So last week (including my 28th birthday) was spent on nights.  They were fairly quiet, interesting and there was a nice team on so it wasn’t too bad and K took me out to a ‘breakfast restuarant’ for a birthday breakfast.  She got me tickets to see Nine Inch Nails up in Auckland next week which is awesome.  I love me some mainstream Industrial noise I do.

Feeling like I’ve dropped off the face of the planet recently so have spent a bit of time making up for it by contacting friends and the like.  I still have a few to get to but I’m trying.  We’re just about to head out for dvds and dinner with friends so had to curtail it (and instead blog…).

Listening to old Underworld at the moment which is bringing back many memories (points for claiming the song the above is from) and as I mentioned to Kristin the other day I’ve been on a big Led Zep bender recently.  A group I’ve only got into recently which is a shame as I’d have loved them years ago.

A few things that have been keeping me happy recently:

Astronomy Picture of the Day: the pictures from this are just stunning and leave me staring at my computer for long periods wishing space travel really existed.  Sign up to their feed.

Fox Fur, Unicorn, Christmas Tree

Wondermark: the comic that just keeps giving.  More hit than miss and invariably entertaining.  Plus he’s created some lovely collections available through Dark Horse Comics.

Anyway.  Enough for now.

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Or at least I may be able to be soon.  I have one night on call left to go.  After that we’re off to Hanmer Springs for the weekend for some relaxation.  It’s not as if the nights have been tiring – in fact they’ve been strangely (insert that word that’s the same as ‘quite’ but with a different word order).  But a week is generally draining even if you sleep well during the day and fairly antisocial.

Anyway, I just got an email from Barry at Wilderness Medical Training after filling him in on my recent exploits on the Medex expedition and he’s linked to my blog and photo site from the WMT website.  Which is nice of him.

Wilderness Medical Training are the group who ran the Chamonix ‘Expedition Medicine and Field Skills for Diverse Environments’ course I went to this summer gone.  As you may remember from earlier posts the course was extremely well run, informative and damn good fun.  Plus you get to meet a whole host of people with a love for the outdoors and doing something a bit different with their training and lives.  They run courses throughout the year in a variety of locations for lay people as well as medics so there’s something for everyone.  Go check out the website for details.

My photos of the week can be found here, including us playing around on the glacier, ice climbing and building our tremendous ice cave.  As I said – great fun.

And speaking of photos – I’ve been using my downtime to sort out the recent Medex expedition shots so will be posting them to my site over this next week.  I’m also posting all the shots since we moved to New Zealand so if you’re really bored check them out (link is on the right).

Ah nights.  Barely have I started before going back onto nights.  Still, I quite like the solitary, dark nature of a week of nights.  I was awake from 9 to 18.30 which was pretty stupid – I’m going to be suffering for that soon.  Plus, daytime sleeping’s going to be tough as it’s so damn hot.  May have to sleep downstairs on our sofa bed as I can turn the AC on.  And tonight there’s no coordinator meaning I can be bleeped by anyone, for anything.  Potentially bad.

Got my first pay cheque this week which was nice and necessary.  I now owe K a huge amount of money so will be her bitch for the next month or two until that’s paid off.  It probably would have just been simpler to transfer my English money here but then if I always did the simpler option I’d have nothing to keep me occupied.

So we also saw Four Holidays the other night.  Now before you say anything, K got free tickets from one of the local radio stations.  Someone rang her to say they had got them so she should ring, which she did, only to be told by the DJ you had to ring when a certain song was playing.  Then he just gave them to her anyway!  Film was mediocre at best.  Occasionally funny but a lot of the characters where genuinelly unpleasant.  Glad I didn’t pay for it.

I’m gradually getting through a huge number of photos from Nepal and New Zealand (the latter number are steadily increasing just by being here) so will post some here once organised.

So I like New Zealand so far.  Though there are a few changes to get used to.  For example, bank charges.  You get charged for everything.  Everything.  Want to take your own money out from an ATM.  That costs you.  Want to use another banks ATM?  Even more.  Cheques, setting up a direct debit, paying a bill, checking your balance on line…all charged.  Not impressed.  Still, have one now.

Mobile phones don’t come for free either.  And cds are really expensive.  It’s not like it is back home!

All told though, everyone is friendly and interested.  Went out for drinks last night and met some of Ks new friends.  Been mooching around Chch most of today, checking out the shopping and the food and then taking a wander through the botanical gardens.  Plus we got the dvd player working which makes us both happy.

And now we’re trying to sort out our holiday for the next week and a bit.  Should be fun.  Going to start sorting out my Nepal photos soon and will start posting them as and when they’re ready.

Turn here to see the dark half.  Just making me more and more excited.

A tribute to Stan Winston

My friend Kristin has a little old blog running that is filled with beautiful things.  And is only moderately baby obsessed.  Check it out

And another blog that is just chock-a-block with wonderful things.  Make a sound I found the things below from there and wonderful they all are.  I would very much like for someone to make me robot cupcakes.  That would make them a very good friend indeed!

 

 

 

And as a quick update – Ron has added his blog from last week on the Mountaineering course with some photos and a brief video of us huddled togther up Jacob’s Ladder.  Check it out here from the 23nd-27th February.

He’s also given a link to Paddy’s site – Paddy was the third member of the course over the weekend and well, his website says it all: World’s Fittest Athlete.  He’s held 157 Guiness World Records over the last 20 years (including an outstanding 8794 one armed push ups in 1hr).  He was a lovely man and you would never have known.  Gentle giant.

Later