Friday, April 28, 2017

Dear reader from Reunion:

I would love to interview you and ask you about the cars there, the island's relationship with France, the pieces of MH370 that have washed up onshore, and the recent terrorist attack. If you are interested, please email me at milhousevanh at geemail. Merci!

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Eating the Globe: Albania

I bought this at the Eastern European market yesterday. The cashier suggested that I slice it and eat it with fried eggs and onions. So I made this for myself for dinner.

Here it is. It's a beef sausage (Albania is a Muslim country so no pork). It is hard like beef jerky. It is quite spicy (it really kicked in after I ate the meal) and quite sour.

My progress:
Countries tried so far:
Africa: Algeria, Egypt, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Madagascar, Morocco, Nigeria, Somalia, South Africa
Asia: Afghanistan, Armenia, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Burma, Cambodia, China, Georgia, India, Indonesia, Iran, Israel, Japan, Jordan, Kyrgyzstan, Laos, Lebanon, Malaysia, Maldives, Mongolia, Nepal, North Korea, Pakistan, Philippines, Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan, Thailand, Turkey, Vietnam, Yemen
Europe: Albania, Belgium, Bosnia, Bulgaria, Czechia, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Great Britain, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Lithuania, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Russia, Slovakia, Spain, Sweden
North America: Belize, Canada, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Jamaica, Mexico, Nicaragua, Trinidad & Tobago, USA
South America: Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Paraguay, Peru, Venezuela
Oceania: Australia, Fiji, Samoa, Tonga

Transporting an engine, shoelaces, and an Albanian sausage

I had an eventful and fun day yesterday.

Some of you may remember my Maserati engine coffee table. Well, years ago, it was deemed by my wife as a hazard, both physically and aesthetically. It was banished to the garage, where it sat, gathering dust and spider webs. Now, she wants it out completely to make room for massive boxes of Viva paper towels and 55 gallon drums of laundry detergent.

Fortunately, someone wants it. All I had to do was deliver it to them in San Francisco. But how? I'm about as handy as Donald Trump, so I researched extensively and asked the friend who originally helped me transport the engine from Santa Rosa to home. (Friend and truck no longer live in the area.) I even went to the local hardware store to get advice. I ended up buying a rope and deciding to put the engine in the TSX wagon.

I needed an extra set of hands to lift the engine so I recruited my friend (and friend of this blog) Chris. He brought some bungee cords. Bungee cords?!

I really wasn't sure if this was a good idea. My greatest fear was that we were going to get into a crash and the engine was going to fly forward and decapitate Chris. But as I closed the hatch, I said out loud and thought to myself-- Chris is an engineer; he knows what he's doing.

We delivered the engine to San Francisco without incident. The new owner was stoked. Mission accomplished. I took Chris out to lunch as a thank you.

It was over pan fried turnip cakes that I learned I was in the presence of an engineering rock star. I was lamenting about how I was five Economist issues behind in my reading when he told me that he was in last week's issue in an article about why shoelaces get untied. OMG!

After lunch, we walked across the street to an Eastern European market to check out its merchandise. I picked up this Albanian sausage, which I will count in my Eating the Globe series. The energetic Bosniak cashier recommended that I just fry up ten thin slices with some eggs for breakfast.

90 year Chilean police anniversary ad by Dodge

Here's to the most professional and honest police force in all of Latin America!

A post shared by Ramón Rivera Notario (@riveranotario) on

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Iraqi food!

I try to be home as much as possible now so eating out is a rare treat. I found this place in Sacramento on the way to Nevada City so I'm going to go there this weekend!

Sunday, April 23, 2017

Impressive truck driving video compilation

G550 4x4 Squared

For some reason, the local used luxury car dealer has a 4x4 Squared with less than 100 miles on it. I had never heard of it before running across this ad on Craigslist.

And here is a very honest take on the car, by the ICON guy:

Saturday, April 22, 2017

Ethiopian intersection without traffic signals

Beautiful and terrifying.

A walk with Cooper

This is the wettest season on record. Usually, by late April, this would all be yellow.