Ah! A Nice Refreshing Coke

Living in Europe means that it’s sometimes necessary to alter one’s perception of what constitutes a “portion”.  In the U.S., it’s easy.  There’s big, bigger, and ginormous.  On our summer vacation, we are currently in Passy-Plaine Joux, which is close to Chamonix, and the impressive Mont Blanc.  We’re staying in a quaint hotel that is way, way, way up the hill, with an amazing view.

View of Mont Blanc

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When Our 6 Week European Road Trip Took A Hairpin Turn in the French Alps

Here I sit out on our terrace in Spain in nearly 100’F hot and humid weather, with no AC to be found, gazing at the Mediterranean Sea and reflecting back on our 6 week Summer Road Trip.  We have so many fond memories, there is no way we could possibly share them all with you, but we have tried here and there.  Today I’d like to share with you when our road trip took a hairpin turn and started going downhill.

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See Austria – Part III

We travelled into Austria, didn’t do any research about the area, so I had low expectations.  And as you read in Part I and Part II, I am totally sold on Austria.  Heidi and I checked out the requirements for retiring here, and it’s similar to Spain from a financial perspective, but being competent in German is a requirement (ouch). Continue reading

See Austria – Part II (Austrian Tourist)

Welcome to Part II of our See Austria series.  I’ll assume that you’ve already read Part I.  It’s a new day in See, and I decided to go pet some of the locals.  Wait…what?  Yes, pet the locals.  You see, just outside our kitchen window, we could see two cute donkeys (a mother and baby).  The owners were feeding them, so I decided to say “Gutentag” to the people, and possibly give the donkeys a scratch.

Checking out the donkeys

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On Our Way to “See” Austria – Part I

I’ll admit it…I was sad to see Italy go.  We had a lot of fun there, and saw a bunch of really cool stuff.  Since I’m being so honest, I’ll also admit that I was a bit ambivalent about Austria.  I had done absolutely no research at all about where we were going, and what we were doing, so I guess I’m the one at fault.

So once we had crossed the Italy/Austria border, we all needed to stretch our legs, and do the Bio Break thing.  Immediately, Austria sucked me in.  As Lars and I were walking into our first Austrian tourist shop, I saw something that made me think that Austria was going to be awesome:

We're going to like it in Austria!

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Great Moments – Lake Garda Italy

Over the course of our Summer 2013 road trip, we had a lot of experiences.  Some of the most memorable for me were very simple.  It didn’t matter so much the What we were doing, the thing that stands out for me was that they were great moments because we were connecting as a family.  The best memory of the trip was when we rented a boat on Lake Garda Italy.

Lake Garda Italy - Boat Rental

Lake Garda Italy – Boat Rental

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Traditional Balsamic Vinegar

One of the things I really enjoy about our Summer road trip travel adventure is that we’re learning about local products, and how they’re made.  While the Pagani Tour was awesome, we decided to do something a little more down to earth.  We took a tour of Acetaia di Giorgio and saw how they make Traditional Balsamic Vinegar firsthand.

Acetaia di Giorgio Continue reading

A Photo Walk Through Riomaggiore – Cinque Terre Italy

For many years I’ve dreamed of strolling through the narrow streets in the five quintessential villages of the Italian Riviera, Cinque Terre.  Each village nestled deeply into the crevices of the rocky hillsides which cascade into the Mediterranean Sea.  With homes painted in a multitude of earthy colors, adorning fresh flowers on the balconies and vines on the walls.  For me, this is one place that was on our must see list while on our 6 week European Road Trip.  Luckily the kids and Alan were up for the day trip from our campsite in Monotpoli, about a 90 min drive each way.

Riomaggiore - Cinque Terre Continue reading