Tuesday, November 18, 2008

That will be $25.00 and 5.00 €


So, I am driving around in my rental car....the Plymouth Horizon....I mean....Ford Focus. This thing has a whopping 1 hp and 2lb-ft of torque (actually, I think it has like 89hp....1.4L Gasser with no guts). Anyway, I had been saying how hard the thing was to get up to speed (Autobahn speed that is) It could hit about 80kph ok, above that, I had to keep the revs above 3,000 to get anything resembling acceleration.

Well, it is that up to 80kph part that got me in trouble. In that range, the car accelerated enough to keep up with...I dunno....my old Nissan Frontier if it had a bed full of gravel AND was towing a trailer. Anyway, I made a left hand turn, and was a little aggravated with the car, so I punched it (the gas pedal, not the car....I really wanted to punch the car though). I am screaming through first and second, the whole time the engine sounding like it is going to explode. 10kph....20...30...40..........50..........................................60 *flash* Swearing, slowing back down to 50kph.

A little further down the road the nice Polizei waiting to flag me down to give me my ticket. He starts rambling on in German, and pauses, so I say, in German, that I only speak a little bit of German. He repeats back a little, and then says "English?". Yes.

"License and regsitration"

I hand them over.

"This road has a speedlimit of 50kph and you were observed going 62kph with the speedlimit of 50kph so that is 12kph over the speedlimit." (All this time I am thinking....Yeah, I know I saw the flash.....oh, only 62...whew.....I thought I had almost hit 70).

"That will be a 25 € fine right now."

"Oh, ok, well, let me check my wallet.......oh...I only have 5€"

"Ok, how about dollars"

Look on my face must have been like ?????????????
"Um I have $27.00"

"No, that is not good enough"

"Well, I have $27.00 and 5€"

"Hmmm......" says something in German to the other Polizei, that guy kinda looks up.

"Ok, well, $25.00 and 5€?"

Since he posed this as a question, I thought he was confirming how much I had, so I said back, "I have $27.00 and 5€"

"No, the fine, it will be $25.00 and 5€"

He hands the money to the other officer, and brings back one receipt for 5€. "This is for the Euro and he will give you a receipt for the dollars" Hands me back license and registration.

Other officer walks up to the car, hands me a reciept for 25€ with the € scratched out and "Dollars" written in.

He walks around the front of the car, and is still writing so I think I am not done yet but he sees me looking at him waiting for him to say anything and he says. "Oh, you are free to go"

As I pulled away, the only thing I could think of was how I wanted to get myself a ticket before I left Germany, but of a fine-only/no points variety with me flicking off the camera. This would not have been the time to do that because I didn't even get the picture, plus I don't think the polizei would have taken to that so nicely, but it was still all I could think of.

So, there you have it. If you are pulled over by the Polizei, you have no idea how much or in what currency you will be paying your fine.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Long time no post

Well, I realize I haven't posted in a while (not that anyone reads this) but I figured I would post now because I am starting to do a redesign of my main web page. Also, I am a "geographic bachelor" as my boss puts it (Chrissy is state-side) so I have a lot of time to kill. I did make it to "The Ring" Sunday and ran two laps and look a LOT of pictures. I will be going again sometime soon to finish my last two laps before I ship the BMW (and try to get pictures of me driving on the ring).

I might start devoting more time to photography (and maybe try selling some photos too) so I will actually be devoting part of my redone site (which might take a while) to my photography. I doubt I will make much, if any money, but it is worth a shot.

Anyway, that is all for now. Enjoy my flickr photos. l8r

Friday, September 12, 2008

DVD Collection

Here is a running tally of our DVD Library:

Thursday, September 11, 2008

"from here to San Francisco"

First off, for those of you who don't know, we are the proud owners of an 08 BMW 135i Convertible (E88 for the gear heads). We actually traded in our E90 3-series on the 1.

Out with the old:

Chrissy Driving on Hockenheimring

And in with the new:

Some Picasa fun
Anyway, BMW has a great Viral Marketing campaign for the 1-Series that I had heard about before I bought the car, but never saw the video until last night (and that is when I found out how deep they made it)

For me, it all started with The Ramp Move (Rampenfest). Rampenfest occurs in the fictional Bavarian town of Oberpfaffelbachen. Well, then I googled "Oberpfaffelbachen" to see if there was any more to this....and boy was I surprised. First is http://www.oberpfaffelbachen.com/, the official website of this fictional town. On the top of that page, there are banner advertisements that rotate. There are ads for Unterholzner Construction (the company that built The Ramp), Peters B├Ąckerei, Sepp's Stunts (The proposed Driver of the launch car), and lastly, Evi's Rapenfest Souviner Shoppe.

Those websites were all created by Brendl Events (Brendl being the man who came up with Rampenfest). His other projects include a Schnitzel Toss and a two-year old's Birthday party @ a bar with a knife thrower....

Friday, September 5, 2008

Another night of little sleep - only getting worse

Yet again, I wake in the middle of the night and I am having trouble falling back asleep. I can't wait till that sleep study is done. To make matters worse, I just found out that the house is going to be hit with a LOT of rain and 22mph sustained winds with 50mph gusts.

The impending move might also be increasing my sleeplessness. Uprooting and moving is always a stressful experience. Changing jobs is a stressful experience. Combine those two....fun...I've done it before coming out here (and got married around the same time too) but then, I was also getting a bump in pay to come over here which made it more bearable. Now, we are going back to making mortgage payments, car payments, power bills, etc... and I am going to be earning less money. (On the flip side, Chrissy is making a lot more than last time we were in the states)

With all of that said, how about a nice tranquil scene to look at from our trip to Evian-les-Bains, France (yes, that Evian)

Evian-les-Baines HDR 2.jpg

Thursday, September 4, 2008

135i and the sleeping incident

Well, I know no one really reads this yet, but once people go back and read it, I am sure they will find interest in this story.

So, about a week and a half ago I feel asleep at the wheel in the BRAND NEW FREAKING CAR! I hit some construction barriers (temporary plastic ones) and drove up over the bases of them. Well, I thought it was just a little bit of paint damage and some mis-adjustment to the suspension. In fact, it was 2300 Euro of suspension damage. The car is getting repaired (out of our hands all weekend...grrr...) and we are going to check out our insurance options.

Sunday, August 31, 2008

New Home

Well, I decided to set up a new blog so I would have somewhere to blab on and on. I REALLY wanted to run this as a Google App for my domain, but that isn't available right now. I will type up some details about our European Road Trip 2008 once we are back in Germany. For now, just go look at my Flickr images