Festival of Winds
Emmy and Gaby
Tuesday, June 29, 2004
"They're all devious cane-toads." -The NSW newscaster on Queenslands rugby players for some offence or another.
Sunday, June 27, 2004
Across the bridge
I crossed the Sydney Harbour Bridge on foot for the first time today, making it officially the first time I've been in North Sydney. Walked around at Milson's point for a while, and then into Luna Park, the amusement park with the scary face, where I ended up watching a dance show for an hour. It seemed to be a local dance school was having their performance as all sorts of different groups ranging in ages and skill levels performed. It was nice and relaxing, and there wasn't a cloud in the sky that wasn't generated from the skywriters who seemed to spend all day covering sydney's skies in graffiti. I had packed a lunch so I ended up eating there as well while watching. Afterwards I wandered around the town, and finding little there to do on a Sunday afternoon, I crossed back over the bridge and went over to the Museum of Contemporary Art. They had just redone their exhibits for the Biennale this year. Following that I decided to head into the Botanic Gardens, with an eye towards going to Mrs Macquarie's Chair, just to see it. It's only a chair carved into the stone, but having never seen it I figured it was worth a quick look. As the day was so beautiful out I decided to stay in the park and ended up just sitting on the grass with many others, just reading and enjoying a warm winter day. As it got later I realizes the sun was starting to go down, and the air got a little cooler, but I decided to stay and watch the sun set over the harbour, something I hadn't really done yet. The sky was perfect for it, and I got several nice pictures, although nothing truly spectacular. I'll try and get them up soon. Then it was back to the bus stop where I grabbed a bus home and made dal for dinner. Now maybe a little studying before it's time for bed again.
Friday, June 25, 2004
Just got home from a relaxing night out after catching the tail end of the Sydney International Film Festival. A bunch of us went out to see Seducing Dr. Lewis, although the actual French title translated to 'The Great Seduction'. It was about a small fishing town in Quebec, and their attempt to cajole a doctor to stay in the town so that a factory can open up there. It was a great, light comedy that brought lots of smiles, laughs and the inevitable awwws. In addition, the State Theatre, where it was shown, is a beautiful theatre, with a great attention to detail, and completely unflawed molding, which was impressive compared to the places in chicago which, despite their best efforts, continue to crumble away.
Refreshments were procured both before and after the movie. Prior to the film, we walked around the corner to a little hole in the wall cafe, walked down a narrow, rickety flight of stairs and had a quick drink, which in my case was a hot chocolate with 2 little marshmallows on the side. After the show about half of us remained to find a decent bar and a beer. We walked into a place, got our beers and less than 5 minutes later they turned the lights on and started telling us to leave. Not exactly the best customer service, as when we said that we'd just gotten our beers and no one told us they were closing we were told 'I just told you, now finish up and get out.' So we did, and resolved never to go back. Then just a quick walk to the bus stop; caught a bus in short order, came home and now get to sleep the night away.
Wednesday, June 23, 2004
Does everyone have a song they always think of when they are trying to get another one out of their head? Mine is Rock Around the Clock, the "one two three o'clock, four o'clock rock" part, including the 'b-dum' drumbeat after each line.
Monday, June 21, 2004
"I love my hippocampus. It's where all my hippos go to learn" -Lisa, or something like that.
Sunday, June 20, 2004
Or something like that. All hours are taken up with studying. Except for eating hours, I haven't managed to give those up yet. Dinner tonight was green curry with rice, with the rice being artfully sculpted by Lisa. Nice and sinus clearing.
And happy fathers day to all you dads out there. Now back to my corner to study some more.
Thursday, June 17, 2004
Not a drop you'd want to drink
I know now why most laundry rooms have vents that lead to the outside world. The dryer has been going for almost 2 hours now in our tiny little room with no ventilation. The humidity in the room is hovering somewhere around 118% and every surface is covered in droplets of water. Unfortunately if we do not close the sliding door, this symptom persists throughout the apartment, so we are forced to close the door and make due with the concentrated effects therein. What I didn't expect was for there to be as much water as there was. It wasn't a leak of any sort, just simply all the condensation and the force of gravity over a couple hours. The result was a floor that really shouldn't have been stepped in, and a foot which now requires sterilization, as the dryer lacks a decent lint trap. The trap it does have is a little circle which pops over the front of the dryer, but which somehow manages to let lots of little partcles fly by, along with hairs and other things which don't belong. Anyway, hopefully the towels in there will be dry soon so I can use them to clean up the mess and then throw them right back in the wash and start the cycle over again.
Wednesday, June 16, 2004
"Damn these tomatos and their high specific heat." -Me, on how tomatos seem to get several times hotter than anything else you are cooking them with. Biomed humor at its finest.
Tuesday, June 15, 2004
A long way to walk for oporto
This morning Cindy, Lisa and I took off to do the coastal walk from Coogee to Bondi. Although it had been started before by Lisa and myself (making it halfway before having to turn around and get to class) I had never finished the whole thing. Now I can gladly say that I have. The walk is a beautiful one, up the Australian coastline, and the water today in every cove shimmered a different shade of bright blue or green. Upon making it to Bondi we decided to have lunch at one of the outdoor patio restaurants only to discover shocking prices. An executive decision led to the choice of Oporto, a grilled chicken burger fast food place that has been raved about my many, but had not been tried by the 3 of us yet. Fortunately it passed our test, as we sat eating on a lawn overlooking the beach and ocean, although we did have to almost resort to violence to keep the seagulls away. Following lunch we headed to a little cafe where Lisa, Ryan and I had gotten dessert our first time in Bondi when we had roomate bonding time, and proceeded to each pick out a tasty treat for a snack. Once they were devoured we hopped onto a bus and headed home. A nap was definitely in order.
Sunday, June 13, 2004
Something that will make no sense to most people
Performing a fourier transform on a non repetitive signal gives a frequency reponse with values at (possibly) all frequencies. Thus, frequencies range from 0 to infinity. What I'm wondering is, are the times between pulses at the limit as frequency goes to infinity equal to the limit as time goes to zero. In my head it makes sense that this should be so, and the math seems to make sense in that frequency is measured in cycles per second (s^-1 as cycles really are unitless) and time is in seconds (s), such that as the number of cycles per second reaches infinity, it should take infinitely long for a single second to pass, and thus time per cycle would be effectively 0. And despite matching units, is it possible that one moves 'quicker' than the other, in the same fashion as some series grow quick enough to go to a true infinity while others do not. And I feel like im missing something by not having the phase play a role, although maybe its not necessary as im not worried about magnitude and direction, simply the time element of it. In addition, it gives rise to the question as to what happens in the transition between and 2 infinitely small bits, and how is a signal truly continuous if it could be broken up at those times, although I guess thats what happens everytime you work with infinities. At least its a good thought exercise for my signal analysis class, even if it doesn't get me anywhere. Yea, so this really didn't need to be written here, but just an insight into a mind apporaching finals.
Thursday, June 10, 2004
Finished my first class of the semster last night with it's 3 hour online final. A whole range of techinical issues made sure we didn't start till 30 minutes after we should have, and although I didn't have any problems since I finished before the end of the time, I think people who tried to save it after 9:10pm (when they still should have had 20 minutes left) weren't able to. I was quite amazed at how unprepared the professor and tutors were for any sort of problems, and that they didn't have a good way of coping with them other than to just get their student numbers and have them wait. I'm not sure if they got extra time or how it ended up working out for them, but I'm hoping they got to take their exam.
Monday, June 07, 2004
Tim Tam Slam
For those of you still clamboring for more Tim Tam info, you can learn all about the Tim Tam Slam. It basically involves biting 2 opposite corners off the square bikkies (or biscuits or cookies, depending on where you come from) and drinking a hot liquid through it, shoving it into your mouth just before the entire thing melts and falls in a sloppy mess all over you. Sounds weird, yes, but tastes really good. And if you want to actually here the song linked above, it is in mp3 format here.
Sunday, June 06, 2004
I put this up a week ago and forgot to add the link, so without much fanfare I give you a few pictures of my apartment.
Thursday, June 03, 2004
Tim Tam Groupies
There's a new club that started up tonight. Founded by myself and my groupie lisa, the Tim Tam Groupies came together, originally as a band but quickly evolving into more of a social group. With new recruit Lestat, Sam's alter ego, and the promise of many more dedicated followers to join tomorrow at Coffee Catch-up, the Tim Tam groupies seem well on their way to greatness. Now we just need a mission statement other than 'eat lots of Tim Tams'.
Wednesday, June 02, 2004
I have been offered by someone who is coming over the chance to receive either some sort of non perishable food or some other American goodie. The problem is I don't know what to ask for. Basically it has to be something that can be picked up in the greater Chicago area, sometime in the next week. Suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
Summer changed back into winter
A year ago at this time I was writing myself little notes on things about which I wanted to blog, but never got around to doing. One of these such events was the NUOC trip to the Indiana Dunes. Myself, Andrea and another guy whose name is escaping me at the moment headed down on Saturday, May 31 2003 to the Indiana Dunes for what we expected to be a day frolicking in the sand. When we got there, it turned out to be quite a windy day, and the dark gray clouds looming all around us didn't help matters much. Nevertheless we started along one of the trails and followed the boardwalk over the sand for a while till we reached a small marked trail on the dunes themselves. (Note: Don't walk on dunes unless its specifically posted that you can, as this can damage the fragile ecosystem and dune grass doesn't hold up well under continued trampling.) As we climbed to the top, we were rewarded with a sweeping, if somewhat dismal view of a heaving ocean threatening to attack the low gray clouds. We proceeded down on to the beach and met a few other brave souls, but for the most part the entire park was deserted. We started walking back and decided to check out one of the trails that led into the woods on the other side of the park. There, with the trees covering the sky, the day didn't feel quite so gloomy, and as we walked we saw interesting large green balls covered with brown spots on the ground. They were about 1 inch in diameter, and appeared to be seed pods of some sort, although at first we were convinced they were alien eggs. After our romp in the woods we decided to hop into town to grab lunch and then planned on checking out the other trails that were up the road a bit. As we drove into town, we began to think that town was too strong a word, since there were 2 restaurants plus a gas station, and that was it. Our choices were limited to something that seemed dineresque with a seafood emphasis, but with decent prices and a pizza place. After a brief discussion, it was decided that pizza would be lunch. We went in and ordered our large pie with numerous unrecalled toppings, and settled down to eat. Just as our pizza came out of the oven, the door opened, and in walked a local. She went up to the chef/waitress/cashier and asked her if she could use 4 tickets to the Cubs game later that day. She had gotten them from the steel mine where she worked, but didn't feel like driving up to Chicago that afternoon. Fortunately for us, she had to work till late that night, so the lady came over to us (as the only patrons in the place besides a cop who came in shortly after us) and asked us if we wanted them. Although it wasn't the plan, we agreed, and discovered we not only had box seat tickets, we also had free parking at the closest parking lot to the stadium (which would have gone for $20 normally). Thrilled at our luck, we left Indiana for the day and headed back towards Chicago where we found that the weather was quickly improving, and left us with a bright sunny afternoon to watch the Cubs beat the Astros 1-0 in 16 innings. Despite the change in plans, we all had an excellent, if somewhat surprising, day.
For all you wondering about my health and safety, take heed. SARS is once again available in Australia.
Tuesday, June 01, 2004
Hard to believe it's June already. The time just fly's by. Classes are starting to be mostly finished and in another week all I'll have left is finals (even if they don't get finished till the first week of July). Almost 1/3 done. Wow.