Bavaria: Pretzels, Dirndl, and Platzes

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No, unlike most travelers who want to see iconic German towns, we were not going to Bavaria, München (Munich) and Nuremberg to be exact, for the Bavarian Alps, famous castles, biergartens, wursts of all flavors and dirndl.As most tourism to Bavaria reaches peak hysteria in September and October for – yes, you guessed it – Oktoberfest, my Company was headed there in August for the Prometheus Conference. Now this isn’t some Greek mythology fan-club but an open sourced monitoring conference (if you’ve lost me here, don’t worry…just continue on). So the top technical brains from all over the world communed here to Germany’s industrial capital in peak heat wave weather to share knowledge and, of course, drink themselves into semi-oblivion on watered down German beers (which they make up for in size of beer). Continue reading “Bavaria: Pretzels, Dirndl, and Platzes”

Three Days in Berlin: A Lesson in Hipness

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Through the wall at the Berlin Wall Memorial, Mitte

What makes sense after spending nearly two weeks in a small Southwestern German village where every neighbor knows one another and the largest employer is the chocolate factory? Head straight to one of Europe’s most cosmopolitan, historically rich and diverse cities of course! Continue reading “Three Days in Berlin: A Lesson in Hipness”

Switzerland: The Ultimate Retreat

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View from our dining spot on the Lake. We ordered crepes from the pop up food tents during the festival.

Switzerland has appeared and reappeared in my life several times over in the past 10 years, and for that, I’m deeply grateful. Each time I arrive in this heavenly paradise of snow-capped mountains, pristine alpine lakes, decadent chocolates and oh-so-on-time trains, I feel a sense of escape from the dirty, loud and chaotic world outside this tiny slice of heaven.  Continue reading “Switzerland: The Ultimate Retreat”

Spies on the Biotonne: Reconnaissance in Lorrach, Germany

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What happens when a Great Leap Forward survivor turned chemistry ph.D, a Chinese American millennial, a Kpop-obsessed teenager (aka lil’ Sis) and a tall white American  (my Company) go to a small, remote town in Southern Germany where the largest employer is a chocolate factory? Reconnaissance, mishaps and a few hilarious misadventures.  Continue reading “Spies on the Biotonne: Reconnaissance in Lorrach, Germany”

Re-Discovering Running: A Former Couch Potato’s Resolution

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I’m shifting gears this week and instead of writing about travel learnings, personal musings and stories, I’m focusing on a hobby: running. If you had just asked me a week ago, I’d deny running was a hobby of mine. Hobbies are something you like, not something you dread. Hobbies bring you joy and value, not pain and discomfort. In short, until last night, I had hated it.  Continue reading “Re-Discovering Running: A Former Couch Potato’s Resolution”