I hope all is well with everyone. As for me, everything is going well – not great. Work is a bit more manageable with the passing of fiscal year end, but there is still a lot to do. It’s still somewhat busy at work – from one day trips all over Germany and weeklong trips in and outside of Germany, as well catching up with administrative work for my projects when I am in the office. I take advantage of my weekends and days off as much as I can, by getting away. If I don’t take off for the weekend, I will probably show up at work.
I had been a bit under the weather with coughing fits a couple of weeks ago. I have been traveling quite a bit, for work and personal vacations. A friend and I checked out Trier, a German city near the Luxembourg border, during the Columbus Day weekend. I was in Turkey near the end of October for work, but I managed to spend a day exploring the old part of Istanbul. I am still going to different parts of Germany managing my projects and meeting with customers and program sponsors. I traveled to Porto, Portugal in search of good seafood and port wine with a couple of friends from work during the Veteran’s Day weekend. I just returned from a five day trip from southwestern France visiting Carcassonne and its famed preserved fortress; Castelnaudary and Toulouse in search of cassoulet – in short a bean and meat (duck, sausage and pork, mainly) stew; and Nimes, to see the Roman ruins in the city and nearby Pont du Gard. Next week, I will be going to Rota and Moron, Spain to survey several schools. After I finish my work, I will be staying for the weekend to see the sights of Sevilla.
I did get my new car – the red with black stripes Mini Clubman. It’s been a month and a half since I had it. I really have not had a long road trip on it yet. But I drive it around during the weekend, when I am in town. I had managed to get by in Germany without a car for 15 months without really any problems. But you know, having a car gives your more options and flexibility.
The photos are of the new car when I picked it up at the dealership and with a small build up of snow from last week. It’s a fun little car.
I promise to fill you in on my trips to Istanbul, Porto, and southwest France before the end of the week. As a teaser, the following are photos from the various locations.
In Istanbul, in front of the Hagia Sophia:
I am finalizing plans for my holiday trip back to Seattle. I should be in Seattle from 20 December to just after the new year. I am planning on visiting a US city in the east coast for a two or three day stay on my way back to Germany.