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By: Ayla Harbin

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Saturday, 23-Dec-2006 12:00 Email | Share | | Bookmark

Just down the street from my house
Woodinville-Duvall Rd.
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Some pics from the windstorm that ravished the area December 14, 2006 and left nearly a million people without power, some of whom as of this date are still without electricity (mine came back yesterday evening after being out for nine days). All reports say that the Woodinville area was one of the hardest hit. My first hand experience/observation confirms that. Woodinville-Duvall road was totaled; they must have had to run all new line most of the way due to the number of places that trees fell across the power lines and where telephone poles just straight up snapped off in the wind. It was an impressive and somewhat surreal sight.

Tuesday, 13-Sep-2005 12:00 Email | Share | | Bookmark
September 13, Paris

La Tour Eiffel
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After a seven hour train ride back to Paris from Nice (should have been four but it kept stopping for reasons unexplained) and a half hour metro ride we finally arrived back in Gif-sur-Yvette; I don't remember how the rest of that evening played out I'm not even sure it involved dinner, I did remember at some point to call home and wish Dad Happy Birthday. The next day, Mon 12, we, Genevieve and I, went to lunch by the Sorbonne and then shopping, mainly in places far too expensive for me buy anything, but it was fun anyway. We had dinner somewhere and saw a movie (the sequel to Auberge Espangol) at Les Halles (a truly massive shopping mall) and managed to catch the last train back to Gif. Tue 13 We separated when we got to Paris, Genevieve to music shop and read a book in a park somewhere, me to see the Eiffel Tower, Arc de Triumph, and Notre Dame. I went to la Tour Eiffel first, the line to take the elevator to the top was somewhere around three or four hours long and cost ten euro so I elected to pay three euro, not wait in line and climb the stairs (more of a full experience that way anyway) unfortunately the stairs only take you as far as the second platform, but it was cool anyway, there is no way to convey the true massiveness of Eiffel Tour, it is soooo much bigger than it looks in pictures. Then on to the Arc de Triumph. the Arc was... well, the Arc. I guess it didn't make that big an impression on me other than that when I first found it I didn't see the underground passage that took you under the street over to the Arc, I was trying to figure out how one might cross a very busy four or five lane roundabout, good thing I found the tunnel =) Notre Dame I found much more impressive, that is some intense architecture! the day was pretty overcast so the windows were not at their most impressive, but it was still very cool. I thought about going down the catacombs but I was sightseeinged out and was supposed to meet Gen fairly soon and I didn't really feel like spending the money so I didn't, rather wish now that I had, but at the time I probably wouldn't have enjoyed it very much anyway so probably all for the best. Gen and I then went and had dinner at a couscous restaurant on the Rue Moufftard, very very delicious. After dinner we went to another movie at Les Halles, I don’t remember what we intended to see, but there was something wrong with the film so we ended up seeing La Vie en Air (it’s about a guy who’s afraid of flying, so they keep showing plane crashes, great thing to see before one has to take a transatlantic/transcontinental flight) while waiting for our movie we were in the lobby and there was some kind of event for the release of RISE (break dancing movie with guy with washboard abs on poster) the director was there (real jerk) the cooler part was the paparazzi that were there, they asked us if we were there for the “event” (we should have said yes, could have had our pics taken by paparazzi =) The movie got out later than anticipated and we missed the last train back to Gif, found a taxi, found out it would cost 80 euro to get back, elected to stay the night in Paris (Gen knew of an all-night café – there are actually a lot of them) ate crepes, fries, and had some wine and ended up talking to some guys (Pierre, Francois, and Christophe) that turned up there. They kept us company for the night and when the trains started running again in the morning went back to Gif.

Sunday, 11-Sep-2005 00:00 Email | Share | | Bookmark
September 6-11 Caen, Avignon, Nice

A first view of Mount-Saint-Michel
A closer look
Views from the monestary
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The 5th we spent traveling (a lot) from London, to Paris, to Gif-sur-Yvette, to Paris, to Caen. The 6th we went to Mount-Saint-Michel. The Mount has had a church of some sort or another since Roman times and until they built the road out to it only accessible at low tide. It had been a monastery for centuries and was a medieval fortress during a war that I can't remember the name of. The 5th we went to the war museum in Caan (no pics =( and then we were going to go out to the American cemetery and D-day beaches, but Gen and I were both exhausted and so we just walked around Ouistreham, the town we were staying in (again no pics=(. On the 7th we went to out to Honfleur and on the way passed through Douville and Trouville. I tried Calvados (a strong apple liquor) at a Cave (pronounced cah-v) in Honfleur, interesting stuff, first you get this really nice apple flavor then it burns all the way down. Then we had to get back and catch our train to Paris where we took the metro to another train station to catch our train south to Avignon. Avignon was very cute (my camera was not working very well so I don't have many pics from these places) we went to the Palais de Pape where the pope lived during the time when there were two Popes, one in Rome and one in France then we walked down to the Avignon bridge (Sur la pont d'Avignon...). It's probably a good thing we didn't have a long time in Avignon, we would have ended up spending way too much money. Nice was pretty nice, after you got down to the beach and away from the center of the city and down by the beach (FYI there are no natural sand beaches in the south of France, places like Canes import their sand). The city of Nice was very busy, noisy, and, well as our momentary friends from New Zealand told us in Avignon, some of it was a bit "dodgy." Swimming in the Mediterranean was awesome, the water is so warm! The train went right along the coast and it's just beautiful. the ocean is a bright aquamarine, the cliffs are a deep red, the hills are covered with dark green trees, and there really are the white houses with terra cotta roofs. I'd love to go back and go to some of the smaller towns along the coast. Most people think of Italy when thinking of olive oil, but the South of France actually produces some of the highest quality stuff, there are olive groves bordering the train route most of the way between Avignon and Nice. the 11th was mostly spent traveling again; our train had to keep stopping for different reasons (something to do with a security stop and another something about a bridge) and it ended up taking something like 7 hours to get back to Paris (on the TGV which should have taken four and a half to five hours) and it was quite late by the time we finally got back to Gif.

Sunday, 4-Sep-2005 00:00 Email | Share | | Bookmark

The Underground
Buckingham Palace
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We were in London for a day and a half, these are from our touring of the tourist spots.

Wednesday, 28-Apr-2004 00:00 Email | Share | | Bookmark
New York

James in the airport before I left
looking up the street from Times Square
in Times Square (the cup was steaming)
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Here are some of the few pictures I took in New York. I didn't have time to take that many; some of these are from the day we got there and couldn't check into our hotel until 4:00 (we got to the hotel to drop off our luggage at like 10:30) so we were walking around, there are also a couple of me and Matt from the committee, and the rest are from the day I went and walked around Central Park. That was cool (walking around Central Park) it was a beautiful day and I walked a long way, all the way up to the Metropolitan and the Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis reservoir (about half way up the park from where we were, probably about four or five miles round trip)

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