April 2006

Grrrr….. All this talk about spring and eating outside and everything must have jinxed the whole city. We woke up Tuesday morning to 5 more inches of snow!! It snowed most of the day, but was very wet and most of it is gone now, at least in the city. This now makes officially 6 months of snow in the 9 months we’ve been in Munich. Actually, though, it has gone by pretty quickly. When I think back, and look back at all the photo albums from last summer, we really crammed in a lot of outdoor-time in the few months of good weather. Here’s to hoping that this is the last snowfall of the year, and maybe we can start enjoying some outdoor biergartens by the end of the month!

This is what it looked like in the city Tuesday morning (I fogot my camera before leaving for work, but ganked this picture off of someone’s Flickr gallery)

Snow in April

But after 9 months of hearning nothing but complaining and excuses about the weather from all sorts of Germans, I finally got a rational and reasonable response yesterday at lunch. I asked a fellow engineer about snow in April, expecting to get the usual “oh no, this is highly unusual”, but instead got: “Well, I suppose there’s always the distinct probability of snow into April. I guess it’s just that most people are tired of the long winter, and wish for Spring to show up to get outdoors.” So, upon hearing that rationale, I decided to suck it up and return to my usual stoic disposition, and quit complaining about the weather myself.

I did get another shock on Tuesday morning, though. Upon seeing the snow outside, I checked my watch to see what the date was and was greeted with an unplesant message. Apparently as I was adjusting my watch last week for daylight savings time, I accidentally changed the day read-out to German abbreviations, instead of English. So on Tuesdays, or known as Dienstage over here, instead of “Tue”, I get this:



Finally, got some major changes done to the site. First, the photo gallery is back up and working. In the process of upgrading, I hope to have made the gallery more attractive and easier and more fun to navigate. One of the reasons it took so long was trying to get all the layout bugs fixed for Internet Explorer. Everything worked swimmingly in FireFox, Safari, Opera, and Camino, but it looked like crap in Internet Explorer!! And according to my blogGet FireFox! statistics, 60-70% of you are still using IE instead of FireFox – so get the with the program, do yourself a favor, and get FireFox! But the 2nd reason for the delay was getting everything transferred to my new domain name – joelion.com. If you’re reading this, you’ve probably been automatically redirected from the old URL, thalions.com/blogs/joe. Ideally, all the old links to the thalions.com/blogs/joe site should redirect properly to the new address, but you should probably update your bookmarks or RSS feeds anyway. Also links to pictures are different and pictures embedded in previous posts are mostly broken, for now at least. Since I bought thalions.com a couple years ago, and now Alisha uses alishalion.com for her site, I thought I’d go for the trifecta and snatch up joelion.com before I become big and famous and someone ends up stealing it from me.

Anyway, enough of that boring business. Not much else to report, but I did put up another photo album of my trip to the Starkbierfest last week at the Paulaner bier hall. Now the German’s aren’t going to get any awards for creativity when it comes to naming their beers. I’ve mentioned the most popular beers before – Helles, CIMG1323_smWeiss, and Dunkel. Those words literally mean “light”, “white”, and “dark” in English. Now to add to that list is a special brew made only once a year, Starkbier. Or, AKA known as “Strong beer”. How creative! Starkbierfest is kind of like the Spring version of Oktoberfest, but instead of everyone gathering at the carnival grounds, it’s up to each brewery to stage their own festivities at their own bierhalls. And as I mentioned, starkbier is only brewed once a year for this event, so you can’t get it any other time. That’s probably a good thing too, since it contains a good bit more alcohol that the other normal beers, and it’s drank in 1 Liter size steins of course. A couple/few of those will put you under the table for sure. (more…)