Tuesday, March 30, 2004

What's Wrong With This Picture?

Yesterday Kate and I were walking through the Common and came across this fountain. I can't believe they would put that out in a public place. I guess it is okay to have kids playing, but why don't they have clothes? More importantly why in the world are they sitting like that? It is very disturbing.

Sunday, March 28, 2004

Sunny Weekend

I was slightly annoyed with Salem tonight because for a minute I thought I lived in Boston. The reason why, because I had to drive around the block just to find a parking space. It seems now the weather is warmer everybody wants to forgo parking in their driveways and take up the valuable side of the street. I might as well move to the city since parking was one benefit of living in Salem. Don't get me wrong I like living by myself and I could never afford that in Boston, but perhaps living alone is not worth the extra money I pay every month. Oh well perhaps I will look soon for a place closer to the city, where I don't have to pay over one hundred dollars for a T pass.

Okay so this weekend I went skiing and practiced for next weeks competition. I did accomplish one thing though, I did a 360 grab. It felt great to accomplish the trick. After the Boston.com photo slideshow combined with this I am flying high. Now all I need to do is go back to work and I will be brought right back down to Earth.

Oh yeah I almost forgot to explain the picture and slideshow. I stopped in the Bury to visit my wonderful family and there was a fire down the street, so I went and took some pictures. It was just a barn and it burned right to the ground. I don't believe anybody was hurt though so that is good.

Hope everybody had a good weekend,

Friday, March 26, 2004

Thursday, March 25, 2004

I got a haircut

It's true I went back to the shorter hair again. I figured warmer weather was on the way and I didn't need the long hair anymore. I know my mom is certainly pleased by this decision.

It seems like the haircut is about the only thing I have done since returning from my trip. I keep waking up around 5:30 every morning so it has caused me to be exhausted every night by about 7:00. After this weekend my sleep schedule will hopefully be under control again. It is going to be weird to ski since I haven't been in three weeks, unfortunately I won't be doing any telemarking because I need to practice for the mogul competition which I signed up for this afternoon. I am not as excited as I was last year, but that should make my run better because I will be much more relaxed. The one area I want to focus on this year is my air. Last year was less than spectacular and I hope to not only improve my ranking, do some sort of 360, but also to make it into the top 32. Okay now the top 32 is a long shot, but if I get enough practice on my air this weekend, stranger things have happened.

I am tired. Over and out.

Monday, March 22, 2004


Amsterdam, Netherlands (21 photos)

Brugge, Belgium (70 photos)

Well, Netherlands (12 photos)

Cologne, Germany (39 photos)

London, UK (103 photos)

As promised above our links to some of the pictures I took. I apologize for the large amount, but it was very difficult to cut it down to so few pictures.

Brugge the Ball: European Explorer

Here is a little album to keep you occupied while I continue to pour through my pictures. Enjoy!!

Back In The USA

I finally arrived back in Boston tonight after a long flight from Heathrow. I am now going through my pictures and trying to organize them. However this is going to take a while and I don't think I will have them online until at least Tuesday. I have 587 to go through, including rotating and archiving them to CD. I don't have enough energy to keep up this entry since I have been up for almost twenty four hours. I can't wait to show you all some of the pictures I have taken. Okay bed time. Later!!

Friday, March 19, 2004

London Day Two

Back at the easyInternetcafe again. My excuse this time is that Vanessa had to email somebody, so Jess and I bought some time also. The keyboards in this place are filthy and the space bar doesn't work so well. After updating yesterday we walked and saw the major sights here in London. Parliament building, the Clock Tower (which contains the bell Big Ben), Westminster Abbey, and the Wheel. We purchased tickets to some concert tonight. It is a classical music thing, which will be a nice relaxing evening. We finally made it back to the hostel and hung out(rested our weary knees) for a couple hours before going out for a nice Italian dinnner.

Woke up this morning only to find out it was raining :o( We bought an all day Tube pass to stay dry and we are going to go on a double decker bus tour this afternoon. I really enjoy the city and though it is really big it feels a bit like Boston. I always have to think twice when crossing the street because of the cars go on the opposite sides of the street, but they have it painted on the road "Look Right". What else? Oh yeah the other reason I like it here is because I feel like I look similar to a lot of the true English people you know the narrow face and the same type of nose. Any of these people could easily be my relative, which I don't find at home or in any of the other countries I visited so far.

Okay I must continue my internet usage elsewhere. Only a couple more days to go. Mom thanks in advance for calling about my jury duty.

Thursday, March 18, 2004

Cup o' Tea

I seem to be updating more when I am away then when I am back home. Oh well perhaps it is because I actually have something interesting to say. Maybe not so interesting, but once my fingers are on the keyboard I can't help but interact with the rest of the world. After hanging out for a bit at the Castle I went back to the hotel and got some sleep. I had to wake up early this morning for the flight to London. btw did I tell you I have clean clothes. We took a taxi to the airport for my 4 Euro flight. It wasn't nearly as sketchy as I anticipated and we made it safely over the North Sea. London was grey and bleak what a surprise. We successfully made it into this huge city and even found our hostel. It was in a square which really means it just sits at the end of some street. Once again we dealt with a Middle Eastern gentlemen who only accepted cash. It was okay though.

Now it was time to explore and see the city. After walking through a giant ass park and crossing several streets where the cars were on the wrong side of the rode, we came to Buckingham Palace. Honestly it is nothing to write home about, well I guess I am writing home essentially, but not in a positive way. Anyway the hunger pangs began to get to us and once again we opted for American Fare, Pizza Hut. It is so expensive to do anything here within a couple of hours we already spent about 100 pounds on trains, lodging and food, which I believe is about equivalent to 200 US dollars. WTF!! Actually could somebody post the actual FX rates for the Pound and Euro vs the US Dollar.

Next stop is the River Thames and perhaps London Bridge (I can feel one of Auntie Babes crazy song reference comments coming). The rest of the weekend is up in the air, though we will certainly be riding on a double decker bus.


Wednesday, March 17, 2004

All's Well At Castle Well

I am now sitting in the computer lab at Castle Well. It is strange how much I feel like I am back in college right now. Here is what I look like, my hair is out of control long I am wearing UNH wind pants, a long sleeve shirt, a baseball cap backwards and some flip flops. I just finished doing laundry and playing minesweeper on the computer. Oh how I miss Somerset Hall. Anyway I am in Europe and its not about reminiscing the old college days its about experiencing new things which I have certainly been doing.

After leaving the internet cafe last night we walked around the city some and had Italian food for dinner at a small cafe along the Rhine. The food was great, instead of getting pizza I ended up with some macaroni with cheese, ham and mushrooms. Very yummy!!! We walked some more and took pictures and then briskly walked back to the sketchy hostel. Once safely inside we turned on some German TV to keep us entertained. First we watched MTV, because the shows were in English and had German subtitles, but eventually those two shows ended and we ended up watching this odd game show. On the show they showed a picture of a woman and then seven pictures of cleavage. The object was to select the three sets of cleavage that belonged to the woman. A timer would count down from a minute and a half and people would call in and guess. As time passed the prize money would rise. After a half hour the winnings were up to 3000 Euro. It was getting late so we shut it off.

This morning we woke up and checked out (left our keys on the table in the room) and went to Starbucks for breakfast. We walked around a bit more while we waited for the Chocolate museum to open up. At ten we went to the museum which was great and they even gave us some still warm chocolate. It was getting late so we made our way back to the train station. After Vanessa battled the ticket line and purchased her tickets for Prague we ran up and grabbed the train. It was going to Monchantgradblack... something. We made it there and stood on the track that said Venlo, but then we heard an announcement in German about Venlo. After a minute we looked up and the sign had changed and we went to find information about the train. I looked up to another track and it said Venlo, we ran up the steps just as the train was leaving. We waited in this long name town for an hour before the next train to Venlo to depart. Finally we made it back to Well where I checked in to the hotel.

Vanessa had class so I looked at some of my pictures on a real computer. They look good, I can't wait to upload them for you all to see, I am sure you are also excited. I went to the market to buy sandwich meat, croissants, waffles, smarties and chips. It was very warm today and the walk back was so relaxing. I even stopped in another market to get an apple, which suited the walk perfectly. As I said before I have all fresh clothing and we are heading to London bright and early tomorrow morning. Good bye mainland Europe, its been fun.

So what was the final snow outcome in Boston?
We definitely had the opposite of snow in Europe today. I was saying how from the day I landed in Amsterdam to this afternoon in Koln, the weather has completely changed for the better.

Have a great day,

Tuesday, March 16, 2004

Choo Choo!!!

I know I missed a day, sorry for all of you that were concerned. I am currently sitting in Köln, Deutsche Land. Pardon me if I accidentally type a z instead of a y, this kezboard is all fucked up. Okay so I made it safely to the castle from Brussels. It was a long daz on the train, but somehow I managed to find the place. It is a very quaint and quiet place. The hotel is about 1.5 km from the castle which is a long walk at 1AM. I got to meet a ton of Emerson people and let me tell you they were very Emerson. We went to a nice pub in Well for some yummy Toasties aka Grilled cheese. Mom if you truly have a map set up you can find Well in Southeastern Netherlands, between Venlo and Nijmegen. We had a little travel trouble this morning and ended up back tracking a little but eventually found our way to Köln. The hostel situation is prettz sketch though. We found the address in the Turkish/Kurdish part of the city. Rang a buzzer and the voice on the other end said five minutes. All of a sudden this fat guy shows up, I have no idea where he was from Middle Eastern/Asian maybe. He takes us inside and makes Vanessa fill out some form, we hand him 80 Euro and he shows us our room. The room is fine I am just thankful we only have to walk there once in the dark, or rather run there. Tomorrow morning we are going to the Chocolate museum, which should be exciting. The city is very beautiful, but still just a city. I look forward to coming home and getting out in Bethel and relaxing for a change. But not until after we have been to one of the largest cities in the world, London. Oh boy its only a couple of days away. Finally the chance to hear some English and see some English signs. Well for now I must go this is costing me an arm and a leg.

I hear you guys are going to get some snow, thats very exciting. It is about 70 here and conveniently I only have a ski parka. Nothing like standing out in a foreign country.

Talk to zou all soon,

Sunday, March 14, 2004


Okay I continue doing the daily update thing, I am not addicted. It seems that despite being in a place I have never been I can still lead an efficient life. So after updating last night I did some more walking around. I went back to the room to rest a little bit and began planning for today. I went to eat in a hostel restaurant, because every place else is so expensive ($20 for everything). The food was bad and since I was the only American it sucked even more. I left there and walked around a bit to see the city at night. No sooner did I get in and it started to pour outside. I finished planning my day, organized my stuff, charged my electronics and went to bed. My inability to do cool things at night continues to be the case over here. I woke up after ten hours of sleep and quickly began my day. The museums didn't open until 9:30 so I went to a couple places to take pictures. I grabbed breakfast at a little cafe. Once everything started opening I purchased a ticket good for five museums. I started in the Belfry tower, 361 or so steps and about a fifty mile an hour wind at the top not to mention the ringing of the bells. I then went to museum after museum throughout the day. I saw a sculpture by Michelangelo today, not the Ninja Turtle. It was pretty cool. I took a bazillion more pictures today. I am now on my fourth memory stick. What else? Oh yeah one of the museums for an old hospital so I had one of those audio things and I noticed this stairway and wondered if it was part of the exhibit since the sign in front of it was in dutch. I passed on it and then when I was listening to the very last pictures story at the very end it told me to go upstairs. It was almost like a test to see if you were listening and had gone to all the exhibits. I went upstairs and it was pretty boring, but still it was rewarding to pay attention.

Walking around after the museums I decided to take a canal ride, because they seem to be all the rage. It was great and I sat next to some Brits who are pretty classic people. I never thought I would be so excited about hearing people speak English. Everybody hear knows English, but they all speak Dutch, so when you hear English it is a rarity. At lunch I overheard some actual Americans and I struck up a conversation with them. It is just so strange to go an entire day without talking to anybody except for buying stuff. Tonight I ate at Pizza Hut, which was excellent. I then mailed everybody's postcards. I finally found a use for all of my change, to buy stamps. I look forward to going back to my room and crashing now after walking about twenty miles today. Tomorrow I head back to Brussels and then on to Venlo and finally Well, Netherlands.
Until next time.
Best regards,

Saturday, March 13, 2004

Another Update Who Woulda Thought?

I never got to finish yesterday because I was running out of time. I definitely felt like a spy, being in Europe and quickly typing away at the computer because of a time limit. So we met up in Amsterdam after I struggled and found the train from the Airport. I even had the chance to go for a walk on my own and explored a little bit. Once Vanessa was here we went and found our hostel. It wasn't too bad. Then we enjoyed breakfast at a small cafe. Basically we just walked around ALL DAY long, which was quite exhausting. We did visit the Red Light District and looked at the sights, which were quite unattractive. Sorry to disappoint, but I did not end up going to a Coffee Shop and did not try anything new. It's okay though I was delirious enough from being up for a gazillion hours. Due to my exhaustion we called it a night at like 11. The city was still very much alive, which was shown by the people yelling outside at 3AM.

This morning we woke up and had breakfast in Amsterdam before parting ways, me to Brugge and Vanessa back to the Castle. First I took a train to Brussels and then switched over to a train for Brugge. Belgium is a different world than the Netherlands, there are hardly any signs in English and it was a bit intimidating. I did manage to find my train with a few minutes to spare and wound up in Brugge. Everybody has raved about it and they were absolutely correct, its great. I like it much better because it is smaller and much more quaint than Amsterdam. You can walk everywhere and since I got here at 17:00 I checked in to the hostel which is very nice, even better than last night. I then went for a walk for the next two hours and saw a ton of sites. It is all a precursor for my full day tomorrow. I have also made up for the low number of pictures and taken almost eighty this afternoon alone. The sun has been out and I am not sure if that will be the case tomorrow, so I am taking extra pics today. I am still indecisive about dinner because there are a ton of choices, though it is much more expensive to eat here. I am thinking of just taking it easy tonight and going with some fine Pizza Hut, either that or some other pizza place I saw. Hey its been two days since I had pizza I am having cravings.

I hope you all are doing well. I am tired, but happy to finally be in one place for a couple of days. Talk to you soon.

Friday, March 12, 2004

Safe And Sound In Europe

I have only five minutes left to make this entry so I will try to squeeze in as much as I can. I made it to Logan yesterday in record time and proceeded to sit on my ass waiting for the plane to board. Once on the plane at 5:15, I of course had to partake in the fun art of seat switching. I ended up next to an Indian woman(dot not feather), she kind of smelled like Ramen noodles. We were just about to leave the gate and security came on the plane and escorted two girls off of the plane. One was crying the other was nonchalant about the whole thing. After they were removed we headed out to the runway and just before we were set to take off the pilot came on and told us we needed to return to the gate to take off the girl's luggage. Bottom line the flight was delayed an extra hour. We finally took off at 7:15 and were on our way. The flight wasn't bad I slept for about four hours. The only bad things was falling asleep and then some sort of food service was happening, so I had to wake up. Finally landed in Amsterdam and made my way through the airport. It was tough at first, but after asking help I was soon on my way to Amsterdam Central Station, with fifty Euros in hand. Okay time has run out. I did find Vanessa and we have been walking all over this crazy city.

Talk to you all soon,

Wednesday, March 10, 2004

Time To Cross the Pond

Well at this time tomorrow I will be somewhere high above the Atlantic Ocean on my way to Amsterdam. I am very excited about the trip though I can't help but be disappointed that I didn't see my whole country yet, heck I haven't even seen the Pacific Ocean. I suppose it doesn't really matter either way, because I am sure I will get there eventually and probably sooner than later. One thing I am most excited about is not having to work for seven whole business days, don't get me wrong traveling to Europe and seeing the sites will be great, but I won't/can't be bothered by work. No phone calls asking how to fix a database, no trips into Boston for a one hour run of the expenses. Haha FREEDOM!! Seriously though the things I am looking forward to most is seeing Vanessa, the canals and coast in Brugge, seeing the Castle, using Euros, Germany, Big Ben, Stonehenge and Amesbury, England. It will be fun to see how the above list will probably be completely different after I return.

For all of you keeping score at home here is my itinerary.

Thursday 3/11/2004
Leave work.
Fly out of Logan for Amsterdam.
Friday 3/12/2004
Land in Amsterdam.
Meet Vanessa at the train station.
Explore Amsterdam for the day and then spend the night there.
Saturday 3/13/2004
Hop on a train for my solo trip to Brugge.
Spend the night there.
Sunday 3/14/2004
Continue exploration of Brugge.
Second night there.
Monday 3/15/2004
Head back to the Netherlands.
Meet Vanessa and check in to lodging in Well.
Tuesday 3/16/2004
Vanessa and I head to Cologne.
Spend night there.
Wednesday 3/17/2004
Return to Well for the day and night.
Thursday 3/18/2004
Train to Amsterdam for flight to London
Friday 3/19/2004 & Saturday 3/20/2004
London and surrounding attractions.
Sunday 3/20/2004
Leave London for Boston in the afternoon.

So thats it, I may have some of the details wrong, but that is my understanding of the plan. I will update the LJ as often as possible, I can't promise pictures right away, but there will definitely be a ton online once I get back to the States. See you on the Other Side.

Sunday, March 7, 2004

Mi Camara

Hooray I my camera is back and I can finally put up the pictures from way back on February 29th. The pictures include some shots of Mark's broken mug, the deprecated Upper Cascades and some Barker shots.

The most recent weekend was a ton of fun, even though I only ended up skiing for a few hours total. Friday night I met everybody at Sud's including Scott and John. On Saturday the weather was very rainy and after using up all of the French Toast batter we hung out and watched several episodes of "The Office", which I highly reccommend. We went to Pat's Pizza for lunch and brought back and extra combo plus pizza in case we might need some later. Next up on the DVD line up was Van Wilder, followed by a great steak dinner at the Grizzly. Stayed at the Grizzly scene for a couple hours and then checked out the Well before heading back home at 1:15.

The rain on Saturday turned the mountian into a giant ice block today. The conditions were horrible as I knew they would be, but since I won't be skiing for three weeks I had to make a trip up there. One thing that has been on my mind lately though is the trip to Amsterdam at the end of this week. I am very excited, but just can't decide whether to try and squeeze everything into one bag or bring a backpack and my work bag. Mom seems to thing one bag is a bad idea, kind of like putting all your eggs into one basket. Any suggestions?

Thursday, March 4, 2004

Surprise Rain

I was running late this morning because I watched some of the 20 hours of TV I have on tape. So I rushed to get things together opened the door and it was raining out. Quick change of plans I went back inside and quickly switched jackets. Problem solved!!! Boy am I resourceful or what?

Last night was BoCaNO at the Kinsale. We really sucked it up at the trivia, it just wasn't our night. It was great to hang out with friends and to eat a yummy meal, although Amy kept trying to eat my fries. Thats not a great idea, kind of similar to removing a dog bowl from a dog while he is eating. Luckily Amy I don't bite, well at least not in public ;o) We also talked politics a little bit last night, which seems to be a growing theme in my life recently. I never really cared, but for some reason I have been thinking a lot about it lately. I have been researching to decide my party affiliation, it is tough in some respects I have beliefs which fall on either side. It is very confusing and I am probably going to find myself sitting somewhere in the middle. I don't mean to turn this into a political journal, but it is interesting to think about. The hardest part of this has been trying to fine definitions for what each party believes in. I guess it comes from the nature of the topic and everybody is on one side or the other. I am sure it will take a lifetime to sort it all out. Enough politics.

T-7 days until I leave for Amsterdam. It will be so great to be away from work for almost two weeks. Hooray!!!
T-105 days until my first DMB show of the year in St. Louis.
T-147 days until I travel to Tampa to see DMB.

I sure do love to travel.

Monday, March 1, 2004

The Wait Is Over

I am finally updating my LJ after a little bit of a break. So as you would guess I skied this weekend (now there's a shocker). Of course it was exhausting, but my tele skills continue to improve. I made the long drive home, which I realized takes as long as the drive to Orono. It seems so long back then and now I do it every weekend. Crazy how things change huh?

Upon returning home I quickly prepared for my little Oscar get together. I got two pizzas ready to go and made some nachos. Ryan and Britt came over and topped their own pizzas. The nachos were less than fantastic, but the pizza was very good. We filled out some Oscar ballots I had printed and it made the night much more exciting. I ended up picking 19 out of 24 awards. It wasn't enough to get in the highest scoring range on the ballot, but I think its damn good. After the Oscars, Ryan left and I wasn't very tired so I just kind of hung out with Britt for a while. However I quickly tired and got some much needed rest. Waking up and seeing the temperature in the forties was very inspirational and I was able to finally wear a lighter jacket to work. Unfortunately work was very busy and I wasn't able to go outside at all and actually enjoy the nice weather. However the taste of it this morning has me prepared for the spring and summer.

I came home tonight and practiced guitar for a couple hours. Britt made me a CD with some good songs for me to learn and I have already made some progress with a couple of them. I am quickly increasing my possible setlists which is very exciting. Okay I know this is beginning to become erratic so I will stop here and go to bed.