Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Marching Out

Can you believe this is the last day of March already? Why not simply post some pictures before this month of March 2010 fades into history.

Just outside the Paris Las Vegas Resort and Casino, looking towards the new Cosmopolitan Towers which will open later this year
The Eiffel Tower at the Paris Las Vegas Resort is an exact half-size replica
The patio of the Mon Ami Gabi restaurant at the Paris Resort faces the famed Las Vegas “Strip” where diners can also watch the dancing water fountains of the Bellagio across the street
Our friend Margaret, George and I spent a lovely evening at Mon Ami Gabi to celebrate George’s birthday
We enjoyed delectable meals and were served by a very charming and quite handsome French-Canadian waiter. Le vie est belle!
Just me in our kitchen, enjoying another weekend

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Happy Birthday, George

Today one year ago we spent George's birthday at one of our favorite places on this planet. What a fun day it was.

Unfortunately, I developed a terrible cold and that kind of puts a damper into our celebration plans for George's birthday today. We'll have his mom and sister over for a nice dinner and we were planning to meet some friends later this evening. I hope I'm up for it. I feel terrible to be sick today of all days.

Nevertheless, Happy Birthday, George. I'm wishing you all the best in the world. And I love you lots.

Friday, March 19, 2010

Schildkröte und Schmetterlinge

Turtle and butterflies. I posted this picture for no particular reason other than I just simply liked it.

There’s not much to report. This week has been rather dull. George developed a slight head cold and hasn’t been feeling his best the last few days. He’s improving though.

Tomorrow is the first day of Spring and the Southern Nevadan desert is experiencing very Spring-like conditions which is rather unusual for this area. Normally it jumps from cool winter season right into hotter than hell summer weather without even the slightest trace of anything Spring-related. So we are enjoying this tremendously. There are blooming flowers and fresh greens sprouting everywhere. We can open our windows to let fresh air into our home and not yet having to worry about turning on the A/C units.

However, during our planned walk in the park yesterday evening the weather turned very quickly into this ferocious wind storm. One moment the air was still and quiet and the next, just as if someone flipped a light switch, we found ourselves in the middle of a dust storm. The wind was so strong that it picked up sand and smaller debris. We could barely walk and had to cover our eyes as we quickly returned to our car. The howling winds would continue to blow well into the early morning hours. The winds have subsided and now it’s merely a breeze.

Now guess what we will be doing on this Friday evening? Preparing our taxes. Yeah! That’s right, doing taxes on a Friday night makes us the life of every party. And for this weekend there’s grocery shopping, a visit to the library, a study group meeting, and lots of yard work on our list of exciting activities.

However, a friend of ours would like to take us out to an early birthday dinner for George tomorrow evening. So yes, there’s time for a little fun to be had.

There’s always time for some fun and food. That’s a requirement.

Thursday, March 11, 2010


A few weeks ago Las Vegas had some rare fog in the early morning hours just before the sun was rising. In almost twenty years that I’ve been living in this city I experienced fog only once before. Fog does not usually occur in an arid desert climate.

But we had an unusual wet winter so far. Add the high desert elevation into this equation and the result can be an extraordinary weather phenomenon. A fog may not spark much of an enthusiastic thrill in other parts of the country, as it may be rather common there. Here in the Southern Nevadan desert however, a few drops of rain or even a snowflake are just as sensational as the latest UFO sightings over Area 51, located just outside the City of Sin.

I merely enjoyed the very sight of fog for the simple reason that I’m not accustomed to it anymore. It’s like a treat to be savored and appreciated. A visual feast. I always found it fascinating how fog can transform one’s own familiar neighborhood into some mysterious, almost otherworldly place. Like a veil covering everything with a haunting but beautiful glow. Especially in the few precious moments before the sun comes up.

And with the first rays of sun peeking from behind the distant mountain ranges to the east, the fog slowly started to dissolve into nothingness. The higher the sun rose, the quicker the fog disappeared. The only evidence it left behind were the dew drops clinging on to every leaf or the patio furniture in our backyard. Eventually, those drops too would roll off, fall to the ground and being absorbed or just evaporate.

Moments like these makes me ponder about a lot of things. It makes me appreciate life a little more. Just like fog in the desert, life can be here one moment and gone the next.

Live life to the fullest. And enjoy the beauty around you. As trivial it may look at first.

A camera can never capture the true beauty and the colors of an occurrence like fog. Nevertheless, I wanted to freeze that moment in time.

After the fog has lifted, the westerly mountains unveiled their snow powdered peaks, illuminated by the first morning sun light.

Monday, March 8, 2010


This short film (approx. 16 minutes, contains profanity) has won an Academy Award for Best Animated Short Film at yesterday's Oscar ceremony in Hollywood. It's one of the best short films I've seen in while. The sarcasm and irony is priceless. It's also kind of sad that I recognized pretty much every single logo used in this film. I'm such a graphic designer. And for a designer this film is like porn.

Friday, March 5, 2010


That’s my George. Isn’t he just fab?

It was kind of a slow day at work yesterday for whatever reason. So I was having fun playing around with a photo of George in PhotoShop and Illustrator, trying to turn it into some sort of pop art, if you will.

Fabulous, Dah-ling. Absolutely fabulous!

Don’t you think?

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Marching Right Along

This year 2010 is just marching right along, isn’t it? It’s already the month of March. Before you know it the days will be longer and temperatures will get hotter again.

George and I are still keeping busy with mostly work. In addition to his work schedule George is currently working on getting his master in education as well. He already got his feet wet as a substitute teacher. And he enjoyed it tremendously. I’m so happy for him to have found his calling.

We’ll be going to Los Angeles again in May. We got tickets to see Peter Gabriel performing some of his own songs and some cover songs live with an orchestra at the Hollywood Bowl. I can’t wait! And yesterday we got our hotel reservation confirmed too. The Hollywood Bowl is such a great open-air venue up in the Hollywood Hills. We’ve already seen John Williams conducting some of his now classic movie themes there as well as listened to Joel Grey and Ute Lemper singing Broadway tunes and some of the best American Standards songs together.

Hollywood, here we come...again!

Yesterday evening we saw Tim Burton’s “Alice in Wonderland” at a special screening. We went in with low expectations. The film was alright, not bad but not great either. George and I felt it was ordinary at best. I was surprised that certain computer generated scenes and effects looked rather tired, which surprised me. In this day and age of almost perfect computer technology and imagery one would expect better. I was also hoping that Tim Burton would finally start evolving from his predictable visual style. The film also dragged at times and some scenes were downright tedious. There were a few laughs here and there but overall the film was a bit stale. I also could not connect to the film’s heroine Alice whom felt cold and standoffish. Given the opportunity a story like “Alice in Wonderland” has to offer this movie could have been so much more.

The sun is out again in full force here in the high desert. Trees are turning green already and spring flowers are blooming. Since we had a rather unusual wet winter we can expect more wild flowers and grasses to cover the arid desert landscape with a burst of color in a few weeks. It’s a fairly rare occurrence but if it happens it’s one spectacular sight to behold. But for now more clouds and rain is predicted to move into the Las Vegas Valley as early as tomorrow.

We’ll see.

Not that we’re complaining. We need the rain desperately. The more the better.

Below are some random shots taken in the last two weeks or so.

One of many winter storms in February, which dumbed lots of snow in the mountains surrounding Las Vegas.

Detail of rain droplets on the window glass.

Detail of water drops caught in the weave of the sliding door screen.

Chocolate Chip Brownie, fresh out of the oven. George made it for a pot luck which was held in one of his classes. It smelled so good but I couldn’t have any. Only lookie lookie, but no touchie touchie. Darn!