Mittwoch, September 28, 2005

New Links . . .

I hope I manged to post a few links . . . we'll see!

Dienstag, September 27, 2005

Subway Horror and Job Interviews

So, I've told you about drunk Oktoberfest people in the Munich subway.

Well, today, there was a soccer game.

I don't know if you're familiar with the average German soccer fan. I'll tell you about it:

They want to see a good game, they root for their team, and about a third like to get drunk. A the lines are long, and the fans don't want to miss a minute of the game standing in line for the next beer, they get drunk ahead of time.

And what a coincidence: it's Oktoberfest! Take the day off, get drunk and go on some rides, then take the subway to the Stadium!

I picked my seat VERY carefully today. Is the person across from me drunk? Is he going to throw up on me? Or just be a general nuisance?

Thank God I rode with a colleague: Mark H. today. He's the "knight in shining armour" at the reception. "A Question?" Mark knows the answer. "A problem?" Mark can solve it. "You want to talk about life's mysteries?" Mark's there to talk. He's always in a good mood, and being around him makes everyone feel good! Too bad that he's taken (romantically). His partner's name is Georg, and I met him at the Oktoberfest last Thursday. Very nice!

You've all had job interviews. I've had about 9 - 10. Seven were successful.

Today, I was on the other side: I was the interviewer. It was a great candidate, as he had worked for Berlitz before, and was just relocating with a British Company to Munich. We'll hire him free-lance, I'm sure. It's just a strange feeling being on "the other side of the desk!!!!!!"

A note to all who read my last post: my sister's web-site is:
It's worth reading! Even though personal references are unknown . . .

Mittwoch, September 21, 2005


By the way, take a look at my sister's blog. She's a great person, and she's got the same political views as I do.


It's Oktoberfest time again!

That means hundreds of drunk tourists in every subway train...

Americans, Australians, Japanese, Italians, etc. All drunk.

I'm sorry. It's fun, the Oktoberfest! It's a huge party! 6 to 7 MILLION people in 17 days. That's 312,000 people every day. 24,000 people in each beer tent.

If each person drinks two Mass (two liters) of beer at 7.35 Euros each, and eats something (between 4.25 and 8.50 Euros), which is the normal, average, then it's: 560,000 Euros per day per tent. That's 7,280,000 per day. That's 116,480,000 Euros for the entire Oktoberfest. Not to mention hotels, restaurants and public transportattion.

It's a family tradition in my husband's family goes to the Oktoberfest. We never go INTO a beer-tent. We sit in the beergarden. We get there on the first day at 09:00 o'clock, although they don't serve beer until 12:00 noon. We want to have at least 40 seats together, and that's the only way: get there early!

Well, this year, for the first time in 6 years, the weather was bad. We couldn't sit outside. So, Traudl, Andreas and I didn't go. Michael went with a friend.

He left the house at 07:34am. He got back at 02:28am. He said he had fun!

I'm going on Thursday with my work. About 100 people from Berlitz are going! Even the manager for Europe (an American who works out of New Jersey) is coming. Some new trainee teachers asked if it was okay to get drunk there, seeing as so many important people would be there, but we said, "100 Berlitz people? Everyone Has to buy two liters of beer? It's doubtful that anyone remembers your name afterwards!"

I won't write on Friday...but maybe Saturday or Sunday...

Sonntag, September 11, 2005

New Pictures of Italy

New Pictures of Italy

Hi everyone!

Here are some more pictures of Northern Italy...

Samstag, September 03, 2005


Here are the first pictures of Verona, Italy.

It's a beautiful city! Every tiny apartment has a balcony (about 6 sq. feet or 1.5 sq. meters), but they take pride in making it into an artwork.

My brother-in-law, Andreas, was sick and tired of balconies after a few hours, whereas I loved them! He also didn't really want to see gardens, but we dragged him to one. Here the pictures.

Freitag, September 02, 2005

Hurricanes, Floods and Nature

You know, when a politician in one of the Southern States of the USA compared the results of Hurricane Katrin to the tsunami, saying, "This is our own tsunami." I thought at first, stupid. Hundreds of thousands of people died in the tsunami of Dec. 2004.

At the time, it wasn't really clear what exactly had happened in New Orleans and Biloxi, etc. A storm had passed, people were in shelters, electricity was gone. But everyone expected that life would return to normal.

Now we hear in the news that New Orleans is being evacuated for the next two to three months! Everything is flooded. Nothing is working: water, gas, sewer, electricity. The people who decided to ride out the storm are still there, looting. Well, what do you expect?

How can you buy food? If all the supermarkets are closed?

What about toilet paper?

What about aspirin and other medications?

You've been wearing the same clothes in the water for two days. What do you do? Well, the shelves in K-Mart still have dry things. As there are no cashiers, you just take them, right?

The United States is a huge, rich country. We can send in National troops. We can evacuate the people per helicopter. We can set up shelters in stadiums, and send busses to take them there.

In Indonesia? India? They don't have the infrastrucure to do all that. So, it really isn't fair to compare Hurricane Katrina to the tsunami of Dec. 2004.

On the other hand, there have been many tsunamis in the last decades in Japan, and even in the U.S. They weren't too bad, so we really don't remember them. The countries were better prepared. Hurricane, tsunami, earthquake, volcano eruption...

Well, this time it was the poorest area in the U.S. I'm only speculating. Not discriminating. The houses aren't built the way they are in Vermont or Michigan or Idaho. They can't afford to.

How many storms and hurricanes have passed over the region in the last 100 years? Almost too many to count. This time, it was a catastrophe.

How many people were killed? 100 or 1,000?

I'm beginning to think: "our own tsunami," is okay to say. We can't compare it to Southeast Asia, but the tragedy is much the same.

The flooding in Europe has receeded, and we have great weather right now.

And my mother-in-law says, "Oh, how horrible, it's so hot..."