I left work early on Friday and took the boys to the Frankfurt Auto Show. Tina was not interested so she stayed home with Sara. The boys really liked looking at the fancy cars. The show was absolutely huge -- each building was massive and there were eleven of them.
Sunday, September 25, 2011
I spent the week of September 12th in Boston (work paid for me to take a Group Policy class). Tina needed some primer for a craft project so she asked me to bring some back for her. She had previously tried to get some primer at Hornbach (a German home improvement store similar to Home Depot) but had been unable to find it there. It seemed strange to me that this would not be available in the German stores, but I did not have a chance to check myself before I left for Boston.
For the return trip back to Germany, I had a gallon of liquid paint in my checked bag (nonflammable liquid paint is not prohibited from inclusion in checked bags). When I picked up my bag from baggage claim, there was white paint soaking through the zippers and I knew that the contents of this bag were going to be a total loss. Things that were ruined in this suitcase: Tina's paint (there was none left in the can), socks, t-shirts, jeans, swim trunks, my favorite hat, dress shoes, Adidas slippers, my course notes from the Group Policy class, my favorite German/English dictionary, and the small green notebook I had been using to record thoughts and impressions. The green notebook is the thing I miss the most -- it is the only thing that cannot be replaced buy buying something new.
I will probably never know exactly what happened. It is certainly possible that somebody opened my bag to inspect the paint and then this person did not properly close the lid. It is also possible that the change in cabin pressure caused the air in the can to expand (this would have increased pressure on the lid, causing it to pop open). I never approached Lufthansa about the damages -- this was a risk I knew I was taking when I put a gallon of paint in my suitcase and now I have to deal with the consequences.
Lots of people tell stories about travel disasters. At least mine has pictures.
Posted by Paul Narula at 12:47 AM
Saturday, September 3, 2011
Oscar walks to school with a boy in his class whose parents own an apple orchard. The orchard is located just a few minutes from our house. Last year, Oscar's whole class took a field trip to the apple orchard. They got to ride on a tractor and Oscar came home with some apples, a large sunflower, and really muddy boots. On weekends in September, the orchard is open for people to come and pick their own apples. I took the boys there today while Tina stayed home with Sara (it was nap time). Fortunately there was no mud this time. The boys had a great time picking apples (mostly Gala) and we also bought some fresh-squeezed apple cider. We ate some of the apples tonight after dinner and everybody thought they were delicious. I expect we will go back again to get some more.
Several of my coworkers asked me which hotel I used while I was in the States. My answer: all of them. Not really, but it sure was a lot of hotels. In fourteen nights, I stayed at seven different hotels and I never stayed at the same hotel two nights in a row.
I returned to Germany on Monday morning after spending two weeks in the United States (business trip). The trip began with extreme of weather at John F. Kennedy Airport (New York City) and ended with extreme weather at Washington Dulles International Airport (Washington, D.C.). Sandwiched somewhere in the middle was a rare east-coast earthquake that was felt all the way from North Carolina to Toronto.