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Biped Report 2003

Latest Biped Report. See also our 2015, 2014, 2013, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008, 2007, 2006, 2005, 2004, 2002, 2001, 2000, 1999, and 1998 Biped Reports.

Dec 20 - Jan 03, 2004 - visited England ... read more ....

Dec 14 - Anne wanted to go to North Carolina for First Flight celebrations. In the end, we compromised on the Ford Museum.

Wright Flier
Ford Museum

Nov 30 - violated State Department regulations by visiting Cuba. The cheese is good. (No, this isn't a secret spy phrase).

Cuba Cheese
Cuba, NY

Nov 28 - Anne visited her sister's new house. There was a feline individual on patrol.

Investigating fibrous intruders
Samantha the Cat

Nov 27 - Thanksgiving. We stayed at Anne's parents new house in Newark Valley. In the morning, we walked along the bustling sidewalks to see the sights (two gas stations and a stoplight).

Anne's parent's house's front's aspect
Newark Valley house

Nov 26 - We hit the road, leaving behind flat Midwestern blandness and arriving at the bright lights and excitement of New York. To be more precise, Newark Valley, NY.

Oct 29 - Nov 2 - visited Toronto ... read more ...

Island Ferry

Oct 18 - visited by Russians (David and Vera) from Columbus, Ohio. We saw an exhibition of art from the Hermitage, St Petersburg, at the university art museum. Apparently, the good stuff had been left behind in Russia. We bought new wine glasses for their visit, which turned out to be bizarrely enormous.

Oct 17 - visited by one of Anne's college friends (Sally) from Rochester, NY. She drove down from relatives (confusingly) located in Rochester Hills, MI. The normal hour's drive was expanded by a factor of two by the usual Michigan Friday afternoon expressway time dilation. Hopefully it was worth it to see Ypsilanti's famous water tower and enjoy good food at the Fiesta Mexicana.

Oct 12 - took the ferry across Lake Erie to South Bass Island. We rented an electric golf cart. At one point, a parade of old cars went by, and fortunately the cart had a loud horn to join in the honking.

South Bass Island
West shore

Oct 1 - saw snow flurries through the window. It's going to be a long winter.

Sep 28 - visited a gem and jewelry show in Novi. We had free tickets, picked up at the geology show last week. A popular new item is the "Mystic Topaz", apparently a topaz coated with an oxide film for strong reflected colors. Sounds like mystic physics at work.

Sep 21 - visited a geology exhibition near Chelsea. Anne bought a couple of trilobites. They weren't alive, unfortunately, but fossilized.

Sep 19 - visited by Roger from Columbus. We had an especially delicious chicken (that's what it said on the wrapper), and drank beer from England and Kalamazoo, sometimes at the same time.

Sep 14 - After yesterday's hosing, the wasps were damp but undaunted. We bought an aerosol wasp killer from the local hardware store.

Sep 13 - Launched Operation "Moist Wasp". There was a wasp nest in a flower box on our deck, and we tried to encourage them to move by running a hose into the main hole.

Sep 10 - Anne returned from a conference in New York.

New York or Newark, who knows
Flight back

Aug 31 - Dim Sum buffet in Columbus. The owner expressed amazement that we were eating anything spicy.

Aug 30 - Lunch at the Old Bag of Nails, a favorite from a few years ago. Later, we headed to the Olde Bag of Beagles.

First Street, Grandview

Aug 29 - dinner at Chile Verde, Columbus, with some friends.

Aug 16 - Lunch with Anne's aunt and grandmother in Pittsburgh.

Frick museum cafe

Aug 14 - At 4:08 pm, the lights went out and stayed out. One of Martin's co-workers quickly suggested visiting a local ice-cream store, correctly predicting special bargain prices.

Swallowtail butterfly
A bug in our garden

Aug 8 - Anne visited a downtown store to replenish her wind-up toy collection. There was severe attrition during the visit of her niece and nephew.

July 25-29 - visited the Upper Peninsula ... read more ...

Miners Falls

July 19 - took the ferry to Kelleys Island, and stopped by Marblehead Lighthouse on the way home.


July 8 - Our e-mail program stopped working a few days ago. Anne figured out that our anti-virus software had decided that e-mail was too risky. It has a point. After some digging through menus, Anne persuaded the program to let us use e-mail again.

July 6 - Still in Columbus, Ohio. Lunch at Joe's Crab Shack, a national chain that also has a branch in Ann Arbor. It was the favorite restaurant of the children of some friends, because of life forms in a nearby pond. (We were disinclined to leave the shade of a canopy to establish what the life forms were). Arrived home later to find out the electric company had not managed to maintain continuous power to our house. Bags of frozen vegetables had thawed, then refrozen in bizarre shapes.

July 5 - Breakfast in Upper Arlington, Ohio, where we used to live. A friend is studying for the bar exam, a stressful time. Apparently, you spend 3 years in law school, and then have to learn it all over again in a mad rush. We asked "Which courses were fun?". There was a long silence. Lunch at le Chatelaine, and then over to German Village for a barbeque at the Olde Beaglery. (No, beagles were not on the menu). We had salmon and various side dishes, while being gazed at longingly by starving beagles.

July 4 - Headed down to Columbus, Ohio. Dinner at Chile Verde, an old favorite. Then headed down to the renovated arena district for a movie. Columbus has done a good job of renovating its downtown.

June 27 - Last week we were in New York state seeing relatives. This week, relatives from New York state visited us. All this traveling helps keep the economy going.

Sun room
Anne's sister and nephew

June 22 - Anne's parents are selling their house ....

Groton, NY
Groton, NY

June 21 - Lunch at a diner in Rochester, NY, then visited Tauganock, Tegannock, ... some waterfall near Ithaca, NY.

T. Falls, NY
Taughannock Falls, NY

June 14 - planted some more hardy perennials along the back of the garden. The labels said things like "Care: none needed. Drought resistant sun loving weedy thing, spreads vigorously."

June 8 - Finally finished repainting a downstairs bedroom, which we started in July, 2002. The excuses finally ran out. It was an uplifting feeling to roller over the last of the pink.

May 16-26 - visited England ... read more ...


May 13 - Sirens sounded for a tornado watch. You are supposed to go out on your deck and watch for twisters [correction - don't do this]. There weren't any twisters around.

Tornado Watch
No twisters

May 10 - visited Grand Rapids, Ohio, which was worried about being washed away.

Maumee River
Maumee River, Ohio

May 3 - Anne headed off to Chicago for a meeting.

April 19 - Anne bought herself a bicycle for recreational cycling (i.e. not road racing).

April 11 - Anne flew out to the metropolis of Elmira, NY to spend the weekend helping her parents put things in boxes.

April 5 - visited a van Gogh exhibition in scenic Toledo, Ohio. Was Martin the only person impressed by the long range orientational order of the artist's brushstrokes, reminiscent of computer simulations of a nematic liquid crystal? (Yes - probably).

Mar 30 - Set off from Groton, NY in heavy snow. Arrived home in evening sunshine about 9 hours later.

Groton, NY
Groton, NY

Mar 29 - Spent the day going through piles of stuff, trying to decide what to keep. For variety, visited a local dump.

Mar 28 - Lunch at Sorge's in Corning, NY. Arrived at Anne's parents about an hour later. Cleared out a closet of moldy books, a real workout for our immune systems. To make up for it, as a special treat, we visited Friendly's in Cortland for an ice cream.

Mar 27 - visiting Anne's parents to help them get ready to sell their house. Set out from Ann Arbor in the early evening, and stopped for the night in Erie. Earlier, we had surprised Laser by taking him to the kennel before getting out the dog scaring devices (suitcases).

Mar 13 - Another heavy snow fall this morning. Ann Arbor authorities sprang into action, implementing the famous Plan A (letting motorists clear the snow by driving over it).

Mar 5 - Saw another Shakespeare play, The Merry Wives of Windsor. We had very good seats, because we didn't have to pay for them. Windsor is a town across the Detroit River in Canada, so the dialog is not typical U.S. English. For example: "Hail, varmint, where goest thou, eh?". "Well met fellow. I'm aboot to partake of a donutte at Tim Hortons".

Mar 2 - Saw one of William Shakespeare's most obscure plays, Coriolis, at the Power Center. There was a lot about Romans, but disappointingly little about circular motion and accelerating frames of reference. The audience seemed to like it, coughing vigorously in approval throughout the performance.

Feb 26 - back to harsh Michigan reality, shoveling a snowbank out of our driveway. Fortunately, it's less than a mile to pick up the dog. Only saw one person drive into a tree on the way. (They were all right, but mildly annoyed). Ann Arbor keeps property taxes very low by not gritting most roads.

Feb 21 - visited Tucson, Arizona ... read more ...

Tucson, AZ

Feb 19 - Actually above freezing this afternoon. This melted some of the snow, and helped form ice patches everywhere when it froze again.

Feb 15 - Cloudy and freezing again.

Feb 14 - Anne ran the car through the carwash. Unfortunately, there was an ice patch at the far end, and the car wouldn't move off it. Other cars were on their way through. Horns sounded. Doom seemed imminent. Fortunately, a car wash employee was able to push the car clear before others where disgorged from the machine.

January 26 - We enjoyed yesterday's simulated warm weather experience, so headed out to the cactus room and tropical room at Hidden Lake Gardens. We added a tropical room to our imaginary dream house, with cocoa plants and a large palm tree.

January 25 - We visited the Cactus House at the local botanical garden. It was 80 F, about 70 F warmer than outside. You could say it was 8 times as warm indoors, if only to annoy scientists, pedants, and other potentially annoying people. Had lunch at Zingermans, a nationally known deli. We don't go there very often, and need to work on keeping the check down.

January 24 - Heard a rumor the temperature was going to rise above freezing some time next week, possibly for a few minutes. Time to celebrate spring. People in California just don't appreciate warm sunshine like Midwesterners.

January 19 - Visited Ypsilanti for Vietnamese food at the Dalat, followed by a comedy play called "The Nerd" at a theater across the road.

January 12 - Saw a musical at a local theater.

January 11 - visited a Degas exhibition at the Detroit Institute of the Arts. We thought a good degassing would help with residual stomach flu symptoms.

January 4, 2003 - visited the Automotive Hall of Fame in Dearborn. The museum was so lame we nearly started limping. Anne was forced to walk round twice, in case we had missed an interesting part the first time. (No). At least we had an excellent lunch at La Shish nearby.

Ithaca, NY
Buttermilk Falls (from December 2002)

Latest Biped Report. See also our 2015, 2014, 2013, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008, 2007, 2006, 2005, 2004, 2002, 2001, 2000, 1999, and 1998 Biped Reports.

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