Thursday, July 15, 2010

Photos of the drive to Munich, and around

Surely I must have some stories! None that need sharing at this moment. It's 2 a.m. here, and I'm hitting the road tomorrow. I've been staying with my friend Brigitte, who I met at Canyon de Chelly National Park in Arizona, in 2001. She lives in Munich, and has been taking great care of me, since she recognized early on that I'm pretty well unable to care for myself properly. I like that! I play the incompetent role so well that I don't think anyone doubts it. Especially not me.

I'm off to a group walk in the south of France that begins on July 22nd, which means I have something like 1,000 miles to drive before then. Yikes. Good night!


A kayaker's paradise in the French Alps, just before the border into Italy. Lots of English and Dutch tourists in the area.
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Mountainous terrain.
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I love these valleys.
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My Jason Bourne moment, without the expensive car, beautiful girl, or helicopter giving chase. 
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Sometimes you just need your privato. We're in Italy!
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I am fascinated by old stone houses.
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This waterfall was within earshot of the campground where I spent the night.
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I got such a great deal on my rental car! I got it from "Rent Ze Wreck I Spit On You! Patooh!!, Inc." Those guys rock. As the BMW's and Audi's come FLYING past me on the freeway, I yell out, "How does it feel to beat up a cripple?!" This isn't my car, by the way.
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Just near here I came up to Immigration Control on the highway. He asked if I had anything to declare. I wanted to say, "I'd like to declare that I don't know what country I'm driving into." I thought it was Austria, but there'd be no immigration. Turns out it was Switzerland, and I was too embarrassed to tell him I didn't know. I was just driving around looking for clues, and it took a while. True story!
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A perfect and uniform Swiss cemetery, as opposed to the (relatively) chaotic French one from the last newsletter.
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An old solid metal bolt on a barn door.
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These guys were sweating this one. It wasn't obvious that it would make it, but it did.
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This beautiful little girl, suffering from car sickness, has a Swiss father and Taiwanese mother. Mom lived in San Francisco for some years and speaks good English, Mandarin, and a local Italian dialect that her extended Swiss family speaks. She can't speak proper Italian.
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A manor built in 1800.
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Incredibly green grass and rugged mountains surround these villages.
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It was tough enough getting up this in my little rental car, but big ol' busses drive it too.
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Not far from St. Moritz, Switzerland.
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A difficult drive in the car with the hills and turns, but I saw lots of bikers riding this road. This is the top of the pass.
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Swiss cheese makers.
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A circus was set up on the outskirts of Munich.
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A group of people "canyoning". (Some years ago a sudden rainstorm created a flash flood and buried something like nine canyoners in a wall of mud.)
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This chute was pretty tight.
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We hiked in this area.
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A canal on the way to Salzburg, Austria, for a day trip.
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Salzburg, Austria. Beautiful place!
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Cuz tonight we're gonna party like it's 1599.
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Trink Coke. This is Munich's rail station.
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This reminds me of an M.C. Escher diagram. A shopping center in Munich.
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A fountain near the center of Munich. It was really roasting the week I was here, like 90 degrees and humid. Unlike Singapore, many of the buildings don't have air conditioning.
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This river is a popular bathing area right in the center of Munich. Some of the women go topless. I was taking photos, like I do everywhere, until a security guard told me it wasn't permitted. So they take their clothes off, and I'm the perv? Nice. A minute later, a guy with a big telephoto lens was clearly taking close-ups of topless women while keeping an eye on the security guard so he wouldn't get caught. Oh. I see why they need a guard.
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Beautiful classical music in the main square of Munich, including a guy playing a grand piano.
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One of the famous beer gardens in Munich. They're HUGE. So are the one-liter jugs of beer, seen in the front of the photo.
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A famous church in Munich, originally built for the private use of someone with too much money. He probably would have disagreed.
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The Marienplatz square in Munich, from a tower that I climbed.
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From the tower.
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You don't normally see so many combs in one window. Nope.
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My friend Brigitte's dog, Lisa.
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Beautiful Noah. He's the one year-old child at the house where Brigitte is house-sitting.
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(The End)