Bye Nana
Date: 19/05/2015
Mood: Sad
Rip Nana :_(

Nana

Nana's obituary


Been a fun couple of weeks. Had a wedding, a death and a funeral in over three Fridays.

With regards my goals for the year:
  • Still on track for the weight goal (4.4Kg lost to the start of May).

  • Still off the Coke

  • Facial hair is still under control (the hair on my head not so much)

  • I'm now walking home three times a week

  • I have run the Tan in 26.45. I now trying to do Albert Park lake in under 31 minutes (it is about 1km longer than the Tan). My first attempt was 33 minutes.

The rest are still a work in progress.
 
Happy new year 2015
Date: 03/01/2015
Mood: Busy
Listening to: Favourite songs
Survived another year and I'm still alive.

I have to rate the last year as a meh - it wasn't bad but it also wasn't good. Just passed a year without moving one way or another.

So with that in mind I have decided on some new years resolutions:
  • Lose weight (> 10kgs - starting at 123.3)

  • Get a girlfriend (don't want to make them all easy :P)

  • Stay off coke (glug glug version - I will never quit the sniff sniff stuff* :P)

  • Try to keep my facial hair under control

  • Walk home from work/ride to work at least once a week

  • Run the Tan in under 31 minutes

  • Finish the DS website

  • Update this website (the images section)

  • Go sailing on Albert Park Lake or in the bay

  • Play a game of beach volleyball

  • Go to more music concerts

  • Go out taking photos more


Well I had better get cracking, only 362 days left to do it in!!

Later,
Steve

* It is a joke, I'm too cheap to pay for drugs! :P
 
All up and running now
Date: 25/03/2014
Mood: Relaxed
Yay! New site is up and running now. I think I have all the bugs worked out now.
 
An update!
Date: 19/03/2014
Mood: Tired
Yay! Finally got around to doing an update to the site.

Just have a few problems to sort out with the routing (links not working), but I hope to have that sorted soon (I think I need to move to a different machine with .Net 3.5 on it)
 
Steves European Adventure Part 11
Date: 28/12/2012
Mood: Relaxed
Listening to: Dance Podcasts
And now the thrilling conclusion to this epic tale of adventure (and only a month and a bit late :P)

Day 72 - Mont St Michel to Paris
Well the night was clear for a while, but that was while I was eating :( I got about 15 minutes of sky shots before the clouds came rolling in.

Mont St Michel looks really nice but it really isn't worth staying at, just do a day visit there. The cathedral at the top also doesn't allow you to bring a camera in (I think I freaked them out when I turned around and walked out on finding this information). Also there isn't much else to do there so after taking more shots of the mont, I was rather bored and just wandered around until the bus arrives.

Lots of time was spent waiting around trains to get me back to Paris (and no way to get a faster one back to Paris).

Day 73 - Paris
Yippee! I'm Paris :D

One of the things in Paris I wanted to see was the catacombs. Unfortunately it was closed due to an air conditioning problem (which just googling shows it wouldn't re-open for about a month after I left!).

But after that I went to the Eiffel Tower and took a heap of shots before moving onto Les Invalides (Napoleon’s tomb). I had been warned to get a multi-day museum pass at the train station when I arrived, but as I arrived back in Paris at 10:30pm, everything was shut. Well it turns out it wasn't a problem as I could buy them at Les Invalides and there was no line!

After that it was a walk home along St Germain Boulevard back to the hotel to rest for a bit.

That night I used the museum pass to get entry into the Arc de Triomphe (not allowed to use tripod up the top but I found you can wedge the camera between the barbs at the top of the fence to keep it steady - how well this works will remain to be seen!) and then back to the Eiffel Tower for some night shots.

Day 74 - Paris
Today was the religious day in Paris. I stared off visiting Notre Dame (and climbing it). The view wasn't that good though as it was fogged in. After that I went to St Chappelle and then to the Basilique du Sacre-Coeur (who don't allow cameras in the Basilique but you can use them from the dome above). This meant I did a lot of stairs for the day climbing both Notre Dame and Sacre-Coeur!

The final religious place I visited was Moulin Rouge ... ok, maybe it wasn't really a religious place :P

Day 75 - Paris
At this point I'm sick of the tourists/foreign people. At all the major tourist spots it is full of scammers, beggars and hawkers. I'm sick of people coming up to me going "do you speak English?" (if you are dumb enough to say yes, they will try to get you to sign some paper and then demand money off you. I found the best way to deal with these people was to say "No!". I don't know if it was using English to answer them that made their brain explode or they just decided I wouldn't be easily railroaded that made them leave me alone after that) or "how much for these?" (ohhh how about nothing??).

Because of the threat of rain, I decided it would be best to go indoors and I went to the Louvre. People were telling me I could spend all day there ... nope, spent about three hours there before becoming bored (I was more interested in the designs on the roof than most to the artwork on display - but I do know I'm an uncultured git :P). Saw the Mona Lisa and the Venus de Milo.

After that I walked the Jardin des Tuileries and spent a while taking photos around the Place de la Concorde before heading home because of the rain.

Spent the night doing washing while eating crepes (Tony told me I had to have a banana crepe, then a chocolate crepe and finally a choc banana crepe - which I did with ease! It also got me addicted to choc banana crepes!).

Day 76 - Paris
My diet in Paris now consists of crepes and baguettes - and I couldn't be happier :D

As the weather was much better, I used this day to climb Notre Dame again (it was free with the museum pass and you could do it more than once if you wanted :D), went out to La Defense (a cool fountain but not really worth it!), came back by Trocadero (which I missed the first night!) and to the Eiffel Tower.

I had booked an online ticket to go up the Eiffel Tower at 5pm but I arrive there at 4pm. So after taking some more photos of the tower, I took a seat near the tower and just watched the world go by. It was here when I realised this is how you should experience Paris. during the day just relax and at night go out and take photos - it is much more relaxing than dealing with previously mentioned scammers, beggars and hawkers!. Admittedly I tended to stay in the middle of the city so I'm not sure if there are any dodgy places that I inadvertently avoided (plus I'm a big male making me less of a target).

I got the lift up to the first level and the view is amazing! I get in the line to go up to the top level of the tower and the line spans the whole deck of the tower - it took about an hour to get into a lift from the first level to the top section. And it was dark by the time I got to the top section so you can't shoot straight down due to all the floodlights pointing up. It really wasn't worth the extra money and time wasted to go to the top. I would recommend just going to the first level - there is much more room without people pushing and shoving and the view isn't that much better.

After getting down I head back to the hotel to pick up the tripod and head back to Trocadeco, Eiffel Tower and then walk to Place de la Concorde for some night shots.

Day 77 - Paris to Singapore
My only other complaint with Paris is the constant barrage of anti-pickpocket warnings. Being someone who is paranoid at the best of times, it sent my paranoia into hyper-drive! I only wore my shorts that have a button-up pocket (they were washed while there!) as I was made to worry.

And anyone who says that the French people are snobs are doing it wrong. I didn't have any problem with the locals. I think it did help that I tried to use as much French as I could (I could order most of what I wanted but I would usually break down when asking for a bottle of Coke - I would have to resort to English or pointing then). Mind you the talking in another language did get to me, every so often my brain would just give up and spout the first French word that came to mind. Thankfully this was usually "merci" or "bonjour" and not something offensive.

Well this leg messed me up! It was only like 14 hours of travel time but as I was going over time lines, it meant I arrived about 24 hours after I took off. My mind didn't take this news very well!

I also nearly missed my plane from Dubai to Singapore as it was a flight to Brisbane and I just looked at the departures board for the Singapore flight. With about 10 minutes before we are due to depart I realised and had to sprint to the other end of the airport to get to the right gate (thankfully I wasn't even the last onto the plane!).

Day 78 - Singapore
My brain is completely fried and I'm sleeping 4 hours then staying awake for 8 hours only to repeat the cycle. I'm also trying to get an entry ready for a farktography contest so the awake time was spent with the laptop hooked up to the TV putting together the images (stitched versions of the Eiffel Tower and the Belfort in Brugge) - I missed out on first place by one vote with the Eiffel Tower :(

Day 79 - Singapore
Still jetlagged. Finally get out late that evening to take some photos and eat satay skewers :D

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