Sunday, June 13, 2010

The Rest of the World

The farthest I have ever been out of the United States is a few miles beyond the Canadian border.  It was on a family trip where we went to Niagara Falls and then crossed the border and had dinner at a restaurant in Canada.  I wouldn't have known we were in another country except that there were signs that told us so.  It's not like the culture was different or there was a different language or anything.

So needless to say, I have very limited experience with other cultures.  That is why Robyn and I have been planning a trip to Europe this summer.  We are going to visit Germany, France and Switzerland.  We've been planning it for a few months but this past week we got our passports in the mail so we are totally legal now.

When Robyn started listing things she wanted to see they included The Louvre, The Musee d'orsay and Sainte-Chapelle among other things.  Basically, Robyn wanted to experience much of the culture.  When I started listing things I wanted to experience I started with crepes, bratwurst, Döner and chocolate.  As you can see, I mostly want to eat awesome food.  I later added other things to my list, these include:
1. The Catacombs under Paris, where I can pretend to battle the undead. (Unless it turns out the dead are rising, in which case I will actually battle the undead.)
2. The castles of Germany and France where I can pretend to defend from orcs.  (Again, unless orcs show up, in which case I will actually dominate orcs)
3. The cathedral of Notre Dame where I can pretend to be a hunchback (unless I actually grow a big lump in my back, you get the idea)

So, we've discovered that Robyn wants to experience culture and I want to eat good food and pretend I'm in a novel or video game.  But I have been working on my French.  I've memorized a very important phrase, "Je voudrais un carafe d'eau." which means, "I want a pitcher of water."  One of my friends that has been to Paris many times tells me that that phrase will save me hundreds of dollars at restaurants, because if you just ask for a glass of water they will charge you for it, but they won't for a pitcher.  He says if I don't use that phrase I should probably take up drinking alcohol because wine is cheaper than water.

My german isn't so good though, I told Robyn she was in charge of German.  The only German phrase I know is, "weggehst kleinen hund und halt deinen mund."  I only know this because when my mom was learning German she read a book about a dog that wouldn't go away.  All the characters kept saying, "weggehst kleinen hund und halt deinen mund." which means, "go away little dog and shut your mouth."  Robyn told me I'm not allowed to say that to anyone except for small dogs that are loud.

As you can see, my knowledge of other cultures is very poor.  That's why we're taking a great journey to see some of the rest of the world.  But don't worry, I'll make sure we eat some good food.


  1. I'm so excited for your sweet trip! Have fun fighting the dead (or undead), defeating the orcs, and being Quasimoto! And eat lots and lots of extra wonderful food for me!

  2. I'm excited to hear about your story when you tell someone "go away little dog and shut your mouth" in Germany :)

  3. I am so excited to experience the world with you! Please make sure we use our manners no matter what country we are in!

  4. I'm glad you are hitting the san-chappel (however you spell that). It was my favorite I would say. I also liked the Sacré-Cœur. Though I hear the area it's in is kind of dangerous, so be careful if you.

  5. Oh, I am SOOOO excited (and a bit jealous) about your trip to Europe! Wahoo! Take lots of pictures! (I'm sure Robyn's got that one covered.)

  6. One more thing to add to your list... on the mountains of Swizerland, twirl round and round while singing, "The hills are alive with the sound of music..."
    That is my greatest dream!

  7. I'm so glad that you are becoming cultured. And I'm glad that you are going to defend us against the undead, because, let's be honest, those zombies aren't going to kill themselves.

  8. We like to pretend We're on the Amazing Race when we're traveling.
    We have yet to find the actual pit stop or have Phil tell us what number we are when we arrive but it's fun to declare a destination a "pit stop" and pretend to be talking to Phil. Or even come up with your own "road blocks" and "detours".

  9. Cool trip. If you have any questions let me know!


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