Sunday, October 29, 2006

Baby, you can drive my car...

Ok. So I'm not the Beatles and it's not my car. In a previous post, I was tellling you about putting stripes on a car, and that it's not as easy as it looks.

Some of you (my Dad, amongst others) whished to see the finished product. Well, Tadaaa!! Here it is, before...
and after...

The "after" picts were taken during our European exhibition and you'll notice that I took our company logo (to spare the innocent, as Mrs. TBF would say).

So. If I can do your car, just let me know. I will also record my new swearing technique, if you want (depending on how difficult the task is ;-).

As for the rest of the week, OrangeX and I just relaxed at home and celebrated our birthdays in peace and quiet. Also nice, no?

Yesterday, we went out for dinner to celebrate and in the rush, forgot to take the camera along. Oh well. The food was great. The funniest thing was that towards the end of the evening, this guy walked up to me and said: "Don't I know you from somewhere?". I looked at him and suddenly, my eyes beamed: "Christian!". Believe it or not, it was my tutor during my apprenticeship at Swiss Telecom 20 (!!) years ago! He sat a table away from me the whole evening and I didn't notice (ok, he was sitting almost behind us). Such a pity that I didn't have my camera with me. We chatted for about an hour, or so, and exchanged e-mail addresses. I'll keep in touch with him.

That is all for tonight. I'm still battered from last week's exhibition, so I'll take it a bit easier for the coming weeks - if I can :-)

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

What happened on October 24th?

A few important events I found on Wiki:

  • 1260 - The spectacular Cathedral of Chartres is dedicated in the presence of King Louis IX of France; the cathedral is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
  • 1360 - The Treaty of Brétigny is ratified at Calais, marking the end of the first phase of the Hundred Years' War.
  • 1648 - The Peace of Westphalia is signed, marking the end of the Thirty Years' War.
  • 1795 - Partitions of Poland: The Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth is completely divided between Austria, Prussia and Russia
  • 1857 - Sheffield F.C., the world's first football club, is founded in Sheffield, England.
  • 1861 - The first transcontinental telegraph line across the United States is completed, spelling the end for the 18-month-old Pony Express.
  • 1917 - Battle of Caporetto starts on the Austro-Italian front of World War I
  • 1929 - "Black Thursday" stock market crash on the New York Stock Exchange.
  • 1930 - A bloodless coup d'état in Brazil ousts Washington Luís Pereira de Sousa, the last President of the First Republic. Getúlio Dornelles Vargas is then installed as "provisional president."
  • 1935 - Italy invades Ethiopia
  • 1944 - World War II: The Japanese aircraft carrier Zuikaku is sunk.
  • 1945 - Founding of the United Nations
  • 1954 - Dwight D. Eisenhower pledges United States support to South Vietnam
  • 1960 - Nedelin catastrophe: An R-16 ballistic missile explodes on the launch pad at the Soviet Union's Baikonur Cosmodrome space facility, killing 165. Among the dead is Field Marshall Mitrofan Nedelin, whose death is reported to have occurred in a plane crash.
  • 1964 - Northern Rhodesia gains independence from the United Kingdom and becomes the Republic of Zambia (Southern Rhodesia remained a colony)
  • 1973 - Yom Kippur War ends
    1977 - Veterans Day is observed on the fourth Monday in October for the seventh and last time. (The holiday is once again observed on November 11 beginning the following year.)
  • 1980 - Government of Poland legalizes Solidarity trade union
  • 1986 - Nezar Hindawi is sentenced to 45 years in prison, the longest sentence handed down by a British court, for the attempted bombing on an El Al flight at Heathrow. After the verdict, the United Kingdom breaks diplomatic relations with Syria, claiming that Hindawi was helped by Syrian officials.
  • 1990 - Italian prime minister Giulio Andreotti reveals to the Italian parliament the existence of Gladio, the Italian "stay-behind" clandestine paramilitary NATO army.
  • 1995 - A total solar eclipse is visible from Iran, India, Thailand, and SE Asia
  • 1998 - Launch of Deep Space 1 comet/asteroid mission
  • 2002 - Police arrest spree killers John Allen Muhammad and Lee Boyd Malvo, ending the Beltway sniper attacks in the area around Washington, DC.
  • 2003 - Concorde makes its last commercial flight, bringing the era of airliner supersonic transport to a close, at least for the time being.
  • 2004 - A plane carrying ten members of the NASCAR Hendrick Motorsports team crashes en route to the race held at Martinsville Speedway. There were no survivors.
  • 2005 - Hurricane Wilma makes landfall in South Florida.

I think I have to contact Wikipedia.... They forgot one very important event. I admit, it might not important to to every single human being on earth, though :-)

In 1965 at 12:10 pm, I, CanadianSwiss, saw the light of day for the first time. Yes! Today, I turned 41 (although I've never really grown up)

And you know what? I'm thankful to have such great parents, family and friends (cyber and not so cyber). You all mean a lot to me.

Have a great day!

Sunday, October 15, 2006

Sad and happy moments in Holland

Exciting days in Holland I had indeed. The reason for going over was the toughest I’ve ever had in my life. On my daughter’s birthday I received a phone call from my sister who told me my ex-wife was very ill. I was shocked to hear my ex-wife, Anjella, has cancer and there’s no hope for winning this battle. I felt hammered, beaten up and needed time to absorb this information. I can’t tell you how lousy I felt after this news. We have been married for 12 years and after a hard time after the divorce, we became real friends. We do have regular contact as we have a daughter. Our daughter, Selina turned 16 on the 18th of September.

I tried to call Anjella that same evening but her boy friend told me she was in no state to come to the phone. “It’s okay”, I said, “I’ll call again tomorrow”. The next day I called Anjella again and we had a long talk. I can tell you this was an emotional talk. We agreed on me coming over to Holland as soon as possible to discuss the arrangements for Selina. We had to arrange for the custody and Selina herself at that moment didn’t want to think about it at all. You must know I haven’t seen or heard my daughter since Anjella and I split up 4 ½ years ago. I would go up to Holland the 1st week of October.

Due to the start of Anjella’s chemo-therapy treatment I had to postpone my trip for a week. I drove up on the 11th of October to meet with Anjella at her place. It was tough to see her again after the last visit to her place in June this year. Last time we met everything was okay, now all is uncertain. I just hope that the therapy helps her to slow down the growth of cancer cells and won’t wear her out. Anjella told me she had the chance to have a serious talk with Selina about the custody and Selina prefers to stay with good friends. I just hope this moment won’t be for the next 5 years. I want my daughter to go through high school and do her studies to become a registered nurse having her mother around. Dear God, just don’t let Anjella suffer and don’t take my daughter’s mother away….

I spent most of the Wednesday with Anjella at her place. We sat outside in the garden and around three o’clock I heard the gate to the garden close. I turned around and saw “my little girl” coming in with her bicycle. At first she didn’t look at us. She put her bicycle away in the shed and after she came out, she turned her head towards us for a short moment. , enough to raise my hand and say “hi” to her. She answered with a “hi” and disappeared towards the front door. Within several seconds she appeared again and walked towards us. I got up and walked towards her, and then we just hugged and cried. I can’t describe the feeling of holding my daughter again after such a long time, but it has been my biggest wish over the past 4 ½ years. Finally a chance to see and hold my daughter again! I had to take along look at this young woman. She’s 1.74m and she has grown up. The little girl I remembered has vanished completely. Now she’s a teen, aware of the seriousness of Anjella’s situation and showing enormous love and care for her mother. I can understand why she wants to become a registered nurse. She’s born to be one. Selina sat down on my lap and we chatted for quite some time. I can’t describe the happiness in me in spite of the sad circumstances. Selina indicated it was strange and she would need some time to get used to the situation. That she will get, I won’t force anything. Re-building the relationship with my daughter will take time. I even got to meet Selina’s boy friend, Dennis, later that afternoon. Dennis is an uncomplicated young man with tons of ambition. I left them early in the evening to go to Brenda, my sister, as I would spent the coming nights at her place. Selina and I agreed on me coming over again the next day. As Anjella gets her treatment on Thursday we would probably meet at the hospital. I arrived at my sister’s place and I was drained. I felt exhausted but happy. I sent Selina a text message later that evening to tell her how good it felt to have seen her again. She replied she enjoyed it too…

We saw each other on Thursday and spent a bit of time together. As Anjella had her treatment on Thursday I left them early in the afternoon. Anjella was exhausted and needed some rest. On Friday, before I drove back home, I went by to see them again. Just for a short moment, but enjoying every second of seeing my daughter. It’s clear now; we’ll be in contact more frequently by phone, text message, MSN and in person. I promised Selina to be back in Holland the 1st weekend of November. Then we will see each other again.

Yesterday we were on the MSN messenger for a brief moment and today we talked on the phone. I’m happy the barriers have come down and that there’s also the initiative from her side to contact me.

In the past 4 ½ years we haven’t had any contact and I must say I was dead tired and emotionally drained, but inside I was filled with joy and happiness. She will need her time but now she knows I will be there for her and she can call me anytime. I’m looking forward to the next trip to Holland. I’m taking it easy for now, so you’ll have to wait for some photos until the next time or the time after that but there wil come a moment where I will share the moments with you. It was just so great to finally see Selina again...

Good times and a crazy rant

What a week! I don't even know where to start, but I'll just tell you this much... working in marketing the week before the largest Rehab exhibition in Europe is in one word, STRESS. Everything that could have gone wrong, did. But we got most of it "fixed" - not without a few panic attacks and probably a huge ulcer growing half an inch in my stomach at every terror phase. So I've decided to skip the details on the latter - also for my sake - and fill you in on more fun news.

How about last Saturday. We were invited by Thomas, and his lovely girlfriend, Nicole, for dinner at an Australian restaurant nearby called the Boomerang. It's always tough to choose the main course there because everything is so good. Hmmm. Filet of Roo? Emu steak? A Town and country steak? Ahhh yes. Perfect. The town and country is about 180-200g (6.5-7 ounces) of beef filet wrapped in a nice strip of bacon and served with a baked potatoe and season veggies. I admit that it is NOT Canadian beef, but it's pretty damn good! I'll have to ask them where they get it from.

Anyway, we had a fun evening together and many, many good laughs.

I kown I'm a bit late with this post, but what the heck! I lookk forward to going back again, maybe with Mr. and Mrs. TBF? I know they've been wanting to try out this restaurant for a while now.

Orange-X was in Holland from Wednesday until Friday and it turned out to be a very special few days, but I'll let him write about that.

Today, we spent about four hours sticking racing stripes on an AC Cobra (yes, it belongs to R.) The front which I did with a colleague last week went pretty well, but the back end of the car is a hell! I've done this for the first time in my life, for goodness' sake! I think that I even invented new curse words!... No, I will not repeat them! Never, never again will I do this! I know... I'm a wreck right now. The thing is that the bum of the car (think 3D now) has - if you stand behind it- a vertical and a horizontal curve, which means that the 2 stripes that you are soooo trying to set straight on that stupid (sorry R.) car ass will end up coming together at the bottom of the boot/trunk no matter what you do. Not to mention having to demount the licence plate, the license plate lighting to get the f**ckin' tape under it. I'm lucky to have so much hair because I'm sure I ripped out about 10'000 of 'em. Yes! This car is coming with us to the exhibition. I've had it! Why am I the stupid idiot alway trying to help and make every one happy? I think I'll need therapy soon! Geezzz! GOD! I can't wait to be outta there! And I love the company for what it used to stand for and the founder of the company, R. (even if he drives me nut sometimes. Heheheh). Now, how coconut crazy is that? Sal, you're sane compared to me.

Pffff. Decompressing....Sorry, but I had to get it out of my system.

I'll be out at the RehaCare in Düsseldorf, Germany all week and won't be back until 2-3am on Sunday. And I doubt that I'll write anything on Sunday. Have a great week!

Monday, October 09, 2006

A day to celebrate

Well, yes. Today's my mother's birthday. I just spoke to her for almost an hour. I'm happy to report that she spent a great evening at her brother's (my youngest uncle) yesterday and had a terrific dinner: a light salad, shrimps, Canadian filet mignon (those of you who have eaten Canadian beef know it's the best by far), vegetable and rice, plus an ice cream cake. Couldn't get any better for me.

Anyway, Mom: Again, happy, happy birthday and all of our best wishes to go along with a fantastic woman. We'll be there on your next birthday. And that's a promise!

I love you!