Archive for March, 2006

Travel Time

Thursday, March 30th, 2006

Well it is time to leave the lovely neighbourhood of Footscray and move onto Sydney. Nath, Mel and myself are doing the Great Ocean Road this weekend, we have our car rented and I bought a tent today so it should be awesome. On Monday Nath and I are meeting with our new travel friend for Tasmania. This is the story of how we found our new friend…

So the other night we went to an information session at Peterpan Tours - the best part was that they gave us boxed wine lol. We didn’t see anything that really suited to our budget of no money so we decided to put  posting on their notice board of anyone that wants to come to Tassie with us and share the cost of renting a car. Well turns out this french guy who is brown (dont worry kish) name Yusief wants to travel Tassie as well. So we meet him at this little bar just to make sure he wasn’t to creepy, turns out he weighs like only 70lbs so Nath and I will have no worries, he is also kinda funny in a weird french way. So the tickets are booked, we are taking the Spirit of Tasmania (ship) over to Tassie and then flying to Sydney… Should be an interesting trip.

I will post pictures once I get back to Martha’s place in Sydney.


The Commonwealth Games

Sunday, March 26th, 2006

Karolin and I went to visit Sue this weekend, and check out the Commonwealth Games in Melbourne while we were there.
Without a doubt, the highlight of the weekend was seeing the track and field events at the Commonwealth Games on Friday night. Sue had picked up some cheap tickets for us - $25 nose-bleed seats - weeks ago. They were, however, directly behind the finish line. When we went into the stadium we asked where we should go, they told us level 4, but we decided to see how low we could get, so instead of going up we went down. No one checked tickets at all. We went to the ground level seats, right beside the finish line, and it was pretty empty. It was early, and so we just sat down to take pictures and stuff, expecting to be kicked out when more people arrived. Well, the place filled up, but no one said anything to us the whole time - we stayed right where we’d sat down the whole night, and the energy of the place was amazing. I think everyone around us got a kick out of me because I was cheering so loudly for Canada - the only Canadian in this sea of Australians. Oh, it was excellent!

Nigeria at the 4 x 400 start line

The other excellent thing about that night was that Susan happened to get in too. She was free to leave her TicketMaster post at 8:30 pm, and it just happened that a lady had an extra ticket that they couldn’t get rid of and so had given it to Susan. While Karolin and I were ground-level on the finish line side of the stadium, Susan ended up getting a ground-level ticket just behind the long jump on the far side. She was sitting with this family that had given her the ticket (and they’re expensive tickets!) and they bought her food and gave her their contact info should she ever need help during her stay. And the long jump finals were also excellent to watch. An Australian jumper won the gold and set a new games record. You could always tell when she was jumping because the stadium would all start to clap in unison and speed up during her jump. And there would be this wave of glittering cameras every time she jumped.

This little Papua-New Guinean ran in the 3000 m steeplechase. He finished last, and was actually lapped by the three Kenyans who swept the medals, but the whole stadium was behind him. Every time he jumped a steeple the crowd would cheer, and he had this standing ovation of 81,000 spectators as he ran down the last stretch of the race. How amazing would that be to have 81,000 people cheering you on? What an experience! Apparently he also represented Papua New Guinea in the mountain bike race the day before.

That was the highlight, but really the entire weekend was fantastic. We also saw the badminton quarterfinals on Friday morning, went to the art gallery, the market, St. Kilda’s for cake, the beach, and the casino. I went in with $10 and came out with $15 after playing roulette, so that was fun. Maybe I should become a professional gambler. ;-P

Okay, I’ve probably bored you all with the track talk, but I love it!

A Good End to the Week

Saturday, March 18th, 2006

Okay, the week that started off terribly has gotten markedly better. I still have an excruciatingly sore throat, as a day without painkillers has proven to me. But really, how can a week be all that bad if you end it with a kangaroo boxing match?

(Okay, there’s a video of kangaroos fighting that’s going to go here, but I think I maxed out my uploading/downloading for the month maybe. We’ll see if I can get it on anyways).

Okay, I give up. The computer wins again. Here’s a still of kick-boxing kangaroos. And a link to my friend Oleg’s website for more cute and cuddly pictures than you can handle.

Kick-boxing Kangaroos.jpg

Apollo Bay and Rugby 7’s

Friday, March 17th, 2006

 Last weekend I went to Apollo Bay with Casey, Tacey, and Lea. Tracey has an awesome cottage right out side of Apollo Bay you could actually see the ocean from the back deck (but it still wasn’t Lake of Bays). We hung out on the beach and enjoyed playing the waves, Casey may or not have lost her top a couple times. Casey and I want and collected shells along the beach, I found a couple pieces of glass along the way to I picked them up so no one else would step on them. As we walked along Casey found a clear piece of glass that looked like the bottom of a bottle- turns out it was a jellyfish, as she reached down to pick it up I told her it wasn’t glass but not to worry if it stung her I would pee on her hand lol. After a lovely day on the beach both Lea and I were totally fried haha. We decided to grab a $10 box of wine and go out for dinner. We went to this little fish and chip take away place (did you know you eat fish and chips with your hands include the huge chunk of fish) as we were enjoying our meal Lea asked what kind of fish we were eating, Tracey replyed Shark.

Note: both Casey and myself have a little phobia of getting eaten by a shark.

Thus, Casey replies “Oh, how the tables have turned” - I lost it. Best line of the trip as it was so true and made the meal taste so much more satisfing. On the way home we stopped and went on a search to find Koalas and Kangaroos as I haven’t seen any yet. We stopped by this camp ground and Lea spotted a Koala sleeping in a tree. SO CUTE. I will be posting pics soon. The rest of the drive home we very pretty as we drove along the coast, reminded me very much of California with the Ocean right their beside you.

Rugby 7’s

So last night I went to the Rugby 7’s which was awesome as our seats were about 6 rows from the front! Kies you would have loved it. The first couple teams were blow out games, Sorry Kish but Sir Lanka can’t play rugby. The All Blacks stood up to their rep as the best team as they kill their opponents. Canada did pretty good as well, losing the first game but  winning the next two- we were all decked out in Canadian Gear. The place was pretty packed and people were really into the game, getting a little tippy from the beer. Overall an awesome experience and I cant wait for the field hockey on Sunday should be a great game CANADA VS AUSTRALIA. GO CANADA.

What am I DOING? week

Tuesday, March 14th, 2006

So, it’s Tuesday, and this week is already shaping up to be somewhat hellish. Mostly because it started shortly before 4am in the wee hours of Monday morning, and has sort of gone a bit out of control from there. My flatmates have odd schedules, which include taking & breaking showers at 4am, needing me to deal with the fall-out, my sore throat has escalated to tonsilitis or strep, and I have to go downtown to make massive changes to my visa. The good is that I’m in lab training. The bad is that a girl in my lab went to the hospital for some sort of chemical burn this morning. I went to a research student welcome tonight for the free food. They were talking about different services and kept harping on the counselling services. Then one of the speakers said “Look, all of you should be paying attention to this bit, because each and every one of you are going to have at least one major break-down trying to finish your PhD!”. I had mild homesickness yesterday. It’s one of those “What the hell am I doing with my life???” weeks, and it’s only Tuesday!

So I hear people want pictures of Australia. Unfortunately I think the cool downtown pics were taken with my film camera (to be developed still) or Sue’s digital (which is currently in Melbourne). So I took a few pics with Mary’s camera on Sunday and Monday, and got some photos of the Bondi open-air cinema from my roomie Anita, and put up some GoogleEarth shots in the gallery. So now you can see where I live, and where I go to school, and my racetrack, and one of my beaches. Check out the “Martha’s Sydney” album in the gallery.

Photo story #1: Crazy Greenpeace guy. Anita, a friend of hers, and I went to see a Luc Besson film at the Bondi Beach open-air cinema one night. It was sponsored by Greenpeace. Do you know that Greenpeace picture with the crazy activist who jumps onto the carcass of the dead whale harpooned by a Japanese whaling boat? Well, he did a talk before the movie. You can only see his silhouette in the photo, and the famous photo of him on the whale is on the screen in the background. It was cool. Know how he got off the whale? An iceberg happened to knock up against the whale just as the Japanese were about to knock him off into the ocean, and he floated away. Lucky man.

Photo story #2: Elec Eng stairs and main “hall”. Well, the Photovoltaics Centre is in the Elec Eng building which is the building just on the right in this photo. Every Friday people in the PV Centre get together for BOS: Beer On the Steps. My centre rocks.

And the photo game: Try to count how many topless women there are in the “Bondi bathers” photo. Maybe I’ll make up a prize for the person who can count the most. I saw 3 at first glance, I’m certain there are more.


Friday, March 10th, 2006

Yes another bday has come and gone and I am now a proud 2-4. Thank you to all who tried to call but yes my phone is not working at the moment (I am actually at an internet cafe waiting for them to fix it up). Its not my fault at all - Plus I was working all day so I wasnt able to take any calls during that time. But, Grandma, Jason, Aunt Sue, Mom, and Mars all made my day by getting in touch with me. Also thanks to everyone who sent me emails -I LOVED THEM.

I wasn’t trying to guilt anyone into calling me, I just wanted to hear from everyone thats all- I miss ya. Erin it definately wasn’t the same without you there. Nath is awesome and took me out for drinks, Matt and Viet also join in the celebrations. We ended up going to this really cool bar called Commercial where we played rock, paper, scissor for our drinks- THUS a night of free drinking!!!

Take care, Off to the Great Ocean Road to chill at a cottage. I will post pics after that.



Sue’s B-Day

Thursday, March 9th, 2006

So I, like many of you, repeatedly tried to call Sue on her birthday. I couldn’t get through, and it seemed like she’d blocked my number. Turns out she’d just run out of cash on her phone. So after the big guilt trip in the last post, yeah, couldn’t call her anyways. ;P

What’s new with me? Well, I had a lab safety session last week for OH&S. Terrified! I don’t want to use the labs now! Mandatory retinal scans for those who need to use the lasers, hydrofloric acid will kill you if you get some on you and don’t treat it properly (or, if it’s just a little, can burn a hole through your hand, like it’s apparently done to my prof. I should ask to see his hands…), and if the air handlers break down, you can die of nitrogen asphyxiation in the rooms that have nitrogen-purged storage cabinets. I get to watch some processing going on next week. I’ll let you know how it goes. -Martha

Commonwealth Games Melbourne 2006

Sunday, March 5th, 2006

As you all will know I am selling tickets for the Commonwealth games and I start training tomorrow. Today another block of tickets went on sale so I am goign to go see some Rugby 7’s on the 16th with Casey and her housemates. On the 19th I am going to see the womens field hockey game Canada vs. Australia so that should be awesome- MOM I am going to wear the Canadian Chicks Rock shirt- represent yo. Mars is making her way down to see me and the Commonwealth games on the 23rd-26th, she is also bringing a German friend from school. They are going to see some Badminton and Athletics on the 24th and experience the charm of the games.

People are really starting to get into celebrating as it is just going to be a non-stop party!

BUT - even before the games is March 8th INTERNATIONAL WOMEN’S DAY!! also my birthday whatwhat. I am asking people to please send me some burned CD’s as I would love to just chill and listen to music but I dont have any.

PLEASE SEND TO (see email for address)

Also, remember my cell # is (see email for #)- just in case you forgot since nobody has called me-lol.


Thursday, March 2nd, 2006