Tuesday, February 28, 2006

2 sleeps to go...

... until my flying visit to New Zealand. I will be there for just 3 whole days - and that includes driving for 7 hours. So I will spend more time travelling than anything else - sigh. But I just couldn't take more time off work, what with it being only the second week of term.

The event is a dear friend's wedding, and the bonus is that I get to see two of my sisters and my parents (and my sister's bump, for the first time). And I get to drink as much as I like at the wedding, because the Editter can be the sober driver!

I think I'm organised:
  • wedding outfit - check
  • wedding present - check
  • present for friend's one-year-old - check
  • present for nephew who's turning 12 - check
  • present for niece who's turning 5 - check
  • Bill Bryson's A Short History of Nearly Everything to lend to my Dad - check
  • Bryan Sykes' The Seven Daughters of Eve to return to the Editter - check
  • wine made by my university - check
  • passport - check
Haven't done any of that packing malarky yet, that can wait until the last minute.


Saturday, February 25, 2006

Brokeback Mountain

Practically every review I've read of Brokeback Mountain says how much it haunts. People can't stop thinking about it days later.

Well, the movie finally made it to Australia and I went and saw it last night. OMG. And that's not just for Jake Gyllenhaal without his shirt on. We had to go for a coffee afterwards just to talk about the movie. When I got home I spent ages on IMDB and the Brokeback Mountain website.

Run, don't walk, to see this movie.

The only thing that bugged me was there was a little girl who had curly ringlets when she was about 3, then when she was 6 her hair was dead straight.


Friday, February 24, 2006

It's raining!!!

It hasn't rained for so long, this is a bit exciting. I just checked, and today we had a whole 6mm of rain! Woohoo.

It's particularly good because I keep on forgetting to water my lawn, and it's as dry as a very dry thing.

It also means the temperature has finally dropped, the high today was only 27.5C!

See, Regional Australia does get exciting sometimes.


tick tock tick tock

Remember those clock keys? They arrived today. How excitement.

Just unwrapping them was an adventure, he'd used that much tape.

I tried the first one in the clock. The first key was TOO BIG.

I tried the second one in the clock. The second key was too small.

Finally I tried the last one in the clock. The third key was just right!

So I wound, and I wound, and I wound, and I wound, and I wound. I set the time (it was 6.48pm). I set the pendulum going. The clock started ticking. And tocking. Tick tock. Tick tock.

Twelve minutes later I got a hell of a fright when the clock chimed seven times.


Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Is it inhumane if it's a cockroach?

Most spiders and bugs I can co-exist with. I ignore them and they go away. I feel guilty when I accidently vacuum up a spider (although I haven't vacuumed in a while, so the spiders are safe for now).

Last night though, there was a cockroach in my kitchen. There was nowhere for it to hide. It kind of ran back and forward on the kitchen bench for a while. I reached over and flicked the on switch on the kettle. The kettle boiled. I poured boiling water on the cockroach and it ran away for about one millisecond and then rolled onto its back and curled up. I was pretty paranoid that it was just playing dead, cos you know these things (and Ding Dongs) will survive a nuclear war. But no, it seems to have worked.

Not quite as horrible as the time in Colombia when we tipped the toaster upside down and about seven dead cockroaches fell out...


Saturday, February 18, 2006

This little piggie went to market

I finally got around to checking out the Sunday Community Market this morning. It was pretty much just like the Ashby Weekend Market in Berkeley, but about 1/4 the size. And probably pretty much like weekend markets anywhere, I guess. Who buys all this crap? Who are these people who buy broken tools and paperbacks missing the cover and chipped crockery? Mercifully I didn't spot any stalls with handknitted toys and teapot cosies, which I was fully expecting. I bought some plums and capsicums and a watch.

In other weekend happenings, I canoed for 3 hours on the Murray River yesterday. Lots of fun, especially as it was someone else's canoe that got snagged and capsized - twice. In fact, the occupants of that canoe were so freaked out after the second time that they opted to wait on an island for a jetski to come and rescue them.

And totally unrelated to anything, I give you Bee Dogs.


Wednesday, February 15, 2006


The other day was my blog's birthday. It seems quite common that around this point in time, bloggers go "meh". And go out with a bang, or announce they're over it, but then come sneaking back, or fizzle out but then come back with a new blog.

I don't plan on doing any of that. It's just that most of what I can think of to say is work related, and I'm not going there on my blog. Except to mention that my last week of work has involved archery, falling out of a canoe, high ropes, earning geek-cred with my first years (that one involves Monty Python, Terry Pratchett, Red Dwarf, and not being a morning person) and a nerve-wracking but in the end quite successful seminar presentation.


Monday, February 06, 2006

A Boy Named Sue

I was a little disappointed that the song A Boy Named Sue didn't feature in Walk the Line. Don't get me wrong, I really enjoyed Walk the Line. However, A Boy Named Sue is probably the only song I could have correctly identified as a Johnny Cash song before seeing the movie. I have strong associations with the song A Boy Named Sue.

First of all, we learned it at school. I think it was in English class. Bearing in mind that I studied English as a third language in Belgium. And yes, English actually is my first language. I thought it was a great song. The other songs I think I remember learning in English class, although they may be fake or implanted memories for all I know, are Thank God I'm a Country Boy, Russians and Good Night Saigon. Interesting taste in music, that teacher.

Then there was that time when I was a student and my boyfriend's band ThünderMönkey were playing their final gig. All the fans turned out to hear such classics as Hooters from Hell and Hot Knives on the Kitchen Stove. Instead they sang Johnny Cash covers, and Johnny Cash covers only. I'm pretty sure they must have sung A Boy Named Sue.

Finally there was that night, just last year actually, when I decided to sing shout A Boy Named Sue as my karaoke choice at a party. Twice. They loved it, honest.


Saturday, February 04, 2006

Look what I did!

I made sushi for the first time ever. I'm quite impressed with myself. In hindsight I think the carrot was a mistake - should it have been cooked perhaps? - but the smoked salmon, cucumber and avocado were delicious. I would rather have used raw sushi fish - salmon or tuna - but raw sushi grade fish 3 1/2 hours from the ocean? I don't think so. I was a little disappointed with the pickled ginger I bought - far too sweet.

In other news, today I successfully bid on these on Ebay. I can't believe I got them for only $325.

Just kidding. $15. You see, I have this fanastic clock on the wall in my living room (third photo in my last post). I inherited it from my aunt and uncle, and we're pretty sure that there was a key with it when it left Oamaru, but since then it's been to Napier, Perth, Berkeley and Regional Australia, and this is the first time I've actually tried to get it working. Only to discover that it needs winding. And that I have no key.

I have no idea what size key it needs, but I think these are the right kind, so hopefully one of them will work. And the others I was thinking I can turn into rather interesting pendants for necklaces.


Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Houses I have lived in #326

I've been thinking I might buy a house here. Last night I flicked through The Australian Home Buyer's Guide (yep, the apostrophe really is there, it's a guide for one single buyer) and decided that unless I'm going to live here for at least 5 years it's probably not worth it. And I don't really plan on living here for that long, although you never know. Although it's very tempting to buy a house just to get the $7000 first home buyer's grant. And if I find an amazing little cottage with river views and swimming pool, within my price range, then I guess I would consider buying it...

In the meantime, the little house I'm renting is actually pretty cool. Really the only things wrong with it are that there is no off-street parking and no bathtub. And the lease agreement says no pets, but I might see if they'll let me have a cat anyway. Or maybe I'll just get one and then hide it when the next inspection happens.

Anyway, all this is leading up to some photos of my current abode. So without further ado:

This is the pathway to my house. It's a bit of a jungle. But at least it's nice and green when so much else around here is yellow and brown from lack of rain.

The front door is on the right of the living room.

Or on the left of the living room, depending on which way you are facing.

I love my kitchen. This is a good thing.

My bed is never made. I guess I just pulled up the cover for this photo. Although these days, with night time temperatures barely dipping below 30C, the cover is now lying on the floor at the foot of the bed. I really like the bed I bought, but it has given me quite a few bruises. I'm such a klutz that I keep on walking into / whacking body parts on the foot of the bedstand.

This is in the corner of my bedroom. It is the fuse box. But I've disguised it as montage of an eskimo kayaker hunting a giant rabbit.

And this the back of my house. You might be able to spot the tv antenna propped against the fence. This would explain why I have crappy tv reception.

There are other rooms in the house - a toilet room, a bathroom and a spare room - but they don't contain anything all that exciting.

If I'm going to stay then I should really do something about the garden. But if I'm going to move in a couple of months then why bother. Decisions, decisions.