Monday, 2 June 2014

Some highlights from Hobart, one year in and it's nearly over

Sunrise from the house in Hobart

So, i've been in Hobart for nearly one year, i've made it. Nearly over the line, and the fact i've worked one continious year, that would also be the longest i've worked in years. You dont have to reach for a Guinness book of records to know that isn't a record, but it is for me.

And now that i'm leaving, it will be quite some time before i work again, my Australian passport in is the mail, i've pretty much achieved everything i wanted to achieve along the way, the only real problems were the ones i had to create for myself, we live and learn.

Most of the videos here were taken on the same day, one of my favourite days here in Australia, is Anzac day, it's legal to play Two up, gambling and drinking, excellent fun!!

First up, two up!!

After Two up, we went to a Brewery tour, more fun. I leart a few things too, although it was a good job i got a few facts on video

Two meter tall brewery tour

It's amazing, all the strange stories that are TRUE, when it comes to this place and heres another one.

Interlude, i thought i saw a rabbit

It wasn't all beer talk yea know

Nickolai and myself getting back to our roots, well something like that?

We had dinner to celebrate one more Australian in the mix, me!

Saturday, 24 May 2014

Tree planting in Tasmania

 Tree planting next to the tree that caused all the trouble

Today, in continuation of the Australian day ceremony, i went to plant my tree at my boss Catherine's garden in Blackmans bay.

This was my second attempt in going, the first time i went the bus service seemed a bit woeful, two weeks ago at the bus stop i realised the next bus wouldn't be for five hours. So it didn't happen then.

This time, a little bit more planning was involved, as the guy that planned the Normandy invasion commented
The planning was everything and the plan was nothing

Diggin' a hole

Catherine likes planting trees, she also likes cutting them down too, but only the ones that are causing trouble.
We planted my tree next to the tree that was cut down, that the neighbour complained about and reported her to the council, apparently you can get fined for cutting down trees?

The place is only covered in trees, you'd never think someone would complain about a thing like that, but the lord givith, the lord takes away. As you can see from the photos, Backmans bay was down one tree last week, not it's up one tree. A win win scenario! Hip hip hurrah!!

After all its the Australian way.

It's nice to get out in the country, i was telling Catherine about the Molai woods, a guy in India planted a whole forest, by himself and established a habitat for several thousands of varieties of trees and an astounding diversity of wildlife -- including birds, deer, apes, rhino, elephants and even tigers.

It was 1979 and floods had washed a great number of snakes onto the sandbar. When Payeng -- then only 16 -- found them, they had all died.
"The snakes died in the heat, without any tree cover. I sat down and wept over their lifeless forms," Payeng told the Times Of India.


The Forest Man Of India

I guess you have to start somewhere? And I was promised Tatty scones too, how could i refuse?

As much as i hate getting on a bus, this time i pretended i was a tourist, what was there not to like?

 One of us was doing all the work, indoors and outdoors

Tatty scones, its a Scottish thing apparently?

 And she has goats

And goats, and chickens and Guinea fowl

Me playing the part of the 'Health and safety officer', no one got hurt and that's the main thing, i think?

Totally excellent day Australia!!

Monday, 12 May 2014

Fellow have to look at the big picture!!!

So this week i became an Australian, ta da!!

I got it!!

A moment i have been waiting for for a very long time, some of you saw the photos, when i saw the photos, i knew i had to make a joke about them, and fast, so i uploaded them and tagged them as 'Citizenship, worst photos ever!'

Bad photos, bad joke. And the joke didn't last too long for me, it began to wear me down, i felt like i was going to snap. So i threw a dinner party, took more photos, those photos in the end came out well. Thank god, Buddha, Jehovah or who ever he or she is!!

Over a game of ping pong, Nickolai was losing and losing badly said
'You have to look at the big picture'
Two day's later while contemplating the picture. I realised i did forget about the big picture and it was then i remembered the online course i did when i first arrived in Hobart called 'A beginners guide to irrational behaviour'

Dan Ariely: Are we in control of our own decisions?

Part of this course covered subconscious mistakes our minds make every day and then i remembered learning in the course how sometimes your mind can focus so much on what's visually wrong instead of the big picture. In my case i was getting all worked up about photos, when i actually got what i wanted, Citizenship, my friends were there and then i was able to let it go.

Getting Citizenship

A bit like how chicks get worked up about their wedding day, getting citizenship was a big deal for me, of course it was all mental. Another part of being a citizen of Australia, off the top of my head is...
Paying taxes
Obeying the law
Fighting for your country
Doesn't sound like fun, now does it? So why get all worked up about photos, eh brain?

As Dan Ariely said,
'As much as you can be aware of what you are physically capable of, when we are mentally aware we can make better decisions, design better health care systems, financial systems....ect'

Or as Detective Callaghan said...

There was a bit of Karaoke too

Advance Australia fair!

After all, it was a good day!

Tuesday, 29 April 2014

Making beer, that's what we have been doing in Tassie...

Who doesn't want to change the world? Well look no further!!!

Nearly one year ago i moved into a house in Hobart, and that's when the beer making story starts, the drinking story has been going for twenty years now!

Today, i would like to fill you in on one of the interesting hobbies in the world, and that's beer making of course!

 Time to get busy?

 Hurrah for beer!!

I moved in, one of the room mates was a Doctor Chris, German scientist with a doctorate in Chemistry and a passion for beer, he even drinks beer in moderation, I've never done anything in moderation in my life, maybe except for religion, thank god, but that's it folks, now back to beer.

The process...

Chris was telling me, after buying beer for the first time in Hobart, he could not believe how expensive beer was, so he went straight to the home brew shop and so it began, then i used to call in and give him some help, and before long, i plunged into to the world of beer making.

Cap's on, wait one week

Beer connoisseurs seem to me much like wine fanatics, in that they are very passionate about their hobby, its certainly a good way of meeting people.

I quite like the Stout mixture with espresso coffee, we usually put a double shot for the keg, i work with Scottish guy Dave, he would put 70 espressos into a vat. He said you cant drink a whole bottle yourself, so myself and Nickolai drank about 4 one Friday evening and were truly wired

 Myself and Nickolai, moderation is the key, yeah right!!

It's not like you can go to the gym after that, your only hope is to keep on going and try to be as optimistic as possible and prey for a happy ending, any kind might do!

We make beer, which is similar to the expencive stuff you can get in the bottle shop, for us it's lett than a $1 a long neck, the same beer will cost you about $8.

A good hobby indeed, just remember moderation folks! I sometimes forget, and as the night goes on, the chances decline, fun times!

A cultural experience, all the senses!

Wednesday, 23 April 2014

I remember why i used to like blogging so much now...

Jesus help me...

I really can, really. And it wasn't just the writing, it's pretty much the same reason i like going to work, and the reason?

Techno  music, currently I'm listening to this DJ set, and how can you not like anything listening to this stuff?

Today i was listening to this set by Pole folder, i sent my mate this message
I  cant believe I'm not on drugs right now 
And what was i doing? I was regression testing, a task normally feared by people, but not me, i was having a great time, and i get paid pretty well too and the proof is in the pudding people, I'm getting too much done at work they have to extend me, and all the time I'm lovin' it.

Don't you too?

When i think back of all the blog posts i have done, i was always listening to great electronic music, it's pretty much how i work, the music i s on, i zone out and get things done.

Which is funny, sometimes i like the times when my mind goes totally blank, i have to concentrate really hard, taking the headphones off would help, but that dear friend would be the easy way out, and  i get through it and its good times again.

Oh lord, and why am i saying this?

Well, over Easter i was working, just like any day for me, I watched tons of Brazilian movies, i finished watching 'a series set in Rio called 'The city of men',  which was fantastic!!!

City of men, check it out!!

And about ten other Brazilian movies, i guess you could say i got a bit carried away.

I had to book tickets back to Europe and book them i did, i remembered the chartered flight i got back from Salvador to Europe, i remember i was on the same flight path that the Air France was on, it went down some where in the middle of the ocean.

I remember telling a beautiful Brazilian woman this story with a baby, she had four other kids in Germany, a Brazilian woman living in Germany. Talk about a different cultures?

Anyways, she didn't seem too upset when i tole her when we too off in the storm with the plane flapping around like a headless chicken, the woman in front was having a mild panic attack, i know this as she informed me...
Your a crazy guy!!!
So last night, i checked out some of the blog posts, this was the this one about Rio,
then there was some friends i met through Tiago in Vitoria and then put it all together, the first week in Rio

The thing i know now is its so easy to forget all these things, now that i know the secret in getting myself to do it is a little bit of music? Why didn't i remember that, i knew it before?

In short, you have to remember the good times, especially when you think your getting old and your losing your marbles, i had some good times and it will happen again.

And another thing, writing really helps me connect with myself, i have a lot of fun, the words start flowing, or maybe it just the music? After all, i did pioneer Meditation to Carl Cox up in Byron Bay, it worked for me, it could work for you too, try it!

Who can tell, either way, it has begun again!

Anyways, I'm one it now and i already know what the next post will be about, it will be about making beer with my scientist mate Chris.

 There you go people, I'm back, stay tuned!!

Tuesday, 11 March 2014

Podcasts, podcasts, podcasts, i love them and so should you too!!

Podcasts, everyone is at it!!

So i have found myself going on and on to people about the benefits of listening to podcast's and i thought, since i haven't blogged in a while, why not blog about that and who knows?
A, It might be the spark i need to start writing again and
B, Maybe, just maybe, i might stop preaching about podcasts and move on to something else?
Yeah right, the main reason i love podcast's, i i listen to them on my iPod, boom! While in bed. It's like bed time stories, do you remember bedtime stories, no? Well it's not too late to begin, reader, it's never too late to relive the best bits of a mis-spent youth.

The king of hearts

Lewis Carroll, Alice in Wonderland 
Begin at the beginning," the King said, very gravely, "and go on till you come to the end: then stop.” 
Lets begin.

While i'm not here to sell devices on any kind, if you can be constructive, and learn interesting stuff while lying on your back, you have my vote, i vote lying down!

The word on the street is...

My all time favourite podcast, hands down is 99 percent invisible, Its a podcast about design, 99 per cent of who you are is invisible, each podcast is less than 20 minutes. If you only have 20 minutes, i always have that before nodding off each night.

Next up, i like the Freakanomics guys, last night i learned the value of learning a foreign language, it seems like a no brainer, but if the payoff of learning is more than 50/50, you should.

Lie betting a dollar and you could win a $1.20, its a good bet. According to the experts, i would bet that would lose anyways.
I also learned people take more risks when they are speaking in a non native tongue, which would make sense to me as people would have different value associations in their own native language.

As a kid i knew saying sorry in Irish was no problem, in English, forget it.


Next on the list, The memory Palace, It gets its name from the memory method of where....

Once upon a time, at a wedding party the palace collapsed, everybody died. But one guy that survived was able to visualise where everybody was sitting and could identify all the dead by where they were sitting and in by doing so, realised when you combine your senses ans visualise the things you want to remember and put them in stories, hey presto, even trivial pages of numbers and be remembered.

Next up, How sound, The Backstory to Great Radio Storytellin, is next on the list, lots of short documentary stories, whats amazing is how passionate Rob Rosenthal is about radio and the science of storytelling

FBi Radio in Sydney have a podcast called 'All the best', its is a weekly half hour radio program telling stories from Australia

The BBC is in da house...

The BBC do a huge range differnt podcasts, especially of documentaries, one i quite like is 'A history of the world through a 100 objects'. One of my favourites was the 'Pieces of eight' gold coins, where they came from?

This mine funded a lot of European culture, the renaissance? Yep that too!

They came from Potosi in Bolivia, i was in that mine a few years ago (you could buy dynamite and TNT like you would buy biscuits in the shop), these mined gold coins brought down the Ming Dynasty, funded the slave trade, wars and more, there was never a cash injection like that, ultimately the coins created the conditions for bad economics, which is similar to our recent economic downturn, hard to believe stories.

Oh, only over 8 million people have died in that mountain in Potosi, since it first opened and the poor people still go in to try and mine what ever they can, at its height it was about the same size as Paris.

There is nothing new under the sun.
And you can learn all this stuff, if you like, going to sleep, cant sleep, you can learn.

And learning has never been more interesting.
Try it for yourself, let me know how you go.

Just install the podcast app and you are on your way!

Wednesday, 8 January 2014

A fear of missing out on someting is driving me to distraction

Do you remember when Iron Maiden sang about Fear Of the Dark? Yes, well your probably old, old as me and you too could have been an altar boy too, where would Heavy metal and head banging be without us Christians?

For those who missed out on those glory years, here it is....

Well that was ages ago, now fears have been updated, it happened one day when i away in the toilet i think? I missed it, dammit!!

You see, now there is a condition called 'FoMo'

You see, just when you thought life couldn't get any worse, and your fear of losing your:
  • Girlfriend, to your best friend 
  • Religion, to Slayer (god listens to Slayer, don't worry about it!)
  • Job, to some guy in a third world country
  • House to the bank, not the sperm bank in the shower now that she's gone for good!
  • Virginity, well that's no loss, is it?
  • Youth, to your no existent career
  • And generally, not having achieved anything worth losing
Well, it seems that people are afraid of missing out on something, so much so they appear to be skimming the surface when it comes to life experiences, so much so, they aren't experiencing much at all.

We are living in a world of comparisons, but only on a grand scale, a bit like how the whole world is getting laid except for you, and you know this to be true, because you stand outside your housemates door at night, thinking 'God, why me?' right? You are that guy, aren't you?

Party time

It's like people going to parties and being distracted on their smart phone, to tell someone on the other side of world how much fun they are having, and the person next to them doing the very same, and in the end the party was a bunch of people standing in some hippie's way as he was trying to come in the door with his guitar.

Have you tried reading a book recently, its damn near impossible!!
Two or 3 minutes, it's about all i can give then I'm off looking at cat videos, that's normal, isn't it?

When you find yourself checking Spacebook for the 20th time today, you've probably have 'FoMo', the most popular time to check social media is just before you go to sleep and first thing in the morning.
And you should never check it at this time as it sets your brain to spend the next few restful hours thinking about what 'Miley Sirus' had for breakfast.

Self control?

Interesting stuff, self control, if you mean to get serious about it could in part be about distracting your self from being distracted, which reminds me in Spanish the devil is also known as 'El Controlador', he who controls....

This is why i have an old Nokia, i know what I'm like and i have to be in a Wi-Fi area to do any online stuff, if I'm on a bus, i have no other option but talk to some one or just stare out the window and hope to spot two dogs involved in a wild embrace....the old fashioned way.

The same too goes for being lost, i just have to ask directions, and that's fun to do, i can recommend asking someone directions around the corner doing it in your neighbourhood, after all, you never know who you could meet?

Except of course, if you really are lost and the smart phone from a stranger can direct you to your destination, because you know, they really are fantastic when used in the right way.

Folks, I'm sticking with the Nokia
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