Thursday, April 29, 2010


Or should I say "rot in hell"?

I am ever hopeful this is the last we'll see of the Emissions Trading Scheme but I'm sure Penny Wong, Bob Brown [there's two I'd like to see drown under rising sea levels!] et al will continue to moan about what bad little humans we are, how much we must all pay for our sins in order to "save" planet Earth.

What might the next reincarnation of the ETS look like?

Friday, April 16, 2010

Loving the Kindle

I'm very happy to report that I love my Kindle. I purchased it with some amount of trepidation, wondering how on earth an electronic gadget would be able to replicate the experience of reading a book.

Well I can easily say that the experience is not deminished, at least not for me. My first book purchase was Nick Hornby's Juliet, Naked and I loved it; reading it on the Kindle didn't detract in any way from my enjoyment.

The features of the Kindle really blow my mind. Being able to search the Amazon Kindle Store by (free) wireless connection from just about anywhere and then purchase and download a book with just a few clicks and a wait of only 10 or 20 seconds is truly amazing. Then there are the features I can appreciate though I would probably rarely use. Like the text size adjustment, the text-to-speech feature available on most books, the inbuilt dictionary which allows you to pop up a definition simply by positioning your cursor next to the word in question, the ability to email PDF documents to yourself at your Kindle email account. The list goes on.

For me it's simply the ease of use and the simple elegance of always having a library in my handbag. After reading Juliet, Naked I downloaded The Remains of the Day which I have been meaning to read after loving Never Let Me Go so much. Recent Kindle Store searching has revealed bargains like the entire Jane Austen collection for $5.19. Many classics are even available for free but I haven't downloaded one yet so I'm not sure what the "catch" is.

Now I'm working my way through a stack of unread paper books and very quickly they seem bothersome to me. Big, heavy and annoying. You could say I have embraced the new technology and I'm not looking back. If you are a book lover I'd say take a look, you might surprise yourself.

Perth Pics

My little munchkins amongst the gumnut babies.

The volunteer guides at Fremantle Prison were not willing to take cash to keep them like this for a few hours. Sheesh! We tried.

Payng hommage to Bon Scott on the Fremantle waterfront.

So much to tell you, dear diary

I know I've been MIA the last couple of weeks and I do apologise.

The week before school holidays started (i.e. the week before Easter) we flew to Perth to visit Big Jay's side of the family. The kids and I haven't been for over three years and it was about time to catch up and let the kids see their cousins.

The trip itself was fine (I won't mention that there were moments when the kids nearly drove me to the point of madness with their whining and complaining). Perth has come a very long way since I first visited 17 years ago. This time we visited a few places I haven't been before, like Mandurah and Yanchep National Park. I have to say there is a lot of effort being made to provide family friendly environments, especially playgrounds, and there is certainly no shortage of places to eat. Particuarly I loved visiting Fremantle which is being restored building by building and looks sensational. We decided it would be our base next time we go because it is so much more vibrant than Perth city (which still remains very much a ghost town on weekends and evenings).

[I will put up some photos in a separate post.]

We returned home on the Sunday of the Easter long weekend. The following week, the first official week of the school holidays, was somewhat of a blur. Visiting friends, entertaining the kids, trying to fit in a couple of days at work. (Special mention should be made at this point of my mum and my sister J who have really helped me out in a big way with childcare duties. School hols are always a juggle but now, with two kids at school, the pressure has increased considerably. I really don't know how women without family support and "real" jobs manage.)

The thing taking up most of my gray matter time right now is Big Jay and the fact that he will be sans job come 30 April. This retrenchment has been in the pipeline for some six months now but I think because of the long lead time we've both been in some sort of denial, hoping that another position would be found. It hasn't and the last few weeks have seen us in serious "future" discussion mode. What did Big Jay want? Did he want to stay in this strange IT world in which he found himself almost as if by accident? What other choices were there at 40? Suffice to say decisions have been made, applications for jobs have been sent, a course has been enrolled in. My Pollyanna-ish approach to life means I believe everything will turn out for the best; we have our health, roof over our heads, not quite ready to check into the poor house, yadda yadda... Nevertheless, I crave certainty (even temporary certainty) and until another job is in place I can't quite get over the fear which has taken up residence somewhere in my gut.

Anyway, the kids go back to school this coming week and I will hopefully have some space to clear my thoughts and get back on top of things (ha!). I need my routine to set the perimeters of my life and having not had that routine in place the last few weeks has probably caused me to be a little more anxious than I normally would be. Control freak? Moi?

OK. Need to go. Photos and more posts coming up shortly.