Tag-Archive for » Los Angeles «

Universal Studios

Universal globe at the entry (© 2010 Bernd Neeser)I think no L. A. trip will be complete without visiting the Universal Studios Hollywood. We did, together with Jake, Amber and Eric!

We spent most of the day with the awesome movie-related rides and shows like Terminator 2: 3D, the House of Horror,  the Revenge of the Mummy rollercoaster and the Jurassic Park Ride that ends with a 26 meter almost free fall. People who have been to an amusement park with me before know that I LOVE rollercoasters and especially free-fall towers ;-) Honestly, when we rode the rollercoaster – like Amber told me afterwards – I screamed like a little girl. Car from Jurassic Park (© 2010 Bernd Neeser)But what really scared me to death was The Simpsons Ride which is not even a real ride but just the most realistic 4D simulation I have ever seen. I promise, if you`re afraid of heights you`re gonna die on that ride!!!

At last we did the Studio Tour where you can see all the sets and stage props from world famous movies and TV series. We saw the wreckage of a crashed Boeing from War of the World, the Motel from Psycho, cars from Jurassic Park and the whole Wisteria Lane from Desperate Housewives! House in Wisteria Lane (Desperate Housewives) (© 2010 Bernd Neeser)There is another 4D simulation with the world largest 3D screens, special effects like exploding cars or an earthquake in the Metro and of course – my parents already told me before – the Great White from Stephen Spielberg`s Jaws.

- Bernd -

Things you can NOT do in Germany

Germany has one of the most restrictive weapons laws in the world. That`s good because as there is almost no legal way to get a real gun the risk for you to get shot down by criminals, angry neigbours, classmates or your own son/daughter is very low. On the other hand if you are a responsible person who is interested in firearms it can be a little bit annoying that you`re only offered the boring stuff like airguns, blank firing guns and the plastic airsoft crap. For everything else you need a licence, have to be a permanent member in a gun club and so on…but wait a minute, aren`t we in the USA these days!?

On a beautiful sunny day ;-) we went to The Los Angeles Gun Club which is much more a public shooting range than a club. They have a wide choice of rental guns including all popular pistols and revolvers and a lot of rifles. I decided to rent a .45 pistol (Beretta 92F) and a 7.62 mm Saiga rifle (based on the Kalashnikov assault rifle), got a short instruction and then…well, what do you think? PARTY TIME!!! :-)

After 50 shots with the pistol and 20 with the rifle I decided also to try a shotgun so they gave me a Remington 870, one of that cool pumpguns and YES, it is fun to pull back the stock for reloading and feel the strong recoil, although your shoulder starts hurting after some shots ;-)

But what about Isabell, did she also have fun with the guns? Have a look at the last gallery picture to find out!

- Bernd -

P.S. Dear brother, next time you have to come along!!

The Los Angeles Gun Club (© 2010 Bernd Neeser)
The Los Angeles Gun Club (© 2010 Bernd Neeser)
Rental guns – Colt, Glock, H&K…everything! (© 2010 Bernd Neeser)
Rental guns – Colt, Glock, H&K…everything! (© 2010 Bernd Neeser)
Just before the first shot (© 2010 Isabell Gernert)
Just before the first shot (© 2010 Isabell Gernert)
Loading the rifle with big 7.62 mm bullets (© 2010 Isabell Gernert)
Loading the rifle with big 7.62 mm bullets (© 2010 Isabell Gernert)
Firing the Saiga rifle (© 2010 Isabell Gernert)
Firing the Saiga rifle (© 2010 Isabell Gernert)
The Remington shotgun (© 2010 Isabell Gernert)
The Remington shotgun (© 2010 Isabell Gernert)
Good work – only two shots were not on target! (© 2010 Isabell Gernert)
Good work – only two shots were not on target! (© 2010 Isabell Gernert)
Isabell – Scared of the noise, holding the rifle professionally ;) (© 2010 Bernd Neeser)
Isabell – Scared of the noise, holding the rifle professionally ;) (© 2010 Bernd Neeser)
   


A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step…

… or in our case: with a single click!

After the decision was made thoughts were going crazy: HOW are we travelling? WHERE do we want to go?  WHEN are we going? HOW LONG are we going to travell? WHAT about the costs? …

So, one thing at the time:

HOW to travel: Okay, let’s face it – anything else than plane didn’t come to our mind. But instead of booking every single flight there is a great way to get around the world: Round-the-world tickets ! ;-) There are several united airlines like Star Alliance, OneWorld Alliance and SkyTeam that provide different around-the-world programs: Whereas SkyTeam only offers booking via telephone, OneWorld does have difficulties with crossing the Pacific. Star Alliance seemed to have it all:  Great deals, easy booking, friendly support – need I say more?!

WHERE to go: The world, of course! Ahw well, some countries have been on our list for a long time: Australia, USA (continent), USA (Hawaii), Thailand and the Fiji Islands – we have to visit these countries! And then one thing led to another: hey, if we’re on the Fiji Islands we could also go to New Zealand. And before we go to the States we could make a stop in Mexico. And why not go to Bali right before Thailand?! Can we do this within 29.000 miles – YES, we can!

So this is the actual route:  Frankfurt/Germany – Mexico City/Mexico – Los Angeles/USA – San Francisco/USA – Honolulu/USA -  Nadi/Fiji – Auckland/New Zealand – Sydney/Australia – Denpasar/Bali - Bangkok/Thailand – Frankfurt/Germany

WHEN to go: Due to a little trip with friends end of August we set the date of departure on September 10, 2010.

Travel planning with Poker chips (© 2010 Bernd Neeser)

HOW LONG are we travelling: According to the novel of Jules Verne our trip will take 80 days. (There is no bet going on, we know that it’s possible!). As easy as it was to set the 80 days the harder it was to choose how many days to spend in each country: First put a minimum of days on each destination, then spread the remaining ones and finally flipping one or two. (Hint: Poker chips are perfect for that!)

WHAT about the costs: Well, nothing’s for free. There are two aspects: The ticket and the trip itself.  As I said before, the ticket price depends on the miles, the stops and the countries you travel to – 29.000 miles are cheaper than 35.000 miles, the entrance fee for one country is more expensive than for another country…. I think we’ll have an extra post for this topic!

Okay, these were the first steps we took on our journey around the world… but be sure, there’ll be A LOT more! ;-)

- Isabell -