Other posts related to travel

Sui generis intersection

| February 8, 2010 4:27 pm

Sometimes, I think civil engineers are out there making fun of everybody…

I wonder what they were thinking when they designed this marvel…

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Spoony Attitude Towards the World

| August 8, 2008 8:45 am

The following videos really made my day. Thank you Amy for letting me know. Also, thank you Matt for making them. The put tears in my eyes.

Don’t forget the 2005 and 2006 editions.

These videos are just another proof that the world is a really happy and pretty place. Let’s work together to keep it that way.


European Flaneur

| January 18, 2007 8:24 pm

So, CM and I went to Slovenia to spend holidays with my parents. Overall, the trip went great. We saw some awesome places, such as Piran. That said, most of time we spend in some groups, such as family, that spend most of time talking to each other in Slovene. I am still fluent in Slovene, but CM only understands little Slovene, so most of time she was bored. Fortunately for her we only go to Slovenia every two years or so.

Here are couple of highlights from the trip. We landed in Munich, Germany. Why? Well, this way we save about $200 per person. Then we rent a car that we need anyway. So, we almost get the car for free. Maybe with Slovenia being a leading member of EU, the flights to Slovenia will become cheaper. The new airport sure looks impressive. After Germany, we drove to through the Alps towards Slovenia. For mid-december, the snow conditions were, well, weird. Almost no snow. If you were ever in the Alps in December, you know how weird that is. I guess people finally achieved their goal of leaving the mark.

In Slovenia, we visited Ljubljana, which was gorgeous. All decorated and super cold. But we did not care, we visited downtown several times, do some shopping, eat in the restaurants. We were tourists. Just tourists staying with my parents. One day we decided to visit Piran, which is a great little town on the coast. My favorite thing about this town is that it is essentially a labyrinth of narrow streets, some big enough for the car, one narrow enough that you have to be slim to go through. These streets are surrounded by houses that are built on top of each other.

My parents took us for a two day trip to the house in Croatia. On the way to Croatia we stopped in a little town in Slovenia called Lipica. This is where the white horses (Lipicaners) come from. It was interesting to see all these horses being really excited about us. They wanted us to play with them. After that, we continued our way to Croatia. Though Croatia has lot to offer, it is clearly far behind Slovenia in terms of their infrastructure. For example, the Istra’s costal roads are in pretty bad shape and things look in fairly bad shape. That said, they did have war much longer than Slovenia, so I would imagine they are still rebuilding. Also, the tourism in the area was greatly affected.

While in Slovenia, we also visited Skofja Loka and Radovlica, which are old town with some really interesting history. In Skofja Loka, we checked out this old castle and museum, and in Radovlica we watched old tradition of creating gift gingerbread artworks.

Finally, we visited several people I know in Slovenia. They ranged from may extended family, neighbors, to people I went to school with, and people that live in US, but I only meet at the conferences.

The way back was non-eventful except that the plane was broken, so we had to sleep in a bad hotel in Detroit.


Delectation in little things

| 8:21 pm

There are two types of people out there: those who get it and those who do not. Well, I am somewhere in between. I get some things and I don’t get some other things. Let’s start with things I get and then work our way to the whatever… I spend last week in Salt Lake City. I was here on business for good portion of the week, but I managed to also have lots of fun.

So, there are several awesome things in life. Somewhere on the top of the list are music, biking, snowboarding, gadgets. I like them all. Pretty much the first thing I did when I came to Salt Lake City is find NA and go on a wild goose chase trying to find this vegan restaurant. We were finally on this parking lot where it was supposed to be, when we decided it is best to call them. Well, turned out that hotel’s list was wrong, so we find another one. And it was totally worth it. This one, called Sage Cafe, was one of the best vegan restaurants I was ever in. The food was really good, and even the non-vegan people enjoyed it. Not learning from the wild-goose-chasing experience, we did the same thing next day, except now we were five people and the hike involved about three blocks one wrong way, then ten blocks the other wrong way and finally a short taxi drive to the restaurant. It was a great restaurant three blocks away from the hotel. Oh, and I forgot to mention that there is some insane cold over Utah, so we did all this walking in about 5-10F (-15 – -12C).

Anyway, Friday afternoon the meeting was over, so bunch of us rented cars and equipment and went to do some serious skiing and snowboarding in a local resort. The nice thing about Salt Lake City is that you drive 30-45 minutes and you are in the most awesome snowboarding in the world. The resort we went to has night skiing, so we stayed there until late at night. Saturday we continued the vacation part of the trip and we went to Snowbird, which is in my opinion the best snowboarding place. Unfortunately, this year the snow conditions are not that good, so they only have 50 inches of snow. Usually they have more like 100. Also, there was little to no powder. But, we had great time, except SP who lost her wallet. So, for the next couple of days, I was her sugar daddy. Finally on Sunday we went to another resort in Park City, where we had actually better conditions than in Snowbird. According to the guy in the shop rental, because of the wind all the snow is blown to Park City. Incidentally, the same guy managed to guess the places I went based on the scratches on the board.

Monday, I had to say goodbye. My flight was at 2pm, so there was no way to do any boarding. So, I spend the day doing work and feeling sad that the short snowboarding trip was over. Well, there will always be next year.

Now, to the weird stuff. Well, I think the most weird thing are people who do not get it. Living life that is. Imagine, there are people out there who wake up in the morning, go to work, come home, watch TV or something and so on every day. And I am not talking about somebody who cannot afford to go snowboarding or biking or anything. I am talking about people who make lots of money.

And finally the weirdest of all. One night after snowboarding, bunch of us went to the Sage Cafe to have some warm vegan cocoa, and some awesome food. The waitress was awesome. She was, and I quote, “a bionic woman” (according to her). She was super excited and really nice. So, J?, if you are reading this, You rock!! But she was not weird. The weird thing was what happened afterward. WS and I walked to the car at 11pm or so, and this woman on the street stopped us. She asked us if we could confirmed that house, van, figment of her imagination, or something, looks like a ship. Since we had no idea what she is talking about, we classified her as the most weird thing in Salt Lake City.


Boisterous Mayhem

| April 23, 2006 8:55 pm

When flying long distance, especially to another country, it is really nice to fly business class. It gives you leg space, access to special lounges, priority checking, but above all, you get nice little ceramic buildings from Amsterdam on each flight.

Beginning of April, I went to visit a customer outside USA and I flew there using KLM. Since I was flying business class, I was able to enjoy the business class lounge in the New York City JFK airport. It was really nice, lots of food (non-vegan), drinks (mostly alcohol), and above all, special security line.

On the plane, the business class treatment continued. First, they start serving drinks before take-off. Then they pretty much walk around you like waiters in the restaurants. Eventually they dim all the lights and windows, so people can sleep. Pretty awesome. Then a little bit before landing, they give you this little ceramic replica of a building in Amsterdam.

So, I know, when I fly withing USA, I usually fly Southwest, and if I fly international, I am usually too stingy to pay for first class. That said, once you compare the nice and quiet business class flight with KLM with boisterous flight with US Airways, you will see that there is absolutely no comparrison.