Monday, March 30, 2009

Electricity in Sydney = Fail... Epic Fail

As I was hurriedly typing the minutes of a meeting into my computer (I try and do that on the same day as the meeting otherwise you can never remember what the scribble on your notepad translates to), we had a blackout.

You could hear groans from everyone on the floor as we all lost what we were working on! We hung around reception and tried to find out what was going on. As soon as we heard that the blackout had affected much of our part of the city, and it was 5pm anyway, we all abandoned ship and headed home. As we've never had a fire drill before, getting out the building proved to be an adventure - 15 flights of stairs later....

I'm glad I wasn't travelling by bus, however, because the traffic lights were also out (picture from Sydney Morning Herald website):


I found out this morning that the blackout was due to a power surge and over 100,000 people were affected. The Sydney Morning Herald reported that:

"Energy Australia said the blackout was caused by a fault in one of four major 132,000 volt cables that supply power to parts of the CBD, the inner-city and eastern suburbs."

Hello? Only four cables. For an entire CBD? How does that work?

The cherry on the top, however, was the decapitated rat left on the back doorstep by Kitty Smalls that same evening. Nice!

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Commando Kitty Smalls!

I came home the other day to this sight:

I think she'd been sitting under a car when a large drop of oil fell on her. It did make her look rather jungle commando kitteh though:


She got a good scrub down that evening, which she did not appreciate!

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Noosa

Noosa was very interesting. The main drag is Hastings Street, which like Double Bay or Mosman dumped in the tropics. It's OK if you like that kind of thing - it has some funky bars and lovely shops.

We were staying about 5 minutes drive away in Noosaville, on the Noosa River, which was much quieter but still had tonnes of fantastic restaurants and things to do. It really is ideal for a relaxing weekend and it's great for families.

Our resort had three swimming pools in a tropical setting, so we swam every day. I bit the bullet and bought a tankini (sob) on Hastings Street. It's very cute. I have decided I feel more comfortable without the little potbelly on disply. Sigh.

It was safer than swimming in the ocean which was polluted with oil from the striken Pacific Adventurer, caught in Cyclone Hamish. The surf at Coolum Beach, on the way to Noosa from the airport, was a rust-brown froth. On the way back to the airport, four days later, it was all clean with people swimming in the water. Great effort from the clean-up crew.

Noosa is a very strange mix of redneck, hippy and wealthy.

We drove up from the airport (in our hire car, a light blue Kia we called "Misty" which was the shitest car ever) and parked up for lunch. The car next to us had the bumper-sticker "Australia: Love it or Leave it". A nice, thinly veiled racist statement.

What does that mean anyway? You have to love that car driver's take on Australia or get out? You have to love every part of Australia or get out? In that case, the car driver's got to love the immigrants because they're part of Australia too. Moron.

Then, a few days later, I saw a woman get out of car, the back of her t-shirt riding up slightly to reveal a swastika tramp stamp! And I don't think it was the Hindi version either. Rednecks!

Having said that, just about everyone we came across was really nice and laid back. And the surrounding bushland was beautiful. We went on a couple of bush walks. One was on Noosa Headland where we followed a track to a beach. Unfortunately it was a nudist beach, something we didn't realise until we got there!

Why is it always middle aged men with fat bellies who are the nudists? Why no young chiseled gods? Ewwww. We continued walking to the next track!

On our last day in Queensland, we climbed to this lookout in the Noosa hinterland, which gave 360 degree views over the Sunshine Coast:
video

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Weekend Away

The Bloke and I are just back from a weekend away in Noosa. We went for a friend's wedding - my friend since year 10 in high school - and had a relaxing weekend away.

It was great to catch up with that particular group of girlfriends who I don't really see much of anymore. The bride lives in Queensland (soon to move to Sale in Victoria), another girlfriend lives in Sale, one is moving to London and one has two kids and lives an hour's drive away.

But, as we re-bonded over diner on the night before the wedding, it was as if we'd just seen each other the weekend before. The husbands looked slightly shell-shocked as we pretty much just talked non-stop!

I'll post more about the weekend away and the beautiful wedding later when I've uploaded the photos to the computer. I'm typing this on my new HP netbook, which I LOVE! The Bloke bought if for me the night before we flew up to Queensland as an early wedding anniversary present.

It's so small and light and very good looking:


It will be perfect for the long-haul flights.

I downloaded the first two episodes of "True Blood" to watch on the plane. I've heard good things about it and it's just being shown on pay TV in Australia.

What I didn't realise what that it contains a few very graphic sex scenes. I'm not a prude, but it's kind of embarrassing having that on your screen when you're surrounded by people on an aeroplane! Blush! Of course the Bloke was laughing about it all weekend and kept teasing me about my "porn"!

Monday, March 9, 2009

Bird Poo = Queezy


I'm fairly sure a bird pooed in my mouth on the cycle home tonight. ARG - A BIRD POOED IN MY MOUTH!

I was cycling along a busy, tree lined, four lane road at quite a pace (to avoid being side-swiped and mowed down by cars) and I felt this wet thing hit my lips. I assumed, because it had been raining, that it was a fat drop of rain falling from trees. But it didn't taste so good..... I immediately spat it out.

When I came to a halt, I wiped my mouth with the back of my glove and IT WAS WHITE.

There was a fairly virgorous rinsing of the mouth when I got home.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Blinder Than Yesterday

I went to the optometrist last week, resulting in two facts:
  • I am blinder than at my last checkup; and
  • It will cost me more money to be blinder.

For the past few years I had been seeing an optometrist in the city, however, after some poor service, I decided to see a local optometrist. It took over an hour to go through the various assessments, but I finally felt as though I'd finally had a thorough check-up. None of this 15 minute rush-job business that I experienced at the city optometrist.

She was extremely knowledgeable and carefully checked my eyes. For one thing, my eyesight has deteriorated and I am another -0.5 blinder in each eye. This makes my right eye -6.0 blind and my left eye -6.5 blind.

But the scary thing was when she said:

"your fortnightly contact lenses are causing irritation where they cling to your eyes"

then showed me some pictures of at what stage of irritation my eyes were. GAH! Ewwww. She had a chart of eye irritation photos ranging from clusters of little red bumps to science fiction red planet surface-style bumps. Erk!

Apparently my fortnightly contact lenses are too tight on my eyes, causing irritation, and over time protein build-up on the lenses causes further irritation.

So I'm trying out two types of daily disposable lenses and will report back to her next week.

The only thing is, they are four times the price of my fortnightly lenses at approximately $120 each eye for a 3 month supply. But what price can you put on eyeball health, right?

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Big Man, Small Bike

Image: Grosh.com
I'm thrilled to be cycling again, although you do see some strange cyclists on the roads.

Like the woman who I sometimes see cycling on a pastel green, fashionable bike. Her cycling outfit is often a dress with strappy sandals. She wears her helmet on the handlebars - I suppose it must mess with her hair otherwise. Silly moo.

The other day I was cycling behind this brick of a man. He was like a caricature of the circus strongman. His legs were like tree trunks and his torso a barrel of muscle. I marvelled at the strength of his bike - how on earth did it support him? I kept expecting the frame to buckle under his enormity.

Monday, March 2, 2009

"Back" in Business...

Or "back" to normality? Oh, so many back jokes, so little time!

I'm on the mend and did a full week pf work last week. I even cycled into work and "back" (see, I can't help myself!) on Friday.

Things are not 100% though. I'm still in pain and it's tough. I feel for people who have chronic pain, to not have that hope that the pain will go away.

On the positive side, it's been interesting to learn that only a few of my back muscles do the work for the whole torso. Come on you lazy abs etc, work damn it!

Even my walking is propelled by the hips. When my physio tried to correct my stride, I told her she was ruining my "signature walk". Aparently you're not supposed to sway your hips. Who would have thunk it?

I'm starting pilates this week at the physio. It's supposed to help strengthen your core torso muscles. I'm secretly hoping that it will get rid of my little pot-belly... preferably within two weeks before I fly up to Noosa for a friend's wedding.... Finger's crossed!