Archive for the 'Archive' Category

Sunday, September 11th, 2005

Sunday, September 11th, 2005

Four years ago

Only when I flipped the page did I realize that today is September 11th, four years after the terrorist attacs on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon.

Photos from the past

Germany in 1929 is a gallery of black and white photos of towns and landscapes in Germany. The pictures are interesting to see just by themselves, but if you know how some of these places look like now, it’s even more intriguing.

Someone posted twenty photos of Germany by the end of or shortly after World War II on flickr. He wasn’t able to identify all the places, but quite a few of them were taken in the area where we live, e. g. Cologne, Remagen, Frankfurt (Main)… The comments are worth reading as well.

Links via MetaFilter.

Lots of old stuff

Okay, in an attempt to clean up my hotchpotch of links, here are lots of different things, some fun, some instructional, some crazy, some yummy…

Cooking and Recipes

Panna Cotta with Roasted Rhubarb, a recipe by Jamie Oliver.

Ask MeFi threads on extraordinary guacamole recipes and best guacamole recipes. – I made guacamole yesterday, but used a recipe from The Pink Adobe Cookbook that we bought while in Santa Fe a few weeks ago.

And another AskMeFi thread on vegetarian recipes.

Thailands Leckerbisschen ist eine Site mit thailändischen Rezepten (plus einige China-, USA- und Sushi-Rezepte) zum einfachen Nachkochen.

Rolf Bungartens Asia-Küche vereint Rezepte aus Indonesien, Thailand, China…

Science

Mad Physics – does this link need any explanation at all? They’ve got everything from how to build a 6 ft tall rocket to the physics of glowsticks. Now this is something for crazy physics teachers!

Link via MetaFilter.

Apollo 13, we have a solution, by Stephen Cass. “Rather than hurried improvisation, saving the crew of Apollo 13 took years of preparation.”

Link via 2020 Hindsight.

Everything You Always Wanted To Know About Sleep (But Were Too Afraid To Ask). Explains why I always stay up late (like today) and feel tired in the mornings – and by the way, it also states that adolescents are “night owls”, probably because of hormones, so school should probably start later than it does to accommodate this.

… for school

Dr. Geo “is a GTK interactive geometry software. It allows one to create geometric figure plus the interactive manipulation of such figure in respect with their geometric constraints. It is useable in teaching situation with students from primary or secondary level.”

Westpoint Bridge Designer and Design Contest, could be useful for physics lessons.

Mathe-Treff der Bezirksregierung Düsseldorf

Traveling around the World

Slot Canyons of the American Southwest is a site full of beautiful photos from – you guessed it – slot canyons in the Southwest.

Link via MetaFilter.

Optical illusions

If you read a handful of weblogs, you will probably have seen these optical illusions before in the past months, but I’m including the links so I can find them again: rapid afterimage, almond illusion.

Music

Classic Cat “is a directory with links to over 3000 free to download classical performances on the internet, sorted by composer and work. To find the classical music you select a composer, a work and a performing musician. Then you are transported to the page of the musician(s) where the music is hosted and you can download it.”

Zitate

gibt’s bei de.wikiquote.org. Entdeckt bei der Suche nach einem Zitat von Antoine de Saint-Exupéry.

Übersetzungen – Translations

dict.cc “ist nicht nur ein Online-Wörterbuch. Es ist der Versuch, eine Plattform zu schaffen, über die Benutzer auf der ganzen Welt ihr Wissen in Form von Übersetzungen austauschen können. Jeder Besucher kann Übersetzungsvorschläge eintragen und Vorschläge anderer Benutzer überprüfen, korrigieren und freischalten.”

Tuesday, September 6th, 2005

Tuesday, September 6th, 2005

Still tired

Today was the second day of school, and I’m still fighting the jetlag, it seems. Not that I usually get that phenomenon because I stay up later and sleep longer during the holidays… I didn’t even have time for a nap yesterday because I had to prepare for my lessons today, but I took one today. I’m still tired though, so I will go to bed early tonight.

We need a holiday like Thanksgiving

During lunch today, I read a few chapters in Bill Bryson‘s book I’m a Stranger Here Myself in which he writes about his experience of returning to his home country, the USA, after spending 20 years in Great Britain. One of the chapters was on Thanksgiving and why he thought it was the best holiday of them all:

“Thanksgiving is wonderful and for all kinds of reasons. To begin with, it has the commendable effect of staving off Crhistmas. Whereas in Britain the Christmas shopping season seems nowadays to kick off around about the August bank holiday, Christmas mania doesn’t traditionally begin in America until the last weekend in November.” (see page 144)

I was mildly amused by reading this, but it really hit home when I went shopping afterwards and discovered the first Lebkuchen at the supermarket. It’s September the 6th, the weather is sunny and could almost be called hot for Germany (temperatures in the high 20s Centigrade or high seventies/low eighties Fahrenheit) at this time of year, and you want me to buy Christmas candy? I’m going to check if any of the political parties promise to introduce Thanksgiving in Germany. I’d so vote for a party like that in the upcoming elections on September 18th.

Tankstelle

One of the real shocks of coming back to Germany after spending four weeks in the US – besides the fact that Germans drive like crazy on the Autobahn and don’t bother to say “Excuse me” when they get in your way in a shop, for example – was the price info at the first gas station we passed. For a moment I believed that I was still in the US and the price was in Dollars per gallon, but the numbers didn’t seem quite right. The price for one liter of regular gasoline was EUR 1,41 – that converts to about US$ 6,66 per gallon! Now I know that about 70% of what you pay for gas are taxes, but still. The strange thing is, it doesn’t seem to bother people all that much, because you still see crazy Mercedes drivers doing 180 km/h (112 miles per hour) if they can. Right now I’m really happy that I drive a small car that doesn’t need much gas, even if I’m not the fastest on the road.

(This entry includes conversions by metric-conversions.org and the Universal Currency Converter, both very useful tools.)

Sunday, September 4th, 2005

Sunday, September 4th, 2005

Rocky Mountain Elks:

Elk in Rocky Mountain National Park, August 5, 2005

Back from the USA

On the day before yesterday – or rather, the day before that since it is now almost 3 am (stupid jetlag!) – André and I returned from our trip to the USA. The flight back was uneventful, but our car required a jumpstart to get going again because the battery was completely empty. Of course only then did I remember being told that the battery was pretty old and would probably die sometime soon the last time I had the car checked.

Driving home from the airport in Frankfurt, the traffic on the German Autobahn was horrible compared to the almost 5,000 miles (no typo!) we drove on US highways and interstates, but we made it home okay. (And the car got a new battery yesterday after it failed to start even once.)

Since then we’ve been busy with the usual things you have to do after a long trip: unpacking, washing load after load of dirty hiking clothes, refilling the fridge… and sleeping. My body is completely confused because of the jetlag, so I spent much of last night awake and much of today asleep. I’ll have to work on that before I have to go back to school on Monday.

You’re probably going to find stories and photos of our trip here in the near future (thanks to taking along a digital camera instead of slide films like last time), but for now I have one question for you folks familiar with roads in Wyoming.

When we drove out of Yellowstone National Park and back to the airport in Denver via Cody, Caspar and Cheyenne, we came across several gates across both state and federal highways and even on I-15 like you would find at a railway crossing. Half a mile before them we usually saw a sign with lights on top saying “Road closed ahead if flashing”, telling you to turn back to whatever town you last passed if the gate was closed. However, the lights never flashed and there was no explanation as to why the road might be closed with these devices, and we weren’t able to guess. Is it because it snows so much there in winter and there is too little traffic to warrant snow ploughing? Is it because of strong winds? Darkness at night? Aliens?

If you know, please drop me a line in the comments or via e-mail. Thanks!

P.S.: We heard of hurricane Katrina on our last day in the US, but only grasped the full extent of it now that we’ve proper internet access at home. I’ll leave it to the many other bloggers to point out news sources etc.

Tuesday, August 2nd, 2005

Tuesday, August 2nd, 2005

Denver or Bust!

I don’t seem to be able to find the time to update the weblog more often. The schoolyear is over, and I’m busy enjoying the holidays. We’re off school for six weeks (one of which is over already) and won’t start the new school year until the beginning of September.

Meanwhile, André and I will be busy with our third trip to the US together (first, second). We’re leaving tomorrow and this time, we are flying into Denver, CO, and plan to see Rocky Mountain National Park and some other National Parks and Monuments, then loop down to Santa Fe, NM, possibly Tucson, AZ, Las Vegas, NV, Salt Lake City, UT and up to Grand Teton National Park and Yellowstone National Park. From there, we’re driving back to Denver to catch our flight home on August 31st.

If you live somewhere in the vicinity of our planned route and would like to get together for lunch or dinner or some other activity, please drop us a line at andrea [at] spicynoodles.net (we will hopefully be able to check our e-mail every few days while on the road). We’re looking forward to meeting old friends – and maybe you?!

To everyone else: Have a great summer, and see you in September!

Sunday, July 17th, 2005

Sunday, July 17th, 2005

Still alive

Busy with school during the week, busy with fun stuff like hiking during the weekends… Today, André and I went to the Mosel to try out a path that leads across Europe’s steepest vineyard. Unfortunately, the good websites about this are all in German, but maybe I’ll post photos and more info in English in a couple of days.

Kraxeln an der Mosel: Der Calmont-Klettersteig

Wir waren heute an der Mosel, genauer gesagt zwischen Bremm und Ediger-Eller, ca. 20 km flussaufwärts von Cochem. Wir hatten uns als kleine Vorübung für den Sommerurlaub den Klettersteig im Calmont vorgenommen. Da der Name Calmont übersetzt soviel wie heißer Berg bedeutet, brachen wir zeitig auf, so dass wir kurz nach acht bereits an einem Ende des Klettersteiges in Bremm waren. Etwa um halb neun brachen wir auf – und nach den quer über den Weg gewebten Spinnfäden zu urteilen, waren wir heute die ersten Begeher des Steiges. Das änderte sich allerdings nach unserer Frühstückspause, da wir während des Essens (note to self: Wenn man Salat essen möchte, sollte man auch daran denken, das Besteck mit einzupacken!) von zwei Wanderern überholt wurden.

Unsere Route verlief von Bremm auf dem Klettersteig bis zur Abzweigung zur Fahne, dann eben zur Fahne hinauf und von dort zur Schutzhütte, dann von da auf dem Höhenweg über den Vierseenblick wieder hinab in den Weinberg (nicht zum Gipfelkreuz), statt über Straßen nach Bremm zurück dann doch noch einmal in Richtung Ediger-Eller, um den Klettersteig wieder zu erwischen und dann auf diesem zurück zum Parkplatz an der Kirche in Bremm. Gehzeit inklusive Pausen: etwa vier Stunden.

Nach einigen Berichten im Internet zu urteilen sind uns so einige “spannende” Stellen des Klettersteiges entgangen (mehrere Leitern und Halteseile), aber unsere Tour war dennoch abwechslungsreich, voller schönen Aussichten und anstrengend genug, dass wir uns anschließend ein Eis genehmigten. Und den Rest des Steiges können wir ja beim nächsten Mal noch erkunden…

Einige gute Seiten über den Klettersteig, teilweise Berichte: