The journey of a thousand miles begins with...the perfect pair of shoes.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Random Thoughts Tuesday: Movie and TV edition

Randomness! Please turn off your cell phones, no talking and remove all screaming babies. Let's all go to the lobby, let's all go to the lobby, let's all go to the lo-o-obyyyyy, and get ourselves a snack.


*Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs was funny, but NOTHING like the book. I was terribly disappointed because of this. Other than the name of the town, nothing was the same! Why did they even call it Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs? They could have called it The Food Machine and it would have been more accurate. I've loved that book since I was a child. I hate when they bastardize an amazing book.

*I wish all movies came with cartoons in front of them.

*G Force was weirdly funny. I'm kind of sick of all the fart jokes in kids movies though. Come on!

*Half a million feet of film was shot for Gone With the Wind. It was cut down to 20,000 feet. I'd love to see some of the stuff they cut.

*Mr. HH and I just saw the new Star Trek movie and while I liked it, I didn't like the whole time travel bit. Also, where was William Shatner?

*During the haunted forest scene in The Wizard of Oz, several actors playing the Winged Monkeys were injured when the piano wires suspending them snapped, dropping them several feet to the floor of the sound stage.

*I'm so excited that the new fall TV season has started. New Bones! New Office! New Everything! Except Chuck. March 2010? What up NBC????

*In the Brady Bunch, they only ever fired up the BBQ grill that is seen in nearly every episode, once.

*I so wanted to be Marcia Brady when I was little.

*Werner Klemperer and John Banner who played the German soldiers Klink and Schultz on Hogan's Heroes, were, in fact, both Jewish. Werner Klemperer fled Nazi Germany and served in the U.S. military during World War II. John Banner spent time in a concentration camp, but was released and fled the country. Robert Clary (LeBeau) also spent years in a concentration camp as a child.

*Hogan's Heroes was my favorite show when I was a kid. Isn't that an odd show for a little girl to love? I never missed it though.

*Nick Nolte, Steve Martin, Chevy Chase and Jack Nicholson all turned down the role of Indiana Jones. Tom Selleck was originally cast, but had to drop out due to conflicts with Magnum, PI. It wouldn't be the same without Harrison Ford.

*We own more than 500 DVD's. Some have never been opened. Mr. HH has a problem.

*Before Indy was born Mr. HH and I used to go to the movies 2-3 times a week.

*"Vader" as in "Darth Vader" is Dutch for "father". "Darth" is not a Dutch word though. Talk about a spoiler!

*When Mr. HH was stationed at Ft. Stewart, GA (shudder), we would go to Savannah on a Saturday morning and watch 3-5 movies back to back. There were 2 multi-plexes right next to each other and we always had plenty of choices. Between movies, we'd run over to the mall across the street and get something to eat at the food court.

*Star Wars was the first film to make over $300,000,000.

*The TV show M*A*S*H lasted 8 years longer than the Korean war.

*My dad never missed an episode of M*A*S*H. He was devastated when the show ended in 1983.

*I had an aunt (by marriage, thank goodness) who thought the people eaten in the movie JAWS were actually eaten. By a real shark. Just for the movie. She and my uncle divorced after just a few years of marriage.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Dear So and So: I'm back baby!

I haven't been able to do a Dear So and So for a while, but this week, like the title says, I'm back baby!!!!

Dear So and So...

Dear Mama Mia (the movie),

I heart you so much! Apparently the Germans love you too because this is the 5th month out of the last 11 that you've been a featured movie on the movie channel. It's in English!!!! Fortunately (for me) Mr. HH and Indy both love it too and will watch it any time it's on. I always wonder why there isn't a soundtrack for my life. How awesome would that be?

The Dancing Queen (young and sweet),

Dear Heel Spur,

I hate you. A lot.


Dear worker bees removing the asbestos from our attic area,

OMG! 7 am? Are you kidding me? Do you KNOW how loud you are? I know you're just doing your jobs, and that's cool, but 7am until 4pm M-F? Really? Really? I feel like I'm going crazy. Indy can't concentrate on school work and I'm seriously thinking of Irishing up my tea in the mornings.

Head poundingly,

Dear fresh baked chocolate chip cookies,

QUIT. LOOKING. AT. ME. LIKE. THAT. Yes, you're ooey, gooey delicious, but I cannot eat all of you, no matter how much I'd like to. The dollar to euro rate blows right now and I can't afford (nor do I want to) buy bigger pants, so please, cut me some slack.


Dear Exchange Rate,

You are seriously sucking right now. When the Euro first came out in 2002 the exchange rate was about $1.60 to 1 Euro and now it's $0.65 to 1 Euro. WHAT???? Do you know how much that makes stuff at IKEA? Come on!


Dear blogger,

Why can you not make the Euro symbol? Or accept it from MS Word? That's really annoying. I hate typing out Euro all the time. It would be so much easier to make the curved capital E looking thing.

Still poor and now annoyed,

Dear house,

How many times do we need to have the discussion about cleaning yourself up?


Dear Edward,

You're mine. Don't be swayed by any of those other bloggers. Especially Cammie. I'm the one. Me.


Dear Johnny Depp,

Same goes for you. I'm willing to cut you a bit of slack because you have kids with what's-her-name, but I'm your true love. Remember that, okay? And yes, I can in fact juggle both you and Edward. Oh and Mr. HH too.

Loving you,

Dear Meryl Streep,

You have gorgeous hair. I kind of hate you for that.


Okay, I guess I'm done. Head over to Kat's to read the other Dear So and So's. You won't be sorry.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Weekend getaway-day 2: flea market, monastery, gorge

Wow, doesn’t that title sound odd?  TO start us off, let’s have a look at a couple of photos of Mr. HH in front of our hotel.  Pretty, huh? That’s the Alpspitz and the Zugspitz in the background.

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After a day of merry making at Oktoberfest, we opted for a low key morning.  TOM’s Wife found out about a flea market in Oberammergau (home of a Passion Play first held in the 1600 and is held once every 10 years-next year is it) so we decided to go.  I’m always up for a flea market.  We piled into her car (she can seat 7) and headed up the mountain.  Seriously, up. Oberammergau is about 15 miles from G-P, but most of it is up a twisty, curvy, hairpin turn-y mountain road.   Oberammergau has an elevation of 2746 feet.  The flea market was pretty interesting.  It was far less cosmopolitan than the ones I’ve been to before (of course, I usually go to ones in cities) and had some really different stuff.  Lots of homemade dirndls, local wood carvings (they’re known for this), WWII stuff and old US military uniforms (the NATO school has been located there since 1953).  We didn’t find anything, but it was still cool to look around and to see that Bavarian’s actually do dress in Lederhosen and Dirndls for everyday wear.  

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After the flea market, we drove to the town of Ettal home of the famous Ettal Abbey, founded in 1330.  Today there is a huge baroque church there and they are incredibly famous for their beer, wine and liquor.  That’s right, the monks brew and sell beer, wine and liquor.  And it is good.  Goooooooooood.

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After lunch at a cafe just outside the abbey, we headed back down to G-P and to the Olympic Stadium before walking through the Partenach Gorge.  Check out the ski jump!

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From here we walked about 1/2-3/4 of a mile to the entrance of the gorge.  I had no idea it would be quite so amazing.

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Can you believe that?  When we got to the end of the gorge, there is a bit of a beach along the river and we decided to go dip our feet in the water.  This is a glacial river, people.  Brrrrrr!  

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We planned on catching the bus back to our hotel, but someone (Mr. HH) made us miss said bus by about a minute and a half and since it was Sunday, there wasn’t another one for over an hour.  Mr. HH thought it would be a good idea to walk to at least the bahnhof.  About 2 miles away, after we’d already done all the walking in the gorge (approximately 2.5 miles).  Indy and I were not too pleased (especially me with my stupid heel spur), but we trudged on and made it to the bahnhof just in time to catch a different bus.  We went to the same little Irish pub as the night before (mostly because it was right next to the bus stop) and Indy and I nearly fell asleep on the table.  It was a fun, but exhausting day. 

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Weekend getaway-driving the autobahn and drinking beer (not at the same time)

Mr.HH was hoping to get home early on Friday so we could leave,but of course that didn’t happen and we ended up not leaving Heidelberg until almost 6:30pm. I wasn’t too worried though and figured we’d get there no later than 10:30. I did not realize that Murphy had hitched a ride in the back though. Oh Murphy, you’re such a bad travelling companion. Around 9pm, about 100 miles from Garmisch, Murphy decided it was time to wake up and show us what he was made of. My poor sweet Ulrika started making a weird sound and a warning light came on that read “Extremely low tire pressure. Pull over.” WHAT? Oh, no! Ulkrika! I pulled over as much as I could (there are no shoulders on the autobahns for some reason) and Mr. HH got out to check it. We had an extremely flat tire. We were about 4 miles from the closest Rasthof (usually has a gas station, hotel, restaurant or two, cafe, small shop and bathrooms) and weren’t sure we would make it. Fortunately, we’d gone less than a kilometer and found a call box service area where I could pull over. There are call boxes all along the autobahns and I was so happy! I could call ADAC and they’d come fix us up in no time. Huzzah! Mr. HH was not keen on calling them though because he’s a manly man and could fix it himself. Oooookaaaaaaay. We paid for ADAC, but let’s not use it. We unpacked the pack of the car (of course you have to remove everything to get to the spare), and Indy and I sat on the side of the road in the cold and watched Mr. HH be a he-man. The jack has never been used before and was really difficult for him to use. I tried hard not to stare at the call box and nearly lost it when Indy,who was watching Mr. HH struggle, leaned against me and said in his “Spongebob narrator”voice “Twenty…….hours…….later.” OMG, I love that boy. I laughed so hard. Fortunately Mr. HH didn’t hear him because he was not in the mood for humor.

We made it to our hotel slowly (sooooo slowly) without further incident, got our room key from the safe (24 hour reception? No way!). They give you a code to access the outside wall safe and let you find your own way. We were not in the main hotel, but the “suites” in the building across the street. We crashed hard and woke up to a beautiful and chilly Bavarian morning. This is the view from the patio off the back of our suite.

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Jealous? It’s so picturesque and quaint. It made me want to climb a mountain and sing. Well, maybe not climb a mountain, but maybe take a train or lift up one and sing.

Do you remember the photo I showed you last week of our hotel from the website? I wondered if it would really look like that. Here is the website photo and the one I took:

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Pretty good, huh? The website photo was taken from the roof of the house next to our building. The flowers are different, but other than that, I think they represent themselves well.

We met up with TOM and TOM’s wife in the restaurant (I love that breakfast comes with most hotels in Europe) and made a plan for the day, while the super awesome front desk lady called all over the G-P area to find a garage that was open on Saturday (not many are) to replace Ulrika’s tire. She finally found one and we zipped over to drop Ulrika off before heading to the bahnhof to catch the train to Munchen (Munich). Here are some photos from the train.

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TOM and Mr. HH TOM’s Wife and me

If you look behind me and to the right, you’ll notice that the teenager sitting behind me was wearing Lederhosen. Awesome!

We arrived in Munich and followed the crowd of people wearing Lederhosen and Dirndls to the Theresienwiese where the Oktoberfest is held. I did not realize the scale of this thing! It is massive!!! It’s like a HUGE fair with beer halls. Indy and the girls wanted to ride the rides, but we had stuff to see first!

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These were taken inside one of the beer halls, but I can’t remember which one. Reservations for tables inside the halls need to be made a year in advance and cost approximately $600 per table (a table will seat about 10 adults-closely). Needless to say we did NOT sit inside a beer hall. Check out the decor though.

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Can you believe that? Can you believe those women carry so many of the 1ltr beer mugs? And some of them hold 3 or 4 in each hand! The mugs themselves weigh about 2-3lbs, plus the weight of the beer. Talk about strong arms.

The outside of the beer halls were pretty amazing too.

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We tried to get a seat in several of the outside biergartens (just outside the beer halls themselves), but that was next to impossible. Mr. HH and TOM were ready to give up, but TOM’s Wife was crazy persistent. She found a group of teens who had a table (outside) who wanted to leave to check out the rest of the fest, but not lose their table. We offered to hold their seats and so we sat down with the friends who didn’t want to go explore. Some of them were perfectly fine, despite a litre or two of beer, while others were sloppy drunk. Slop-py. When they found out we were Americans, they went crazy. “We love Americans!” they said at least 100 times in the 2 hours we sat there. It was so funny. They were really sweet kids. Here’s photos of the outside beirgarten and the kids we sat with. BTW, notice the size of the pretzel Indy is holding.

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Oscar is the one waving and was not drunk, nor was the boy in the green whose name I can’t remember (he’s from Moscow though, I remember that),but the boy in the batman hat was drunk. Crazy drunk.

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And now for some incredibly “controversial” photos. Don’t freak out, it was just a sip and if you look at the third photo, you’ll notice that we have nothing to worry about.

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Beer was not Indy’s thing. Which is good, but he asked if he could try it and we figured one little sip at Oktoberfest wouldn’t hurt.

After the other teens came back and we gave rounds of hugs, there were a few more “We love Americans!” we left to go ride a few rides, take in the sites, eat some yummy treats and head back to Garmisch before the crowds got too thick (it’s not a place for kids after 5pm).

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We had so much fun, but were completely pooped by the time we made it to the train. We ate at a little Irish Pub next to our hotel and then headed back for some much needed sleep. Here’s Indy about 2 minutes after he laid down.

Come back tomorrow for photos of a flea market in Oberamergau, the monastery at Ettal, the 1936 Olympic stadium and the Partenach gorge.

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