Saturday, August 6, 2011

Paris and Switzerland

I love traveling, but it's always nice to get home to our own house and bed (especially our heavenly bed!!!).

Now for the recap of last month's Swiss/French trip:

Basel, Switzerland
Highlights: Rhine Swimming (Rick did this - I hate being cold, so I watched), sunbathing (with SPF 70, because I'm not a skin cancer fan), National Swiss Day fireworks over the Rhine, and seeing friends!

Lowlight: I was still coughing ALL the time, thanks to the nasty bug that I caught earlier in the week. BOO.

Paris, France
Highlights: Smooching my man over champagne at the top of the Eiffel Tower, seeing the Eiffel light show at night, seeing the Catacombs, walking through Notre Dame (again), climbing the tower at the Sacre Coeur, BEING IN EFFING PARIS with my lovey.

Lowlights: I have found Parisians to be nice people for the most part (just a little smelly), but Rick and I found out on this trip that their homeless population is made up of 90% @ssholes. One homeless guy reeled through the line of tourists at the Catacombs, bumping into people hard, and then went on to spit on and kick a teenage kid who was just sitting and minding his own business. Another homeless guy actually HIT a lady on the arm while she walked by! It was just while we were walking by, too, prompting Rick to comment on the future state of any homeless person who did that to me (rhymes with "head).

Chateau Versailles
Highlights: It's Versailles, so..... EVERYTHING was a highlight, even though I'd just been there a month ago.

Lowlights: I would say that the rain was a lowlight, but we had our umbrellas with us, and it's EFFING VERSAILLES, so there were officially no Lowlights.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Welcome to Europe!

I moved to a small city in The Netherlands for my honey's internship.

While its exciting to be actually living in a different country, it's been a bit rough of a start for me.

I was really excited to move somewhere new, and it's nice that Dutch people can speak English (very) well. But I feel like a total jerk for not knowing their language, and I'm not my usual outgoing, talk-to-everyone self. It would certainly be different if I had a job or school here, but that's not the case.

I realized how truly isolated I have felt when I was on the street one day and, to my shock, a woman asked me a question! Sadly, it was in Dutch. So all I could do was shake my head, and say, "Sorry..."

It's like I have put an invisibility cloak on the people around me here. I automatically assume people aren't talking to me (because usually they aren't), which can be embarrassing when shopkeepers try to greet me and I realize it very late.

Things are getting better since I joined an expat group, and thanks to some of R's nice co-workers.

But I do still miss the dogs. They seem to be having a ball at my parent's house back in Seattle. My mom and I Skype almost every day - 3:30pm my time is 6:30am her time, so we chat over coffee before she gets ready for work. She always holds up the dogs or turns the camera on them so that I can see them.

There's generally a new story of what they rolled in the other day - dead bunnies or dead birds on a boom day. But dead worms or bugs are usually are the dead-thing du jour. If there is a big, dead black beetle in the yard, Paris will find it and roll in it, guaranteed.

I finally got around to posting pictures on facebook - some from our brief time in Seattle, and a lot from the European travels of the past month. This set of pictures cracked me up. I was trying to capture the tender moment of my nephew "helping" my mom, "Gan Gancine," to water her garden. I was lucky (?) enough to also capture this little dog story line as well:

Chewy (on the right) finds a Dead Thing in the yard.

Chewy rolls happily in the Dead Thing. Oh happy day!

Not sure what he's doing here, but I think he is sniffing his New Dead Thing Smell.