The Daily Parker

Politics, Weather, Photography, and the Dog

Back in the Loop office

Now that Cassie's poop no longer has Giardia cysts in it, she went back to day camp today, so that I could go to my downtown office for the first time in nearly two weeks. To celebrate, it looks like I'll get to walk home from her day care in a thunderstorm.

Before that happens, though:

Finally, the MLB's least-popular umpire, Ángel Hernández, has announced his retirement, to much rejoicing. The Post has a retrospective on his worst calls over the years.

When is bad butt not bad butt?

Cassie got a bad result from the lab yesterday: a mild giardia infection. It's a good-news, bad-news thing: The bad news, obviously, is that she can't go to day camp (meaning I can't spend a full day in my downtown office) for at least a week. The good news is that she's mostly asymptomatic, unlike the last guy. So we just went to the vet again, got another $110 bill for dewormer.

But at least she wasn't crated for three hours with her own diarrhea. Poor Parker.

In other good news, bad news stories today:

Actually, they're all bad-news stories. Apologies.

More Germany photos (and one that isn't Germany)

I went through the photos I took on my trip to Germany last week and put a couple of them through Lightroom.

Getting coffee in Viktualienmarkt:

A very practical car for city life in post-war Germany, the 1955 BMW Isetta:

The Trödelmarktinsel, Nürnberg:

A better edit of my earlier photo of the main gate at Dachau:

And finally, I had a really great view of the New York metro area on the flight home:

Easy connection in Charlotte

My flight from Munich landed at Charlotte about 40 minutes early, and I got through customs and back through TSA in 34 minutes. Sweet!

And now I'm watching the plane that will take me to Chicago pull into my gate. Sweet!

Really, I just want to hug my dog and get 10 hours of sleep tonight. I have a feeling one of those things will happen and the other won't.

Morgen!

The sky looks different this morning:

I'm about to head to Nuremberg, depending on the price of train tickets. They seem to vary quite a bit every time I check online. But on a day like this, I'm sure I can find something fun to do nearby.

Walk around the neighborhood

Finally recovered from jet lag, our hero takes a 6-kilometer walk along the Isar and through Glockenbachviertel:

As the sun set, it found a gap in the clouds which I hope means tomorrow it'll come out for a while. You can see a little bit of it here on the Paulaner Brewery:

(I didn't stop in; any Brews & Choos stops on this trip will come tomorrow, in Nuremburg.)

The Theresien-Gymnasium:

And back at Marienplatz just as twilight became night:

Now, off to find a beer.

Metra to dip toe into early-2000s technology

Before I even took off from Chicago on Wednesday morning, I snarked a bit on the widening gulf between US and European technology, particularly in public transport. I don't think Chicago's regional heavy-rail agency, Metra, heard me specifically, but it seems they have committed to introducing electric trains on one currently-Diesel route before the end of the decade:

Metra plans to buy battery-powered trains that could hit the rails as early as 2027 on the Rock Island line, potentially fast-tracking a move to greener and more frequent off-peak service.

The commuter rail agency’s board voted Wednesday to pay $154 million for eight two-car, zero-emission trains from Stadler U.S., of Salt Lake City, Utah.

The trains, unveiled by the Stadler U.S.’ Swiss parent company last year, are a significant departure from Metra’s well-known diesel locomotives and cars.

The Stadler trains have low-level boarding and ADA-compliant lifts. Each two-car powered train seats 112 people, with trailer cars seating about 46. The cars are connected by open gangways. Half of the trailer cars would include ADA-accessible bathrooms.

In its statement, Metra said the new trains could help achieve its vision of providing more frequent all-day service. The first sets are expected to be delivered in 2027 or 2028, Metra said.

So, the Rock Island line gets Saturday and Sunday electric trains only half a century after the all-electric S-Bahn opened here in Munich.

Which reminds me, on Tuesday coming home from work I discovered that the 13-year project to construct a single goddamn Metra station officially concluded with the opening of the inbound Leland Avenue ramp at Ravenswood, almost 7 months after the rest of the station opened:

But hey, the Metra Rock Island District will get eight two-car electric trainsets—made by a Swiss company—within the next four years.

Only forgot one important item

I carefully checked my bag yesterday morning before leaving my house. I almost forgot a power adapter, which one needs to charge one's phone, watch, and tablet. Unfortunately, the power adapter I brought converts EU outlets to UK. Fortunately, Munich is one of the most technologically advanced cities in the world, and I can simply buy a Type E/F adapter at an electronics store about 500 meters from my hotel.

It also helps that the German word for adapter is Adapter.

There's a bit of rain at the moment, so I'm collecting myself in my room (which was available when I arrived at 8am!) before heading out to buy ein Adapter.

I should have photos and more interesting things to say this evening. Of course, as it's 2am in Chicago and my body is very put out by me waking up from a 3-hour sleep just before midnight, I foresee an early night.