Monday, December 10, 2012

Injured and Coming Home

Hospitals love me.

Really, they do.
Regardless of time and space and destination; I always find myself in one, worryingly more so in recent years.

It is unfortunate the feeling isn't mutual.

So my two months stint of Eastern Europe expedite has come to an abrupt halt, after spending four glorious weeks on the road, I found myself tumbled unglamorously down the stairs. After four hours of stubborn denial, I finally succumbed to alternate means of transportation in a form of the ambulance.

Can't believe this is happening to me. I'm in an ambulance. #injury #travel #hiccup #austria #vienna #wien #winter #snow
In an ambulance heading to AKH - Vienna General Hospital.

I had to admit I cried a little when the medics in their bright shiny uniforms arrived like knights on gallant horses amidst the indifferent, arrogant and unfriendly Austrians (well, not all of them, but definitely most of them, Viennese particularly). Maybe because of the pain, partly because of relief, but mainly due to the fact that, for the first time, a real sense of loneliness seeped in after realising I was truly in a foreign land, all by myself, helpless.

It took me 20 minutes, after being carried up the steps from the metro in a wheelchair by two young Austrian studs, to realise that one of my medics was rather cute. His outbreak indicated his exceptional youth. Definitely feeling a little paedophilic for a fraction of a second. Yea, just a little. Hold your judgemental thought there.

Four more hours and I was sent home, by another friendly Austrian in his two-door sports (erm, maybe I should reconsider my judgement of Austrians), with a brand new and my very virginal cask.

My best friend for the next one week. Or two. :S #injury #travel #hiccup #vienna #wien #austria #winter #snow

And had my cask signed for the first time (always wanted to do this, well, not so much of getting a cask), by two really helpful friends I recently met in Vienna - an Italian and an Austrian; thanks guys for helping out when I'm all alone and injured and helpless.

Written on my cast. It's the only silver lining thus far.  #injury #travel #hiccup #vienna #wien #austria #winter #snow
I penned down something too. One for the road.
Sarcasm is something I picked up in Eastern Europe.
The people in this part of the world digs humour this way; can't beat 'em, join 'em.

One more hour till boarding time... I'm currently chilling in the crown lounge of KLM at Schiphol Airport, Amsterdam (transiting here from Vienna).

So happy to see Dutch people. Friendly and service-oriented.  #travel #austria #klm #airfrance #vienna #wien #businessclass #fly #plane #dutch #amsterdam

Oh yes, I'm flying Business Class, baby.

This is why you buy insurance when you travel. 

Sunday, December 02, 2012

Eiffel Tower Paris

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7,300 tonnes of irons. World tallest 3-floor building/structure at 324m high, it is also the world's most visited paid monument.

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It was a building most hated by French themselves despite its iconic significance. It represented everything that was not French in its time, or even now. It was tasteless, ugly, non-artistic, tall, boring and steely.

I will quote this from a petition sent to the Minister Works and Commissioner for the 1889 Exposition which the structure was built for and meant to be demolished after:

"We, writers, painters, sculptors, architects and passionate devotees of the hitherto untouched beauty of Paris, protest with all our strength, with all our indignation in the name of slighted French taste, against the erection…of this useless and monstrous Eiffel Tower … To bring our arguments home, imagine for a moment a giddy, ridiculous tower dominating Paris like a gigantic black smokestack, crushing under its barbaric bulk Notre Dame, the Tour Saint-Jacques, the Louvre, the Dome of les Invalides, the Arc de Triomphe, all of our humiliated monuments will disappear in this ghastly dream. And for twenty years … we shall see stretching like a blot of ink the hateful shadow of the hateful column of bolted sheet metal"
(Source: wiki)


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Market near the Eiffel Tower. Lots of good food.

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tempting long sausages to make you drool

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Palais de Chaillot, opposite Eiffel Tower

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Will always be a favourite ride of mine...

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Taking the Seine River Cruise in Paris

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There are 37 bridges along the river of Seine and legend has it if you kiss every time you pass through underneath a bridge, all 37 of them, your love will be sealed forever.

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The cruise is breathtaking at night as it is in the day.
Personally I think Paris at night is more enchanting than it is in the day time.

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Don't you think?