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20.10.06

Well, I just got back from Berchtesgaden. It is a small city in the middle of the alps. Famous for the summer vacation home of Adolf Hitler. Called "The Eagle's nest", it was built high up on a mountain.
Of course that was kind of a stupid thing to do. See, it is only accessible in the summer. In early October, the road ices up and no one can get to it. Since this is late October now, the place was closed. So I wandered around the small city. They have a church that was built in 1206 and a castle built in the 16th century.
One thing I will say is that the city is a mess. Right now they are repaving and re-doing the roads there and traffic is confusing and it was very unclear where you could go on foot. I mostly tried to follow the locals as I made my way to the old city.
Had Pizza for lunch. Was very good. Real italian guy made it.
Anywho, I am off to the gym and then dinner. Will probably stay in and cook something.

19.10.06

Well, it is the morning again. 7:10 to be exact. We get breakfast by Frau (Means Mrs in German) Strobl. She is about 60 years old and can have a temper if you get on her bad side.
This is midterm week so far.

Philosophy midterm was yesterday and not at all worried about it. Most kids wrote about a page and I wrote 3 full pages just for him to read it all :P. The prof likes me though and knows that I know this stuff so I think if I just show that I undersand he is fine with it.

Next is German though. It is a bit harder. Think of English grammar lessons in 3rd grade then put them in German. I never did well in 3rd grade grammar so seeing if I can do better now.

Well back to studying adverbs, prepositions and conjunctions.
Example: I esse den Apfel, weil ich Hunger habe. (I eat the apple because I am hungry. Weil means because and it is a subordinate conjunction so the verb habe in the second sentence is at the end).


18.10.2006

This is the european date. Day, month, year. Smallest to largest. Makes sense I think.

Well I have a cold and have had one since Saturday now. Started with a sore throat, then sore throat and runny nose, then runny nose and coughing and now just coughing. I think that means I am getting better.

Right now it is 6:55 am cause thats the only time I can talk to my sis. Have to get up for 8 30 class anyways (German).

My German teacher comes from a small village on the border of Switzerland and Austria. That means he has a different accent and can be a bit hard to understand at times.


23.10.06

Another day another rant (with information)

Well,I fell off the bike and gave myself a good bruise on my thigh. There is a big divit that runs between the sidewalk where I was trying to go and the street I was on. My tire got wedged in that divit and I went sprawling on the sidewalk. 'Cept for a bruise or two, a scrape on the elbow and a bit of humiliation, I am fine.

Classes are going. Best thing I can say about them. I am a business major with 0 business classes this semester. All core classes or classes I had to take cause I am on the trip. Not my favorite, but need to take them some time. Worst class is probably theology. Prof doesn't speak the best English and she can make non-sentences at times.

Well, now for the fun European fact o' the day. At the table, it is customary to hold both the knife and fork and eat with both in hand and not put one down to switch hands. Felt kinda like a pig at first but got used to it quick. Food here is good depending on what you get. The lamb sandwiches they call kabobs are great, as are the pizzas. And the Chinese is great. Greek is also good. Not so good is goulash, fish or rolled meat things caled rolles.

Well it is 4 after 8 pm now. First night time post. Maybe have more in the morning before german.

25.10.06

Yeah, its been a few days since my last writing. Midterms will do that to ya.

Halloween is coming up and they do celebrate it to some degree. They watch American tv shows and try to intimitate them. Most don't know the concept behind it but they do like getting candy and dressing up.Sorry if my spelling is off but I have 5 min before my first class (8:30 am german 312). Candy here is different then back home. Chocolate is a lot sweeter. Also, the favorite food seems to be a chocolate spread thing called nutella. I don't like it much. Too sweet for me. Anyways time to go to class. Wednesdays are long, but not long like Tuesdays (in class from 8 30 am to 8 30 pm ugh)

27.10.06

Well we are on our Fall Trip starting in Metz. It is a medium sized city on the German/French border. About 8 hours from Salzburg if you know the way. If you're like us though, you hit traffic and take the wrong off ramp. We were supposed to get here at 6 but didn't get here 'til 8. Dinner was also late. We were supposed to be there at 7 but didn't get it until 8:30. Europe has a bad habit of awful service. In Salzburg there are 2 restaurants I go to where service is great. But most places are so slow. Supposed to be the "charm" of waiting and talking with people around you. But I want food. Well that's enough for now.

5.11.06

Paris. City of lights. City of Magic. City I could do without. My trip to Paris was decent but had a much better time in the smaller French cities such as Chaute and Reamis, but I am getting ahead of myself here...

Well my last entry was from Metz so will start from there. We enter Paris and it looks much like any big city, lots of buildings and very gray. The buildings are mostly prefab and not much different than those you would find in Portland. There are some buildings such as parliament or the Eiffel tower that are cool looking but overal it is far from the perfect city as is the sterotype for Paris.

Anyway, we get to the hotel and I am in a triple with 2 other guys. Joy. The room is not any bigger than a double, they just took out the desk under the window and added a bed. We were in the Port D'orleans section. Central very southern part of Paris. So got a quick lunch and then went to the Monet ( it is the artist, Mo - ney) museum. I wasn't into impressionist art much but apparently they are famous paintings.

After that I went back to the hotel and slept. And with that I too will go. I will be on in the morning to tell of the next glorious day....

6.11.06

Well, I did get up at the usual time (about 7 am) and went to the comp lab as usual but was too tired to write. So now it is 11:45 and got back from the gym waiting for lunch so all ready to write about the first full day in Paris.
So first full day is Sunday. Well, since this is a Catholic University they scheduled our trip to Notre Dame Cathedral so we could have mass and visit it. Little did we know what a headache that would be.
We took the subway to the church with no problem and crossed the street to where it was. Well, we get there and get through the line and we are stopped. Now, not many kids speak French so we had no idea what was going on. Dr. Loos, the art history professor who was with us on the tour (she is very nice, about 70 years old and speaks like 8 languages) told them that we came all the way from Austria for this mass. So we were let through. Mass was to be at 10 am to 11 am. Well it starts at 10 am but there are lights and cameras everywhere. Apparently this was a special mass commemorating some charity. So it was all high and fake like. This producer lady was yelling at the audience to sing louder and smile more. Very fake and I was almost offended by the whole performance. Well, come to find out, that was the rehearsal mass. It didnt start till 11 am.
Well after mass we go to the Royal Chapel across the street with all the stained glass. Was neat. Went to lunch then and I ran into my neighbors who live across the street from me in Tigard.
We then go to the Rodin museum. You know the statue "the Thinker"? This is the guy who sculpted it. So saw that and all his other works. After that, I went to Napoleon's tomb and....yeah that's about it. Was exhausted and went back to the hotel to sleep. And as lunch is about ready I am going to go to that. Might have more to say after lunch.

6.11.06 pt 2

Ahh the Louvre. Very cool place. Saw most of the heads of the Roman emperors and lot of other stuff. I saw the Mona Lisa, and to be honest, it isn't all that great. Saw the Venus di Milo and all that. After that, we got on the bus and took a tour of the city. Saw the arch of triumph and lots of stuff.

Oh I forgot. After Napoleon's tomb I walked to the Eiffel Tower. I didn't go up then because there was a huge crowd. I would come back later though.

OK back to Monday. After the tour we have dinner at the hotel (French think its charming to have you wait for your food....I call it piss poor service) and then went on a boat ride down the Seine River. It was ok and saw the Eiffel Tower all lit up. After the ride went back to the hotel and to sleep...

Tuesday was Versailles. It was ok but really I was expecting more. If course, the garden and all was closed because winter was coming (soon) so didn't look that great but was still disappointed. Schoen Braun in Vienna was better.

So, after that we were to go to an impressionist museum but the line was too long so we were set loose and I went to the Eiffel Tower. I got lucky because the lines were low and took me about 30 to 45 min to get to the top. Took lots of pictures. After that wanted a nice quiet evening so went back to sleep.

Chartres was on Wednesday. Probably the thing that saved France in my eyes. I enjoyed Chartes. It is the best preserved Gothic Church in Europe. We had Mass and then a tour of the Cathedral by this British guy who knew all about the stained glass. Very cool. So back to Paris, more browsing through shops looking for souvenirs and then a nice quiet evening.

We left Paris on Thursday to go to Reims. Reims is a town known for champagne. We took a tour of the factory and learned how they make it. Basically, it is wine that is fermented twice. At the end we had a taste. Was a little too sweet for me but the others liked it and the group spent more than 1000 eu on it. They were so happy they gave father 2 free bottles for bringing us. We went on to Strausbourg and stayed the night.

Next stop was Neuschwanstein. It is the Disney castle basically. It is small and looks like it is from an amusement park. Very strange place. It was on the way from Strausbourg that it started snowing. We went on to Reutte and spent the night there (back in Austria now)

From Reutte we went to Innsbruck and had a little tour of the city. Wasn't too much to see but was a good stretch from the bus. We get on the bus and then back to Salzburg. And that's the trip to Paris. Well, thats a lot for a day. Will put in more some other time. This should make up for the lack of entries this last week, so yeah. Anyways, will be back later.

9.11.06

Well I went and did it. I got a hair cut. My first since September and she probably took a good inch off. What was amazing, was it took her 10 min. Never seen it done so fast. I went in at noon, made an appointment for 3, went to the gym and then got the hair cut. The hair place was in the same building as the gym (it's a mini mall).
That brings me to the gym. It is the nicest gym I have ever been to. The machines all have built in TV's so you can watch cable (which we don't have at the center) as you work out. There are 6 treadmills, 4 elyptical machines, 6 stair climbers, and these things they call wave machines where the motion is similar to that of roller skating. Also, there are 2 rowing machines and 12 bicycle machines (2 different styles, so 6 of each style). There are a large number of weight machines too. For each machine you are supposed to sit on a towel so the actual seat doesn't get sweaty. Kinda different from other gyms but it works fine. The most exotic machine I use is the counter weight. It is like an assisted pull up. The weight you select is the weight you subtract from your own weight. You then stand on this raised platform and the platform lowers under your weight and you pull up so the weight you selected pushes the platform up with you.
I usually work out for an hour and then 5 min in either the sauna or the steam room. Very nice. After I am done with that, I go to the market that is on the other side of the mall and buy carbonated water. I buy the one in the 1.5 liter bottle because it is the best deal and usually drink it all. The tap water here is a little hard so bottled water is the best bet.

Well, I think that's enough for one day. Tomorrow is Friday and I am going to be working on some papers so that I can just ride out the rest of the semester and not have to worry about them. They aren't due for a few weeks still but better to be done than scrambling. So will probably be back with more info til then.
Aufweidersehen (means good bye. Auf-on weider-again sehen-seeing. Best translation is until we see each other again.)

12.11.06

Another day another dollar. This weekend I mostly worked on papers and such for school. In philosophy there is a 10 page paper due. The prof asked if half the class would volunteer to turn it in on November 13th (tomorrow) and the other half on November 28th. Well, half the class opted to turn it in on the 13th. Well, it is now the 12th and most are not done (it is 6:30 pm as I write this). A couple haven't even picked a topic and they have a 10 page paper due tomorrow.
Also, most are unable to comprehend how to work simple objects. One put dish washing soap (it is like dawn) in the dish washer and suds were everywhere. When I went to make lunch, I turned on the stove top and some charred burnt thing started smoking. People don't know how to work a kitchen or live above that of a pig.
Anyways, enough of my rant against my fellow humans here (I use the term "human" loosely). There was a request from one of the card senders (Granny and PaPa) to talk of the public transportation. It is very extensive throughout Europe. Cars, while hardly rare, are not owned by everyone. They do not have a street car train like in Portland, but their buses are all electric and run on the same power wires as the street cars in Portland. I have yet to use the buses as there is no where I can not go on my bike. Europe is extreamly bike friendly and the cars always make room for you. Also, cars ALWAYS stop for pedestrians. Walking is very common too and they expect others to stop for them while they are walking too. A mutual respect thing. Anyways, if I have a long ways to go, say to another city, I use the train. It is very easy to use the train. They have a machine that looks like a vending machine.You go up to it, select your destination, if it is a return trip or not, and then insert money and your ticket prints out. A train ride round tip is about 10 eu depending on where you are going. Also, the ticket is good for any ride that day, and there are usually several trains throughout the day making the same trip. Just a matter of finding the train that's right for you. Well, the weekly meeting is about to start. Will write some more another time.

13.11.06

Birthday. Yay. Ok, enough celebration.

Well, today was a bit different. Did a lot. First I woke up late (8 am) because I lost track of time and stayed up til midnight the night before. That's no problem though because breakfast doesn't start 'til 7:30 so only lost a half hour. So I eat breakfast and wait an hour to go to the gym. I did my workout and then off to the pharmacy where I bought a flu shot. They don't give you flu shots, they sell you the needle. Supposed to do it yourself. Well, I went back to the center and got Father to do it (he was a nursing professor years ago)and it was no problem.
I also got a traditional Greek drink called ouzo. Tastes like licorice. Bitterly sweet and strange but I like it.
And also went to classes. Got my theology quiz/test backand got 27/28 so I am happy about that.
So for a school day did a bit. Gym and flu shot. I'm mostly done with all the assignments of the semister so all I have to do is mostly go to class.

27.11.06

Well back form Milan Italy. First thing I will say is that, like the French, the italians are chaotic. Example, when crossing the street, you run or you get hit. Also when parking, you pull in and pull forward until you hit their bumper, then you back up into the other bumper. Repeat until your in.
The Cathedral there was cool. But the fromt was being restored so didnt get the best shots of it.
In the German speaking countries, everyone fallows the law. When you want to cross the street, they stop. Always.
Well class is going to start soon. Laters

18.11.06

Well, now that I am about done with all the projects in school, I can finally relax. Next week I plan on going to Milan, Italy and this weekend (Sunday actually) we are celebrating Thanksgiving. We are doing it a week early because we get Thursday off so we get more time to travel. So that's about all that's going on here...

Shopping here is different than in the US. For one, you have to pay to use a shopping cart. Another, if you want a plastic bag, you need to pay for it. NOTHING is given away free. Sundays, everything but restaurants close down so there is always a big rush on saturdays to get all the stuff you need for sunday.

Sorry I don't have much to write about... Send me an email if you have a topic/question.

12.8.06

Well I went to the christmas market today. Very touristy. The Austrians celebrate Christmas a bit different. The have St. Nikolaus day and Krampus day. St Nick comes dec. 5th and gives presents (small things) in the shoes that the children leave outside their door. Krampus comes on december 4th and he basically terrorizes the bad kids. They dont have a santa but they have Christkind, who is sorta an angel who comes on dec 24th (not 25th) and gives presents out.

A traditional austrian drink is called Gluewein, a spiced and heated wine. The problem is that it is 65 degrese out and the wine is suposed to warm you up. I am hoping for some snow but if there isnt any by next wendsday I will go and just buy a drink for the experence.

The christmas market is set up by the city of Salzburg. Most German cities ave a market where traditional stuff is sold like wooden toys, quartz crystal, hats, etc. The one in salzburg is mostly for tourists and is priced accordingly. I plan on going to a small city called Hallin where it is smaller and more traditional. Also there is an ice skating rink set up near the market kept going by the machines that keep the ice cold. It still looked more like water skiing than ice skating.

Now, it may suprise you to learn but the Germans and Austrians are no longer savage barbarians who harrass the civilized peoples. In fact they are a very civilized people. Motzart was born and raised in Salzburg and Beethoven moved to Vienna and stayed there for most of his life. The Austrians were only 2 years behind the wright brothers in flight and the Germans invented the Automobile. Please do not confuse western europe which is much like the US to their eastern europe neighbors who are still having many problems with their infastructure.

Think that's all for now. Sorry I haven't been posting more but I was working on getting through my classes. I only have finals next week then I am comming home. See ya'll then.

11.1.07

Down in a hole....
Feeling so small....
Down in a hole...
Losing my soul...

Ahh, good ole Alice in Chains. When you listen to a depressing song it makes you feel better. Recently my playlist includes Ozzy, Alice in chains and Metallica (mostly from the black album). Guess that means I am depressed. Oh well. Atleast I have some good music.

God, it is the weekend. More booze is going to come out. Hoefully it will be like normal and they will stay at the bars far past when I go to sleep. So far a couple profs have indicated some large term papers will be due. One is a 10 page paper in history and the other is a 10 page paper in theology. Math is mostly busy work as I have had the exact class in high school. German we will have to give a 15 mn presentation some time about some subject that we choose (he said no when I asked if i could do Arnold Schwarzenegger :p). Fine arts is easy. No home work and it is kinda interesting. Music is same as art history. Kinda boring and all but no home work.

Probably finished with my angry blogs for a little unless they really get under my skin this weekend. So, enjoy my calmer and semi boring day blog for err.....the day.

Random fact : I am sitting in the library and there is a book on the shelf called "The Nature of Woman".

9.2.07

The end of an era.

Today I was going to go to the gym when i noticed the handle bars were loose on the bike again. So I take out my allen wrench to tighten but it won't tighten. I look over the bike and I notice a good sized crack in the frame. I loosened the handle bars and took them off to see that the bars are broken in two and it was only the screw that was keeping them on the bike.When the frame cracked, there was nothing left to hold them in place.
So how did it crack? Well on looking at the frame there is considerable rust on the thing. I would guess that the huge temp. changes (we went from 35 to 55 the last few days) caused it to crack.
I probably won't replace it because after the 3 week tour of Italy and Greece I only have 6 weeks or so left and it isn't worth my time to look for a replacement for such a short amount of time.
It was a rust bucket and a piece of junk, but I managed to get a lot of miles out of it. Farewell friend.

8.1.07

Back in Salzburg.

Did some stuff over Christmas break, went home and to Leipzig and Dresden but I am now back for another semester. All the kids I know and hate are back. Only person to leave is the German kid who I actually didn't mind. I think Dante wrote a book about people similar to those I am forced to live with.

The Crazy Lady who lived in the building set her apartment on fire so she is gone, because of Austrian law they couldnít evict her, but without a place to live she has to move. She would scream a lot.

Ya, back for another semester... Joy.

Alright, I can't let this charade go on. I am flat out miserable here. I love the staff and the Austrians are great, classes are going well, fr. John and Frau Stroble are the best but these kids...IDK what to do at this point. I was hoping the university would want to keep a clean image and kick half of them out but not one was sent packing. I am a very reasonable person and it takes a lot to get me angry but if I were to call them pond scum it would insult scum everywhere. They represent all that is wrong with America.

I started to hate them after October Fest (was the third day here). Night after night they would get ass over tea kettle drunk. Now at the time I thought, ok I don't want to be around these people. Thatís fine I can be a bit of a loner. But with Vienna we are forced to be together. Night after night I had to stay with the drunks as they came back from various bars in all hours of the night. Ok, well it is just a couple trips that I have to be with them. Thatís ok right?

Ha, about a week after Vienna a girl who hadn't slept in two days and was drinking most of the time had a seizure. She was alright but didn't really change her behavior much. Then the parties started. Night after night of going to bar to get drunk and coming back to dance and do whatever. So why does it bother me? Because I am forced to watch. I have to watch this pathetic and immoral show play out in front of me.

Here is a story of how bad it gets. A girl, Tori the Bitch (more on her later) was talking about how a local guy (think his name was Tom) was seen with a local slut named Mary. She was upset because she had slept with the guy the night before and thought she was much better than Mary. To get back at him, she slept with his friend (Matt I think it was).

One of the girls (Clair) has a boyfriend back home. One night Alex decides to get her nice and drunk and they sleep together. Now they are dating but she hasn't told the old boyfriend. Oh and she and the old boyfriend had been dating for 2 years. Good going there Alex.

Then we come to Pain in the Ass Pam. If there is a more useless person on this planet I haven't met them. She is as competent as a retarded jelly fish and twice as able to screw up. In Paris she decides to go bar hopping till 2 am alone. Now she is a bit of a cow so not an attractive woman. Well she gets so drunk that she throws up on the subway and somehow lost her panties on the way back from the hotel (she was wearing a mini skirt btw). Threw up more in her hotel room to the delight of Erin (who is actually not a bad person). On the bus to the concentration camp, she seemed fine. Not once did she say anything was wrong. Then she threw up. No warning, no "I don't feel well", just open up and let fly.

Tori the bitch. Imagine Paris Hilton and you have an idea of Tori. An uppity high fashion princess who has the I.Q. of a dead squid. A great man once said it is better to remain silent and be thought stupid than to speak and remove all doubt. She apparently never heard that quote by Lincoln as she will argue with the professors over points where even the dead squid would know she is wrong.

Sarah the Damned. God even thinking of her makes my skin crawl. Think if Gilbert Godfreed got into an argument with Fran Dressure. Thatís how she is all the time. Like a walking migraine, she will laugh at anything. She is diagnosed with some psycho disorder. If I was her doc I would immediately order a cranialectomy (remove her brain), she is constantly popping some sort of pills.

Kate the Russian. She is not really from Russia but she prides herself on her dad being from St. Petersburg. So she constantly drinks (vodka by the gallon). She is the main reason the German kid left.

These are just a couple of the mental patients I am forced to live with. Now I am able to seal myself off as much as I can from this, but during the trips (god 3 weeks in Greece with them) and when I walk into them at the center (only so much time can I just be out in Salzburg or in my room) I have to see the demeaning show.

Partially I blame the University of Portland. Their screening process was either faulty or they have sunk to a moral standard that I didn't think possible for a CATHOLIC university. I know for a fact some of the kids did not meet academic standards and the university could have kicked them out but didn't. I thought the problems would self correct but apparently I had too much faith in the university.

These people are what other European nations will see and get to know about the US. If all I had to go on was these fruit loops, I would hate the US too.

9.1.07

Still mad so will tell more stories of these Jerry Springer rejects.

First a disclaimer: many stories I write here are what I hear and are not first hand accounts. Keep in mind that if I didn't believe it I would not write it so it is at least conceviable that this happned and use it as a moral basis to judge these cretans.

This is a new story about Christmas break and it is 100% true. A group of them went to Portugal to look around. Well they get on a train without paying for a ticket. When they are caught they are fined 100 eu each and the police come to take down their information. Well they get the brilliant idea to not write down their addresses but still the police got their ID's all down. They are waiting any time for the Portugese police to come and demand they be extridited for petty theft (it is considered theft to be riding a train without a ticket).

Now their trip to Prague. Apparently there was a movie called Euro Trip that came out and they all saw it back in the states. Well like crazed monkeys imitating poo throwing, they decide they need to do what happened in the film. So they all get on a train to Prague and get hammered. Most of them do not remember much but several of the girls think they were harrased by the men but they don't remember enough to be sure. Not that they care much anyway.

First trip to Hallen. Nice city smal city a little bigger than Scio (about 800 people). They decide to go to a bar and get wasted. Well they meet a couple Irish people and they decide to get into their car (whitch 5 year old can tell not to do...especially with people you meet in a bar in a foreign country) and go bar hopping. The irish drive to a pub outside of town. Well they do that till about 3 am. When they want to get back to the hotel room, the Irish are long gone and they are stuck at the pub. Drunk and panicked, they stumble about a mile and a half back into town. They get back at about 5 am and get about an hours sleep before we need to be on the bus back.

More stories some another time. Now about more happy things:

Theo is ok. The prof can speak English but he talks really slow. Boring.

Math is a review of what I had in high school.

Art history is neat but really when am I going to use it? Same with history. I have my history credits and don't need any more. Plus 1600 to 1800 AD is a boring time period where little of consequence really happened.

German I have half way given up on. I can understand people and can read it ok but I can't speak or write very well. Oh well.

This semister should be about the same as last. If only the deamons would go away.

18.1.07

I got some lederhosen yesterday. I asked frau stroble where to get some on monday and I went on wendsday to get them.They were kinda spendy but it is one souvineer that everyone who visits a german speaking country has to get.

22.1.07

I know I know, havenít been good about doing this thing enough but hey, what are you going to do?

Anywho, todayís rant will be about Austrian telecom. To describe it I believe that the telecommunication services in Palestine rivals that of Austria. Serious it is that bad. Internet is either dial up or DSL. For dial up you have to pay for the phone call (averages about 5 to 10 cents a min. within a city, it goes up from there if it is a longer distance and thatís ONLY for the telephone call) plus they sell internet by the download chunk (you can buy 1.5 gig for only 25 euros. Just FYI 1.5 gig is nothing). What makes it worse is that it is dial up, so that a 30 min call could be just to check your mail.

The second internet method is DSL. While you donít have to pay for the phone charges and it is faster than dial up, you still have to buy the chunks of the internet and donít have full unlimited flat rate access. They do have unlimited access but from what I found it starts at about 300 eu (!) per month. Even if I did have that money to spend, the phone system UP has set up doesnít allow for DSL in the room.

So how am I online? Well I go to an internet cafe about once a week for a video chat back home. Right now though I am in the library on one of 8 computers with internet access. Like all others here, UP has bought 15 gigs for all 40 of us to use. If we go over it is a 3 eu fine....whoopee. Way I figure it 3 eu is the price of one drink or two in a bar and if they are charged that it is only a positive. Plus it really bugs me to have diminished access to the internet (Read: if I didn't have this small portal to cyber space I would go hulk and destroy all).

So thatís Austrian telecom for ya. About 15 to 20 years behind US's and half as good as it was back then. Serious, Austrians should be embarrassed about this. They have a nice looking city and all but the 16th century is over and while it is nice to keep the window dressing, get with the times man.

*Update* Well I went on a little search and found a flat rate deal for the low low price of only 50 eu per month. Thatís only around 75 bucks US. This is a flat rate but there is a cap at 100 kbps download speed. It isn't horrible but for the amount they are charging it is.

28.1.07

Yes, Yes, I am a horrid person for not doing this more than once a week. Well now that a week has gone by I can at least write something of (marginal) importance to entertain the masses rather than dredge the trenches of my mind to slop something together and dump it here.

Err....back to reality, it snowed this week. Started Tuesday and then melted on Wednesday but then came back on Thursday and had about a full 2 or 2 1/2 inches by sat. Right now it is Sunday and about 40 degrees so the snow is about gone. I say good riddance. Why?

Well I fell on the bike. Three major factors contributed to this. First, I was riding in the snow and there was ice under the snow. Remember how I said it melted on Wednesday? Well it refroze on Thursday. Second, on Wednesday i noticed that the handlebars on the bike were a little loose. This was a cause for concern but i believed that it would be fine. After all it is about only 3/4 of a mile and I am on the actual road for about 3 blocks. I made a mental note to fix the bike as soon as I found a wrench. But these are not the only reasons why I fell.

The gym is at a mall and to get to the bike racks I have to go across from where the parking garage is. Now, a normal person would let me have the right of way as 1 - They already have to stop because they need to wait for an opening in traffic and 2 - I HAVE right of way. Well out comes the cow. But this was not an ordinary cow. She was on a cell phone. I start to break and slow down but there is no way I can stop fully. She rolls right in front of me and I swerve to miss the car, ice takes over and my bike gets out from under me and my leg lands on my keys and wallet. I did not just stop though but the bike and I continue on the ice until ironically I hit the STOP sign. She doesn't even notice that I was there and simply drives off. After making the European equivalent of several rude gestures to her, I get up and assess the damage. Bike seems fine. The basket was bumped so that it was twisted but a 5 second repositioning of it fixed that. I notice my leg is hurting. A lot. I look at my hands and on both palms I can tell they will be bruised. Knowing that a workout will only cause me pain and possibly make my injuries worse, I decide not to go until it doesnít hurt to walk. I walk the bike home; take a shower and start reading and doing the bit of busy work that my Profs have assigned.

So accident number 2. I will admit I shouldn't have rode in the snow and ice and riding with loose handlebars is a bad idea but I still think a lot of the blame is on the cell phone cow.

The morale of the story? Don't ride a broken bike in snow and ice in front of people who are so much more concerned with talking than driving that they would have to be hit by a Mack truck before they would hang up.

If you constantly drive with a cell phone, a curse a pox on thee.

28.1.07 pt 2

What's this? A second blog? Is this the second coming? Is the apocalypse upon us?

No, I just had the WORST meal possibly of my life. The retards couldn't translate chicken into German so they translated turkey in the hopes the Austrians would get confused and get chicken like they wanted. Turns out that plan is as retarded as it sounds. They actually got some chicken but mostly turkey.

Their idea was potatoes, friend rice and teriyaki chicken. Well, now they have turkey. What do you do? Teriyaki chicken and turkey mixed together. What can go wrong?

The fried rice looked like some one drooled over it. When your rice has a clear sticky coating, I think thatís a bad thing.

Potatoes were fine...except they left the skins on.

I have eaten bad food in my life. I once ate a soup consisting of canned vegetables (juice was the base) heated and then bologna added for the meat. That tasted better then this putrid mess we were served.

In short there are people in third world prisons who are served better food then this. Heck, there are people eating grass who eat better than this.

2.2.07

The book of Hell (or perhaps Vengeance?)
When? 12.30 am Feb 1st, 2007
Where? Halls of main building
What? Group of naked, drunken idiots running around screaming.

Solution: Video tape the whole thing and tell the director that unless he does something the video goes to the vice dean of collage of arts and science (who also runs the Salzburg program).

Well that is the story in a nutshell. I was about to go to bed and as I was dozing off I hear screaming. I think, it is just a one-time thing. Plus it is the weekend. But the screaming didn't stop. Next I hear *stomp stomp stomp*. People running on the third floor (I am on second). I think, they will stop any second. After 15 min of that, I hear "Put your cloths back on". I jump out of bed, put on some jeans and a shirt and quickly grab my camera. As I am walking out my door I turn on my camera to see "low battery". I run back to get some and it takes me a min to find them and put them in. By the time I get to the third floor they have put their underwear back on but are going from room to room, rubbing themselves on each girl they find. My hands can barely keep the camera still. This is a gold mine. No, a God send. Here it is, proof of what I speak. I catch it on video. My camera doesn't record sound, but if a picture is worth a thousand words, a video is worth a thousand words per frame (I think I was running 4 frames a second. Got about a full min of the thing). I won't post the video here but if I feel that their punishment isn't enough I will not only have it posted here, but also you-tube and google video. If I can I will also send links to their parents whom I am sure would be so proud (though if I can't, being thrown in front in your underwear for all the world to see should be embarrassing.

So what do I expect? One of two things. Either they are removed from the program (not likely as a couple of the girls have been prostituting themselves to the Austrians and haven't been kicked out) or they get on alcoholic probation and can't drink the rest of the year. Either way, they will be miserable and that is all I am seeking at this point.
Hmm...Does it sound like I am bitter at all? Well I am. The director is a great guy but as an enforcer well he isn't up to it. What I am trying to do is to get him evidence so he can justify implementing and enforcing draconian policies to get some semblance of order. As it is, chaos reigns and I really don't want to go to Greece and Italy in chaos.

3.2.07

Just the book of hell.

Had about an hour and a half talk/rant with/at the director of all the crap that has gone on. Basically he has said that without a complaint he can't do anything. Not one person complained about having half naked, drunk idiots running around at 1 am and rubbing themselves on you. Basically the director told me he did try to remove one girl last term but because of the bureaucracy at the university it is almost impossible to get someone out.

At this point I just don't care anymore.

4.2.07

I will try to make this a non rant-ish blog. Today I went to the gym and did some rowing, weights and stair stepper. For butterfly press I am at the highest the machine can go (100 kg or 220 lbs), Vertical traction I can do 90 kg (about 190 lbs) Military press is 45 kg or 110 lbs, Horizontal leg press I can go up to 210 kg or 460 lbs. Rowing I can do a kilometer (2/3 of a mile) in 3:51 seconds.

Now for a little culture fact. Austrians like whole milk. It is actually hard to find half fat (1.5%) milk in the stores. But whole milk is the norm. Also you would be hard pressed to find a very overweight Austrian. Gas is somewhat expensive so they like to walk or ride a bike to where they are going. When they buy what they want they then have to carry it all the way back. About once a week I go to get a 6 pack of 1.5 liter carbonated water (costs about 3 US dollars and I am set for the week). For comparison, the large coke bottles back in America are 2 liters. I have 6 1.5 liters. Thats a little less than 5 of the 2 liter cokes. I just have to carry it across the street and I can tell you it is a pain to lug all that liquid plus the rest of your groceries just across the street. Also you have to pay for the bags in the store. They don't give you free paper or plastic bags. They usually cost about 15 euro cents. I almost always have a back pack on so that I can just stick what I got in there and ride the bike. Wearing a backpack around is extremely common.

Oh and my vengeance was wrought upon the half naked idiots. They are now banned from having alcohol the rest of the time here in Austria. No ouzo for them in Greece. Better yet, one is an alcoholic so he will be miserable the rest of the year. It may not be kicking them out of the program, but it has become a dry prison for them and just knowing they are suffering make me feel better.

If you take pleasure in the suffering of those you can't stand, are you a bad person? I don't think so. They are just experiencing some of what they have made me go though so I believe we are even :)

15.2.07

Going to Greece tomorrow. We leave at 1 am. We drive to Ancona Italy to get on a ferry. Will take around 12 hours to get to greece. 12 hour drive to Ancona. Fun.