Category Archives: holidays

Sydney / Batboys weekend wrapup

Been back from Sydney / Bathurst a little over a week now.  Been flat out unpacking the rest of the house, setting up broadband, catching up with work and other things.  I’ve been a bit slack on this blog but I’ve been updating some of the others – Batboys, MacSwitch and Down Under Geek.

http://www.batboys.com.au
http://www.macswitch.com.au
http://www.downundergeek.com
 
Batboys was a great weekend.  I’ve talked about it a lot on the Batboys website so I’ll direct you there is you want to read more.  We had about 15 guys show up, had a great couple of days, and I can’t wait for the next one.
 
The other great thing I got to do in Bathurst was catch up with an old friend from high school – Judith Segedin – now Judith Wilde.  I had caught the XPT from Sydney to Bathurst on Friday morning – still a great trip: the scenery in the Blue Mountains was beautiful but after 3 1/2 hours I was ready to get off.  Judith picked me up at the train station with her little girl.  We spent the day together at her place and went out for lunch at Zigglers.  In the afternoon we picked up her boy from school and then later in the day, Heather Fillery came round and we spent some time with her.
 
It was great to catch up with Judith and spend some great quality time together.  She was kind enough to let me spend a few hours with her again on Sunday while I waited for the XPT to take me back to Sydney.  I got to catch up with her husband Lindsay who is a great guy.  Thanks for the great weekend Judith.
 
There are a couple of pics of Judith on my moblog.
http://michaelq.textamerica.com/?r=3059584
 
Got back to Sydney Sunday night at went to the Hard Rock Cafe with Gus.  Good to spend a bit of time with him although as he was in jury duty all day it was a bit frustrating to have him away all day.
 
After a week away it was great to get home again on Monday night.  Missed Fiona and Jhett very much.  Probably the first time Fiona and I have really been apart in two years and it wasn’t much fun.  But the break was great and I really enjoyed my time away.

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A pretty good day – Star Wars, iBook, Chess and some Pizza

Some days you just can’t complain about the life you have.
 
Yesterday I went into the main Sydney CBD and saw Star Wars Episode III for the second time.  I saw it the opening weekend a few months ago but I wanted to see it one more time on the “big screen” before it comes to DVD.
 
Although it was a bit long and drags on a bit the second time, it was definitely worth it.  Having the whole story a bit clearer in your head lets you enjoy it a bit more.  I noticed a lot of things I hadn’t before – even the evolution of the ships into what will obviously become TIE Fighters and X-Wings in the original trilogy.  The Alderaan based ship that Leia will be caught on in the first movie with its stark white halls. 
 
You watch and realise how easy it can be for an Empire to evolve out of a Republic with some clever manipulation and planning by someone who is patient enough to wait for the change.  At the end the downfall is “greeting with applause” as the Emperor declares himself ruler in the best interests of everyone.  Its a great movie and segue into the original Trilogy sensationally.
 
I look forward to one day watching all six together.  Wouldn’t it be great to be able to “forget” you know what going to happen and just start with Ep 1 and start over – what a ride that would be !
 
First Mac
 
After Star Wars I went into town and the David Jones store.  I ordered my first Apple Macintosh – a 14” iBook.  I have tired of all the security hassles with XP and just want a bit of a change.  A lot of things I am wanting to do in the future – podcasting, digital photos and videos, blogging etc – can all be done the same if not better on a Mac.  I’ll be setting up a new blog to discuss my switch to a Mac – MacSwitch.com.au

So I ordered the Mac and picked up a Shuffle and some software.  The iBook wont be delivered for about a week or so as there is a bit of a delay with the new models.
 
Would you like to play a game of Chess ?
 
Coming back through Hyde Park I saw some guys playing Chess on one of those big boards that you walk into and move the pieces.  I stopped and took a few photos with my mobile and posted them on my Text America site.  I probably should work out how to do that with my Flickr site instead so they are all on the one site.

http://www.michaelq.textamerica.com/
http://www.flickr.com/photos/michaelquinn

But it was great to stand there and watch them for half an hour, just take some time out and enjoy the sunshine.
 
Pizza time
 
Rounded off a great day by heading over to the Italian Pizza shop across the road from the apartment.  Not the best Pizza I have had but pretty damn good.
 
All in all – a pretty good day.

A great weekend in Sydney

At the moment I am spending a few days away on a bit of holiday.
 
This weekend is the Batboys weekend in Bathurst which I am really looking forward to.  It is also the CSU Rugby Old Boys weekend so it should be a good time to catch up with a lot of people.
 
But I am in Sydney this week enjoying some time away and catching up on a few things.  I am staying with Gus at his apartment which is pretty close to the city.  Unfortunately he is on jury duty at the moment and so I away during the day.  Bit frustrating but we can still see each other at night.
 
First night we were here we saw Fantastic Four.  Not a movie I was planning on seeing but it was actually pretty good.  Very funny in some parts.  Like most of these franchise movies I find they spend waaaay to long at the start of the movie setting up the story.  How the super heros were created etc.  Just Get On With It.

A week of grey skies in Melbourne

Fiona and I have just spent a week in Melbourne.

She spent a week working at the Austin Hospital in Heidelberg – looking at some new techniques, new equipment, procedures etc for her Mid-Wife work at home in Mildura. I think initially she thought it was going to be a bit of a waste of time for her. But from the first day she she talked about all the new things she had learnt each day. So I think she has really enjoyed her time here.

http://www.oldenglandhotel.com.au/

I have basically been working in the motel we have been staying at – the Old England in Heidelberg. There aren’t any “regular motels” around the hospital – or seemingly from our research, any close to nearby train stations. So we decided to stay at a local pub which we found on the net.

Its a great pub – its more than just a bar. It has a large dining room which has been packed all week for dinner – good food too. Plus it has a cafe, bottle shop, lounge bar, sports bar etc. So its a bit more than your basic pub. Very old place too. 150+ years. Apparently it used to be a house where the local artists would hang out. So they have lots of old Australian paintings around the place.

As a work place it hasn’t been great. No table in the room so I have had the laptop perched between my legs with my feet up on the spare chair all week. But it did the job.

No internet!! Not that I was expecting any at the pub – but they teased me by having a “Phone / Internet” plug in the wall which Fiona found on the second night. Plugged in – nothing happened. Found out the next day that the plug has just recently been installed – the actual internet hasn’t been hooked up yet though.

Couldn’t find any wireless hotspots I could use around the local shopping centre. Found an internet cafe that was good enough to let me plug in to their network though. Let me download some email and some podcasts to listen to. Kept me a bit sane.

But for the entire week – 1/2 hour of sunshine. Just grey skies and a bit of drizzly rain. At least Melbourne kept its promise.