady readers out there,  but let’s just say,  riding was not a pleasant experience.  We’ll leave it at that.

I initially thought I’d do the cleaning downstairs,  but then figured I’d try to get me and the bike in the elevator.  We managed.  It’ll be much easier to just wash it down out on the terrace.   I’m not overly concerned about any bits starting to get a little rusty.  That ship has sailed.

At some point in time,  and this will quite likely be in the New Year,  I’ll take down our light fixture over the dining room table (that’s a very loose definition of “dining room table”,  by the way)  cart it off to the place where we bought it and have them pack it for transport.   Should be fun!  We’re thinking we’ll do an “air shipment” in addition to having everything shoved in a container that ends up on a ship.  


I decided I wanted to include the Winnie-the-Pooh clock,  just for contrast.

We’ve had the option of using an “air shipment” for all of the moves we’ve ever done when it comes to the whole “Ex-Pat experience”,  but up until now, we’ve never really felt the need to.  We’re allowed something like 350 pounds. 

We have enough clothes and such at home,  that we’re not going to be in any hurry to have all our cr*p end up at the house right away.   Besides,  I remember how slightly overwhelming it was when we moved home from Puerto Rico.  And there was hardly ANY furniture,  since we had rented a furnished house.  This time around.  Oh boy.

Then along with the light fixture (OK fine, “chandelier” if you prefer),  there will be Travelling Companion’s sewing machine(s),  along with my guitar.  That’s all we could really think of that we wanted to have show up within days of our own arrival.  Whenever that may be. 

It’s all up in the air at this point,  but I’m still going to plug away at a few of these little tasks from time to time.

Starting with the bikes.  Which is why I probably should get out there.


Oh, I saw this in the store this morning.  Just thought it was a wee bit odd.  


I guess there’s no German word for “Marshmallow”?  Who knew it could be so easy to learn a foreign language?


Keep it between the ditches.


Thanks for stopping by.





Sunday, September 16, 2012

We’re booked!

Not in the sense of being incarcerated or anything. I suppose that would more like,  “We’ve been booked”.  Not sure I’d put that on the blog. 

Well, at least not until I posted bail.

What I mean is,  our flight home for Christmas has been sorted out.  We decided to go with Koninklijke Luchtvaart Maatschappij.   (I love saying that)  instead of Air Austria.

Oh, that’s KLM for the rest of you.  I suppose Royal Dutch Airlines would work,  although the literal translation is more like, Royal Aviation Company?   I guess the “Dutch” part is understood.

I’m so easily distracted….


Anyhoodle,  it was Travelling Companion who did most of the head scratching yesterday, since she has a better handle on just when she needs to be back here for the big “Year End”  thingy.  I don’t mean New Years Eve either,  I mean the finance thingamajig.  That wasn’t happening with Air Austria.  

As it stands,  we’ll be somewhere over the Atlantic for New Years,  since we’ll haul on out of Toronto again on the 31st around six p.m.  We don’t really do much in the way to “celebrate” New Years,  so I predict I’ll be asleep.  Or will be trying to be.

So we’re outta here on the 14th of December,  which is exactly three months from when the flight was booked.   The slight wrinkle with KLM is, one does have to get to Schiphol first?  That part does slightly suck,  since we have to be on a “city hopper”  out of Vienna at something like 7:00 a.m.,  and take the long flight from Amsterdam a few hours later.  Gah!    Oh well.  GOING HOME!  HAR!     I can suck it up.


Today we spent a bit of time checking out accommodations in both Istanbul and then in Paris.  These will be possible destinations at some point in the New Year,  before we pull up roots and head off to The Great White North.

I’m going to have a little chat with “the boys” downstairs (who own the restaurant)  and see what they might have to recommend in the Istanbul department.  They’re both of Turkish origins,  and have counselled us in the past about going to Turkey.  So the temptation is certainly there.  I’m just not overly convinced that it’ll be that much warmer than Vienna at that time of year though.  We’ll see.


I’ve been to Paris enough times to be able to sort that one out,  since this trip will have more to do with buying fabric for Travelling Companion than hanging around as a tourist.  Champs Elysees?  Drove the car there.  Eiffel Tower?  Pfft!  We’ve seen it.  Screw those places,  we need to find those fabric shops!

I’m not going to go off on a great long essay on the quality of certain fabrics and where one can find this kind of stuff,  but suffice to say, until you’ve actually put your hands on some of the higher end “designer” fabrics,  held it up to the light and said, “Wow, how does it do that?” you haven’t a clue.   Sorry. 

It’s like,  riding a work horse, and then jumping on a Thorough bred?  Stepping out of your Pontiac Sunbird into an Audi R8?   Seeing High Def for the first time?  Commodore 64 and well,  whatever you have in front of you?  Need more examples?  I’m sure I could keep going.


If you’re making pyjamas or whatever,  then your local Jo-ann's, as one example, is just fine.    There are lots of places locally with that sort of run of the mill (hey,  is that a weaving pun?) fabric.   We have to make the rounds here in Europe while we still have the chance.    There had been talk of a trip up to the Netherlands at some point,  but we haven’t quite figured that one out just yet.  We’re going to go with the Paris program as a priority.  All planning is subject to change of course. 

No pictures today,  since running off to take one now would be somewhat contrived I’m afraid.   I just wanted to blurb out this little snippet mostly for the friends and relations who might happen to tune in from time to time. 

Not going to make it to the pub on the 14th though. Darn!

I somehow think going directly to the pub from the airport might be considered a bit silly?  And it’s unlikely our kids would be willing to meet us there.  Just a hunch.  Well,  and there’s that whole issue of perhaps falling asleep over a pint that might create a bit of a stir?  It’ll be nearly midnight our time before we get home to roost.  If I can stay awake for the cab ride home,  I’ll let you know.


Here’s hoping you enjoy the rest of your weekend.


Keep those sticks on the ice.

Thanks for stopping by.



Friday, September 14, 2012

I blame the darkness.

As the daylight hours begin to diminish, we’re once again faced with the prospect of getting up in the dark.  Never been one of my favourite things.  There’s a time as well,  usually right around mid-December,  when going to and returning from work in the dark is the norm.  At least in the Northern Hemisphere. Also not my favourite thing.  That was one of the things I actually enjoyed about working afternoons,  since even in the winter time, if it was a bright sunny day,  then that time was my own,  and I didn’t have to show up for work until later in the afternoon.  Coming home in the dark was a given.

I had a whole long-winded thing going on here about not being able to stay awake much past 9:30 and then waking up way too early,  but I unloaded all that drivel.   Suffice to say,  it’s a slippery slope,  and the darkness doesn’t help.  I’d say I need to be “out in my shop” in the evenings to try and fend off the sleepiness,  but operating potentially finger severing devices as a means of staying awake is probably not the best solution.  I’m not sure I can come up with a “plan”,  whether it’s here,  or back home.  Coffee is out of the question,  since I’ll still fall asleep,  but then wake up that much earlier.  This I know.


Anyhoodle,  it’s a fairly normal Friday here in Wienerland,  and at least the weather is trying to be a little better.  Still overcast with tiny snippets of sun.  But really tiny.  The shorts won’t be going on again any time soon,  since it was only 12°C this morning.  No clue what it is now.  Marginally warmer.  Don’t care.

Of course,  the good part about that is,  I’m not so concerned about going out and about in a shirt that might possibly need to be ironed.  If I have to wear a jacket, then there’s no reason to get all bent out of shape over a couple wrinkles.   “A couple wrinkles” he says! 

I’m trying to see the positive aspects of facing the colder weather.  Go with me on this one.

I never did get all that much of a tan on my legs,  so we can give up on that endeavour,  although I’m really not all that keen on even being in the sun,  but if a little tanning comes along,  I can accept it.  To some extent.  The only conscious effort made,  and it’s probably only a consideration,  is to avoid the dreaded “sock-tan lines” at all costs.  Better to burn the tops of ones feet by wearing sandals as far as I’m concerned.

I’ve seen some fellers out there with some mighty interesting looking contraptions on their feet.   If I thought I could get away with it,  I would have taken pictures,  but you know what I mean.   No socks with sandals!  Guys, please!   You’re making us look bad!  And that’s just one example.


I’ll try to control myself here,  I can sense my heart rate starting to climb.


Over the period of time that we’ve been here in Wienerland,  there’s been no shortage of junk mail,  both shoved into our mailbox,  as well as slipped over the door handle to the apartment.  I look on it mostly as entertainment,  sift through it, and then dutifully take it down and toss it into the recycling bin.  No harm done.  Plus,  it never hurts my vocabulary any to read flyers from the local lumber/hardware/tool stores and such. 

Hey,  if I can put a spin on cooler weather,  then I may as well take a shot at junk mail.

The thing is,  once in a while we get something that just makes me do a double take.  There was that flyer once a couple years ago from a Bordello just on the other side of the Czech border that I found somewhat curious,  and then yesterday we received this one that I’ve posted below.    It was hanging on the doorknob like one of those “do not disturb” signs from a hotel room.



So let me just paraphrase.   If you sign up to this deal for €11,90 a month,  they will deliver to you any of the items that they show on the reverse side for breakfast. 

All righty then!

So first of all,  who the heck is that lazy that they need their breakfast delivered?  And then of course,  you’re going to pay your €11,90 a month whether you order anything or not. 




It’s a unique idea,  I’ll give them that much.  I’d be curious to see how many people would sign up.  I can barely shove some breakfast down my throat most mornings,  so having someone show up first thing in the morning with items that I had foolishly ordered the night before,  thinking maybe I could get it down?   I don’t think so.

Besides,  I can walk out our front door,  and within roughly 25 metres,  I can be at a bakery down in the subway station where I can get most of those things, and probably cheaper.  If I had a good enough throwing arm,  I could probably hit at least a half dozen bakeries within throwing distance of our front door.   We’re talking a regulation baseball here.  No soft balls.   Just saying.

I guess I’d just need to be that much lazier.   Here I thought I had a pretty good grasp on just what being lazy is all about.  Silly me!  There are people out there lazier than me?  Wowsers.


Well,  hopefully someone is willing to bring you breakfast once in a while.  I doubt that it’s costing you €11,90 a month though. 

Or maybe it is?


Have a fine weekend if I happen to skip ahead.


Thanks for coming by.


Oh,  and P.S.,  I’m guessing the young lady does NOT come with breakfast.   There’s a reason not to sign up right there!

Thursday, September 13, 2012

My next wheelbarrow.

Considering that I bought the one and only wheelbarrow that I’ve ever owned back in *thinks* 1992,  and that it’s spent a good half of its life outdoors,  I’m reasonably certain that it will have lived its life,  and will need to be replaced.

So why the sudden thoughts of wheelbarrows?

I saw this beauty the other morning.

Copy of IMG_0432

I don’t usually gush over wheelbarrows and really,  I only took one picture.

Let me just flip it around there for you,  so you don’t have to crank your head over.


What?  Jägermeister is making wheelbarrows now?  Or is this some kind of sponsorship?  Either way, it’s a fine looking wheelbarrow.  I’m sure you agree.  Since well, we’re all experts on wheelbarrows here and everything….aren’t we?

Took me a minute to get that to work,  since Picasa, in a Big Brother kind of way,  kept trying to adjust the picture back to the way it “thought” it was supposed to go.  Not that it actually thinks or anything.


Speaking of looking at things in a sort of covetous way,  I’ve seen a couple of these in town.  But only a couple.




See,  that’s a “Danger Will Robinson” right there,  since the last time we were on one of these foreign country junkets,  I kept seeing Toyota Tundras.  Which,  by the way,  they do not have in Europe.  Toyota has something called the Hilux.  It’s kind of similar,  but nothing that really makes me turn my head or anything. The VW pick-up though?  Obviously I got out of the car and took a couple pictures.  I think that counts as “head turning”.


So when the executive decision was made to go shopping for a pick-up truck in 03,  you can see what we ended up with.


It’s parked up there behind the Jetta.   I sold it to my nephew in the early part of 08,  so I suppose I could do without some sort of “picking up stuff from the lumber yard” kind of vehicle,  and borrow that one once in a while.   I guess.   Maybe.   Mind you,  his son has been driving it this summer,  and he’s still a teenager.  I have no opinion.


I mean,  the chances of sniffing out a VW pick-up in North America are slim to none,  so there’s no worries there about me going all ape-shit at some dealer’s lot.  Makes it easy I suppose. 

Thoughts of riding the bike come to mind,  but bringing home a sheet of plywood gets tricky.

The chore of trying to decide just what will meet our transportation requirements once we get settled back home again will be fraught with a host of decisions.  Can’t say I’m looking forward to that part.


I’ll probably keep it simple by starting out with the wheelbarrow. Get that one under my belt,  and go from there.  You know,  small steps.


The weather here in Wienerland has pretty much sucked for the last couple days.  Rain.  Wind.  Getting cold.  

Had to put on socks and long trousers.  Can’t say I’m thrilled.

That’s enough griping for one day.  I’ll just sit here and have warm thoughts about my new wheelbarrow.


Thanks for stopping in.