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30 July 2013


What a superb idea - an outdoor library and lounge area!  A nice way to spend a sunny summer day: lounging in bean bags or hammocks while reading a good book, chatting with friends, or simply watching passersby.

29 July 2013

The heights, sights, and possibly freights of Europa Park

Ever since I've taught English here in Freiburg, my students of all ages have encouraged me to go to Europa Park.  This summer I was finally able to do so, and in great company.  :-)

Height/Freight: One of the many roller coasters at Europa Park.  This is their most recent addition,  "Wodan", located in the Icelandic part of Europa Park.  It was added in 2012 and I believe it's the only wooden roller coaster (or "Achterbahn") in the park.  As with many wooden crate coasters, this one is thrilling, though you do get jostled around a bit.

Height: Acrosplash!  An acrobatic water show featuring an international cast portraying Bond & villains with many fancy dives, jumps, "comedic" effects, and concluding with a high dive into a low pool.

Sight/Freight: Clowns.  On almost every children's ride, clowns.  This was was particularly creepy as it was a clown dummy set to roll back and forth across its zipline, its body swaying along...

Sight/Freight:  And of course no children's fairytale experience is complete without something completely psychedelic.  Frogs, fairies, and plenty of 'shrooms on this joy ride.

17 July 2013

Gufi is Pretty in Pink

Summer abounds in Gundelfingen -> mit viele schönen Blumen!  :-)

12 July 2013

Wind Turbines

It's quite common to see the houses tucked into the hills of the Black Forest covered in solar panels as well as roof-top gardens atop of modern homes and apartment buildings.  Wind turbines also dot the countryside: I have a view of 3 from my window.

Germany has been reveled as a 'green' country for many years and is becoming greener each year, but not without its own bumps in the road.  Nuclear energy is hopefully going to be phased out completely in Germany and Baden-Württemberg elected a Green, Winifried Kretschmann, as their Ministerpräsident, which is promising.

The wanted/needed push for renewable energy is prevalent, however the debates come in choosing which is 'best'.  There are at least two sides to everything, however those sides pertaining to wind turbines are not necessarily clear-cut.  Renewable energy is good, altering the natural environment/wildlife is not, wind turbines can both attract and deter visitors, the NIMBY argument, etc.  Have a look at the article from Spiegel Online (I think it's slightly biased against turbines, however a good article regardless) or the Bundesverband WindEngergy (German Wind Energy Association) website for some direct pro-turbine related info.

For me, artistically speaking, I enjoy the stark contrast of having a huge technological device against a natural, wild though tailored, landscape.  It's man and nature interacting on varying levels, making it possible to combine past, present, and future within one shot.

08 July 2013

05 July 2013

hi-ho, hi-ho, to the forest we go!

Today I ventured with a good friend of mine into the nearby Black Forest.  We took a little drive with the car, a short stint on bikes, and then hiked downhill to check out a waterfall she had previously stumbled upon.