Around the world in two weeks

27 November 2008 at 23:55

With stops in London, Köln, München, and Tokyo, my two week business trip went by in a blur.

The trip was good from business standpoint and I was lucky to be able to see good friends in all three countries, but boy am I thankful to be back home. Two weeks on the road is about my limit for a work-related trip.

Thoughts from Munich and London

6 February 2008 at 09:27

Some random thoughts from my trip last week to Munich and London:

  • Flughafen München is the cleanest and quietest airport that I’ve been through in recent years. It’s a striking contrast (and a bit eerie) to sprawling complexes like LAX or or LHR.
  • Corporate rivalries play out in interesting ways. Just after the giant BMW grille in the baggage claim, there’s an Audi S5 on display right by the exit and enormous Audi banners in the outdoor square of the airport. Seems like a bold move given that Munich is BMW’s world headquarters.
  • Bread is generally very good in Germany. I would eat brötchen all the time if I could get something comparable here in California.
  • There’s nothing like the sense of déjà vu that you get when you return to a city that you were last in years earlier. In my case, strolling down Kaufingerstraße and ending up in Marienplatz brought back a flood of memories from a trip to Munich a decade ago.
  • The street cars in Munich are Prius-sneaking-up-on-pedestrians quiet. The N-Judah that runs by my flat in San Francisco sounds like a stampeding herd of buffalo by comparison.
  • London Heathrow, unlike the Internet, really is a series of tubes. Catching a connecting flight at LHR involves a series of moving walkways connecting a seemingly endless sprawl of terminals.
  • The EmPower power outlets built in to many airplane seats seems rather customer unfriendly. Is there actually a good technical reason for not providing standard AC outlets in-seat instead?

Willkommen in München

28 January 2008 at 00:21

Giant kidney-shaped grill and roundrel on the wall in the baggage claim?

I must be in Munich.