Iceland

If you’re not yet convinced that Iceland must be your next destination, here are 37 photographs with astonishing Icelandic scenes to prove that it should be!

Wow.

From Shanghai to Linan

The beginning of our two day study trip to Linan organized by the International School. Price: 50 Yuan (about 4,50 Euro).

Leaving Shanghai

Five buses in front of the International Students Building.

Leaving Shanghai

Large houses being built in the middle of nowhere. We’ve also seen developments with dozens of new, empty houses.

Leaving Shanghai

Oriental cherry?

This time next week

I’ll be aboard Air China flight 962 on my way to Shanghai. I’ll have written two more exams, cleared the apartment I have been living in for the last three and a half years and hope I won’t have to sleep under a bridge when I will have arrived.

Countdown

For about a year I’ve been knowing that I would go to China. It has always been in the future. Months, weeks and now it’s only days. 10…9…

16 days

One exam next Thursday, two more the Friday after next, then two days to clear out the apartment and I’ll be gone. Is there any time for a farewell party?

Chinese visa

Chinese F Visa

I thought I’d get a student (X) visa but this is a business (F) one. So I don’t have to apply for a residence permit and can avoid the health check. But, and I hope that won’t be a problem, I have to get re-entry visas when I visit other countries. And I have to extend in order to do an internship.

Get them to the UK

I don’t know if it’s really that hard but in Germany we drive on the right side of the street. So if you’re the slowest car on the Autobahn your place is the inner lane and only the inner lane!

Delta m

Four weeks until I have to be in Shanghai. No appartment yet. But a flight:

Itinerary Munich - Shanghai

I’ll arrive in Hongqiao rather than the modern Pudong Airport. It’s nearer and I better get my things to wherever I stay before exploring the city.

According to the lady of the Air China service hotline I may take thirty kilogram to Beijing but only twenty to Shanghai. Different regulations for international and domestic flights. Ok. I thought about sending some stuff by mail. Beijing, Shanghai. That shouldn’t take too long. A Chinese friend advised against it. Hm.

Anti

I don’t want to write on my semester thesis, don’t want to study for the exams, don’t want to clear out my appartment and don’t want to go to China. Although I have to admit that the images Jan and Michael took look quite good.

Leaving Sweden

Lappis

Another view of Lappis

Grillkrydderi

Previously mentioned Grillkrydderi

Fried noodles with Grillkrydderi

And the fried noodles I’d usually make with onions, basil, oregano and thyme. But if Grillkrydderi is the only thing available… ;-)

Breakfast/Lunch

Last combined breakfast and lunch with fried noodles, Kanelbullar, bread and margarine. That was one-week vegan’s first day back in his old life and the first time in Sweden that we could eat Kanelbulle together.

On the way to Universitetet

On the way to Universitetet

Light

Nice light

Flygbussarna terminal

Flygbussarna terminal

Check-in at Stockholm-Skavsta Airport

Check-in at Stockholm-Skavsta Airport

Boeing 737-800, Ryanair

Our plane arrived too late so we had to wait for an hour. The pilot was quite funny, he appologized and assured: “We’ll have you down there as soon as possible.” Then he asked everyone to be seated as soon as possible because: “We have to be airborne in ten minutes.” He didn’t even stop at the beginning of the rollway, just drove around the corner, speeded up and took off.

Weapon aboard

They take away all the nail scissors but sell canned peanuts with these sharp tops. I’d rather be threatened with the scissors.

Frozen car

Frozen car

Burger King vs. Gusticus

Burger King vs. Gusticus. Why is the first one closed at half past midnight?

Fried potatoes

Fried potatoes

Finally home

Finally home

Helsinki with two vegans

First view of Finland

A first view of Finland while disembarking

M/S Mariella in Helsinki

M/S Mariella in Helsinki

Finn's favorite letters

Finn’s favorite letters on a poster in the tram

Tourist intruding Finish living space

Tourist intruding Finish living space

Downtown Helsinki

Downtown Helsinki

Counter area of a Finish bank

Counter area of a Finish bank

Helsinki Cathedral

Helsinki Cathedral

Ship seen from Helsinki Cathedral

Ship seen from Helsinki Cathedral

House with display in Helsinki

Building with display

Helsinki Central railway station

Helsinki Central railway station

Vegetable cheese pasta

Vegetable cheese pasta, not vegan

Looking vegan food

Near central station, too expensive

Looking vegan food

Perfect restaurant with dishes without “any animal matters”. Doesn’t serve à la carte food until 3 pm.

Vegetarian chicken

Vegetarian chicken

Chinese restaurant with vegan food

Final destination

Rice noodles with vegetables

My Rice noodles with vegetables

Noodles with vegetables and separated egg

One-week vegan’s noodles with vegetables and separated egg.

Tofu

Hardcore vegan’s tofu with vegetables

Finish record store

Finish record store

Pedestrian lights in Helsinki

Pedestrian lights

M/S Viking XPRS being built in Helsinki

M/S Viking XPRS being built in Helsinki

Posters aboard M/S Mariella

Advertising for tax free shopping everywhere aboard M/S Mariella.

Temporarily leaving Stockholm

Lappis

Lappis

Mind the gap

This display in the Stockholm Metro says you should mind the gap between train and platform. I couldn’t take a picture of the one saying you should pull the emergency brake in case of an accident. But why would you do this if the train won’t stop.

Drottningholmen

Drottningholm Palace

Kina Slott

Kina Slott

M/S Mariella

M/S Mariella in Stockholm

Pasta aboard M/S Marella

Pasta aboard M/S Mariella. Our vegan refused to eat it because it contained cream. One-week vegan removed all the cheese and started eating before we knew about the cream.

Food aboard M/S Mariella

What the vegan got instead. Not healthier but the poor little milk animal didn’t have to die for it. ;-)

2007 ends in Stockholm

Boarding

Boarding

Swedish Escalators

Swedish Escalators at the Metro station Universitetet. They’re running much faster than the German ones.

Gamla Stan

Gamla Stan

Mårten Trotzigs Gränd

Mårten Trotzigs Gränd, the narrowest alley in Stockholm.

Out of Bavaria

  1. About half of the way from Freising to Frankfurt/Hahn is covered with construction sites.
  2. Most parts of the Autobahn have a speed limit.
  3. Swabia is a very hilly region.
  4. Nicotine gums help a smoker to smoke less, and the fellow travellers to avoid health hazards.
  5. Don’t eat pizza at Frankfurt/Hahn.
  6. While landing, the pilot has to turn off the cabin lights to comply with safety regulations.
  7. Flygbussarna bring you from Stockholm-Skavsta Airport to the city. No idea if everyone finally got a place.
  8. There still are subways on a sunday at 2:40 am.
  9. Fried spaghetti with barbecue spice taste good… despite a massive amount of salt.

Ready to go

TripIt found out that we’re going to fly aboard a Boeing 737-800, Google got the route and I made a reservation for a parking lot so everything’s prepared for our trip to Stockholm.

Freising - Frankfurt/Hahn

(Image: Google Maps, Map data ©2007 Tele Atlas)

Swing back

We’re three again and the flight is booked. Stockholm, we’re coming!

Old habit

Same wrong way, same traffic jam, but this time I took the right road back and only lost twenty minutes. So how could that happen again? I usually take the highway when driving home from university and the autobahn when I go to Munich. The problem is that they closed the highway due to road works and I have to take the autobahn in the other direction. Well, I’m not used to that, followed my habit and took the wrong ramp…. twice…. 🙄

Wrong way

I took the wrong way, landed in a traffic jam, behind an excavator, in the wrong part of the town and finally got back to where I had started thirty minutes before…

Another icon language

Zlango claims to be “the universal icon language”. I’m sceptical. It reminds me of all those tiny little pictures in the Chinese books trying to point out how the sign for “horse” developed from the drawing of the animal.

A real problem is the fact that they have very few icons and I have to admit that I wouldn’t understand most of them. Another analogy to Chinese…

Zlango

Singapore Flyer

Another reason for a detour to Singapore:

And it’ll open just in time.

Gran Canaria

A friend doing an internship in Las Palmas de Gran Canaria showed me her neighbourhood on Google Maps. She lives directly between a long beach and the harbor. If only we could swap…

Streets of Berlin

Before going north I assumed there wouldn’t be any fast people. Though I never had a problem with changing trains I often couldn’t cross four-lane streets at once because the green phases of the traffic lights were just sufficient to reach the traffic island in the middle of the road.

And at first it was hard to find the youth hostel because the house numbers aren’t counted the same way as in the rest of Germany where the odd numbers are on one side of the road and the even ones on the other. In Berlin they start on one end and then count up on one side turn around and continue on the other one. So numbers 9 and 34 may stand vis-à-vis.

Hardenbergstraße

Berlin

Berlin is about to replace Paris as my favorite city. Never thought that could ever happen. The last time I’ve been there was so determined by culture, museums, sights that the city itself was forced to the background. But it’s such an amazing place.

Hardenbergstraße

View at Bahnhof Zoo and Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church.

Reichstagsufer

The Spree with the Reichstag building, seat of the German parliament.

Plane and train

In order to attend the Raumfahrer.net Meeting 2007 I am going to fly to Berlin tomorrow. The flight (500 km) will last 75 minutes, the train ride to the city (20 km) between 35 and 50 minutes.

By the way: The homepage of Verkehrsverbund Berlin-Brandenburg, the local public transportation network, lets you chose how you would like to change trains: normally, comfortably or slowly.

Umsteigen

Aren’t there any fast people in the north? Or is it just a question of how you define “normally”?