« first day (2779 days earlier)   

12:11 AM
Funny you should mention meringues. I was just thinking I was due to make macarons.
Hi @Catija, are you here?
 
@Jolenealaska Yep.
 
12:35 AM
I hear congrats are in order! But other than that, do you have an ATK subscription?
 
Yep :)
You need a recipe?
 
(and yup :) Yea on both counts. Yep, this one:
 
That's a great recipe. :)
 
You'd think they would give me one freebie year, considering how much free publicity I give them :)
 
You want me to email it to you?
Got it.
 
12:39 AM
it's a tough one to remember :)
 
Yeah. They make great mini-loaves, too.
 
Yes!
I've done a couple of Q&As with that recipe.
One just got bumped to the front page.
 
Nice.
 
That's one of the most rewarding but very inexpensive recipes I've ever done.
 
1:01 AM
I got the recipe. Thank you!
 
Welcome :D
 
 
16 hours later…
4:43 PM
> NO! That's Not true! I am in my 60's and when I was much younger, the ground beef DID NOT have the scum that appears at the top an side of a ground beef patty.
I wonder if there could be any truth to that at all, maybe coarser grind that didn't release as much protein?
 
5:12 PM
@Cascabel I don't think there is anything to that. I get that scum even when I grind my own beef and wild game. I have ground and processed meats at all levels of coarseness.
Yay! Ciabatta is rising. I so missed bread! :D
 
5:36 PM
On Monday, I will be sleeping in a hotel called "The Dude".
 
does it abide?
 
Their marketing department did their job - I must say that the name was one of the reasons I chose it from about 15 hotels which offered very similar performance on my main criteria (like distance from the place where my meeting takes place)
It s a bit hipster, but hopefully in a way I would like - for example, the hardwood floors and the iron beds are a plus for me.
how are you @Cascabel?
 
When Alaska had a female governor, her husband was referred to (even by the local news stations) as the first dude.
 
@rumtscho I'm good, you?
 
@Cascabel Also mostly good. The work partners in our new project... well, let's say that I am actively learning a lot of communication strategies there.
But it is spring outside, which automatically lifts my mood by a few notches, so the overall level is good.
The magnolias are blossoming, that's my favorite week.
@Jolenealaska There are probably worst parts of being married to a politician than that. And worst parts of being married to Sarah Palin, I guess.
 
5:50 PM
Oh yes :)
 
OK, now I am slightly insulted in my national pride.
There is a payment law for employees of the German federal government who are travelling
one of its rules is that the traveller gets a daily allowance for each day spent travelling
and there is a table of how much the traveller gets per day depending on destination country.
Of all the countries in the world, Bulgaria gets the second cheapest allowance, 18 Euros per day. Only Moldavia is cheaper with 15 Euros.
There are tons of countries on that list which I think have a lower living standard than Bulgaria. African countries, for example.
Interestingly, the highest sum is paid for Angola, 64 Euros per day. That's more than for Norway or Liechtenstein.
Ah, OK, I think I got it
they are probably going of Mercer rankings
And this text (in German) says that the rankings are specifically made with sending employees to foreign countries in mind: finanzmarktwelt.de/…
so for poor countries with low security standards and possibly high racism, they assume that professional travellers have to be sent to rich people ghettos or apartment complexes with heavy security
and these are rare and expensive, which makes the average cost of sending people there very high.
That's how Luanda gets to be on top of the list.
Sofia gets the lowest ranking for EU capitals, because the cost of living there is really the lowest from all EU.
But also it is a place where foreigners are very safe (I would suppose even much safer than in some inner cities in the USA) so they can live in an average hotel.
Hey, I never knew about the Good country index. Looks interesting!
 
 
2 hours later…
7:42 PM
USA #25. No surprise there.
 
7:54 PM
My ciabatta is out of the oven. Yay bread!
Travis just woke up. He's puzzled that bread has appeared.
 
8:45 PM
@rumtscho Apparently you should try traveling for Uncle Sam instead, where it'd be $150–280... aoprals.state.gov/web920/… :-P
aoprals.state.gov/web920/… (I'm guessing Moldova and Moldavia are the same place, but am feeling to lazy to ask Google)
 
8:56 PM
@Jolenealaska A puzzled Travis appears.
@derobert Hmm, I wouldn't mind being paid at these rates. Also, if I work for the USA but do it in Germany, I would be getting 347 USD per day just because.
 
@rumtscho Well, that's the maximum allowable reimbursement. You have to give Uncle Sam receipts...
 
Oh :( The money I get from the German state is issued without receipts.
But it is meant for meals. This means that as soon as somebody provides me with a meal, I get less money.
 
Ah, OK, that doesn't include lodging then, I guess? That's separate?
That'd be comparable the the M&IE part of the US per diem rates
 
And usually there are meals while travelling - in Germany, booking a hotel at the business rate always includes breakfast, and most daylong meetings include lunch.
Yes, lodging is separate, and reimbursed with a receipt.
 
So if you were traveling to Bulgaria on Uncle Sam's dime, you'd be able to request reimbursements for meals & incidentals of $70–100/day in Bulgaria ... which I'm guessing means you'd get to eat some pretty nice meals!
 
9:02 PM
Transportation expenses (like a bus ticket, or sometimes taxi, if you can provide a reason), conference fees, etc. need a receipt. The "allowance" is a flat rate, but gets reduced for each meal you get for free/included, and is less if you travel partial days.
@derobert ah yes, that's for certain. I think that an above average restaurant can cost about 20 USD per person.
 
Yeah, I'm sure there are all sorts of fine print on the US ones — never actually worked or traveled for the Federal government, so I don't know them all.
 
if one does not do things like order a whole bottle of terroir wine, or get the caviar appetizer
and have you travelled for your private employer? Do they allow you a comfortable experience?
 
@rumtscho I haven't had to travel for an employer much at all. Only time I've done it, they arranged everything — and it was a reasonable hotel.
 
Sounds good.
Do you actually still work for that company where you are doing the online questionnaire system? I haven't seen you in some time.
 
Yep, still work for them. Though last time I traveled for work was before I worked here — haven't had any reason to travel for this company.
 
9:13 PM
And how are you doing in general, not in respect to business travel? What is occupying you these days?
 
shrug pretty much the same as always, I think. Just been wasting idle time on unix.se instead of here...
 
I'm sure unix.se sees your time as not wasted!
 
Mostly. They're surprisingly on-topic compared to here :-P
 
That fits with my stereotypes of what I'd expect of the average Unix user in comparison to the average cook.
 
LOL I understand now why Travis was puzzled. This bread is different from the last loaf I made.
You can make differently shaped breads? Wow.
 
9:25 PM
At least you are introducing the novel concepts one at a time
 
He came home the other day with a cinnamon roll he had purchased. He lamented that it needed more icing. So I made him more.
"How did you DO that?"
magic
 
The ironic thing is, if you post a video of yourself baking and he posts a video of himself carving, guess who will get more comments of "wow you are doing magic there"
 
The carving amazes me. Hold on, I'll snap a picture.
 
9:43 PM
That's about 2 hours of work.
He did the Stark thing for me.
The walruses are a special order for someone he met a few days ago.
The walruses are walrus ivory. That's what is making my apartment smell like a dental office.
 
9:59 PM
I mentioned that I'd like a Stark sigil carving. He did that carving free-hand in like 30 minutes.
 
10:16 PM
@Jolenealaska it's beautiful.
 
 
1 hour later…
11:37 PM
I have met Travis's dad twice now. What an interesting guy. In Chickaloon, I knew the tribal chief. Now I know an Inupiaq village elder.
We got into a long discussion regarding statehood and its effect on natives.
His verdict? Yay USA.
 

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