Saturday, July 19, 2008

Andrea's Birthday Bump

It's lovely to be able to celebrate winter birthdays in the summer time in this part of the world. It also provides one with further opportunities to embarrass one's wife by making her pose for photos in front of the garden outside the apartment - but hey I don't care when the product of said embarrassment is so great!

Flying to Victoria

I had a meeting at the University of Victoria on Wednesday - happily this entailed flying there and back in perfect weather via the helijet - hooray! I then got to relax at home with my post-helicopter buzz.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

philip glass animation

now i am hooked on sesame street...

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Counting to Four!!

this is what we have to look forward to!
oh the joy!!!

Sunday, July 06, 2008

Back Home

Surely I am the luckiest man in the entire universe - look at the recent record of this blog and try and argue with me! Thanks to Mum and Dad, Andrea and I enjoyed the most perfect date night in a long time recently with Mr Herbie Hancock himself on the grand piano and dinner at the Parkside - oh so sophisticated! And just take a look at my date - ooohh lah lah! I really have to try and avoid sounding smug and self-satisfied don't I! I'l keep working at it...

More Canals and Golden Light

Ok so in the last five years I really have had the most incredible good fortune to travel to some of the most amazing places, but surely Amsterdam in mid-spring takes some beating - certainly up there with chasing monkeys through the forests of Costa Rica, and art hunting in upstate New York! I remember sitting on a park bench on a quiet canal with the sun setting over the water and the good burghers of Amsterdam wandering about, thinking that all was well in my world with a beautiful wife and a baby on the way - just a perfect moment!

Welcome to Amsterdam

Amsterdam (always uttered with a thick Sean Connery/James Bond brogue) really is the picture postcard perfect city every one I know who has ever visited the place has always talked about. We were lucky enough to enjoy three perfect, golden days there, ambling around the canals, taking in all the sites and lolling abut the city generally. The city of Spinoza and Vermeer really is amazing - a kind of tolerant, prosperous and liberal ideal. With Andrea resting back at the hotel, I spent a couple of blissful hours wandering the canals in the most golden light, quite sure I had stumbled upon some other worldly utopia.

Table Tennis Fury!

So in most Berlin inner city parks, fixed concrete table tennis tables are provided for the fun and amusement of locals and visitors alike. All one has to do is ensure that one always has two paddles and a couple of balls handy! We spent our last day in Berlin very happily competing for the local table tennis championship and even though Mark had us all down cold (next time sir! Next time...) as usual Andrea and Dell won the "fashion in the fields" competition and the annual "best game face competition". Andrea also received special mention for her very adroit table tennis form despite the obvious encumbrance of an all too large belly. As always, she dug deep for the team, representing Vancouver/East Melbourne with grace and style!

More Berlin Fun - The Dalai Lama and the Brandenberg Gate

Quite by accident, Andrea and I stumbled upon the Dalai Lama in Berlin. What an amazing piece of good fortune! We were wandering about the city taking in all the tourist sites - the Brandenberg Gate, the Reichstag and the Jewish memorials - only to discover ever increasing crowds as we approached the gate. At first we thought this might be some Sunday protest of the kind Berliners are apparently famous for, but as we got closer and closer we began to suspect that maybe the Dalai Lama was actually in town. For a piece of unexpected good fortune this was all very exciting. So now Andrea and I have seen the Dalai Lama speak on the subject of global dialogue and the importance of non-violence as an everyday ethic underneath the Brandenberg Gate in Berlin! Quite remarkable!