29 April, 2011

Domesticity, Environmental Rant, Footy and a Wedding!

Last night, I needed to get stuck into the study room; it had become somewhat of a dumping ground. BUT, more importantly, it has files that I needed in order to do the last two years of L's tax! Her last year working and the last year of the investment property she had. I was also throwing out and clearing the amount of PAPER that has amounted! I just find it incredible that in today's environmental/sustainability world, we can not move to electronic statements and the like, especially from financial institutions and from Share Companies! But anyway, there's my rant for the day...

Today is going to be a busy one, and I am hoping that the bank will have my credit cards ready, if not, then I will be moving to another institution as there is no reason as to why they should not be at the Branch for collection... Time will tell!

Tonight is also footy night, with the Swans v Carlton, to be played at the SCG! I've only been to a single game at the SCG, mainly been to the ANZ Stadium, so I am looking forward to it. However, I am still waiting for my membership card to arrive so as I can GET IN! I am sensing that a call to the office, that assured me it would arrive in time. It means though, that I now have to leave work, drive home only to drive (or train) back into the city to go to the footy and then head back out home AGAIN!!!

I was hoping for some clearing, dry sunny weather over today and tomorrow, as the lawns really do need to be mown. Perhaps, as it is a busy weekend with footy tonight, a 101st (21st + 80th) party on Saturday night, that I might be able to get it done on Sunday afternoon... Time will tell! Not tio mention, though, that I am entertaining a friend who is up from Melbourne for the week, and he's bought the weather as it is nice and clear down there (so I was told yesterday it was 22c and scattered cloud)!!

Also, rumour has it there's a little wedding on tonight, my invite must have been with my Credit Cards; lost in the mail... What are you doing for the wedding, watching, or wide berth?

Hoo roo for now... ------

28 April, 2011

Thursday Thirteen #14 - Moody

Thursday 13
  1. Lately, I have been increasingly... moody! I have no reason and I've been finding myself either wanting to simply stay at home, or be somewhat solitary...
  2. Small things are irritating me, like why is it raining, I need to mow the lawns...
  3. Whilst I am my own person, I am also having difficulties in trying to be in SO many places for SO many people... I'm tired all the time...
  4. WANT to go back to who/where I was mid last year OR earlier this year, but I am finding myself in a rut, and I don't know why...
  5. Where I use to be a 'Happy-go-lucky' kinda guy, I am now wanting things to either hurry up and end OR for them to start (so as they can end)...
  6. I am no longer finding pleasure in 'the little things', going out for a coffee is a task rather than an adventure...
  7. Housework is amounting, and I HAVE to get it done...
  8. I STILL need to do L's tax from 2008/09 and then 2009/10 for the investment property...
  9. I am even enjoying the late night shopping channel, blah...
  10. Whilst still wanting to 'escape' I do not want to be seen as 'running away'...
  11. I enjoy photography, but difficulty in finding the subject/composition of what I want to take...
  12. Subconsciously, I am not thinking the bigger picture is swamping me, when in fact, I should be planning and executing...
  13. I need to set goals, and follow through to reaching them... First up, FOOTY on Friday night!

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Hoo roo for now... ------

27 April, 2011

5 Day Easter Weekend, WOW!

Sydney RES

OK, so this is WHY I did not post over the last weekend... And apologies, its going to be a LONG post!

This Easter weekend, was set to be an extra LONG weekend, thanks to it also being ANZAC Day thrown in as well...

Good Friday, after a morning of procrastination, I headed down to the Royal Easter Show... Why did I procrastinate, well it was the first show since our last day there two days before L died in 2009. I had not thought I was being hesitant in going, but over dinner with my mate BF, where HE asked the question, I was (subconsciously)! But, anyways, here I was at the Show, and enjoying it a little... I travelled lightly this day, so not many photos for the day...

Ferris Wheel with sunset

Easter Saturday, was following on from a little stressful week in that my new iPhone had issues. When I had last plugged it in to synchronise with iTunes, both iTunes AND the iPhone wanted to do updates... not a problem here I thought, wrong, but as my computer was also having issues, that made it all into a much BIGGER problem! The laptop FROZE during the install of the new firmware upgrade which basically, stuffed my phone! I tried and tried and tried to search for a fix, but as try as I might, I could not find a resolution so it was off to the Apple Store to see if they can fix it. I was only there for a short period, with laptop in hand in case, and they pressed here and there and plugged it in and installed the new software and sync'd back... Everything re-instated... Ahhhh, how good is it to do regular back-ups, NOTHING lost! So it was now OFF to the show for me...

Friday night though, and here comes a funny story, I was given M's mother phone to call M when I got tot he Show. NOW, this phone, is a tiny little thing, weighs nothing and is very strange to me... When I got to the station, I left the car, got my camera bag out and headed to the train to the Olympic Park and onto the Show. I called M to say that I was in and met up with M and the crowd... When asked about M's mothers phone, I wished that the world would open up and swallow me as I had left it in my car back at the station near home! I had been in so much stress over the lead up to this, and this was no better... Oh well, it was laughed off and we started our walk around...

Easter Sunday I was at a family lunch over at C&P's place with the boys. She'd prepared a feast, as with her MIL... A great day was had... I headed home, VERY FULL, via A&S as they were unable to be there due to other family commitments and to see M&W for Easter.

Easter Monday, was ANZAC Day... Lest We Forget...

They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old; Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn. At the going down of the sun and in the morning We will remember them.

The Ode comes from For the Fallen, a poem by the English poet and writer Laurence Binyon and was published in London in The Winnowing Fan: Poems of the Great War in 1914. This verse, which became the Ode for the Returned and Services League, has been used in association with commemoration services in Australia since 1921.

Tuesday, which was really the Easter Monday day in recognition, it was back to the Show. I still wanted to see some stuff there I had not already seen. the rain over most of the weekend, had taken its toll on the main Arena, but as per every other year it rains, it will be alright in a few weeks time... It was a cooler day, not cold, and I managed to catch up with A&S, with M&W! We sat in the Members Stand for a while and had a couple of beers... OK, maybe a few! After watching the Polocross, it was time for them to leave and I went and caught up with B,K with S and M We had dinner at Arizona's, and I had another beer, before heading home and an early night before work...

Hoo roo for now...


20 April, 2011

WW No. 46 - London Lady Beetles

Lady Beetle Blue

Lady Beetles

Hoo roo for now...


17 April, 2011

London calling...

I arrived back, late, into London (Hotel at Heathrow) at around 11.30pm and after a very quick shower and freshen up, I headed down to the restaurant for some dinner...

The following day I was to be meeting up with KW, as it was to be a 'spotters day' here and there and a visit also to Kensington gardens thrown in. After meeting up with him at Victoria Coach Station, we headed back to the hotel to drop off his things before heading back into central London, and its City Airport, London City (LCY).

We caught the Tube to Tower Hill, and then a very short walk over to Tower gateway to get the DLR down to the airport. I just love the London Underground! Once at the airport, it was suggested we might like to go for a walk down to the end of the carpark, and thankfully, it was a great suggestion! There was an older chap there listening to Tower Frequency on his radio, so we introduced ourselves as spotters from Sydney and we had a lovely afternoon!




Approach into LCY


We dodged some light sprinkle showers here and there, but a great afternoon was had. We then headed to the Thames Barrier (world's second largest movable flood barrier) and is downstream of Central London. Its purpose is to prevent London from being flooded by exceptionally high tides and storm surges moving up from the sea. It was my first visit here, and the adjacent parkland's were great as well with the old canal's pruning of shrubs looking like waves!

Thames Barrier

Thames Barrier Park

After the Thames Barrier, into Chinatown, near Leicester Square/So Ho, where I knew of a great little (cheap) restaurant. After dinner we then headed down to the Tube and headed back to the hotel... Another great day!

Hoo roo for now...


16 April, 2011

A couple of days in Ghent...

Well, after a couple of days in London, I am now in Ghent, Belgium- but its BOUND to be busy! Busy indeed it was! But I wanted to leave the last post for Louise an extra couple of days...

I arrived in Belgium via the Eurostar via Brussels. The transfer time in Brussels was quite good, no rush! Once I arrived in Ghent, I thought it simplest to just get a cab to the hotel. WHAT I should have done was just got the tram at 1.20 Euro instead of the 8 Euro the cabbie charged! But it was the easiest!

Suburban Train, Brussels
ROWS of bikes at Brussels Station
Ghent Bike... racks?

Monday morning, it was an early start with breakfast, and as I had to get to the 'official' hotel to get the bus, I had a walk to do. but it wasn't far at all in fact, enjoyable!

Ghent Square
Ghent Shopping
Ghent Shopping
Ghent Canal

The day of presentations, went down very well, there really is some great stuff happening! After the technical side was done and dusted, that afternoon we were treated to a guided walk around the City of Ghent and an official welcoming at the City Hall by one of the Councillors. The history of the City is just amazing, as it is something we just don't have here in Sydney being just a tad over 200 years old! I will add THESE pics of the tour of the city in its own post later in the week...

On the Tuesday though, we had a little extra time to sleep in as we didn't need to be at the other hotel for the field day until 9.30. So I still left early, and got some early morning photos of Ghent along the way. We arrived at the research facility which was also a soccer (OK, in Europe its FOOTBALL) pitch. There was a lot of machinery there and a lot to see.

At the Ghent University's research facility, we were treated to a lot of different machinery applications, some I had not seen before, whilst some are changes in technology. There was just SO much to see it was great! And after the morning exhibition, we then headed across to K.A.A. Ghent's home ground.

ETS Trade Show
ETS Trade Show
ETS Trade Show
ETS Trade Show
ETS Trade Show
ETS Trade Show
ETS Trade Show
K.A.A. Ghent
K.A.A. Ghent
K.A.A. Ghent (Light Booms)
K.A.A. Ghent (Light Booms)

I had a great time in Ghent, and its certainly a city I would love to go back to...

Hoo roo for now...


15 April, 2011

Two years on - its still so unfair... Rembering Louise

7.36am, 15th April 2009, my world came crashing down around me...


At first, I thoght all was ok, and then I felt as though I didn't know what to do...


You're now at peace, with our angle babies...

Louise 14

2 years ago today, Missing you more than ever, and loving you still today


Hoo roo for now...


11 April, 2011

London to Ghent, via Brussels!

It was an early day today, only because I woke RATHER early (to early to own up too) but suffice to say, I am now very tired... I washed and made myself respectable before heading down for breakfast. After breakfast, I put my bag into the baggage holding room, and then headed over to London Heathrow for some spotting.

This mornings runway operations were 09L for arrivals and 09R for the occasional arrival but mainly for departures. I caught the bus, and when I arrived, although it was rather fresh and crisp, I found more than a few 'Bobbies' patrolling. Not wanting to get on the wrong side of anyone, I asked it would be OK if I was to spot for a little while, and explained where I was from, and it was accepted that if HE was to get a call, he would explain. So cool, it was all good to go! I was located on the departures entrance ramp on Terminal 5. Here are a couple of shots of the morning.




I then headed back to the hotel to collect my bag, then a bus to Hounslow Central to catch the Tube to St Pancras to get the train to Brussels Midi to catch the train to Ghent to catch a cab and here I am in my hotel... As I said, I am tired, so I will close off here, have a shower and get some rest! After all, tomorrow IS the conference!

Good night all!!!

Hoo roo for now...


10 April, 2011

A day in London... A Garden, a Park and a Palace

This morning, I woke sort of early, 6.30am, which sort of blew me away a little as I was tired, especially after a couple of beers with H&P last night!

So I got ready for the day, had breakfast and headed out... I was planning to head up to Stamford, but the plan changed a little so I headed for London instead. First stop was to get phone sorted a little so as I can do International calls/SMS. I headed down into Bayswater, which is where L & I stayed with R when we came over in 2004. It is a fantastic, vibrant, colourful, dynamic little strip with lots of restaurants (cheap) along the way. It is on the District/Circle line, and about 50m up the road is Queensway which is on the Central line! So its easily accessable.

After getting the phone fixed, I headed across into Hyde Park, Kensington, which is next door to Kensington Palace, home of Diana Princess of Wales before she was tragically killed in Paris. I walked around the Park a little, around the Round Lake which had some Swans and ducks swimming, before heading past some deck chairs and over to the Palace Gates. Unfortunately, the was some major renovations underway... I then headed around to the rear entrance, which is to get access into the Palace itself, and there was the most amazing little garden which was full of colour.

Hyde Park (Kensington Gardens)

Diana Princess Of Wales Memorial Walk

Round Lake

Chairs in Hyde Park

Kensington Palace Gates


Tulips Lobelia and Marigolds

Kensington Palace Gardens

Kensington Palace Gardens Pond

And yes, it is SPRING here and within 24 hours of arriving, I had to visit a local Boots (Bayswater) for some Hayfever relief!

I caught the Tube back up to Marble Arch, and went into a highly recomended department store ?? and it was SO chaotic, I think there was a sale going on! However, it was SO bad, I could not get to where I wanted, shorts, due to the sheer number pf people there, so I headed out to get some lunch and head back to the hotel for a recharge (phone batt nearly dead)....

So that was my day!

Hoo roo for now...