Friday, 29 February 2008

Definitely... maybe

From the archive list of this blog one might be led to believe that not a lot's been happening in my life this year. Well, not much worth writing about anyway. Such an assumption would be completely off target. Especially given that I'm rather partial to venting my less than nice experiences in this space... Oh well, I'm not going to rave and rant about possibly pointless and ridiculous gag orders that are in place about certain incidents and images etc. So let's just say a lot has happened, but I'm not going to be able to write about any of it.
notice anything missing?!
I'm finally back in Perth. Almost didn't expect to be, but am. Not an entirely bad thing. But the Trident's trip to the North Sea has been rudely hijacked by another boat, and we'll be back in the North West Shelf. That's right, Australia. Again :-<. So hopes of European escapades rest entirely on the quick materialisation of the Norwegian visa that has been applied for (I've been told). In the mean time, I'm planning to make a better effort at using my time here. (Read travel more around this country.) But plans are funny things. You make them, and then they backfire on you. The only good thing in the last 10 days on the boat was one boat trip that I went on. As is evident form the image above, I managed to do a pass ahead of the ship in the small boat. (It was easier, I was driving, so I made the call :P.) Of course, driving one handed and taking pictures with the other wasn't the ideal thing, but you'd be surprised how much easier that is in a boat that in a car :D.

For the rest, it was just a continuous nightmare of fantastic proportions. Uncertainty over crew change not the least of the demons. Finally we managed to sort things out so we could have the port call. There had been several times over the previous week when I'd told myself, "It couldn't possibly get worse than this." Each time I'd been proven wrong, but I think that first night in dock might just stand the test of time :|. Then in the morning things started clearing up so fast, the night seemed like a distant haze :).Took me three nights in hotels in Invercargill and Christchurch (this time the trip was a meagre 50 mins, as against the spectacular 7 days as on the prior occasion :-<) till I even got on my first flight out. And when I did finally land up in Perth the heat was quite a shock compared to the still frozen South Island. I think I spent most of the day and night trying to sleep off the effects of an altogether very strange trip. It's only just beginning to work...

Feeling: drained
Listening to: The Calling - Wherever you will go

Sunday, 24 February 2008

. . . - - - . . .

It's official. This is the second worst trip I have ever had. Yes, it tops even the last trip with those 18 days of back-deck work. And it's not even over yet :|. We're headed into Bluff again, this time on a sort of emergency port call. I couldn't be arsed to care really. Honestly past the point where things can be logically put in any kind of a sane perspective any more :-<.

Never thought I'd say this, but I'm about ready to get out of this part of the world :|.

Currently: too far gone
Listening to: Third Eye Blind - Burning man

Monday, 18 February 2008


And now what? :| Oh dear. So the deal is, we've been happily (I speak only for myself here, more or less) crawling up and down along the south-east coast of South Island for about 4 days now, getting battered by the infamous terrible weather of New Zealand that has finally shown itself worthy of its reputation. So thoroughly has it prevented any sort of activity on the boat that I'd started bringing my book on shift. As a result I've managed to race to the end in a relatively short time.--

Now this is when I headed off for breakfast, and when I was back, all hell had broken loose. But let's stick to the chronology of things, shall we?

My opinions on The Unwaba Revelations - the finale of Samit Basu's Game World Trilogy. He kinda let me down, just a little bit :-<. Don't get me wrong, I enjoyed most of the book immensely. But seriously, c'mon, what was that with Red dying, then not, then losing her mind(s), then turning into the Red Queen, then... oh well, let's not spoil it for people here. It's quite funny, really!

My biggest grouse actually, was the lack of proper action. The thing that had kept the first two books really fresh was the pace with which everything happened, and the fact that all the action was of a very personal nature! This one has megatons of conversations, and then as if to counterbalance this, there are lengthy and rather uninvolved narrations of extremely hectic battles. Although I must commend Basu for keeping the eventual outcome as confused as possible with the several (sometimes rather annoying) about turns in the story.

It's become a rather regular feature of concluding instalments these days, the propagation of this lingering sense of sadness alongside a healthy dose of hope for the future :|. And the ending bit was just plain soppy /:). Oh! OH!! Did no one notice that monumental bungle on page 331?!!! What were the proofreaders doing?!! Why on earth would Orro the ravian be doing stuff for the (non-existant) army of Zivran?!!! I agree, having more than one major character with a name starting with Zi.. might be a bit much, but still!

Oh well, I hope Basu does write more, but I also hope he doesn't involve these particular characters. I find myself rather attached to a significantly large number of them and would rather have their futures shaped and preserved in my own imagination and not rudely destroyed, or otherwise toyed with /:).

Right, and then, while I was wondering what I would do to entertain myself for the rest of the shift, the worst streamer disaster I have ever seen with my own eyes, happened. And thereafter proceeded to rapidly worsen to the point where, in the foreseeable future, any free time might prove very hard to come by indeed :-<.

Currently: pretty shook up!
Listening to: Massive Attack - Risingson

Friday, 15 February 2008

Red :(


I can't believe this happened!! And this soon too. That she's dead!!! I really loved her :(.

The rest of this book better be good X-(.

Currently: furious
Listening to: A Perfect Circle - Blue

Edit (16-02-08 02:03): And now she's not. Oh, for crying out loud!! :|

Tuesday, 12 February 2008


The sheer irreverence of it!!!!!! =))))))))

Oh god, I could die laughing :P. As I'd suspected, I hardly remembered anything from The Manticore's Secret. (Of course every little detail came flooding back to me as soon as I'd read it, adding to the overall effect, so to speak. :P) But the big deal is that I've just finished with it, and now. Finally, one shall get started with The Unwaba Revelations :D :D. :D :D. :D.

Oh and by the way, we won our last league match (foosball again) and somehow landed up with second spot in our half of the draw!!! >:)

Currently: sporting the widest stupid grin ever (for the above, and other sundry reasons :D)
Listening to: Alanis Morrisette - Thank you

Monday, 11 February 2008


It's been over ten days since we were last on the back deck :D. The last time I was on the boat and could say that was mid October! I guess I could stop feeling that involuntary shudder every morning, the pause and deep breath as I reach out towards the instrument room door.... Okay, so maybe I'm exaggerating just a little bit :).
But really, just an example of how tense things have been, we've had one emergency medical evacuation of a senior crew-member about to suffer a heart attack! (Well, he didn't, but he thought he was going to!) Thankfully, the person in question is doing fine, I'm told. And he's definitely not complaining about the prospect of happily spending the rest of the trip in the comfort of his home :).

For some time now, I've been getting this feeling that I've become a bit less of a nice person. (Not that I'm claiming I've been a particularly nice person all along, just relatively speaking.) I can't really put a finger on it, just a nagging suspicion. Probably a combination of factors... A little less care for neighbouring ears and their associated feelings. A little more direct output of immediate reactions, a little less by way of applied filters. Oh well, I'm on my way to blending right in :P.

Currently: indulging idle thoughts
Listening to: Coldplay - Square one

Friday, 8 February 2008

Good times

Life's been good this last week :). After a long long time things on-board seem to be running as they should. The disappointing thing is that sunrise has switched times alarmingly swiftly and is now well past 6 am. But seeing how the sky is almost a permanent envelope of dark clouds or fog, I guess I've not been missing much on most days.Then yesterday, pretty much to my extreme surprise, I got to go out in the small boat! Firstly these last few trips the weather's been too rough most of the time, and even when they have been out in the boat, I've been stuck in the instrument room. But this was (barring the personnel transfer last trip) my first time out driving the boat in these waters, and it was beginning to prove quite a handful, what with the steadily worsening weather, high seas and the freezing water! (I'm sure none of them will be reading this, but it was awesome fun shipping bucket loads of water into the boat, to the extreme annoyance of the rest of the crew >:). OMG! I'm turning into Skippy!!! :-S)

As for the rest, we lost our 4th foosball match. But not without a fight! It ended up as the only game as yet to have ended in a tie at full time! Unfortunately the sudden-death was too much for us to handle :P. Oh well, seeing how the rest of the league's been doing, the progression into the next round might actually turn to reality :D.

Currently: hopeful :)
Listening to: Dashboard Confessional - Reason to believe

Saturday, 2 February 2008

Steam (letting some off)

Deep breaths. Stare out into the vast deep blue, the smouldering red on the horizon, the setting moon. And take deep breaths. This too, shall pass. Smile. Well, try... There be bad days, and then there be days like today. The dark tide welling up from within needs an exit, but there is none. In.. out... in.. out. :-<
The good things. I finally, finally managed to get all the New Zealand photographs (well, the remaining ones) put up on my photoblog :). Still have to go through the rest, but significant headway has been made. The best part of my days right now though, are entirely due to the Trident Table Football Competition :D. I've never ever played foosball before, but entered my name in the draw anyway. Turns out there are a whole lot of people who have definitely played before. And some of them kick serious butt!

Some of those people were kind enough to show me the basics, and I've been playing quite a bit since. The end result is that I can now actually move both hands in the proper direction at the same time, most of the time, well sort of :P. And don't end up feeling like someone's wrenched my wrists off my arms at the end of it :D. The really good thing is I've drawn a totally cool partner (it's a doubles thing), the Brazilian mammal watcher. She's obviously better than me, but more importantly, doesn't take herself too seriously :). The amount of laughing and screaming we indulge in while playing, I think most of our opposition either get irritated or scared, and we've actually managed to win two out of the three matches we've played till now!!! There's two more to go in the league stage and while there it is rather unlikely, we might just have an outside chance of making it to the next stage :D.

Oh well, so that is about it. Have been back out on the back deck for the last 3 days. And the reasons and circumstances, well... let's not go there :|. There seem to be no easy trips these days. I was pretty sure that the last trip was the second worst I've ever had. But now I'm not so sure, this one's climbing the charts :(.

Feeling: depressed, mostly.... and apprehensive
Listening to: John Denver - Sunshine on my shoulders