My Favorite Photo from KL

If you’d like to see a wider selection of my photos from Kuala Lumpur, I’ve got them over at my photography blog, here. However, I thought I’d share with you my favorite one – this was taken at Batu Caves in Kuala Lumpur. And while these monkeys look sweet, darling and adorable, one of them did bite one of our delegates, without being provoked, so you want to stay far back from them! The telephoto lens helped!


Traveling to Kuala Lumpur, via Dubai

And sleeping and resting is (mostly) what happened. I was able to sleep a LOT on the flights going over to KL, and had picked up some flu medication, hand sanitizer, tissues and mints in London to use on the plane. So by the time we landed, while I wasn’t feeling good, I certainly was feeling better – no fever, for one!

We were flying Emirates, which was an interesting experience. I was pretty excited that they had hummus as an appetizer for pretty much all of the meals, so that made me a happy camper. For some reason, even sick, I can still manage some bread and hummus.

We landed in Dubai in the fairly early morning, and the airport was pretty quiet (I only know this because when we got there midday today, it was a mob scene). We did a quick stop at the ladies room, and it was the first time I’ve ever been in a ladies room that was totally silent. No one said a word. There were a lot of women in various forms of burkas – some were full, with only their eyes showing, while others had their faces showing. It was always interesting to see a couple, where the man was wearing a very casual outfit of shorts and a tee shirt, while the woman was covered head to toe. Although, as I said to my dad, at least it was easy for her to pick out what to wear that day – like my former days in a Catholic school uniform! Continue reading

Instagramming it

I made a resolution this year to do another 365 project, but this time using the Instagram app on my phone. I haven’t stuck to it that well, but I’ve definitely been using it more often, and playing around with some of the features. I’m also using a neat little app called PictureFrames, which allows me to put multiple shots in one image for a collage-type look.

Here are some of the shots I took on my trip, using Instagram:

Flying to Innsbruck!

Continue reading

Back to My Favorite City – London

Site visit to the Corinthia Hotel
We finally arrived at Gatwick, and zipped over to Durrants Hotel on George Street. It is a lovely old London hotel, with a lot of character…but less than good service. The hotel still uses what look to be original keys, which you turn into them every time you leave the hotel.

We freshened up and headed out into the afternoon to do a bit of shopping and have a bite of dinner – the next two days would be very full with meetings, so it was really the only free time we had. I picked up some doggy mugs at a great kitchen shop along the Marylebone High Street, which match the dog mug I got there last year (now I’ll have four!), and picked up the matching forks and knives for the two spoons I got at Emma Bridgewater last year. 

Then, we headed to The Rajdoot, our favorite Indian place to visit when we’re in London (and really, our favorite Indian place, period). I ordered my usual chicken tikka masala, and we learned from another patron who was talking to the waiter that it was a different chef that night. We were both pleased with our curries, and the naan bread was some of the best we’d had, but I ended up getting just a touch of food poisoning that night, which was less than ideal!

The next day was FULL. We started off with a meeting at the Corinthia Hotel, which is a new property in London, opening in about mid-2011. It’s ideally situated on a very quiet block, just up from the Thames, near the walking bridge. And the hotel itself is beautiful. It’s owned by the Corinthia group of hotels, and the London location is their flagship property. They’re hoping to become the Mandarin Oriental of Europe, and having seen their property, I can say they’ll definitely give them a run for their money. Continue reading

Stops and Starts

I had intended to write this post about two weeks ago, but you know what they say about the best laid plans!

I’ve finally decided to do something about the extra weight I’ve put on. Because I’m tall, it hasn’t been too terribly noticeable, except to me. But I’m on an upward trend that I don’t like, so the time to make some changes is now. A friend of mine has had great success with Weight Watchers, so I’ve joined and committed to the points system.  It’s not easy, but I’ve lost about 5 pounds already. I’m too embarrassed to admit my total goal (though I can admit that for my height, I’m officially 7 pounds over a healthy weight – two pounds now), but once I’ve lost the weight, I might be willing to.

Part of the points system is exercise – you can get more food points for the day by moving your body, which makes sense.

I’ve been traveling now for the past twelve days (I’m currently writing this in Word while on my last of 8 flights in that time period – I think we’ve got about two hours to go!), and having to pack for three different climates meant that I couldn’t fit my sneakers. I knew I’d be doing a lot of walking, and it turned out that a few days into the trip, I picked up a nasty flu/cold bug that would have kept me from doing any running anyway, but I still wish I’d been able to. Continue reading

Back from my World Tour

I had fully intended to arrange for posts to be published while I was globe trotting over the past twelve days, but the best laid plans, as they say…

I’m currently on the final flight of my journey for this trip – flight eight of eight in twelve days. And yes, that’s as exhausting as it sounds. We have been to England, Austria, Italy, Dubai (just the airport) and Malaysia, and I can’t wait to sleep in my own bed…for all of five minutes before I am off again.

It’s a busy month.

With only about 5 days home the entire month of March (yes, I’m serious), there isn’t much handy homeownering going on. But I can share with you a few photos from my recent travels, and you may want to know some of my tips for settling your house for a long trip away. Continue reading

A Weekend in San Vigilio – a 12 Day Trip Kicks Off

So I’m currently flying back to the States on the second of three flights today (and all of them about 7 hours!). It’s been one of my longest trips ever – 12 days – and I spent time in London, San Vigilio, and Kuala Lumpur.


We left approximately a gajillion years ago on flight 1 of 8 for London. Next year’s annual conference and 25th anniversary meeting is going to be held there, and we needed to do a few site visits to figure out what our program will be. But first, we were off to San Vigilio again. So after a quick dinner at our airport hotel, a fairly decent (and VERY quiet) night’s sleep, we were off to Gatwick and on to Innsbruck! Continue reading

In the “Somedays I Just Can’t Win” Category…

So last night, all I wanted to do was watch the last three episodes of Downton Abbey. The first one that I hadn’t seen was airing at 6pm, and of course, I forgot – but luckily, I’d already set the DVR. I thought I’d just run the steam mop around quickly (as I’d been in bed on and off until three with a terrible migraine) and then jump into watching the show.

That might have been what happened if my washing machine hadn’t gone on the fritz. And by “on the fritz,” I mean, leaking like a sieve when it’s running.

It’s awesome. No, really.

I noticed it when water was coming out of the bathroom as I was cleaning. Fortunately, the steam cleaner has a water vacuum function, and it wasn’t a lot of water. I couldn’t figure out why it was happening – I can tell that it’s coming from the drain hose and not the incoming water pipes (fortunately!), but I don’t know if it’s because the machine is unbalanced or because there’s an actual leak. There seemed to be some feathers in the water, so it might even be a clog from washing my comforter the other day. Continue reading

Spring…er, February Cleaning

So, the only cleaning chore I actually like doing is laundry. To me, it’s the most tangible – clothes are dirty, you put them in the washing machine and dryer, and they come out clean and smelling nice! Plus, it’s the only thing that the dogs can’t seem to dirty up immediately!

I realized recently that there are some spring cleaning-type things that I should be doing involving the laundry…like washing my pillows and comforter. I was reading in a magazine yesterday that you can, and should, wash pillows regularly, and it’s something that I forget to do. So tonight, after my regular laundry was finally finished, I put the pillows in with some fresh powdered detergent from Sweet Grass Farms. My mom had gotten me some of their laundry sachets for the dryer for Christmas, so I recently ordered some of their powdered detergent and fabric softener, and it does make my laundry smell so lovely and fresh. Continue reading

The G Family – Alan G

Now, it’s time to start moving backwards. I’ll start with my dad’s family, since that’s the one I seem to be able to find the most research for!

So Alan G. was born on January 19, 1950 in Belfast, Northern Ireland. His mother was from Belfast, and his father was English, but had met his wife in Northern Ireland, where they had also married. We’ll get into their stories more in future posts.

My dad can feel free to correct any of the details that I get wrong in the comments below, but…

His father worked for the British Foreign Office, so he was posted around the world in various places during my dad’s childhood.  For a few years, they lived in Turkey… Continue reading