Sunday, September 16, 2012

One Week and Three Countries with Nick B

We started Nick's vacation in the Alps with mountain biking on the agenda. The weather couldn't have been better and the scenery was absolutely breathtaking.  However, when deciding to partake in this particular activity in the future, consider having some experience before taking the lift straight to the top. Nick had been once, and my vast biking experience culminated on my bmx when I was about ten. (not including bar hopping on beach cruisers of course) I was having some serious doubts about this whole adventure riding my brake the entire way down the first run. After getting to the bottom and realizing that I was still intact, I was hooked! I couldn't wait to get back up and do it again. We survived the day and had an awesome time although all hopes of future X-game careers were dashed when we watched the video of ourselves (see below).  There were very good riders that would go by us.....we would scoff and say "we go just as fast as they do and this is our first time!"...... and then we watched the video that makes us look like five year old's who just took off their training wheels.  Pretty funny though, please enjoy at our expense.  By the end of the day I started to feel that bad combination of confidence and fatigue and knew that it was time to go home.  On the last run I did successfully ramp off a big rock for some huge air, 10 inches...minimum. Nick was following me and wasn't so successful but crashed rather gracefully..... if I do say so myself.  Bottom line, I think we are just getting a little older.  When your number one priority is not getting hurt, your chances of being great at an adventure sport decrease incredibly. 
The next day we departed for Majorca, an island off the coast of Spain for two nights.  Not much to talk about, we stayed in a hostel just ouside of Palma and relaxed on the beach during the day and wandered the city at night.  We ate delicous tapas, drank sangria, and devoured gelato like there is a worldwide shortage and we discovered the motherload.  We visited the Palma Cathedral, which was stunning and enormous! Since moving to Europe, I have seen my share of cathedrals and this one is a must if visitng the island. Beautiful beaches, beautiful city, can't wait to go back! 
The last day, Nicole was actually able to get off work a little early and join us.  We took the boat across Lake Geneva to Evian, France. (bottom three pictures) We had a great night eating at an amazing french restaurant and chatting.  Good way to end the trip.  Thanks for coming Nick, I hope you had as much fun as I did.  Until nextime buddy!

Thought very hard about not putting this picture up due to the seriously high "nerd" factor.  When your are 32 does it really matter anymore? Yes...yes it does. 

Huge lantern chandelier above the altar.
No comment.
This was our dinner one night, delicious!
Nick B's "James Bond" impression.  
View of the beach near where we stayed

Verbier and Chateau de Chillon with Matt

 Our friend Matt came out to visit us, unfortunately only one night, but we still managed to see some pretty cool stuff!  The first day we made it out to Verbier, a small Suisse ski town in the Alps.  Didn't have a lot of time but took the lift up all the way from the bottom and got to see some spectacular views.  We will go mountain biking next time Matt!  The following day we went to Chateau de Chillon, the medieval castle that we walk by all the time but never actually went in.  They built the castle on a small rock island in the lake and you can still see parts of the original floor down in the cellars. Construction began in the 11th century!  I still can't get over the amount of age and history of everything here in Europe.  Although short, we had a great time.  Thanks for visiting Matt, hopefully we can meet you and Janet in Florence and Copenhagen next year!