My Diary

I've split my diary now to individual months - so - the default page will be the diary of the current month. Here are the links to the other entries so far:
May 2009 April 2009 March 2009 February 2009 January 2009 December 2008
November 2008 October 2008 September 2008 August 2008 July 2008 June 2008
May 2008 April 2008 March 2008 February 2008 January 2008 December 2007
November 2007 October 2007 September 2007 August 2007 July 2007 June 2007
May 2007 April 2007 March 2007 February 2007 January 2007 December 2006
November 2006 October 2006 September 2006 August 2006 July 2006 June 2006
May 2006 April 2006 March 2006 February 2006 January 2006 December 2005
November 2005 October 2005 September 2005 August 2005 July 2005 June 2005
May 2005 April 2005 March 2005 February 2005 January 2005 December 2004

April 30th

What a great game it was. Thanks to Brendan I got tickets to the NBA Playoff game #5 of the Boston Celtics vs. Chicago Bulls. It was a great game in the The Boston Garden. Boston defeated Chicago with 106 : 104 in the end. With that game I've now seen a live game of every of major sport in the US: Baseball, Football, Hockey and Basketball. This game was by far the most exciting.
Game #6 is going on right now - watching it on TV while Stephan prepares dinner. I can tell you - its really nice to have a roommate like him - there is always good food when you need it :-)
Its been a sporty week in general for me. 3 days on the bike to work - making it a total of 150km. I am still exploring the best routes on my way there and on my way back. Just discovered a new route tonight - looks very promising.
Besides the biking there is of course salsa. Did some salsa last night at An Tua Nua. Its been a bit quite - but still good. Ryles unfortunately took away many people when they had their free wednesday nights in march - but - some people are still showing up - making it a good night.
Last thing - and really exciting to me: I HAVE AN iPhone :-) - I love it. Still need to get used to typing messages - but its really a nice gadget - oh yeah - and I can also make phone calls with it :-)
Thats it - dinner is ready - here are some pictures of the game on tuesday night.
Lets GO CELTICS Checking a free throw of the Bulls
This is the captain of the boat captured by pirates. He was sitting 3 rows in front of me The Boston Garden - we were sitting in the 3rd row behind the basket
Some basketball action The final score: 106 - 104

April 26th

Exploring the Neighborhood on the bike
Yesterday and today I took my bike out for some extended rides through the neighborhood. The weather was beautiful and I just like riding the bike around - exploring new areas that I havent yet been to. My basical goal was to bike eastwards. I wanted to end up at the Atlantic. I oriented myself on the sun. Well - lets put it that way: I am glad I wasnt too good in it :-) - otherwise I wouldn't have seen all those great places. The most fascinating place was the Forest Hill Cemetery. I was so fascinated that I went back today with my camera.
On my route through the neighborhood I biked through Dorchester, Roxbury, Milton, Quincy, Mattapan, Ashmont. Its great to explore these areas with on the bike. It allows you to easily check out individual streets - ride through parks - stop for pictures - and sometimes take a One-Way in the Other-Way :-)
Now its sunday evening. A sunny weekend is almost over. The Red Sox are playing their 3rd game against the Yankees tonight. They won the first two games - lets hope it will be another good night for the Sox tonight.
Looking forward to another bike ride to work tomorrow - looks likes its going to be another sunny day.
Cemetery Pic #1 Cemetery Pic #2
Cemetery Pic #3 Cemetery Pic #4
Cemetery Pic #5 Cemetery Pic #6
Residential Area in Dorchester From Washington Street towards the Atlantic

April 25th

Sitting in the sun and party at Monique's
What a beautiful day it is today. In the past hours we worked in our garden. Aranged the new seating area - prepared the garden beds - and contemplated about how to pave the sitting area.
Last night it was time for a nice party at Monique's house. She invited - and many of her (mostly from the salsa scene) friends came. Besides dancing and chatting - the highlight was the food that people brought in - I really like the Peruvian and Ecuadorian dishes - yummie. My contribution to the party was not food - it was austrian wine.
Well - time for some pictures. Here we go:
Stephan delivered the outside seating arrangement Here we go
Austria Wine: 2 Reds and a White Monique (our host on the right)
Red Bull - another Austrian Drink I like this sweater: PERU instead of PUMA
Just fooling around Some salsa dancing
First Caipirinha (with Cranberry Juice) in the garden Same for me

April 23rd

2 Days in New York
What an easy ride to New York - the Acela Train takes about 3 hours from Boston to New York Penn Station.
Its been a good first day and I am sure it will be another good one today. After my work day I walked around a bit - my usual tour - Public Library - Times Square - Rockefeller Center. After that I met with David for dinner and drinks. We checked out a belgium place close to my hotel. I probably had a not very typical belgium dish: Burger :-) - but I had some typical belgium beers :-)
It seems to be a beautiful day today - sunshine and warmer temperature. And - it seems that this is even getting better on the weekend. They forecasted 20+ degrees - yahoooo :-)
Well - time to get ready - the client is waiting.
Nice beer list at the 2nd bar we went to Prost with David
Not a well focused shot - but still nice: Empire State Building at night My breakfast - as usual - coffee in the hotel room :-)

April 19th

Zinedine Zidane
As we all know - a regular soccer match has 90 minutes. If you watch it you either sit in the stadion to see the whole field or you watch it on TV and see what the TV crew shows you. In both cases the focus is on the ball or on the excited players or fans when a goal is scored. As I mentioned in my last blog entry - I went to see a special portrait of Zinedine Zidane - shown in the Museum of Fine Arts here in Boston. I didnt really know what to expect - well - now I know. It was a 90 minute documentary. 90 minutes showing a full game of Real Madrid vs. another spanish club in the 2005 season. The interesting thing though was that the only thing that was to see was Zidane. He was followed by several cameras during this game - all with close up caption of his face and body. The fascinating thing about this soccer experience was that you could see his facial expression - his desperation when the game didnt really go as well as he thought in the first half - his relief when he turned the game around with a goal - his aggression when he got into an argument - and his acceptance when he got the red card for a fight he got into. Well - again - it was an interesting experience and a different way to see a soccer match.
The weather this sunday turned out much better than I originally thought. Instead of rain today it was sunny - not really warm - but sunny. Spent the past hours on finishing a presentation - now - as I am finished - its time for food and an early night sleep. Seems that the weather will be dry till tomorrow night - which means its time to take the bike to work again.
Have a good week. Cheers

April 18th

Spring was here - at least for a day
Oooohhh it was so nice. Yesterday - friday - we had about 20 degrees and sunshine. Even at night - after salsa dancing - it was still not too bad out there. Today the picture changed - its cloudy - soon going to rain - and the temperatures are dropping. Seems its not going to get more than 10 tomorrow. But - I was happy that we at least had one really nice day. Stephan got a lawn-mower - and also gave it a test run as you can see from the picture below.
The second picture is a delicious leftover meal. We still have plenty of food from our easter dinner. Additionally to that it was "Pasty Week" in the culinary school. So he brought back tons of pasta this week - yummie :-)
Now - the weekend is rainy - perfect for some indoor activities. I stumpled upon an interesting event today at the Museum of Fine Art: Zidane: A Twenty-First Century Portrait. Tonight is dinner time with Leah and friends in a new place in Somerville. Tomorrow - well - another rainy day - probably just relaxing - a little bit of work that needs to be done - and - yeah - did I mention relaxing? :-)
I still owe this diary an entry about the book that I recently finished: The Audacity of Hope. Will do that soon.
Whats coming up this week? Seems another business trip to New York City on wednesday and thursday - and two birthday parties on friday and saturday.
The breaking news just came from Stephan: Seems he found a way to order Koenig Ludwig Weissbier :-)
Thats it. time to go
Well - not yet over: Checked out a new place on thursday night. Sarah's friend Matt plays in the Salsa Band iCombo Sambroso. They performed at the The Fireplace. Good music in a very nice restaurant.
Mowing the Lawn Rabbit - Pasta - Salad and Wine

April 16th

Back on the bike!!
2 days in a row I took the bike to work. My normal route goes via the Mass Ave Bridge to Cambridge - via Hampshire St to Porter Square - to Alewife - via the Minuteman Trail to Lexington and from their to the office. Its a 28km ride. Tons of lights through Boston and Cambridge but a nice ride on the minuteman trail. In total: 1 hour and 5 minutes. On my way back tonight I tried an alternative route. I never thought that there is a road worse than Route 9 in terms of pot holes. Well - there is :-) - Concord Avenue - the most "amazing" and "challenging" pot holes - especially on the down hill part :-)
Besides that there is not a whole lot of news in my world. The weekend is getting closer - one day left. Tonight - thursday - I am going to latin concert - Sarahs friend Matt is playing again. Tomorrow is salsa. Saturday I am going to see Leah. Sunday - well - dont know yet.
Thats it. Time for a beer (it feels much better because I know I've already burned all those calories)

April 14th

All numbed up
Either we austrians are very barbaric or we are just fearless when it comes to dental care. Why that? Well - I had my 2nd dental appointment today. It was time to get some holes filled. Back in Austria I remember those days at the dentist as a bit painful but ok. When I got to the dentist today he started to numb up my mouth first before taking any action. I told him that I was surprised about that as it is "just a filling" and that "we AT HOME" dont to that normally. The expression on his face was interesting :-)
Anyway - so - I got totally numbed up on my right side - got two holes fixed - and was done after 20 minutes. 3 more fillings to come in 2 weeks - yahoooo :-)
Last night - Stephan and I checked out a new option to rent DVD's. Its called RedBox. It works pretty good and it is just $1 per night. We have a RedBox in the super market close by our house - so its easy to pick up a movie. And - its definitely cheaper than Video on Demand ($4 for 24 hours) or a movie from Blockbuster ($4 for 7 days). We saw Lakeview Terrace. Definitely a movie to recommend.
What's coming up? Well - if the weather stays that way (temperatures above freezing) - then its time for my first bike ride to work. It will either happen tomorrow or on thursday - depending on how long the salsa night is going to be tonight.
Other than that - there is no real news that needs to be made public here on the blog.

April 12th

Easter Sunday
Easter Sunday is almost over - back to work tomorrow morning (not like my austrian friends who have a public holiday). So - what happened today? The day started a bit late due to my long salsa night. Soccer happened at 10AM - but - due to the "early" hour I decided to skip soccer and take a bike ride instead. After the bike ride it was time to help Stephan a little bit with the prep work for dinner. The easter dinner was rabbit - and lots of other stuff. At 3PM Chez and Birdy joined us. Chez was basically in charge of the rabbit - he did a fantastic job. At 5 we were joined by Andreas. We had a delicious multi course meal. I think its been the first time for me having rabbit - well - at least as far as I can remember. It was delicious.
Fortunately for me and Stephan - we made more food than we could handle - so there are plenty of leftovers to feed us in the next days. Here are some pictures. Cheers
Sailing boats on the Charles with the MIT building in the back Massachusetts State House
Chez - taking a first look at one of the rabbits 3 rabbits ready to be cooked
Are they ready yet? Guess they need a little bit of wine for the taste
Andi, Birdy, Chez, Stephan - ready for the main course The desert after the desert: Austrian Schnaps

April 11th

Caipirinha Season has started
Finally - the Caipirinha Season in 166 Amory Street has started :-). It was friday night - I was actually about to take a nap in the evening to get some rest before salsa. Stephan prepared dinner and I made my way to the super market to get some groceries. I picked up my usual golden delicious apples. Then - something else caught my attention - LIMES!! I connected the dots -> LIMES -> SUGAR -> CACHACA -> ICE -> CAIPIRINHA. I picked up the limes and some brown sugar from the store - then went into the liquore store to get cachaca. From that moment it was clear that I "sacrificed" salsa for caiprinhas this night :-)
What else? My U2 Tickets for september have arrived - yeah!! Chez was over today. He and Stephan are going to prepare easter dinner - whats on the menu? RABBIT!! Will be interesting - not sure if I had rabbit before - definitely looking forward to it.
Now its time for bed - almost 3AM already. Cheers
Thats how it looks like when we go beer shopping :-) Caipirinha ingredients
My U2 Tickets Chez and Stephan discussing the easter dinner menu

April 10th

A long week is over
Seems that it has been a long week for me - havent really had time to do any updates here for the past 4 days. What happened? Well - I was busy. Long days in the office - a user group meeting on wednesday and 2 days on-site with a client. The fun part of the client visit is that it is not completely over. The "final task" will be done tomorrow 5AM. Somehow I need to manage to either get up that early or just stay up after salsa tonight :-). Why 5AM? Well - because thats when their server maintenance window opens for an hour - allowing us to do the changes that we have to do to get the stuff running that we worked on in the past days - should be fun :-)
Besides that there are of course other stories to tell:
* Broken glass: last night it was time again to return our empty beer bottles and the some new stuff in. Stephan already declared the "state of emergency" because we totally drained out :-). So - we packed all the bottles - half of them in a box - half of them in a paper bag. I carried the bag. Several meters before entering the store the weight on my hand got lighter - the noise of breaking glass revealed that the bag (soaked by leftovers) couldnt hold the load anymore :-(. Fortunately not all of the bottles broke.
* Cell Phone: on our way home from the store Stephan noticed that somebody put something under our windshield whipers. Back home I checked it out - it was a cell phone. Seems that somebody lost the cell phone close to our car - and somebody else probably thought it belongs to us - putting it under the whipers. Called one of the last numbers that were dialed on the phone - got ahold of the Mum of the girl that the phone belonged to - and an hour later she had it back :-)
Whats the plan for the weekend? Unlike my austrian friends - monday is not off here in the states. So the weekend is just a regular weekend. Tomorrow is supposed to be rainy - so I will probably just relax. Sunday should be fine - time for some soccer. Other than that I am sure I will be salsa dancing.
Thats the update for now. Cheers

April 6th

A sunny sunday followed by a rainy monday
Its been so nice yesterday. The sun was shining and the temperature was almost springlike - I think we had around +15 celcius. So I took my bike out for a ride - took some pictures along the way.
At night I met Andreas - he always somehow manages to get some good deals for bars. So - last night - we had a $25 gift certificate for a bar in Allston. In order to claim the certificate we had to consume food for $35. The problem though was that the portions in that bar are not small. We "worked" on multiple appetizers - did a pretty good job - but in the end we struggled with the Nachos. Anyway - thanks to Andreas for always inviting me to those dinners.
On my way home I stopped at Blockbusters - a DVD rental store - and picked up two movies: Eagle Eye and Transamerica. Watched Transamerica last night and just finished Eagle Eye.
As for today. The day started out gorgeous - but - just as the weather man said - the clouds came in at noon and it started pouring rain. The rain also canceled the first game of the baseball season. The Red Sox were supposed to play their opening game today in the afternoon - which has been postponed to tomorrow.
Thats the news. Whats coming up? Another night at Christophers tomorrow (seems I kind of keep my weekly schedule now) - and hopefully some dancing during the week.
I guess thats it for today. There is more to tell in the upcoming days - especially about the book that I just finished.
First sailing boats on the Jamaica Pond A piece of the Berlin wall
Leonard P. Zakim Bunker Hill Bridge Andreas and Andreas
The Nachos that we just couldnt finish I guess that fits well into a student bar :-)

April 5th

Boston Salsa Congress - and - 26 hours in New York
Its Sunday, 4:50 AM. Usually pubs, clubs and restaurants close at 2AM in the state of Massachusetts. But salsa at the Boston Salsa Congress lasted till 3:30 AM. The $40 for the evening party were a good investment. The evening started with several performances of local, US and international salsa groups. After that it was time for live music till 2AM followed by music from the Boston DJs till 3:30AM. The place was full - but fortunately the dancefloor was big enough to handle the load. You can see some pictures below and I've also uploaded some videos on YOUTUBE.
My weekend actually started friday morning. I took the train down to New York City - well - to be precise - to Stamford, CT. Thats where Leah picked me up. She currently stays with her parents to recover from her surgery and was nice enough to host me for the night. The trip started with a big surprise. For whatever reason I thought my train departs at 9:20. Well - in fact it left at 8:25. I realized that at 8:30 :-( - Fortunately I could use my ticket for the next train which was at 9:40.
On friday night thunder and lightning rolled into New York - very unusual for April - but fun - especially fun because Leah's dad heated up the grill to make some burgers. The burgers turned out to be delicious.
At noon on saturday we made it to the city. Had a great breakfast in NOHO (North Of HOusten) and then walked down to Chinatown where I boarded the Fung Wha Bus to Boston. 5 hours later I was at home - a nice dinner with Stephan and then it was time for dancing.
Well - thats the story. Sunday is around the corner - well - actually - now its 5AM - so sunday is technically already here :-). Will see what the day will bring.
Thats actually a picture from the thursday night pre-salsa party at Ryles Rich breakfast in NOHO
Enjoying the breakfast with Leah One of the many great salsa dancers at the congress
One of the disgusting salsa dancers at the congress :-) We made it till the end - exhausted but happy
The Salsa Congress Banner The vacant dance floors at 3:30AM

April 3rd

Salsa Zoo
This weekend - Boston is turning into a "Salsa Zoo". Why that? The Boston Salsa Congress takes place this weekend. It started with a pre-party at Ryles last night. Although they opened both floors at Ryles it was still not really enough space for dancing. Around 1AM there was finally more space because the first people started leaving - yeah :-)
Well - time for me to go now. Heading to the Back Bay Amtrak station to take the train down to NYC. Will be back tomorrow night - just in time for the big saturday evening party at the congress.
What else is going on besides salsa? hm - well - not a whole lot. My tooth hole is doing well - knee is still not 100% good (but I am almost there) - and it seems Stephan has finally figured out how to make good coffee in the morning :-)