Thursday, April 29, 2010

Was ist das?

That's what's for dinner! Snapshot of the pretzel not included, but
there is a big bread basket full of rolls an pretzels to the left of
the plate, with two types of mustard in the wooden canisters pictured
- honey dijion and spicy yellow. And as for you, Mr. SOB, below is
pictured some of the best potato salad i have ever had in my life.
Your little state side deli doesn't stand a chance to the real deal.

Ich liebe Deutschland!

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Ich habe eine Blume!

Today, I took the tram to school with Yoko who lives upstairs, made
friends with the crazy Aussie who's German is about as good as mine,
and I bought a plant. My German is coming, slowly but surely, but I'm
happy to be here. I have such great freedom with my job and lifestyle;
I can't even begin to imagine what corporate America golden handcuffs
or settleing down feels like. It's finally beginning to sink in that
my life is far from the norm and just how lucky, how blessed, I truly

Monday, April 26, 2010

Tiffany Key? Yes Please!

Many moons ago, when we lived in Lewisburg, PA, we lived across the
street from an antique store. I was obsessed with two things: the
postcards and the keys. I loved flipping through pictures of towns
past and reading the thoughts of people I would never know, who are no
longer with us. I also thought the old keys were beautiful and came
with so many questions. Why are they here in an antique store? What
did they once open? If I wear one as a necklace will it break my neck?
The postcards I studied in college (geography major, remember?); but
the keys - I have my own set now! The big cool old fashioned one opens
my room and the gate. The others open the main door and main gate.
Unfortunately for me, I can never get anything to unlock the first try
and stand for what feels like hours trying to open the door. And it's
loud too! I always make sure that I'm in and out at reasonable hours
because I know how awful it is that I can't even open the door quickly
or quietly. At least when I get my fancy Tiffany key for my birthday,
it will serve decoration purposes only!

And yes, that's my awesome bed spread with matching pillow case!

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Guten Tag! Tag Zwei

Greetings from old country! And let me tell you, this town is old
country. Church bells chime every fifteen minutes, stores close mid
day, and apparently nothing is open on Sunday. I walked all around the
city yesterday and it is beautiful here. As a lover of land use
patterns, and Europe, the landscape is much to my liking and I'm sure
things will only get better once I can talk to people. Auf deutsch.

My room is basic and clean; it's part of a nunnery. I'm not sure how
many sisters live here but their chapel is around the corner from my
room. Rosaries or daily mass is at 6 depending on the day. This
morning Sister Reggie and I went to church and it's nice to know that
bad church behavior is language-less.

To be a bit honest, I'm ready to get to class and to do some serious
homework and studying. It would also be nice to meet some people my
age who don't wear a habit...

So yes, I finally made it to Augsburg, Germany to learn me some
deutsch. I've been waiting so long to get here - since the winter and
delayed in Shannon. And now I have the next three weeks to enjoy,
learn, and drink beer!

Via iPhone

Thursday, April 22, 2010


We all know I'm a sucker for a geographic song; songs about planes, traveling, leaving. Listen to the Get Up Kids lyrics - those are their major themes. Anyway. I just heard this song for the first time on my pandora and I thought it captured my college education rather well. Enjoy!

Designer Skylines by Owl City

Affection, the gifted architect
Is making a draft and beautiful design
The options and possibilities
Are endless when we connect and re-align
Collections of books and documents
Arise and parade around my cluttered desk
Reworking the math and measurements
Until I'm convinced these plans are picturesque
Like mountains in the Midwest

Reaction creates the columns dark
And wide like the roads around Fort Lauderdale
The structures begin to take their shape
Before I've designed the public monorail
The turnpike and high-speed motorway
Connect and enclose the quaint suburban streets
The airport, the broad suspension bridge
The lake and the beach where several rivers meet
Compounded from the spreadsheet

A city sparkles in the night
How can it glow so bright?
The neighborhoods surround the soft florescent light
Designer skyline in my head
Abstract and still well-read
You went from numbered lines to buildings overhead

Did I say 8 days? I meant 9

I am finally home. That was the shortest 6 and a half hour flight I have ever worked. I am currently procrastinating packing up my suitcase to go back to Europe but here's the kicker - there are negative seats going Saturday and 7 going out tomorrow night. So I will be leaving for my big German adventure TOMORROW instead. I'm excited to be going... now I just have to get everything in my suitcase!

I did have a great Irish vacation this past week and would recommend Ireland in the spring time to anyone. It was beautiful, and just as we were leaving, flowers and trees were starting to bloom. Sigh, Europe in the spring time. There's no where else like it!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

The Beach Boys

Well I feel so broke up
I want to go home

So hoist up the John B's sail
See how the mainsail sets
Call for the Captain ashore
Let me go home, let me go home
I wanna go home, yeah yeah
Well I feel so broke up
I wanna go home

Possibly Thursday?

Monday, April 19, 2010

8 Day Shannon Trip?

Oh yes! So we have been delayed and rescheduled numerous times now.
The latest update has us departing Ireland for the states on Thursday.
Will that actually happen? Your guess is as good as mine. I recently
made the switch to Sky news, as opposed to CNN, and they are far more
informative with better meteorologists and volcanologists. I also find
it strange that not one of the news agencies out there has mentioned
Irish airspace; if you look at a map, it becomes a bit more clear as
to why...

Thus far, I missed watching United States of Tara with my sister and
have had to cancel my first week of German class. If we are not out of
here by Friday, then I have to scrap the trip entirely. That is
looking like a real possibility.

Just like my new Irish boyfriend! AND the captain is all about it
because he can marry us on the plane! Haha, my mother would just LOVE

Via iPhone

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Thanks Mom!

So I finally downloaded the Skype application for my iPhone, added minutes and called home (eat that AT&T international plan!). I talked to my dad for a bit, about making the best of the situation and then he put my mother on the phone.

"As I said to the family, it could be worse - Alyssa could be stuck here with me! 'Why didn't I get a trip? I wish I was on a trip. Why can't I go anywhere? When can I leave for Germany???'"

Thanks Mom. Love you too.

For those of you who know me well know just how psychotic I can get when it comes to work. I was excited to get this trip Tuesday night, so I wouldn't have to worry about scheduling Wednesday. And in all honesty, there is nothing in the above quote that isn't true. It does stink that I had to cancel my first week of German classes; I'm still scheduled to go for the last three until May 15. I'm also scheduled to leave Shannon on Tuesday. We'll see how that one goes.

It's nice being here in Ireland with other crew members who want to go home, be with their families, and take care of personal matters and projects; we are all in this together. I'm so thankful that I don't have any strings holding me to the states: no boyfriend, no husband, no kids, no bills, no house, and parents, who love me a lot, to take care of everything else.

The company has offered to buy us dinner tonight, which is nice. It's also 60 and sunny outside which for Ireland is even better. Tonight is also laundry night, as I have been wearing these jeans since Geneva and am down to one pair of underpants. We're going on the big tour tomorrow of touristy things; I'm excited for that. I told the crew that we can't come home after having been here for days on end and have our only activities be Indian and Thai curry, Guinness, and dancing into the wee small hours of the morn (80's night, Nancy Blakes, and that pub with the kid with braces). Besides, Mom said she'd pick up the tab for anything I couldn't afford ;)

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Ashes, Ashes, We All Fall Down!

As I'm sure you all are well aware, there is currently a volcano errupting in Iceland impacting travel in and out of Europe. I am in Shannon, Ireland where the airspace is currently closed. I was supposed to depart tomorrow, Friday, and that has been cancelled; but scheduling has us departing Saturday morning. The thing with these mother nature geological events is that no one really knows when what's going to happen. I'm mad at myself for not being prepared for my trip to Germany before I left for this trip - I figured it was a three day and I would be back at my house by 1 or 2 Friday afternoon. There's nothing I can do about that now and we'll just have to wait and see. I'm supposed to be in German class in Augsburg Monday morning. Keep you posted as to how that goes!

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Bottles of Fun!

My past two trips were Berlin, speaker position off airport alert, and Geneva, I was called 3 1/2 hours ahead of time at home. The best part about flying to mainland Europe (and Ireland) is there's no liquid restrictions. Even as crew members, there are liquid restrictions flying out of the UK, which is where I go more often than not as we are all well aware. I have grown accustom to not even trying to get hummus or yogurt (only Muller's rice in either strawberry or vanilla custard) through, let alone investing in bottles of fun at the supermarket. I don't have time to be checking my bag, waiting for it on the carousel; when I clear customs, I want in my car and home. Anyway, I digress.

So on these two trips, Berlin and Geneva, I was able to bring home bottles of fun! My favorite bottles of fun! I bought a hefeweizen in Berlin and a Leffe Brune in Geneva. AND my best friend J, who just came home from Italia brought me back two Fantas and a bottle of my favorite red! My fridge is full of fun and you are full of envy ;)

Fanta and

Montepulciano d'Abruzzo

Leffe, cold Fanta, and a .5 liter hefeweizen... yum!

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Skin and Bones

As I have previously mentioned, I haven't flown this many hours since last summer. Since then I've dropped a few pounds and now can wear a size 2. I know its shallow and vain, but it sure is nice to see that little 2 on the inside of my pants. I can't see it, this is my body and it feels the same to me. I've been working out a bit so I feel healthier and it is far easier to lug my overstuffed bags through security and up and down the terminal. But last night en route to Geneva it dawned on me why the pounds have literally melted away: I had stopped flying! I wish you all could have seen the things I stuffed in my face on that plane. I was first class galley, which didn't help. I had a cashews, piece of garlic bread (YUM!), one of the veggie spring rolls with the sauce, pretzel bread, a salad with creamy dressing, a coach chicken (stir fry with rice, egg, and what looked to be broccoli and carrots). And a bite of brownie. And a handful of grapes. OH - and I had a half of a wrap before we took off. What makes eating on the airplane worse is that I ate all this between 8 and 11, and didn't sit down to have an actual meal. I only have one more "trip" (okay, reserve days that could equal a trip) and I know I won't plan out food to bring with me for 3 days. I think I'll make this my goal come May, when I head back out on line.

I did try to pick up Manchester where they have a microwave in the crew room. Instead, I got assigned this trip, with no microwave, and a kebab shop two blocks away. And with the Swiss franc the way it is, that's about all I can afford.

PS - When you spell check on a French computer, English is wrong. I appologize for any mispellings; you know, more than the usual.

Thursday, April 8, 2010


Good aviation news: I flew my tush off in March and so far, its been non-stop flying for April. I haven't flown this much since last July. This past week has included Edinburgh and Berlin. Good beer everywhere!

I'm getting ready to leave for Germany for a month; that adventure begins in a little over a week. Anxiety is beginning to set in because I have yet to hear from my school with necessary information such as where I'll be living for a month, where the school is, how to get to where ever it is I'm going. Moreover, I still have a few pesky reserve days that I can't seem to get rid of and we all know what kind of scheduling drama can ensue from those! There are a few loose ends I need to tie up here at home too, and with all these balls in the air I'm a bit concerned as to where they'll land. Keep you posted, and most certainly will be blogging from Deutschland!

Wednesday, April 7, 2010


Skip down the avenues
holding my hand
flowers bloom
sneezes scrunch your face

Brown waves flail behind
my grinning head
breezes blow
summer's ahead
hold my hand
come along
is our hearts song