Thursday, September 29, 2011

It could be bronzed and used as a doorstop

Jewish Memorial Berlin
It is amazing the amount of crap that collects in the short time a person is away. Of course most of it is not useful to me.

I am having a particularly busy period because at this time of the year Suzanne gets lots of mail from banks and finance companies. I have to take a sack down to clear our letterbox.

Suzanne is the person who used to live here – with her husband - now more than three years ago - and left without bothering to tell anyone about her new address. Perhaps she was in a hurry. 

I returned mail to the senders for about two years but then gave up because it was clear that neither she nor they cared much and I was still getting mail from the same people all the time – after sending back hundreds of letters.  Since then I have been throwing it all in the bin.

I opened a pile once. It included bank statements, dividend statements, cheques, bills – or sorts of stuff. She seems to manage without it. 

Some people can do this – not me – I need to be highly organised. The thought that I was missing mail – any mail – would send me into a panic. I would chase junk mail deliverers if they missed my letter box. But there may be a special I need this week!

Suzanne clearly does not have this problem. Her husband was better organised – we get no mail for him. Although I do know that he is a liar – he lied about the air conditioning. I hope they have a housekeeper and cook in Dubai – I suspect that she is not very tidy.

In another act of complete bastardry the Vienna Polizei have given me a speeding ticket while I was on a mercy mission.

I was at Shopping City Sud buying urgent supplies of wine at Wein and Co to replenish the cellar prior to the arrival of Liz and Darryl - and was caught doing 63 in a 50 zone. (All this is KPH)

But – and here’s the rub – the Polizei were standing less than 30 meters in front of the 70  sign. Now that is just ridiculous. This is just revenue raising nonsense. 63 – hardly a dangerous speed in a Mercedes Benz E 200 – which can stop on half a Euro - with a metal fence on one side and a shopping centre wall on the other – with no possibility of a pedestrian appearing – unless from the sky by parachute - or out of a person hole. 

I am of course totally pissed off because I now have more speeding tickets than Cate – who drives like Sebastian Vettel when she is out on the open road – and is never caught.

Except on one famous occasion when she was caught and passed on an autobahn by a Fiat Panda. Cate was – as usual – hammering along at about 140 – and being passed by gigantic Audis and BMWs – when we heard this terrible whining noise which got louder and louder. Is that Sarah Palin?

Thinking our gear box was overheating and readying itself to explode we started to panic - when this ancient Fiat Panda – circa 1982 - howling like a banshee – hauled itself up alongside us and – blowing massive amounts of blue smoke – dragged itself slowly and noisily off into the distance. Holy shit!

Clearly this man was on a mission and had no further use for his car after this trip. I am guessing he was delivering it for a friend who wanted it in a hurry. I am guessing that the only thing it would be good for on arrival would be to be bronzed and used for a doorstop. As a car it would be well and truly fucked up beyond all recognition as a going concern. 

Cate was so stunned by the audacity of this ancient beast she was unable to respond. In fact she became quite circumspect and hardly went over 150 all the way home. This is always a relief and enables me to unclench my knuckles and other delicate parts of my anatomy. 

But every time I exceed the speed limit by even a smidgeon I get nailed. It’s just not fair.

But I do like to ride the Autobahn train when I am boxed in by giants. I will tell you about this tomorrow. Shit it is scary!


  1. Didn't I tell you need a new wine supplier? ;-)

  2. Yes yes I know that - no more speeding fines

  3. I had never seen the Holocaust Memorial before, interesting picture at the top. I googled "graveyard Berlin" then went looking at photos and made the connection; impressive.

    Speeding? I have got stopped and ticketed a few times but no convictions in the last 25 years. I think the local cops like me, I tend to help out quite a bit around here, they are on speed dial number 5 on my cell phone. The New Mexico state troopers, though, that's another story. They once gave me a ticket for doing 85 mph in a 65 when I had my wife's little Mazda set perfectly on 65 by cruise control. But my son told me that it was most likely the minivan behind us on the hill that the trooper caught at 85 and blamed me. I was furious. AND it was just the beginning of a journey to Denver. SO we went to fight the ticket driving all the way to Clayton NM ~3 hours away and the cop didn't show up, so the judge threw my ticket out. I guess my preemptive semi-irate-firmly-polite phone call had helped and I had brought a witness, the son. The funny part was the judge and I were wearing the exact same shirt from JC Penney's.

    Do they have wine delivery in Wien? That might save you a ticket. Oh, that reminded me, while shopping today I saw a Keebler cookie called "Vienna Fingers" - shot a picture, but I am sure you can find them online - yes, they googled up just fine.

    Today's captcha: yakingo - A good name for a Tibetan restaurant with a drive up window specializing in yak meat and milkshakes.

  4. Well that upped the price of that wine all right although you got to whine about it. Hope you enjoyed the crap out of it when you got home.

  5. well, just as you write this i was booked today 135 in a 100 zone just as I was overtaking on a motorway to avoid what I considered to be a dangerous driver. The highway patrol officer said I was at 135 for 4 seconds!

    Its just STUPID. now I am told that over 30kph and you lose licence for 3 months.. I am utterly pissed off.

  6. esbboston: The photo was taken from that damned balloon. They do have wine delivery but I prefer to go and get it - i just have to do it more slowly.

    Sandy: It was all very nice

    Simon: Well you had better get a good solicitor because you will be fucked without your licence.

  7. my friends offered me a 'Coyote'-system for my birthday...because I have loads of speed-fines ! works :-)

  8. Here in NASCAR country, people regularly drive 20mph over the limit, whilst shooting off text messages on their phones, steering with their knees and completely disregarding pesky things like driving on the correct side of the road.


    And yet, I get pulled over and issued a warning for doing 38 in a 35 zone.

    PS: There's rumor of another Berlin trip later this year for The Husband and he'll be there for 2-3 weeks which means I'll definitely be tagging along.

  9. I thought I would tell you that one of your previous stories had me go "eXploring" during our lunch date yesterday at Red Lobster. I saw they had Jameson's on their drink menu so I gave it a try .... Not bad, but I still prefer Benedictine. I just now went over to wikipedia and saw they have several varieties of Jameson's
    Crested Ten
    12 Year Old
    18 Year Old
    ... so I'm not sure what the restaurant had.

    Today's Captcha: dowendnyl : this is a financial term regarding the stock market index, so when the Dow Jones Industrial Average is headed in the wrong direction, either up or down, in spite of supporting evidence for the rest of the economy doing the opposite, "Dow in denial".

  10. Viviane: Hmmm... This may have helped - but they were in the same place they always are and you cannot stop stupidity.

    smedette: You are driving the wrong type of car: Get a gigantic SUV, a gun, a dog, tats.

    esbboston: Jameson for lunch is a brave move - even at Red Lobster.

  11. Don't worry, it was a very small amount of Jamesons, a single shot, because I was driving. For some reason my wife refuses to drive my truck. The inside of the cab an F-350 is essentially the same as an F-150, its just quite a bit higher. Good luck with your Arctic Circle trip planning. I asked my younger son once if he would accompany me on a trip to equatorial Africa, I was studying Kiswahili at the time, and he said "NO!" and so I asked him if he would go to Russia instead, and he calmly said "yes" - and then shortly there after they had several airplane wrecks in the same week, I believe. He never inquired about our plans after that. I was going to go to Japan in the spring of 2007 but my mother-in-law died, my wife got cancer, and I was sent home on medical leave. So I went back ((home)) to South Dakota instead of going to Japan, after being away for nearly 30 years. That was truly a trip that I needed to go on. You can go home again, but someone else lives there, and usually the shrubbery is completely different.