Thursday, December 29, 2005

First tooth and first Christmas in Brussels

So what do you do when it is your first Christmas in another country, and Your first child's first Christmas? You start new traditions as cooking some drunken Turkey (Turkey with wine) with Pasta (Traditional Christmas dishes in VE and MX, although it doesn't seem like), and you enjoy dinner, a good bottle of wine and a great talk.

Although we didn't have a white Christmas, it gave us the opportunity to enjoy our balcony, and its view. I can't complain, life treats me well.

And by the way, Daniela's first tooth is already out (pictured on the right side), so if anyone wishes to stop by to feel it while she bites as hard as possible your finger, you are more than Welcome

Daniela´s First tooth
Family Christmas PictureChristmas Dinner in BrusselsDaniela and her new hat

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Feliz día de los Santos Inocentes

Today December 28th, in Latin America as well as Spain is the celebration of the day of the Holy Innocents, today's celebration is equivalent with April Fool's Day celebration in other countries. It is a day where people play pranks on each other, and prank victims are called "inocentes".
It was something remarkable to experience in Venezuela as even the newspaper will get in the spirit and publish some special news as part of the pranks, always keeping the footnote in the last page stating which ones were not real.
For those of you interested in the history behind celebrations, today's celebration celebrates the Massacre of the Innocents, or the day when Herod gave the order to kill all the boys who were less than two years old, as he felt his throne was in jeopardy as the Magi came in town asking for "He that is born King of the Jews".
One mental note for those that are superstitious, it is said that in this day you should not lend anything (be it money or any other object), as then you will never see it again.
So keep that in mind and go play some pranks on your friends, as they will not see it coming ;-D

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Back on the Road to the land of the Pharaohs

After a snowing day in Brussels it was time to get on the plane and fly to Cairo for a week of work, it is definitely something which I love from my new job, the opportunity of exploring new places.
Although the day started catching a bus at 5:30 am, with some almost melted snow falling in Brussels, and an overcast weather all the way into Zurich airport, and the fact that my plane from Zurich was changed and delayed a bit. It was a great time to relax and enjoy the view of
white Zurich, something captivating.
I decided to have a little nap and recover some energy while waiting for the plane to be de-iced and take off and without noticing it I slept during the whole take off and 15 min more. After that I was awaken by the warmth of the sun, so I opened my eyes and grasped the amazing view of the white Austrian a and Italian Alps, I have to say it was a really wonderful thing to see as outside of Zurich we had a clear sky and the sun was being reflected from all the snow covered peaks. It made me think about spending some days during winter in white Switzerland, something I really hope to do sometime soon.
That view made me realize that sadly I left home my travel companion - my Olympus camera, so this time I will have to take in everything and save it in my memory, without being able to share it (at least physically) with you guys.
This is just the best way to start my trip to Cairo, I hope my stay there is even better.

Saturday, December 17, 2005

Special post for the DHL Gang

I was amazed when I entered a toys store and found this DHL Matchbox toy truck. So for 5 Euros you can have your own DHL truck, what do you think about that? Is that good marketing and branding awareness or what?

Anyone interested in one?

DHL Truck Toy

First Snow in Brussels

Snow has always have a special place in my heart and the first snow is a very special moment. I have to say it was great seeing my wife's face, as she saw for the first time snow falling through the window of our apartment.
It was some snow storm, but sadly it melted away almost immediately as it was too hot outside. I still keep my hopes up of having a white Christmas in Brussels, Daniela's first one and our first one in Europe.

Perla's First Snowfall
Daniela's first SnowfallSnowing in BrusselsSnowing in Brussels
Paduwa Church after the snowSun comes out after the snowCars with some snow

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

A bit more settle in Brussels already

UnpackingI didn´t do itLast days in Florida

Sunday, December 11, 2005

Already blogging from Brussels

Well, after a crazy month of transition in my former work, finishing up some work, packing all our apartment, repainting it, moving offices from one building to another in Florida, give away many bags of things which we won't use here, getting out of the hotel at midnight because of a false fire alarm, having my parents over for 2 weeks to help us with the move, exchanging our TV an other stuff with a colleague, shopping for last minute things and winter jackets, flying for 12 hours (connection in Frankfurt), etc. etc. etc. WE ARE FINALLY IN BRUSSELS.

So from now on we'll trade the shorts and swimming suits for winter jackets and gloves, and of course our new adventures from the old continent are just starting. Keep you guys posted.

Perla and Daniela ready for winter
Perla and DanielaAutum in BrusselsDaniela ready for winter
Grand Place - BrusselsGrand Place - BrusselsGrand Place - Brussels
Grand Place - BrusselsGrand Place - BrusselsThe Royal Galleries - Brussels

Some of the best beaches

During our 1 week trip to Venezuela, thanks to god we invested 1 day in to going to Falcon State and it's Keys. In there we visited "Playuela" Key and "Los Juanes".

The first pictures are from "Los Juanes" or the swimming pool as it is called by the locals; it was given this name to it as it is a spot between 2 keys filled with crystal clear water and white sand. What makes it special is that there's no beach nearby (so you can only reach it by boat) and it's about 1.3 mt deep.

The Family at the beachDaniela and I in the beachPerla and Daniela
Grandparents and Daniela at the beachLos cayos - Falcon, VenezuelaPerla and me at
Perla and Daniela with a SeastarDaniela after a lot of sunDaniela sleeping with her Tiger

Pictures from some great days in Venezuela

Eliana, Daniela y ElilinFriends in my house´s porchDaniela in her bouncer
Friends at my placeDaniela and grandma sleepingDaniela Sleeping in the car
El Avila Mountain - CaracasDaniela and smurfs' housesDaniela sleeping in a hammack

Monday, November 14, 2005

Back in the US

After a great week invested back in Venezuela with my wife and daughter, we are already back in Miami tan, happy and with at least 4 extra pounds (or 2 Kg) after eating like crazy all week long.
It was great to catch up with friends and family but it was even better to see my family react to Daniela, I have to say that everyone was sad about us having to come back after such a wonderful week. Pictures and list of things done and ate are to come soon.
On the other hand I received a video of a Norwegian reporters trying to see the reality of hospitals in Venezuela, it is sad but it is the reality, for those of you interested in an international perspective on what is going on my country go to: http://www.albacom.no/images/stories/video/tv2_231005.wmv

Monday, November 07, 2005

Back in my home Country, back in my Venezuela

My wife Perla, my daughter Daniela and me are back in my home country for a week. It has been a tough road with a lot of things to overcome before coming here, but I can only say that I am happy that I can share with her that big part of my heart that always stays home when I leave.
Si estas en Barquisimeto dame una llamada o pasa por la casa porque estaremos aquí en Venzuela solo hasta el domingo que viene.
Nos vemos,

Thursday, November 03, 2005

You know you're from Florida when...

You have FEMA's number on speed dial.
You have more than 300 'C' & 'D' batteries in your kitchen drawer.
Your pantry contains more than 20 cans of Spaghetti O's.
You're thinking of repainting your house to match the plywood covering your windows.
When describing your house to a prospective buyer, you say it has three bedrooms, two baths & one safe hallway.
Your Social Security number isn't a secret, it's written in Sharpie on your arms.
You are on a first-name basis with the cashier at Home Depot.
You are delighted to pay $3 for a gallon of regular unleaded.
You decide that your patio furniture looks better on the bottom of the pool.
You have 2-liter coke bottles & milk jugs filled with water in your freezer.
Three months ago you couldn't hang a shower curtain; today you can assemble a portable generator by candlelight.
You can recite from memory whole portions of your homeowner's insurance policy.
At cocktail parties, women are attracted to the guy with the biggest chainsaw.
You can rattle off the names of three or more meteorologists who work at the National Hurricane Center.
Someone comes to your door to tell you they found your roof.
Ice is a valid topic of conversation.
Relocating to South Dakota does not seem like such a crazy idea.
You spend more time on your roof then in your living room.
A battery powered TV is considered a home entertainment center.
You don't worry about relatives wanting to visit during the summer.
Your child's first words are "hunker down."
Having a tree in your living room does not necessarily mean it's Christmas.
You know the difference between the "good side" of a storm & the "bad side."
You go to work early & stay late just to enjoy the air conditioning

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Odd News from Yahoo

I have been reading the Yahoo Odd News feed for quite a while, and here are some interesting news from it:

Doctor sued for sex treatment for back pain: "Dr. Smith's medical treatment included intercourse in which he told plaintiff was needed to help alleviate plaintiff's lower back and lower extremity pain," the former patient said in the lawsuit. This goes Directly to the Only in America!!

Police scramble to squash pumpkin threat: Venezuelan security services scrambled Monday to tackle a new threat on the streets of Caracas: Halloween-style pumpkins carrying messages of rebellion against President Hugo Chavez. Who said Venezuelans decorations were not dangerous?

How to beat the heat in stifling Dubai - go skiing!: "You see jungle forests in the UK, sandy beaches in Paris, tigers in Central Park, New York. Why not snow in Dubai?" Francois de Montaudouin of Ski Dubai told reporters on Tuesday. I know I said before that Dubai is a city which is always under construction, but is trully something that needs to be seen.

Woman buys winning Lottery ticket with stolen card: A woman bought a winning lottery ticket worth $1 million with a stolen credit card and could wind up with nothing if convicted, police said. Talk about bad Karma!

Million dollar bid for Lenin body: The head of the Russian Buddhist region of Kalmykia said Friday he was willing to stump up $1 million to give a new home to the embalmed body of Bolshevik leader Vladimir Lenin. Can you think of better ways to invest 1 million USD?

Pope's Ford Escort Sells for $690K: A light blue 1975 Ford Escort GL once owned by
Pope John Paul II sold for $690,000 Saturday to a Houston multimillionaire who said he plans to put it in a museum he wants to build in his hometown.

Findland's Tax details go public: Every November when the Nordic nation's tax records of the previous year become public, Finns indulge on a massive scale in satisfying their curiosity about each other's finances. Just imagine everyone checking each other information, it should be really interesting.

Bad lasagna sours Argentina summit security: At least 70 federal police officers guarding the beach resort hotel where U.S. President George W. Bush and others will meet were overcome by diarrhea and vomiting after dining on lasagna at a nearby hotel late Tuesday, police commissioner Daniel Rodriguez told local radio. You have to watch all the possible sides where the attack might come from!!

Stamp collectors hail blockbuster New York trade: The trade was remarkable in that it was a cashless exchange involving one $3 million item for another, and because it completed Gross' collection of every U.S. stamp from the 19th century -- a feat no museum has accomplished. Talk about being crazy about your hobby!

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Daniela's Photo attack

It has become a habit to do a Daniela's Photo attack every now and then, so here's the latest update with picture of the little one.

1 of the visit of an AIESEC friend from Mexico, one of me and Daniela sleeping together (and the same way), a couple more from her eating and some of her outfits. So Enjoy!

The apple doesn't fall far from the tree
Eating fruit togetherWant some tuna?Karina's Visit

Now I can drink on my own

Ready for the cold weather

Sunny outfit