Follow my adventures while living in Italy with my husband and our two dogs Moose the whippet and Ruby the Australian Terrier. It's sure to be full of fun, frustration and cultural confusion.

Sunday, 10 November 2013

Los Angeles and Hawaii

So at the beginning of October we headed to LA to spend a few days with Joe's parents. We've both been to LA before but it was great to spend a few days kicking around the city, the weather was great which was a nice change from Munich which was getting decidedly chilly and we also got to see our friends Mike and Neelam who have recently relocated there. We went to the Getty, to Griffith park and cycled along Venice beach boardwalk. We ate a lot of mexican food (yesss!) and had more than my usual quota of starbucks (fyi usual quota is zero, coffee in Italy rocks).
a hummingbird at the getty - can you see it?

the walt disney music hall

some dude surfing 

me and my hairy husband at griffith park

token kiwi taking a photo of a squirrel (oh my god a squirrel!!)

family photo at the getty

cycling the boardwalk 
a pohutakawa in downtown LA

hundreds of dire wolf skulls found in the LA tar pits

 From LA we flew to Hawaii. The idea was that we support DAd in the ironman but unfortunately due to logistical issues Dad couldn't make it - but we had a week of fun in Hawaii none the less. Another unfortunate thing was the US government was shut down at this time, so the Volcano National Park on Kona was closed. This means we have to go back (which funnily enough we are not that upset about). In Hawaii we lay by the pool, went snorkelling (with dolphins! and a turtle! and manta rays (at night!)!) and drove around the island. Pictures of some of the said adventures below
Dolphins riding the waves of the boat we were taking to go on our night manta ray snorkel. We had been snorkelling with the dolphins earlier in the day (by chance there was a pod of them in the bay where we went snorkelling), it was a pretty magical day

Joe and I half way up a Volcano 

Joe in a rock (made by a lava flow?)

Kissing under the banyan tree

The Hilo side of the island - very lush

Magical sunset on our last night there

Saturday, 9 November 2013


So the first exciting thing for me to happen in October (actually at the end of September) was Oktoberfest. My new work is across the road from the Weis''n and my flat is also quite near it so for the three weeks of Oktoberfest my commute (a 25 min walk) and any trip to the bank or supermarket was impeded by folk dressed in traditional Bavarian dress in varying states of intoxication.

My work went to Oktoberfest for one afternoon as a work function. I must say it was wonderful and not really what I expected, here's why

Oktoberfest is not just a bunch of 20- something year old tourists getting drunk.

It is a massive festival that locals, young and old support and participate in. Families take their children to go on the rides, eat cinnamon sugar covered nuts and maybe hang out in the beer gardens (though not usually the drinking tents, although I did see the odd child in them a couple of times). Also there doesn't seem to be any upper age limit, you see plenty of the older generation there drinking a Mass and eating half a chicken. They all dress up in the local dress and go and party. That's another thing I loved about it, everyone is there to celebrate so that's what they do, no matter the level of intoxication the moment you walk into a "tent" (I use this term loosely as this is what they are called but they are by no means a tent, more like semi permanent large hall). So the moment you walk in, people are dancing on chairs and singing and clinking there giant mugs of beer together shouting Proust! (cheers in German).

I had such a great time that I went again (also with workmates, in a less official capacity after work one day). Below is photographic proof of me loving it!