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Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Gotta Have A Smoke

Lori was kind enough to pass me this article from Hope you all enjoy as much as I did.

BRISBANE, Australia (AP) -- A French woman who is terrified of flying admitted in an Australian court Monday that she drunkenly tried to open an airplane door mid-flight to smoke a cigarette.

Sadrine Helene Sellies, 34, was placed on a good behavior bond after pleading guilty in Brisbane Magistrates Court to endangering the safety of an aircraft.

Sellies was traveling on a Cathay Pacific flight from Hong Kong to the east coast city of Brisbane on Saturday when the incident occurred at the start of a three-week Australian vacation with her husband, the court heard.

She walked toward one of the aircraft's emergency exits with an unlit cigarette and a lighter in her hand and began tampering with the door, prosecutors said. But a flight attendant intervened and took Sellies back to her seat.

Sellies was arrested and charged by police on arrival at Brisbane airport.

Defense lawyer Helen Shilton told the court Sellies was terrified of flying and had taken sleeping tablets with alcohol before takeoff.

Shilton said Sellies has no memory of what happened on the flight and that she has a history of sleepwalking.

But Magistrate Gordon Dean sternly warned the woman: "You must understand, if you are on a plane you must behave yourself."

Sellies, who did not speak in court and was aided by a translator, was placed on a 1,000 Australian dollar (US$734; euro623) bond -- meaning she will have to pay that amount if she commits another offense in the next 12 months.

So my question to you is, do you think the French could ever pass the no smoking laws that seem to be making the rounds?

Saturday, November 19, 2005

Spain Round 3

So last weekend I returned to Spain's Costa Brava for the 3rd time in about a year's time. The purpose of this trip was to visit my mom and Jim who were vacationing there before taking a two week cruise back to the U.S. leaving from the port of Barcelona.

However, before leaving for Spain Diane came to Paris to stay with me for a few days. She toured the city some more while I worked and then on wednesday night her and I took off for Girona airport. Diane's visit was a surprise for my mom setup by Jim so of course at baggage claim my mom was rather surprised to find Diane standing there with me. Once that was all over we hopped in the car and headed about 20 minutes away to the coast to a small resort area called El Mas Nou. After chatting for a bit we decided to head to Barcelona the next day and then went to bed.

The next morning we woke up and headed to Barcelona. Having already been there twice before within the last year I was the official tour guide. Not really knowing much of Barcelona besides what I've already seen I took them to see the Sagrada Familia, Casa Batillo, and of course La Rambla. After enjoying some sangria on La Rambla we headed back home and called it a day.

Since we were only about 20 minutes from Girona we decided to make that our destination for the next day. So the next morning we woke up and after visiting the beach at the base of our resort we headed over to Girona to see what that city had to offer. We arrived with no map and no idea what to do. After we found the city center, found parking, found a map, and found the tourist office we were on our way. We had a quick lunch and then set out to see what the city had to offer.

We decided to split up so Diane and I headed for towards the main shopping/restaurant street and took that through the Jewish quarter and on to the Cathedral. After visiting the Cathedral we headed for the wall. Girona was once a walled city so there are still remains from the wall which you can walk on. However, much to our dismay the wall was locked and we were only able to get on certain parts of it. But of course we did some exploring and found a really cool park with remains from old buildings inside of it and wound up spending all of our time meandering through the park to see what it had to offer.

After doing this for a while we decided it was time to head back to the car to meet our mom and Jim, but not before doing a little shopping and picking up some jewerly.

The next day it was time for our mom and Jim to board their boat and that evening Diane and I would be boarding our plane to head back to Paris. So we once again hopped into the car and headed to Barcelona. We said our goodbyes and then Diane and I set out to see a bit more of Barcelona. This time I was able to see something I hadn't seen upon my previous visits. We headed first for Parc de la ciutadella which was a lovely park in the city center complete with a zoo, large fountain, and even a pond with paddle boats. After this we decided to head to the Picasso museum on my insistance since I had yet to see it. However, on our way there I realized I had infact already visited the museum on my first visit to Barcelona, so we just continued on down the street to the Cathedral. After the cathedral we strolled over to La Rambla where we visited the market for a few minutes and then continued on to a restaurant I had previously visited which I knew had some good paella.

Once we made our way to the restaurant we ordered up some paella and of course some cava sangria. We had a fantastic lunch till we realized we were running a bit late for our bus which would take us back to the airport. We paid and hauled it to the bus station where we managed to catch the bus and headed back to the airport and eventually back to Paris.

We got back to Paris rather late and the next morning Diane was on another flight heading back to the U.S. It was a rather quick trip for me but it was nice to get away for a while and spend some time with family.

You can see some pictures from this trip on my website under Spain. Hope you enjoy!

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

It's A Mystery

So here's another mystery I've encountered here in France, perhaps someone out there can help me with it. Why oh why can't I find a candle that actually gives off a scent in this country??? I've visited so many stores just in search of a candle that smells good in the package, and I've bought several that I thought had potential but everytime I bring them home and light them, I can never smell them. And trust me it's not just me who has noticed this, so it's not anything wrong with my nose.

Are the French just truly against good smelling things, and if so why are they the ones creating parfume? But then again, why are they also so well known for their makeups yet none of the Frenchwomen actually wear makeup?

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Bringing Halloween To France

So monday was Halloween and despite the fact that the French don't really celebrate Halloween I couldn't let another Halloween go by without celebrating. So I made myself a costume, rounded up some friends, and together we attempted to show the French what Halloween is all about. We found a few english speaking bars holding Halloween parties so off we went. Walking down the street we were about the only ones dressed up and naturally got plenty of stares. We started off at Lizard Lounge which was having a Halloween party but even there we were about the only ones dressed up. We then meandered over to another bar which turned out to be a bad idea and so we quickly left and headed to yet another bar claiming to have a halloween party. This one turned out to be fairly decent as some people were dressed up, but still not quite the type of party I was hoping for.

While the parties weren't quite what I had hoped for, I still had a good time and well just really enjoyed confusing the French since they consistently confuse me.

Below you can see me in my costume dressed as cotton candy. To my right is my friend from work, Alex, who was a party pooper and didn't dress up. To the right of Alex is another work friend, Trudi, who was a type of bat.