Tuesday, 29 July 2008

Why.. so.. serious?

:D Could not resist :P. Of course it is rather annoying to realise now that almost every other status message for the last week, on pretty much everything that allows you to have status messages, was a quote :|.

So I finally went and watched the movie everyone's talking about. Or well, most of it anyway. Will have to go see it again at some point I suppose. The really ironic part is, despite having made plans of watching The Dark Knight with about 3 other people, I still ended up watching it alone eventually. And missed the first 15 minutes or so in the bargain :|.

At least the movie was good :). Unfortunately, I got the feeling these people cut out loads of bits :(. You know, when the scenes sort of cut from one to another with little jerks. And you know this isn't dodgy editing on the original! No movie makes this much money in 10 days with that bad editing :|. So yeah, will have to see it again, somewhere else.

On other fronts, I got to Asker quite alright. Didn't even have to run around too much for the apartment keys this time! Just wait around for a half hour in the mid afternoon heat and make a dozen or so calls :-<. Oh and it's seriously insane weather here! Hot as hell! (Okay, not really, in absolute terms, but this is Norway!!! 30 degrees is HOT!) The really good thing is there are two more people from the boat here at the moment. And I also ran into someone I hadn't met in over two years!It's not often that you run into people and find them quite so unchanged :). Especially despite not keeping in touch, and working the way we do, and dealing with the way our worlds tend to change at an even faster pace compared to the more firm kind.... I was very pleasantly surprised :).

Moving onto a completely unrelated subject, I've just realised there are some features of my IXUS (that P&S cam of mine I've been using for almost a year and a half now?) that I didn't even know about! So that's immediately stalled any plans I had of getting a new one. At least for a little while longer.

And this space is now 3 :). Yes, we are all getting old...

Currently: forgetting.... something...
Listening to: Coldplay - Everything's not lost

PS. I really need to get that new Coldplay album now :|.

Saturday, 26 July 2008

Babysitting (it's tough!!)

Heh, still not enough time and other necessary ingredients for full-on Italy post(s?) :P. And this time the reason is my cousin. One of the 5 yr old ones. Only, this one's a major handful.

About every member of the family within a 200 km radius had been summoned to try and take care of him while his mum was away for a while. By the time I got there, they were all thoroughly drained. And over the next four days, the kid proceeded to work his charm on me :|. So yeah, about the busiest break I've had since like, forever :-<. Though I did get to see Cars about a million times :D. In about a gazillion pieces each time, unfortunately.

And now I'm back home and about to leave again. What I do find surprising is how I actually don't feel like bitching and moaning about everything under the sun :). Got in touch with a bunch of people. Despite being an email person (as in the only way I actually manage to keep in touch with people mostly is if they send me a few lines, and then I reply promptly :|) I have to admit, actual voices work a lot better :).

It was more of the usual, marriages, changed jobs, new jobs, movies, whales and sea-sickness. But at least it was nice hearing it straight from the horse's mouth, so to speak :).
When last I had the time, I had nothing to say. And now that there's so much, I have no time :|. Ah the irony that is life. A couple of pics in the mean time.

Currently: leaving... again
Listening to: Craig Armstrong - Diffuse

Monday, 21 July 2008

Three days in Rome, and more :)

I'm happy to say that yours truly is alive and well :). And for those who wondered, the hostel bookings were all good. The hostels themselves... well, they were hostels :). After a week at the Renaissance in La Defense, a week in YHA hostels, mostly in far flung corners of Italian cities, is quite likely to provide a stark contrast. Oh, but what a week it was :).Monday morning we finally landed in Milan (well, at Bergamo actually, which is a fair way outside the city, but hey, Ryanair is cheaper than a train ride!!). Since then it was a giddying trip punctuated by spectacular sights and spaced with cross country train rides... Milano Centrale - Venezia Santa Lucia - Firenze Santa Maria Novella - Pisa Centrale - Roma Termini :D. Okay, so not quite cross country, but long enough to allow us a little bit of time to let the days sink in. For the rest of the time it was an absolute overload :).It's a shame that I'm in no shape to actually go into details at the moment, but I'll get there eventually. Unfortunately the public transport situation I found myself in, in Rome, meant a night spent at the Leo DaVinci airport and no sleep despite the hostel bunk I'd reserved for the night :-<. And then of course barely 4 hours at home last night as I arrived late and departed early. The trusted combination of the window rolled down and loud music kept me from driving off the road this morning on the way to Shantiniketan, but there's nowhere near the requisite level of energy or enthusiasm to do any sort of justice to my fantastic six days in Italy... Currently: about ready to collapse, but still grinning :D
Listening to: Colin Hay - My brilliant feat

Sunday, 13 July 2008

Lights, and highlights

So the training thing finally ended yesterday. I'm still in Paris though. Only just. We leave early tomorrow morning. After the initial rush that translated to exploring the city till late every night finally wore off by midweek, I chose to keep a low profile and enjoy a couple of quiet evenings here in La Defense.Before that I'd managed to get a good look at the Arc de Triomphe, walked down the Champs Elysee, spent the better part of one evening walking by the banks of the Seine. That last bit ended at the base of the Eiffel Tower.To be quite honest, it is every bit as impressive as it's made out to be :). We actually had dinner close by, waiting for it to get dark so we could see the tower light up. I loved the fact that unlike every photograph I've ever seen, the lights were blue, not yellow/white :D. And as the perfect icing, the tower started sparkling on the hour while we were still around!! Unfortunately, the hour was 11 pm. With an 8am start the next morning :|.
Incidentally, this is the first course I've been to in about 2 years, and it was quite a refreshing experience. But by Saturday afternoon it was really beginning to drag on. It did eventually come to an end, as we all knew it would, but there'd been times when that had seemed hard to believe :|. We made good use of Saturday night :D. Managed to have a go at Pont Neuf and the Notre Dame. The cathedral was quite mesmerising as the lights came on. Unfortunately, John and I managed to lose each other in the crowd :|. With no phones, this is something that has to be avoided in Italy, methinks...After a pretty slow start we finally decided to head back to Notre Dame this morning. Sunday service was in progress as we made our way in. Again, I was impressed. Unfortunately, that didn't leave us any time to actually try and make our way through the immensity of the Louvre. But with another trip to France looming ahead, I'm not too worried.
Tomorrow it is off to Milan. And hopefully, the bookings we made still exist... The website I made them on seems to have disappeared :|. But, it's a Roman holiday :D, I've resolved to try and not allow myself to get too worried about things :).

Currently: looking forward to this week :)
Listening to: Craig Armstrong - Leaving Paris

Tuesday, 8 July 2008

Paris, je t'aime!

Yay!! I've already shed much of the awful frustrating gloom that had me by the throat for much of the last trip on the boat. Thanks mostly to the fact that I find myself strolling along the streets of Paris in the evenings. Rather obligingly, the evenings are still bright and sunny till about 9 pm these days :).The course I'm here on lets off at about 6, so that's still enough time for a little visit down into town and then dinner as the city lights up. So far we're already managed to get lost once. Been overawed by the sheer size of The Louvre. Ogled the Eiffel Tower from a distance. And felt uncomfortably familiar in the metro :|.Have obviously been taking pictures, but the net situation is less than ideal, so maybe later. Hopefully, by the end of the week there'll be more. It is less likely that I'll be any more comfortable with my lack of French.

Currently: :D enjoying
Listening to: Air - One hell of a party

Edit: There's been so much more since! But it'll just have to wait :).

Saturday, 5 July 2008

Die hard

Ordinarily, I'd love a short trip. It's just that this one's turned out so weirdly, I don't know what to think of it :-<. Random emergencies. Loads of boat trips. And I was driving every time (yay for that of course!! :D). But it's the last day now. And the rest of the trip seems like a blur between the barnacles (on the back deck or in the boat) and Scrubs....

Tomorrow, I head off for Paris! Provided we do have complete helo ops, 'cos unfortunately the weather's not playing ball. And I found out yesterday that I'd been bumped down from the 3rd chopper to the last one!! Ah joy :|.

It would seem there's less to say these days. At least less to say out loud anyway...

Currently: stalled
Listening to: Creedence Clearwater Revival - Fortunate son