Thursday, April 29, 2010

Noah's Tulips

On Monday, I came to the conclusion that my office needs to be gayed up seriously. Thus I bought a bunch of flowers and placed them on my desk.

It took me over a day to realise that there are always two tulips of the same kind in it. I still do ask myself what this might mean.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Heavenly Temptation

No, this picture was not taken in our cellar, we can't afford to be label drinkers. I took the picture in our hotel in Mexico City. It had an excellent collection of fine labels. The bottles of Château Pétrus here range somewhere between $700 and $4000, depending on the vintage. Do the maths.

Pimp My Balcony

I finally made it back from India on Friday. Lufthansa's booking system was a tiny bit overstretched with the situation and indicated my booking often as cancelled (though not always), however, everything went just fine.

Thus I could enjoy an almost summer like weekend, however, our balcony was far from ready for summer.

I like to store certain things on the balcony of our residence. We haven't got a cubby, so there is no alternative place for gardening tools, bike maintenance tools and garbage to for recycling.

The problem is, that there are hardly any durable outdoor storage furniture available. As a (too long term) intermediate solution I once bought these really cheap plastic chest of drawers, which really have fallen into ruin.

After a long quest and over-stretching Toño's patience, I finally came across Container DS, which were designed by Kuno Nüssli for MAGAZIN®.

This sideboard system is inspired by oversea freight containers and thus is made of durable metal. It is not an outdoor furniture but it should be fit for the task.

We spent all Saturday cleaning the balcony, getting rid of waste, re-potting plants and potting new herbs. Now summer may come :)

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Saturday Flowers

on the balcony of our residence

Monday, April 19, 2010

Hiding from the Icelandic Volcano Attacks

Maybe you occasionally watch telly and heard about the volcano with the name nobody dares to say. And maybe you saw pictures of people stranded at airports, without being given any assistance, having no hope and even less money left. Or you saw people trying alternative means of transport, like using taxis, swimming the English channel, or using cannons.

Well that is not the entire truth. There are others who yield up to their fate, although they are deriously longing for being hugged by Toño and they might miss Tigresa's party this weekend. That does not mean that I've checked other options, like freighters (25 days to Hamburg) and overland routes, however, I've decided to sit things out, like with this breakfast:

I admit, being in a five star hotel with my caring employer's credit card does help.

For now, I'm on Thursday's & Friday's waiting lists and have a confirmed flight on Saturday, provided the airspace between India and Germany is reopened till Wednesday morning. Qui vivra verra...

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Yield to Pedestrians?

Traffic in India is really soemthing. We usually feel quite comfortable on the back seat of the car - i.e. nobody wants to sit next to the driver. However, being a pedestrian in this traffic is a completely different chapter. This traffic sign clearly shows how it works:

Nevertheless there is also beauty in these streets. Like I quite like how these trees cover the street.

Did you notice the brick-built median strip? It is the only measure that works to enforce some lane discipline. And it also helps crossing the street as a pedestrian.

I've posted this before, but bring it again to show what amazing things can happen in the Indian traffic:

Well... Buzz Words

My mission here in India is accomplished and I could fly back if there were not this disruptions in Europe's airspace.

Since I've booked via my caring employer's travel agent HRG, I'm supposed to reschedule my flight also via them. Of course, I did not manage to get through to them. On their brochure, there are all those nice buzz words, which so not withstand this stress test:

We care about you ... smart travelling with HRG ... our employees are always within easy reach ... let us deal with it for you ... smart travelling ... as a good partner we are with you all the way ... our 24-hours service is at your full disposal throughout the world, 365 days a year ... no worries ... we cover all eventualities.

Nevertheless, I tried to celebrate a bit.

Saturday Flowers

Friday, April 16, 2010

Love Is Stronger Than Death

Tonight, a tweet harmless tweet by Borstal Boy sent me heavily down memory lane.

It took not long that I came to The The's Love Is Stronger Than Death which is such a wonderful song for being in love in spring time :)


Me & my friend were walking
In the cold light of mourning.
Tears may blind the eyes but the soul is not deceived
In this world even winter aint what it seems.

Here come the blue skies here comes springtime.
When the rivers run high & the tears run dry.
When everything that dies.
Shall rise.

Lovelovelove is stronger than death.
Lovelovelove is stronger than death.

In our lives we hunger for those we cannot touch.
All the thoughts unuttered & all the feelings unexpressed
Play upon our hearts like the mist upon our breath.
But, awoken by grief, our spirits speak
How could you believe that the life within the seed
That grew arms that reached
And a heart that beat.
And lips that smiled
And eyes that cried.
Could ever die?

Here come the blue skies here comes springtime.
When the rivers run high & the tears run dry.
When everything that dies.
Shall rise.

Lovelovelove is stronger than death.
Lovelovelove is stronger than death.

Shall rise. shall rise.
Shall rise. shall rise.

No Sports At Dawn (in speedos and in public)!

I'm currently in Bangolore, India for a three day meeting. Only on Monday evening we came back from México, where on the weekend, we had the pleasure to meet and dance with Dzyan*.

On Wednesday, I flew to India; and this morning at 7am I finally made it to the pool, just to realise again that I'm not a morning sports person, especially when being jet-lagged. In addition, I realised that I'm just not exhibitionist** enough to exercise in view of the the pool side breakfast restaurant and the treadmill robots.

* go there, meet him - this is highly recommended!
** or just have a "tiny bit" too much fat on the hips.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Saturday Flowers

Toño's late mother embroidered this table cloth for her silver wedding anniversary.

Thursday, April 08, 2010

Cutlery - Revisited

There is not every thing just fine here in México. There is a constant lack of decent cutlery. Like today when I was given a nice sirloin steak for lunch which I was supposed to eat with a effin plastic fork and nothing else. I had to wrap the meat in some tortillas and had to bite pieces off it. wtf?

Wednesday, April 07, 2010

Monday, April 05, 2010

Baptism, Wedding, Party & Hangover Breakfast

One can easily forget that there was also Easter to be celebrated because on Easter Sunday* there were plenty of things going on here at La Huacana in México.

After noon mass, Katia, one of Toño's niece got baptised.

Getting baptised at Easter seems to be very popular. There were about 10 babies, toddlers and even children lining up to receive this sacrament.

The second important event was the wedding of Toño's brother Tito and Maria.

They were actually already married, but that was in the U.S. of A. For some unknown reasons to me, this was not accepted by the Méxican authorities and they had to do it again in order to be entitled to a certain type of mortgage. Whatever, it was very touching and just another reason to celebrate.

About 400 relatives showed up to celebrate Easter, baptism and the wedding. There were Mariachis and a 20 men Banda band to entertain them.

Toño's family definitely knowns how to party. I had a blast blast and a few Corona Extras and tequilas too much. I reckon at times, you just had to lick the sweat off my skin to get drunk.

My sleep was almost comatose, but Toño's relatives also took care for a healthy hangover breakfast - an intensely hot shrimp cocktail - to get me on my feet again.

* in Switzerland we also have an Easter Monday.

5 on the fifth - Spring

I thought I give this 5 on the fifth thing a try. I opted for the theme Spring.

In my parents' garden (Märstetten, Switzerland)

The first flower on our balcony (Zürich, Switzerland)

Carla Guadalupe in the car (Santa Clara del Cobre, México)

In the garden of Toño's sister Chilo (La Huacana, México)

Family party (La Huacana, México)

Saturday, April 03, 2010

Sombrero de la Tierra Caliente

The area of México where Toño was born and bred is called Tierra Caliente. Yes, it is hot here, like for today 38°C/100°F are forecast. And it is only spring.

A thing I like about the Tierra Caliente are the sombreros, which the hombres wear.

I like the dynamic shape of these hats and the simplicity of the design, which is not only aesthetic but also functional. It keeps the head cool. The sombrero is made from the leaves of the royal palm.

Sadly, only the old geezers wear them nowadays. But Toño was so kind to wear one for me to take a picture.

No, I did not buy one. It is not for the lack of trying, but Méxicans seems to have smaller skulls. I could not find one that fits on mine, which has a circumference of 62 cm/24".

Saturday Flowers - México Edition

Thursday, April 01, 2010

Comer con Chilo y la tía Lourdes

Today at noon, we went to Toño's sister Chilo. The question of dinner came up, a menu was found, a shopping list drafted and soon both Chilo and tía Lourdes were cooking for the 16 people that happen to be there.

Caldo de camarones

Filetes de pescado

This drink is called Michelada:

Tía Lourdes made it for me. She used tomato juice, lime juice, beer and seasoned it with chilli powder and salt. Very refreshing.

Yes, I'm having a good time :)


I will not go as far as to say that the way people handle their cutlery reveals their character. Although, the way people handle their cutlery tells a lot. Like you can easily spot the American in a restaurant (swap alert!). Nevertheless, I was quite flabbergasted when I was given my cutlery like this earlier this week:

¡Qué cabrón!