Archive | October, 2012

Rows and rows of cottages.

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Folks, I am ill, ill, ill. I was supposed to leave for California this morning, but changed my ticket last night. It was around that time that my nostrils decided to be The Blob for Halloween (they like to get started on their costume early, it seems).

Blerg.

All energy has been sucked out of me and replaced with mucus.

But I feel I need to reply to some of the comments on yesterday’s post, during which several lovely folks noted that Castle Leslie seemed more like a manor than a castle. There was a bit of protesting about the lack of a moat, and there was certainly no drawbridge, and from my vantage point, I saw absolutely zero people wearing crowns and making decrees.

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No matter how much I travel, I find that there are things that still surprise me about Europe.

Like universal health care. Or the ubiquity of nutella. Or the fact that you can drive for a few hours and find yourself in a radically different country that isn’t Canada or Mexico.

And let’s not forget castles. It’s crazy to me that castles are actually a real thing over there, and not merely the stuff of fairy tales. (more…)

Seattle, it seems, has finally figured out what month it is, and the sunny and peculiarly warm days that characterized the fall thus far are now over. They’ve been replaced by cool winds grey skies, and foggy cityscapes. I am totally okay with this, however, since it means I can whip out my snuggie and eat pumpkin bread.

And for the record “whipping out my snuggie and eating pumpkin bread” is not a euphemism. No sir.

On that note, here’s The Week!

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I am honored and delighted to be featured on Hipmunk’s website. Sadly, they edited out the part where I referred to my local grocery store managers as “fascists.” But I guess I understand.

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Horsey Surprise might be my new favorite site.

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I realize that one of the most important parts of travel is embracing the unknown. We travel to strange lands and discover what is different and foreign to us, and our minds and hearts are opened.

I understand this, I really and truly do. And yet, there is something incredibly wonderful about finding the familiar in far-off lands. We encountered it during our Ireland trip, and it felt like we were somehow cheating – yes, we were traveling, but we were surrounded by friends.

Or maybe WE surrounded them.

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We went to a wedding in a part of the world we’d never been to before, and sat at a table full of people we’ve known for years.

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I am well aware that I owe you guys tons of posts. I need to tell you all about Ireland, and Northern Ireland (yes, the two are different. Don’t for a second think that they aren’t very, very different), and I have gobs to tell you about Milwaukee. Because, man, did I love Milwaukee (it is a town full of cheese and Packers fans. Damn right, I loved it.)

But before I get on with any of that, I would like to share with you the one photo I took last weekend while we were in Boise (yup, we went to Boise, too. Rand and I actually had about 12 hours between getting back from Wisconsin and heading off to Idaho. Flight attendants have started recognizing us. I’m not entirely sure that we should be proud of that).

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Fortunately, even non-giants are allowed to explore the area.

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While we were in Northern Ireland, I decided that we needed to visit the Giant’s Causeway despite not really knowing what it was. When Rand asked, I replied with the rather vague and not-entirely accurate, “It’s a big rocky thingy. Um … with giants.”

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My husband, about to cross Carrick-a-Rede.

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I recently learned that I’m not all that afraid of heights.

I kind of hoped that I would be. Fear of heights is your brain’s way of saying, “Don’t take us tumbling off a cliff, please.”

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Rand refuses to believe I have a bad side.

Photographically speaking, I mean. He knows I have a dark and sinister and downright evil side to my personality – that could never be disputed. It shows itself in full force when I’m stuck in traffic, when too much time has elapsed between my consumption of snacks, and during both the regular and playoff seasons of the NFL.

During those moments, my husband will stare at me with the same wariness you would a wild badger that you’ve suddenly discovered in the backseat of your vehicle as you zip down the highway. It’s a mixture of where-the-hell-did-that-come-from and I-need-to-get-out-of-this-situation-as-quickly-as-possible.

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