Sent: Monday, June 16, 2008 7:44 AM

Subject: Alex Flachsbart’s Ramsey Great Ideas Tour
Well, Id offer a more complete update if I could reliably find the “Y” key on this nonsensical German keyboard John Harris has furnished me with for the afternoon. Or if I could even begin to locate the apostrophe key. Oh well.

In any case, I´m (there, found it!) safe and sound in Vienna under the wise and illustrious tutelage of the one and only John Harris. I can now completely understand why this man´s a legend. I also now know why no one even bothered to try to totally describe him. You simply can´t. Oh and tell everyone he sends his regards – “naturally,” of course.

I´ll send a more thorough note later (the apartment he´s got me at, while it´s IN a palatial estate, isn´t quite the palatial estate that most of my fellow GITers are used to, and as a result lacks internet), but for now, tell the world I´m alive and that I´ll have more for you shortly!




Sent: Tuesday, June 17, 2008 12:40 PM
Subject: Alex Flachsbart’s Ramsey Great Ideas Tour

Afternoon, Ramsey Family!

The long awaited Vienna Update has finally arrived, and none too soon– after four lovely hours in days in the city that John Harris built, I´m off next to Budapest, where access to the Internet will more than likely be limited; from there I´m off to Croatia, where access to the Internet will DEFINITELY be limited. So if you don´t hear from me again for a couple of weeks, don´t worry, with any luck, I´ll be otherwise occupied sunning myself on the beaches where Roman emperors once sunned themselves… I still bet it won´t stack up to Gulf Shore s, but only time can answer that question.

On to Vienna! I´ll do what I can to recap the past few days in the remaining ten minutes I´ve got at this internet cafe, but if I don´t finish now you´ll surely hear the rest at the dinner next year. I´m almost glad that John Harris didn´t get a chance to come to Tuscaloosa for this year´s dinner because being introduced to him here, in his element, was surely an experience I´ll never forget. Watching him deftly manouver the Jag in and out of city traffic while eating a sandwich with one hand and giving me a local tour with the other was impressive. Watching him smoke me biking through the Viennese countryside was downright crazy. I think I´d need about three emails of this length to do justice to my time here so I´ll wrap it up as my hour runs down by saying that it was three times the experience I thought it´d be and that between having dinner with an Austrian family, living in the basement of a palace, wandering around the housing projects, and getting mobed by local antique dealers at a flea market (all arranged or suggested by John), I´ve had the local experience of a lifetime. And I´ll be coming back for more in about two weeks. Already, I can´t wait.

Sorry this one isn´t quite as long and detailed as the one I sent previously, but I´ll do my best to send another update from Croatia.

Until then, I remain the ramblin´