Day 15:Year 15 (2002)

I have the utmost respect for bloggers now. Keeping pace with posting everyday is demanding! Hard to believe that we are already in week three of this foodie journey. Today, we took a side trip to Bilbao to see the Guggenheim Museum. Bilbao is about one hour west of San Sebastian.

The toll roads here quietly suck about 15 to 20 euros out of your pocket on every round trip. Beautiful pavement and clean freeways are your prize. At least the pothole repairs are minimal.

Year 15 was also a special year, as it was our 15th anniversary that had us going to Paris and the Burgundy region to celebrate and ironically where the wine bug got further enhanced.

The splendor of Frank Geary
The splendor of Frank Geary

The Guggenheim did not disappoint. The art showing for this period was Art and Space - a look into dimensions of space (in relation to your surroundings). The primary feature was the Belgian poet and artist Henri Michaux (1899-1984), who created his work on various forms of drugs between the 20’s - 80’s. If interested:

The most interesting pieces to us were the Andy Warhol, 150 multi-colored Marilyn’s (Monroe) piece (screen grab from website images), the blown apart and suspended from the ceiling original VW from Mexico (screen grab from website site below), by Mexican artist - Damián Ortega and the permanent display entitled The Matter of Time, by Richard Serra. A massive sculpture of weathering forms of steel. (screen grab from website site below). [Note: pictures were prohibited in the museum].–Deb liked the exterior Art Exhibits best…Tulips, Fog, Flowering Dog.

Amazing Living Dog greets you at Guggenheim. The wind blows the flowers making it look like moving fur on the dog.
Amazing Living Dog greets you at Guggenheim. The wind blows the flowers making it look like moving fur on the dog.
Fifthteenth Year Reflections

Deb has masterminded this trip to coincide exactly to the day/year alignment or our 30 year adventure. Amazing planning and helps me to stay on track! Thinking back on '02 brought back some fond memories. It was our first trip to Mt. Bachelor in Oregon. The kids real first ski school experience. To be honest…it was miserable weather…raining…

The girls were learning both snowboard and skiing to see what they liked best. It was raining. They did not want to be there. We continued to encourage them to keep trying. Bad parents! But, hey, they learned to become skiers/snowboarders that year. So, mission accomplished.

That year also saw us going to Paris and Burgundy with our friends Rod and Stacy to celebrate our 15th anniversary. Our first extended foodie road trip. We started in Paris. I remember distinctly having to buy new shoes to keep up with Deb. Shopping miles took on new meaning. I also remember watching MTV in french…which was interesting.

We drove from Paris down through Provence, amazing sites and tons of lavender everywhere. We stayed at Alain Ducasse’s LA BASTIDE DE MOUSTIERS - an inn situated at the heart of the Alpes de Haute Provence region. Beautiful country and even better food.

Deb got up with the chefs as they went to the garden to pick the days vegetables. She was a giddy kid, watching and taking pictures. She hung in the kitchen while they prepared the days catch. Ironically the sous’ chef was from San Francisco. She was here to learn from one of the masters.

I will never forget our Foie gras experience. You couldn’t pay me to eat any kind of liver (childhood issue). But, that was overcome with one of the best ever dishes…that changed my palette forever.

We could write forever about that trip, but for sake of brevity - there is one other story to share-The rental car. We had a brand new BMW 5 series (our only option). And, well, it was a rather large car for cities with small roadways. Especially dealing with the walled in city of St. Paul and trying to park the car with no turning radius. Let alone navigate walls that would clip off mirrors. First minor dent.

Then there was the parking garage in Nice. I had trouble understanding why the car would not go forward after a gunning it a bit more. Only to discover the large cement post…that we could not see. Second minor dent.

So, now clearly panicked that we dented a brand new BMW, we stopped to at a car service/car wash to find some rubbing compound to help smooth over the dents. And, of course everything is in French…so what we thought was compound rub - wasn’t. And, a bit of paint removed later…we decided mud on the marks was a better way to go. So we patched the scratches the old fashioned way - camouflage. Who could possibly know?

The next morning, we had an early am flight. We dropped off the car at the airport - no one was at the car rental service, so we left the car and the keys and jumped on the bus and headed to our flight. We waited for months to be charged on our bill for our handiwork…but it never came. We were spared, less our guilt and now a funny memory.

Dinner in San Sebastian
Our dining partner throughout the meal.  Ever so attentive.
Our dining partner throughout the meal. Ever so attentive.