Wednesday, January 27, 2016

I Live in Iowa: Week 239

Well, I was hardly in Iowa this week, but I wasn't in one constant place all week, a total of four different hotels, so I'm claiming Iowa. Plus, it's hard to be a resident of a country when you speak so little of the language.

Monday morning, instead of a national holiday, I traveled to Chicago in the -21C or -4F weather for a flight to Germany. These flights are the hardest. You take off in the afternoon, and arrive in the early morning, having barely slept at all are thrust into another day, except this day in my group we are expected to work. Thank God for coffee!

Tuesday afternoon was full of a technical meeting, and dinner with our hosts. It was actually one of the more productive and attentive first days I have had in my three trips to Germany. Maybe I'm getting used to it.

Wednesday we had more meetings, and then traveled north to Erlagen, for meetings on Thursday and Friday. The itinerary for this trip was complicated. People from three countries attended in person and there was a different group of people at the discussion every day. It was pretty great actually. I was afraid that this was going to be the beginning of the end, but the more we talked and toured, the more confidence I have in our partner's capabilities. Sure, there are still challenges, but we are more on the same page than not on the same page.

Friday afternoon, as we made our way back to München I drove and both of my supervisors took some rest, and I managed to get up to 142 mph, they were awake at that point. The thing about the Autobahn is while you can theoretically go really fast, and people do go over 200 mph on occasion, most of the time there is so much traffic that doing 100 or 110 mph is about all you are going to do. Once you get to 120 mph, around 200 kph, you will inevitably end up stuck behind someone going 90, and at that speed you have to hit the brakes when there is still 200 meters between you and the other guy.

Saturday I took advantage of my first ever free weekend in Europe to go skiing in the Alps. Specifically I skied at Skiwelt Wilder Kaiser starting from Söll, Austria.
Somewhere in Austria
An Actual Igloo Behind Me
My coworker gave me a ride to the ski resort, about a 2 hour drive in a snow storm. Then I took a bus, a train, and two subway trains, plus some walking, to get back to the hotel in a four hour phone free extravaganza. We depend on our phones so much for navigation these days, I enjoyed doing things the old fashion way without international service on my phone turned on.

Overall a poor week of running. Two days off and only 24 miles total, but I did bike on one off day and skied until I was exhausted (5 hours) on Saturday. Still a good week, I don't seem to be injured, my hip is not healed 100% yet, but it's coming along.

It was a good week. 

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