Friday, June 29, 2007


I love to travel.

People often say that they hate flying in planes. I love it. The anticipation of heading somewhere new to experience new foods and see sights that you never imagined, or returning to the comfort of your own home and your friends and family after a time way. I love the inflight movies and I laugh at the flight attendants with their pulled back hair struggling to pull the heavily laden food trolleys up the narrow aisles. Guess I am lucky to be of small stature as the minimal leg room is never an issue.

Travelling by road also has its moments. 10 hour drives between Melbourne and Sydney as a youngster have conditioned me well. Waking up before sunlight. Breakfasts at McDonalds. Sleeping sitting up with the strains of Phantom of the Opera or Dire Straits in the background. Of course, now the engine drone heard from the inside of a vehicle and tyres on bitumen put me straight to sleep. Too many a time I have jerked awake from wacking my head against a bus window. I am sure that I am slowly killing off all of my braincells.

Our 9-day 4WD tour from Darwin to Broome was going to be a new test. Sitting sideways on benchseats in the back of a Toyota Landcruiser is not condusive to sleep... or so I incorrectly thought!

On Sunday 17th June, Gideon and I set off on our Kimberley adventure. We were picked up at 6.30am. I was getting excited. We had chosen this tour (Kimberley Adventure Tour (KAT)) because the size of the group and the vehicle meant that, unlike other tours available, we were able to head down unsealed roads to see the Bungle Bungles and the gorgeous gorges along the Gibb River Road.

In total there were eight of us. Joel the tour guide. Anu and Miia, two Finnish girls about our age. Murray, a slightly older guy from Queensland. Esthi a 27yo Swiss pastry chef from Switzerland living in Fremantle currently. Sam, a 20yo from Switzerland also. Gideon and myself. There was going to be lots of driving, seeing some amazing Australian scenery, swimming in gorges and waterfalls, and sleeping in swags under the stars every night. : )

Saturday, June 16, 2007

The Oriental Emporium

Ahh... another sunny day in Darwin.

Just came back from the Oriental Emporium on Bagot Rd. It was f!@#$%n' awesome!
Disappointing that I left it this late in our stay in Darwin to go.

Huge Chinese grocery store that is actually spacious and clean... pretty rare anywhere really.

Was pretty impressed at the range of instant noodles and the fact that they stocked Hakka fishballs, thai fishcakes, dimsims and springrolls. Hakka is the brand that my uncle owns, they make or import (I can't remember), the most delicious thai fishcakes! Of course they are the only brand of fishballs I will EVER buy!

I went in to get a few packets of instant tom yum noodles and walked out with a few extra items:

  • 8 packets of instant noodles of various flavours from the Thai Mama brand (they make awesome tom yum... for an instant noodle)... including Green Tea Tom Yum, I'm keen to try these, haven't had them before.
  • A packet of Hakka Comination Fishballs
  • A Frozen coconut juice - these come in a plastic glass size container and go for about $1.20 in most asian grocery stores and are just yum
  • A packet of black sesame glutinous rice balls - I'm just about to boil them up in a sweet ginger soup

Thursday, June 07, 2007

Late Movie update

The Kimberleys adventure heading your way shortly... in the meantime...

28 Weeks Later: 2.5/5

Cast: Robert Carlyle (Trainspotting), Rose Byrne (Sunshine)

In a nutshell: Much like 28 Days Later, only less of the suspense and human interaction and more of the blood and guts. The last half hour is a bit of a let down.

Brief Synopsis: 28 weeks after the first appearance of a deadly virus in the UK that almost wiped out the British population, the US declare the virus dead and sets up a safe area for the remaining unaffected. Of course, things are not that simple.

The brilliant thing about 28 days later was that it was a zombie movie, but somehow a highly believable zombie movie. This sequel is much the same to begin with, but seems to lose sight of reality towards the end, leaving one somewhat unsatisfied. The camera work is of that Bourne Supremacy style where it is supposed to come across as realistic and chaotic, but actually has the effect of being able to see crap all. With similar ideas to the first, it is not a complete brainless mess, but the focus and integrity is not quite there.

Pirates of the Caribbean: World’s End: 2.75/5

Cast: Geoffrey Rush (Shakespeare in Love), Kiera Knightly (Bend it like Beckham), Orlando Bloom (Lord of the Rings Trilogy), Chow Yun Fat (Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon), Johnny Depp (Edward Scissorhands), Bill Nighy (Love Actually)

In a nutshell: The good news is it doesn't seem as long as the almost 3 hours that it is, but on the otherhand, it just can't quite capture the magic of the first movie.

Brief Synopsis: Continuing from part 2 of the trilogy, Captain Barbossa, Elizabeth and Will Turner must save Captain Jack Sparrow from Davy Jones’ Locker.

There is a lot of excess in this final edition of the Captain Sparrow Train. There were scenes and perhaps characters that did not really add anything to the movie. As a result, many found the multiple storylines confusing and frustrating. For me, it was a case of lack of continuity and too much jerky editing. They also somewhat wasted Johnny Depp who really was is the reason why the franchise has been so successful. Having said all that, the main storylines and the resolution of the end (is it really?) of the trilogy was pleasantly enjoyable.

Zodiac: 3.75/5

Cast: Jake Gyllenhaal (Day after tomorrow), Robert Downey Jnr (Kiss Kiss Bang Bang),
Mark Ruffalo (Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind)

In a nutshell: Superb cast, mostly good suspenseful intensity. Pretty good for a based-on-a-true-story.

Brief Synopsis: Based on a true story. Follows three men, a cop, a newspaper reporter and a cartoonist, in their obsession to solve a serial killer case.

Although this is not your typical Fincher (Seven, Fightclub) movie, it is still excellent. Perhaps a little long, lagging slightly towards the end, this movie kept me riveted and intrigued for the majority. The acting is wonderful and the quality of the direction and script is almost perfect. While a little graphic and violent in bits, it is more the psychology and the finer details of the characters that keeps you in suspense and wanting more. Definitely worth a watch, will work just as well on DVD.

Monday, June 04, 2007

Personality Test - Imagini Visual DNA

Here's a bit of fun. Thanks to Daniella for sending this link on. :)

When you link on -- a series of about 12 pictures will come up -- click on a photo in that category. Just continue to keep picking the pics that appeal to you after reading the category. At the end it will give you a profile of yourself ...

Here's my profile plus some comments on why I chose what. Maybe have a look after you have done the test yourself!

Saturday, June 02, 2007

Chorizo omlette awaits

I did 33 spins in a row tonight...

....of course, I was not able to walk in a straight line afterwards.