My first time in Paris I stayed at a cheap tourist hotel in the outskirts of the „most romantic city on earth“. Small and simple rooms – yes, we at least had a TV and were totally thrilled about the two German channels in the sea of French ones-, no restaurant but a dozen vending machines offering everything from ice-cream to sandwiches to meals-to-go … and a 15-minute-walk to the metro. Which can be very long if you’re suffering from blisters.

The daylong trip itself – from rural Styria to metropolitan Paris – was an adventure. (And that’s the nicest expression I could find …) Imagine a bus full of middle aged people (very nicely said as well) in the middle of the summer and no air condition. Which broke down in the middle of the highway somewhere around Strasbourg. We suffered and swore to never ever take part in one of those cheap sales bus tours again. The only reason my pal and I booked this tour was the price – pure and simple. Who wouldn’t take the opportunity to spend three days in Paris for 200 €? Especially since students are always short on cash and I knew, of course, that some shopping would be on the schedule!

Usually these bus tours are pre-organized for every single minute but I wouldn’t be me if I didn’t have other plans. My friend and I only met our fellow travellers at breakfast. And while they were hurrying from one sight to another, squeezing in the one or other sales event where you couldn’t resist buying mattresses, pots and electrical blankets because it was such a great deal – and if you didn’t order you wouldn’t be allowed back onto the bus – we had the best time ever doing whatever we wanted. Strolling on the Champs Elysées? Shopping on Rue du Faubourg? Driving up to the top of Eiffel Tower, mounting the stairs to Sacre Coeur? Walking along the Seine, visiting Notre Dame and sitting in cafés? We did all that! And it was great! BUT … and here it comes, the big BUT! I still was disappointed! Paris is the incarnation of romance! THE dream honeymoon destination! Well, maybe if it’s dark and you don’t see how rundown and dirty the city really is. And I’m not talking about the suburbs or tiny side streets. I’m talking about the inner city! Let me give you an example which is still fresh in my mind after all these years, because it kind of made me sad.

By visiting the Eiffel Tower you best get out at Trocadero. Which in itself is magnificent, especially the view to the Tour Eiffel. But we were a little surprised (and that’s a nice expression as well) seeing it smeared with graffiti and the fact that its fountains were switched on at 10 am. It made me wonder, why!? Do they just not care? Confident in the fact that tourists will be too enchanted to oversee the dilapidated houses, dirt, broken sidewalk tiles …?

And still … I want to get back to Paris. I want to experience it with the love of my life, staying at a nice hotel close to the 1e arrondisement, walking through the streets, enjoying the real Paris with buttery croissants and café au lait, just watching the world pass by, feeling the romance, being enchanted like millions before me … one day I will return! And it will be an incredible experience!


Killer on the loose II

Remember me? I’m the buginator, equipped with all kinds of bug killing equipment and methods. In my last posting my Louboutin shoes plus boxes, Chanel No 5 and liquid nitrogen found use in my bug hunt. And since you’re reading this right now I presume you’d like to know what else I have come up with.

  • Poison! I love poison! The more the merrier! Your home improvement retailer is a wonderful source to get all kinds of bug sprays and I enjoy nothing more than buying everything available. I also got a special tool belt in which to store all those cans and you can see me sneaking around, armed to the teeth to spray kill a fly, an ant, a cockroach, a wasp, a mosquito, a spider … you name it, I got the right poison to kill it!
  • Your car! The faster you drive the more bugs you’ll kill on the way! The bigger your car, the more bugs you’ll kill! So, what’s the conclusion? Buy big cars and drive fast to kill off as many bugs as possible! The downside? It might be a wee bit difficult to use your car in your house just to hunt down one bug.
  • Shoot it! A) You get some shooting practice in case someone dares to break into your house – or you need to accidentally kill off your husband! (Oops, sorry, Darling! You were in the bug’s way!) B) It’s fun! C) It’s even more fun! D) Hey, you always wanted to remodel anyway! Those few holes look quite charming and give your house character! You could also brag to your guests that Bugsy Malone lived in your suburban house, hiding from the Feds. Apart from that, big hunts are the new party games!
  • Your new flame thrower! Who doesn’t have a flame thrower at home? They can be so useful! And if you don’t have one yet, it’s high time you get one! Naturally bugs are not fire resistant and the plus point is you don’t have to scrape off bloody remains. Bugs incinerate instantly, leaving either a crispy corpse or ash behind! On the other hand, there’s some soot to deal with! But smoky interiors are so IN now, I tell you!
  • Drowning! May require some leisure time, since bugs are very difficult to drown. So, if you’ve got a little spare time on your hands and are of the masochist kind, that’s the way to go!
  • Should everything else fail or you’re just too lazy to get the killing done yourself, professional exterminators will do the job for you! Hunting down every single one of those annoying little buggers, having fun by doing so!

Well, I hope I’ve given you a few inspirations! I’m always open for more bug killing methods, yours M

Killer on the loose I

I hate bugs! I can’t tell you how much I hate everything that crawls and stalks and slimes its way around the house. If I see a spider hanging from the corner of the living room ceiling I start screaming – hysterically. Until someone comes and puts it away. (Wishful thinking!) With no white knight coming to my rescue I’ve developed a few very ingenious and effective ways to murder even the tiniest mosquito. Since I’m surely not the only hysterical woman who starts screaming from the top of her lungs whenever she sees a spider AND has to deal with it ALONE, I thought I’d give you the one or other tip how to get rid of all kinds of bugs for good.

  • Your Louboutin shoe box: simple, but very effective! Louboutin shoe boxes are made of strong cardboard, therefore the danger of destroying the box by using too much force is minimal. Instructions: Wait, until your wasp-spider-bug is sitting somewhere completely still, take the box and smash it right onto your fiend. Voilà, you’ve got a smashed, dead bug. The downside? It’s sticking either to the window glass, the wall or your shoe box. In either cases some cleaning is required – or new paint! It’s also a good way to explain your brand new Louboutins to your husband! I won’t take any responsibilities for Prada boxes, though!
  • Your Louboutin shoes: But only those with the really, really high and spiky heels! As could already be seen on the TV series “CSI”, high heels are marvellous murder weapons. Even cockroaches won’t survive being pinned to the floor by a 10 inch heel. I would not recommend velvet covered heels, though. Cockroach intestines don’t clean off too well. (And I’m talking from experience!) On the other hand … you’ve got another excuse to buy a new pair! And one can never have too many! In case you don’t want to use your Louboutins after all … any designer brand will have to do!
  • Chanel No 5! Bugs don’t like Chanel No 5! Why? I don’t know! Maybe it’s too expensive for their taste! Just spray them and they will stop doing whatever they were doing, stunned, deliriously waiting for you to kill them off! You wonder whether other perfumes will do the trick too? Well, I wouldn’t count on it!
  • There’s nothing better than liquid nitrogen! A quick N2 shower and your least favourite bug is freeze dried! The advantage? By smashing it you won’t leave any unwelcome gooey and bloody stains. Just take a broom and off they go! Out the door, becoming mulch again! BUT! Don’t forget to smash them to pieces! Otherwise they might thaw and become alive again! Haunting you to take revenge!

Ohhh no! Running out of space! I’m not done by a long shot! The bug killer will be back next Saturday! And until then: happy hunting!

My American Favourites

Ever think about the things you love about your favourite countries? I do! And of course, I don’t want to keep my thoughts from you!

My favourite American car: Can I say Range Rover? Oops, wrong country! Hm, American car … let me think about it! … Corvette Stingray! Definitely! Sooo hot!

My favourite American book: A dangerous question, since I own about 900 English ones, with at least half of them from American authors. I’m not that dull to name classics like Salinger’s “Catcher in the Rye”. No, I’d rather go with Fitzgerald’s “The Great Gatsby”. But maybe I should be more specific and categorize …

My favourite American movie: Ohhh, you can’t really expect me to name only one movie of 100 years of movie making. That’s just impossible … I wouldn’t know what you would think of me if I said, “Die hard”!?

My favourite American store: If I can spend money in it, I’ll love it!

My favourite American city: New York City. I can’t help it! Just adore it! For a shopaholic like me it’s heaven! But I’m not that shallow all the time! I enjoy Broadway and all those wonderful museums as well!

My favourite American sight: Isn’t there anything more terrific than 5th Avenue? No, seriously, get me back to Monument Valley and I’m in heaven, literally, since it’s a holy place and you can feel the power of the ancients everywhere you go.

My favourite American appliance: definitely the garbage disposal unit in the kitchen sink … it’s so much fun disposing of everything you don’t need anymore. Like your husband …

My favourite American invention: Post-its. Where would we be without Post-its? They are stuck everywhere at my place!

My favourite American writing place: every single Starbucks of course! And apart from that … the higher up the better …

My favourite American male, dead movie star: Cary Grant! No doubt about it! Could swoon every time I see him on TV.

My favourite American female, dead movie star: Katherine Hepburn – she was one of the greatest women in Hollywood ever! Far ahead in her time in terms of emancipation!

My favourite American food: Unfortunately, everything!

My favourite American president: Not the current one, that goes without saying!

My favourite American building: Chrysler building! Welcome to the 20s, my favourite era …

My favourite American ghost: The ones on the Queen Mary of course!

My favourite American … ah, I guess I have bored you enough for this week! I’m pretty sure this one will have a continuation at one point … Have a great weekend! “American” hugs and kisses