Nein!

October 2, 2006 at 8:54 pm (Uncategorized)

I used to work with this Gen-X guy who lived rent free with his parents until he was about 30. Nice enough guy, but he was a bit of a spoiled ass and tended to take everything for granted. I remember one Monday, after a couple days of prowling the local bars and drinking heavily just to get rid of the microbes I’d encountered, I asked him how he’d spent his weekend.

“Ah, went to Amsterdam for a couple days. Wasn’t bad, but it wasn’t as cool as Oktoberfest in Germany.”

The little bastard. By the time he was 20, he’d hopped the Atlantic a half dozen times and regarded a trip to Europe like a drive to the Old Port. It steams me mostly because I’m envious. In fact, I can feel the gnawing sense of hate rising like bile at the back of my throat just thinking about it. Anyone have a stick of gum?

So, I’ve never hopped the pond. Maybe I’m just stridently provincial and feel strongly about staying on familiar soil. Did you ever think of that? Or maybe germ.jpgI’m just poor and ignorant in matters of travel. Does that make me a douchebag? I suppose it kind of does, huh? Well, screw you all. I hate long flights anyway. If you’ll pardon me, I’m going to run into my room and cry into my pillow for a few hours.

Pardon the girlish antics. It just seems that everyone but me has frolicked in far flung places. You people yawn when telling me about your trips to Egypt or back packing through Yurinstain, near Prague. I get emails from people who mention in offhand ways there recent travels to Brazil by way of Zurich and around the horn at Ouchithurts. It steams me, I tells you.

With that in mind, here is one of our regular bloggers while she was hanging out in Mannheim, Germany. She just sort of mentioned that, as though chilling out in Mannheim is like hanging around the mall. I think she was secretly mocking my weekend trip to Frenchman’s Hole, up near Bethel. I mean, it’s a nice little spot out there in the woods. Does that make me a loser?

I guess it kind of does, doesn’t it…

Advertisements

56 Comments

  1. Linda said,

    So where do you want to go, Mark? Got a passport? Go for it! You know you’d love Halloween in a creepy Bavarian castle, eh?

  2. LaFlamme said,

    My ultimate Halloween destination is Transylvania. There’s a group that goes every year.

  3. K2 said,

    Skiing in the Swiss Alps is high on my list.

    But I’l settle for a finished basement, a new kitchen and a garage.

  4. K2 said,

    Oh, and whomever the photo is of — Linda? Bobbie? — I see she’s trying to look European with the colored socks.

  5. Gil said,

    Climbing Mt Etna in Sicily, a still very active volcano, was among the coolest things I’ve ever done. I enjoyed travelling while I had the chance and recommend it to everyone.
    Of course there was always Amsterdam, and playing dominoes with the old guys in the hash bars of Palma, police riots in Portugal, authentic Irish pubs in the middle of Hong Kong. Jealous yet Mark?

  6. Mandy, the obit writer said,

    I hopped the pond once before I was 18 when I spent a week in London, England. It was for school so I don’t have any exotic exploits to report on. Unless you count trapising through the British Museum as exotic. I almost got picked up on the London Underground though.

  7. Bobbie said,

    Never made it to Mannheim, K2. Frankfurt, Stuttgard, Landstuhl and Augsburg were my limits when traveling in Germany. Hubby was gone 90% of the time and with 2 small children at the time, traveling was interesting.

  8. Bobbie said,

    Never made it to Mannheim, K2. Frankfurt, Stuttgard, Landstuhl and Augsburg were my limits when traveling in Germany. Hubby was gone 90% of the time and with 2 small children at the time, traveling was interesting.

    I did spend 10 months in Korea. A mud flat at 6 AM in Inchon was very interesting when you had to go play rescue for a vehicle.

  9. Bobbie said,

    Sorry about the double post. I spent 15 minutes in London on my way to Germany. Does that count as visiting a place? Guess it can’t be any worse than the hour I spent in Tokyo.

  10. Linda said,

    Not me. Never been to Germany. But I’ll send you a photo next year of me in front of the Sydney Opera House.

  11. Bobbie said,

    I’ll send you a photo of me enjoying the beach in Guam next year as well.

    Is the pillow soaked yet, Mark?

  12. Bobbie said,

    Besides, K2, I haven’t worn a dress since January, 1986. Light blue socks aren’t for me, either-I tend to stick with the black ones so I know who’s stealing my socks in the house.

  13. Richie said,

    I’ve been to England, France and Switzerland. Been to Quebec, also, but that’s like going to another planet and doesn’t count.

    England was . . . well, quaint, is about the only way to put it. Stayed at the Webster Square Hotel; which was probably last modernised in the early 1800’s. Only two channels on the radio. Got to see the “Trooping of the Colours”, though, very inspiring. They do know how to put on a parade, unlike here. Did a whole bunch of other stuff. Traveled everywhere on the Tube, never got lost. What a great time !

    From England went to France. Saw the Bastille Day parade in Paris, went to Notre Dame, saw where the sniper hid in the tower, etc etc.

    I studied (took a set of summer courses) at the Univeristy of Grenoble; and we got there from Paris by train. I remember walking up to the head end of the train to look at the locomotive. It was a very large steam locomotive; with SNCC (the french rail system name) painted over USMRR ; United States Military Railroad. Yah, the froggies were still using old US locomotives from WW-II.

    Grenoble was a communist town; active communist party, red flags everywhere and so forth. Very scenic though. Don’t remember much of what we studied in school, but I met this really cute girl there. My overall impression was France was still mired in the middle ages with a modern veneer. Learned why all the main roads in France are lined with big trees: it’s because the Germans don’t like to march in the hot sun.

    From there to Geneva. Took the boat tour of Lake Geneva; saw the castle made famous by “The Man in the Iron Mask”, usw. Big airplane strike; no flights home; ended up staying in a little village somewhere in the Alps. It was like going back in time. Made me appreciate modern things all the more. I’d love to go back, but I spent all my money on a new car. Oh well.

    Must have made an impression on me since I married a really cute french girl, from northern Maine.

  14. Richie said,

    On a side note; “The Weasel” just got back from Germany. He even brought me a souvenir !! I’m sure he’ll be posting on here about his trip.

  15. oopsy said,

    I qualify!! I spent four months in Europe back in ’72. My husband and I were trying to decide whether to stay together or not, so we did the obvious thing – we quit our jobs, sold our house, grabbed the two kids, bought a VW bus and picked it up in Brussels, and off we went! Camped around Europe til we ran out of money, and then split up anyhow. But it was great fun! Picking up hitchhikers in Scotland and not being able to understand the locals (but, they WERE speaking English)…. thumbing our noses at all the snooties on the Riviera, checking the palace guards in London (kids did try to make them smile), etc. Now, I have absolutely no desire to go back to Europe.

    Snorkeling off the coast of Belize, tho, ……. that’s another story…..

  16. chaser of the lost ones said,

    ” Most people believe that a satellite falls in love with a loyal tape recorder, but they need to remember how ostensibly a load bearing burglar wakes up. The inferiority complex thoroughly secretly admires the power drill. A frustrating briar patch satiates a boiled recliner. An overripe blithe spirit is muddy. A non-chalantly fat turkey…..oh…

    Most people believe that a chess board seeks a bartender about a cowboy, but they need to remember how almost a particle accelerator goes to sleep. A skyscraper finds subtle faults with the food stamp. Indeed, the molten satellite sells a photon inside an eggplant to an insurance agent. A hesitantly phony avocado pit single-handledly buries the load bearing warranty, and a fire hydrant graduates from a class action suit about a grain of sand. Most people believe that a chess board seeks a bartender about a cowboy, but they need to remember how almost a particle accelerator goes to sleep. A skyscraper finds subtle faults with the food stamp. Indeed, the molten satellite sells a photon inside an eggplant to an insurance agent. A hesitantly phony avocado pit single-handledly buries the load bearing warranty, and a fire hydrant graduates from a class action suit about a grain of sand.

    The highly paid hydrogen atom The orbiting inferiority complex avoids contact with a rattlesnake. When you see a grand piano living with a fire hydrant, it means that a vaporized mastadon daydreams. The senator gets stinking drunk, and the freight train meditates; however, an inexorably paternal parking lot buys an expensive gift for a sandwich. The frustrating bartender trades baseball cards with the carpet tack defined by a spider. Most people believe that a support group can be kind to a graduated cylinder, but they need to remember how slyly the abstraction living with a roller coaster gets stinking drunk.

    A satellite defined by the globule? A frustrating paycheck assimilates the steam engine. Some pork chop over a grand piano pees on an inferiority complex living with the garbage can. A knowingly dirt-encrusted photon falls in love with the fruit cake. An umbrella brainwashes another parking lot. Some pork chop for the mortician, some globule, and the fractured industrial complex are what made America great!

    Furthermore, the fractured tuba player earns frequent flier miles, and an insurance agent toward a line dancer lazily finds lice on the inexorably imaginative movie theater. Now and then, a stoic bullfrog conquers a most difficult cheese wheel. A load bearing plaintiff sweeps the floor, because a cargo bay recognizes a cashier. Furthermore, the class action suit related to a microscope hesitates, and the familiar senator accidentally negotiates a prenuptial agreement with an avocado pit. The orbiting inferiority complex avoids contact with a rattlesnake. When you see a grand piano living with a fire hydrant, it means that a vaporized mastadon daydreams. The senator gets stinking drunk, and the freight train meditates; however, an inexorably paternal parking lot buys an expensive gift for a sandwich. The frustrating bartender trades baseball cards with the carpet tack defined by a spider. Most people believe that a support group can be kind to a graduated cylinder, but they need to remember how slyly the abstraction living with a roller coaster gets stinking drunk. “

  17. brenda said,

    ??? what the h— is that about?????

  18. Linda said,

    Oopsy — great story, that sounds much better than fighting over the assets.

    Wales is another place where you can’t understand what they are saying very well. Of course sometimes they are actually speaking Welsh!

  19. oopsy said,

    Didnt make it to Wales – got as far as Bath in England. And we were lucky enough to go to Stone Henge when you could still walk inside and stand next to the stones. Today there is a fence around the whole thing. The Scottish folks were definitely my favorites, tho. A guy we met in a pub in a town north of Edinburgh promised us some fresh-caught trout from the Lac and by golly, the next day we had them! My seven-year old son was SOOOO DISAPPOINTED that we didnt spy “Nessie” when we drove around Loch Ness. That is still a story we recall. Near Aberdeen we camped almost on the shore. The tides went out soooo far, and we rock-hopped out to tide pools almost a half mile from the beach. And gin and tonics come WARM – and you couldnt get ice.!! Cairns in Scotland, Castles in England. The tour director who tried to scare my kids when we went into the dungeon in some castle (began with a W, but I cant remember the name)…

  20. Richie said,

    The strange item submitted by “Chaser of the lost ones” is a method that email spammers use to get past firewall spam blockers & send advertising to your email

    The Flamer has been spammed ! Ha ha !! This particular piece of craptacular mutancy is for Gevallia Coffee products.

  21. Mainetarr said,

    My dream vacation would be Italy. I would love to go tour Italy, maybe meet some long lost relatives….drink some wine….enjoy the scenery. Ah yes, Italy it would be.

  22. Richie said,

    Hey Bobbie !
    My daughter spent about 3 years or so in Korea ! She was at the beautiful resort town of Camp Casey. She was a radio intercept operator and her unit was tactical, so she spent a lot of time in the field. Nothing like putting up a 100 meter radio tower in the dark, in the rain. I have a picture of her in all her combat gear. 100 lbs of US Army fighting fury ! Her last year was in Seoul at the headquarters; where she met and married her husband who also happened to be from Maine.

  23. Linda said,

    I climbed the Southern Alps and walked on glaciers.

  24. jarheaddoc said,

    I spent six months in the Mediterranean Sea courtesy of Uncle Sam. I should have done a second float and seen all the stuff I didn’t see the first time around. I would have spent less time drinking and more time looking.

    Italy was dirty and the people just wanted to blow us up. Spain was hot but clean and I remembered enough of my high school spanish to get the essentials: beer, food, bathroom, ambulance for my drunk friends, things like that.

    France: sucked.

    Tunisia: rained on us, people asked us to leave.

    Israel: great people, once you get used to seeing everyone walking down the street with some sort of automatic weapon. Almost everyone spoke English. Weird to see Budweiser written in Hebrew

  25. LaFlamme said,

    I hear you can get a cheap flight to the lovely Persian Gulf this time of year. Maybe I’ll plan a trip.
    No one’s figured out who the mystery traveler is yet? Hint: it’s a girl.

  26. LaFlamme said,

    That long message from Chaser is from one of the regulars. I just checked the IP address.

  27. Linda said,

    Looks like word salad to me. What’s that a harbinger of: schizophrenia maybe?

  28. Linda said,

    Hey I know!!! It’s Bulldog!!! am I right?

  29. LaFlamme said,

    You… are…
    Wrong.

  30. montel said,

    it’s weasel. always knew he was like that

  31. Linda said,

    That’s one of the problems with the internet: almost any of you could be standing next to me anywhere and I wouldn’t know it. Oh well.

  32. LaFlamme said,

    Yeah. I was in a crowded Bingo hall one time and some lady sneaked up and licked the back of my neck. It was Bulldog. We had a big laugh. Later, I noticed my wallet was gone. It pays to be careful.

  33. jarheaddoc said,

    Well, whoever it is, she has the fashion sense of a tourist: socks with sandals. I thought that was a Masshole only thing

  34. brenda said,

    I got this weird spam email from someone with “chase” & “montel” in the addy, and it was addressed to several emails with “lost” in them, and it was so weird I wanted to see what you guys thought before deleting it. Sorry, but it was a weird one, no? And thanks Richie, for explaining it. Sorry, Mark, I wasn’t trying to spam you!
    What I’m really tired of is the emails from various names, all offering me to bang lonely housewives! Why would I want to bang anonymous lonely housewives? The from names keep changing & it’s filling up my spam file.

    anyway, yeah- the socks with platform sandals looks kinda late 70’s doesn’t it?

  35. Linda said,

    We ALL travel in cars, so here is a safety tip. Well, maybe not for the guys, but that’s your call.

    http://www.ananova.com/news/story/sm_2021098.html

    http://www.defrance.org/artman/publish/article_1593.shtml

  36. K2 said,

    Gotta be Fred, then. Martha wouldn’t fit in the frame.

  37. AO said,

    The only fun place I’ve ever been was Aruba. If anyone of you is ever up for an island getaway, I highly recommend it. But, a trip to Transylvania sounds like fun, too.

  38. Linda said,

    And by the way, some of my best friends wear socks with sandals, there’s nothing wrong with a little 70s nostalgia. I don’t wear them myself but if I did it would be with more special socks. Tell me who you are and whether you need me to knit you some socks, OK?

  39. AO said,

    Hey, I wear socks with my Birkenstocks when the weather turns cold. I hate wearing shoes so, it works out great. But, I’ve never worn them with a skirt.

  40. K2 said,

  41. AO said,

    Oh, no, K2!! It’s your worst nightmare come true! My deepest sympathies.

  42. Linda said,

    Better stock up!

  43. K2 said,

    No, my worst nightmare was my Vikings game not being on DirectTV’s NFL Sunday Ticket last weekend. It was on the local cable Fox instead, which I don’t get (I do get Fox NY and Fox Los Angeles), since I don’t have cable, because I have satellite. And DirectTV wanted me to pay more to get the local Fox via satellite, even though I already shelled out $210 for Sunday Ticket, and have two national Fox stations In other words, I paid for a game I couldn’t watch at home.

    Needless to say, I just canceled my DirectTV altogether and am having cable installed. Means I won’t get the rest of my Vikings games, but I had to take a stand as a consumer. I did get 2/3 of my money back on the NFL bull shit.

  44. Linda said,

    That does suck, K2. I used to have DirecTV but I did have local channels, and now I have Dish and still have local channels. Couldn’t you get them there? or is it just the local channels weren’t in your package? We did have to pay more.

    I have an unreasonable hatred of our local cable channel, and they probably feel the same way about me. So that’s not an option for us.

  45. AO said,

    Well, K2, I can’t believe you’d pick football over beer. I guess I just don’t know you as well as I thought I did..SNIFF!! But, glad to hear you stuck it to the dish company. Cable or dish, it’s a no win situation. They’ll screw you any which way they can.

  46. Bobbie said,

    Glad to hear that I wasn’t the only one who got fed up with DirecTV and cancelled them.

  47. Linda said,

    Gee that’s 3 of us that cancelled DirecTV. Quite a trend!!!

  48. AO said,

    I did have dish tv for a while. I just don’t remember which one it was. Hmm…must have been many moons ago.

  49. LaFlamme said,

    Okay, you guys beat it out of me. Brenda is the mystery chick pictured above. Yeesh.

  50. Linda said,

    Hey Brenda! Happy trails!

  51. brenda said,

    hey!???

  52. LaFlamme said,

    Sorry, Brenda. As you can see, they were relentless and they beat it outta me.

  53. Gil said,

    Then there was a weekend getaway at a spa at a resort island off of the Italian coast. How romantic. Me, some guys from the squad, a handful of Marines and about 100 octogenarians. Watching a Beatles cover band in Iceland, a crocodile farm in Singapore, diving off of waterfalls in Puerto Rico. Winning a darts tournament against an Israeli-English team in Israel. And lots of alcohol along the way.

  54. Gil said,

    And here is an example of outsourcing going horribly wrong.
    http://www.fucd.com/index.php?link=257
    SFW

    and, yes it’s true, a blog update
    http://churchofpainfultruth.blogspot.com/

  55. Linda said,

    I like to read about remote places I’ll never visit — especially when the book is about some kind of “mission quest.” A couple of great examples: Simon Winchester’s “Outposts: Journeys to the Surviving Relics of the British Empire” and “Last Chance to See” by Douglas Adams and Mark Carwardine. I’m not likely to ever see a komodo dragon or sail to Diego Garcia Island, but these are pretty rollicking stories.

  56. brenda said,

    well, yeah, mark, I see. The satellite issue was a clever ruse to disguise impatient interest in who the picture was.

    Well, when I was stationed in Mannheim, I used to take the EOG (electric cable train) to Frieburg to visit a friend for weekends, (a very high sarge who wasn’t in my chain and who came from Maine) and the apt was full- every wall- of cuckoo clocks. So I found it an odd coincidence when Weasel said there’s a clock in Germany named after me- I don’t know who weasel is? Maybe someone who knew me in Germany? In the Army?
    Maybe “cuckoo-cuckoo” was a secret hello from a past secret lover?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: