Sunday, October 29, 2006

Amsterdam & Frankfurt

Brief business trip to Europe.

Amsterdam (picture of canal to the left) is one of my favorite city in the world. It combines urban density with beautiful, wide open canals & trees. People are diverse & friendly, and you can never tire walking the cobblestone streets.

Visited good friend Erika - who recently moved there with her husband Jessie and two sons - Matisse & Morgan. Erika reports having success explaining the ''coffee shops'' to the kids, but so far are stumped on what to do about the legal prositutes.

The Van Gogh museum is terrific in that, unlike most famous European museums, it's intimate, relevant and revealing. Although it only house a few of Vincen't famous paintings such as the Potato Eaters and Iris (most are in other famous museums); this museum has just about everything else nicely arranged not only in chronological order, but by geography as well so you can see exactly where Van Gogh lived and how they affected his art. A bonus section on Japanese woodworking that infuenced Van Gogh is not to be missed.

Bought home 50 tulip bulbs & a case of ''siroop waffelin'', these incredible cookies filled with caramel. Team Mia has been addicated ever since.


In Frankfurt for 4 days attending the Frankfurt Buchmesse - mostly boring work stuff. Did hook up with buddy Sal Nensi, who was in nearby Paris and decided to drop by. At lots of heavy, heavy German food. Highlight was at the old stand-by Lorbacher Tal where we had a ''sausage salad'' that actually didn't have a single piece of vegetable in the ''salad''.

Best night was when we hooked up with colleagues from Dark Horse Comics - Lance, Dirk & Matt - who formed an improptu band Tigers & Scorpions (named after the bartender & her tattoes) and played a spirited set at the Spritz Haus in Sachsenhausen, our traditional hang out. Later we stayed to watch this amazing German cover-band, The Mad House Flowers. We were skeptical at first as they started with weak covers of Depeche Mode and Midnight Oil, but they quickly hit their stride (assisted by shots of jagermeister b/t each song). By the time they launched into Tina Turner, Nirvana and Lenny Kravitz the place was hopping. The band later emailed to tell us they already booked the same night during the book fair next year.


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