The lines were awful. To further complicate things, Indians don’t queue well. I figure that, with a line of 25 people in front of me and the 100 or so Indians who went to the front of the line and got in ahead of me, it took me almost an hour to get my ticket to the Taj, check my bag and go through security. To further complicate things I had a tuk-tuk driver who didn’t want to drop me at the East Gate, which was supposed to be the gate with the fastest entry time. The driver wanted to park at the south gate for some reason unbeknownst to me and he had every conceivable excuse available as to why we shouldn’t go to the East Gate. I would have gladly lost the tuk-tuk driver except that he spoke really good English, was funny and he was quite knowledgeable. In the end, I simply waited and got in. Fortunately, by the time I got out I was thankful that I went in when I did. The length of the line had tripled. Poor souls…
Sometimes, Ethel and I go out pubbin’ at places down the street from our house. The best thing may well be that we don’t go pubbin’ alone when we go. We go out with other pubbin’ types. Fortunately for me, the amount of pub brew that my wife has drank in the last year hasn’t been enough to fill a paper cup. This has saved me significant sums of money on drinks and cab fare. I should thank my wife publicily for helping me save money in this way. I think I will.
I only saw a couple of internet cafes during my trip to China. I’m sure there were more, but I didn’t see them. Note that during the time I was in China I had an internet connection that was, at best, pathetic. It was really bad. The Chinese really can’t get a lot of web sites that westerners can. Plus, the speed is really slow. Fortunately, Chinese hackers provide ways around the government’s restrictions. Unfortunately, not around the slow speed and lack of internet availability.
On the tour to Suzhou, China we stopped a the Lingering Gardens. I didn’t know it at the time, but the Lingering Garden is a UNE SCO World Heritage Site. It’s not hard to understand why. The Lingering Garden is a classical Chinese garden that is part of a local residence that was built in 1593. The house is over 400 years old, yet it’s still something anyone I know would be privileged to occupy. Fortunately, the Chinese government has made it something all of us can enjoy.
This is a view from my window of the Crazy Buffalo saloon. This place rocked all night long. Fortunately, I was high enough and the windows were good enough and I was tired enough that the noise from the street didn’t bother me. Was there traffic all night long? Yes. Was it strictly from the Crazy Buffalo? No. There were lots of bars in the area that stayed open all night. Or, at least it looked like they did from my window. I wasn’t down there past midnight. Anyway, I liked the neon at the Crazy Buffalo. It was really big and it flashed real cool.
One day Ethel and I are out driving around in Oklahoma City. She says "Are you hungry?" I say "Sure." We decided we were both hungry for a little bit of Italian food. We figured we’d go to Bella Vista, an Italian restaurant on the south side of OKC. Big mistake. There is nothing little about the servings at Bella Vista. This is a 17 layer lasagna. Incredibly cheesy. The kind of food your cardiologist would tell you to avoid at all costs. Way too good. Fortunately, they have take-home boxes for those of us who don’t make a total pig of ourselves. Dollar-for-dollar, the Bella Vista is the best value in Italian in OKC. Significance? You don’t have to go to Paris or London or Tokyo to get really good food. There’s a reason why Americans are the pudgiest people on the planet. Hint: good, cheap food.
This is an example of a foggy road. Fortunately, it’s not tooo foggy and, fortunately, the fog is daytime fog and not nighttime fog. That being said, I’m still not a fan of fog, day or night.
This is Carlos, our guide, talling me to quit taking all those silly pictures and get on the boat with the rest of the group.
We took a ferry to la Fortuna.
She couldn’t believe we had a TV, let alone a remote. What she found out was that all the channels were in spanish. What did she expect?