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Inspiration, Not Expiration

It is easy in the world to live after the world's opinions; it is easy in solitude to live after our own; but the Great Man is he who in the midst of the crowd keeps with perfect sweetness the independence of solitude.
-- Ralph Waldo Emerson

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Friday, December 09, 2005
If it ain't broken, break it!

Thank goodness that I can email blog entries in. I'm here at work and I'm not allowed full internet access. I also can't blog using my Treo anymore, but more on that later!

An update on the car front. Thanks for the useful comments! I finally got my car back for the past couple of weeks or so. It's no longer overheating now that it has a new water pump fitted! This has been quite fortunate, because the termperature has since shot up into the 30's (Celcius), so having an overheating car would not have survived very long!

Despite the car working again, I'm really on the look-out for another car. As much as it's been fun, I'm not too fond of having to bring it back to the garage every month and having to rent something to drive in while it's being fixed! I think I might trade it in for a decent car with manual transmission or something.

On the subject of things needing fixing, I've managed to turn my all-singing all-dancing Treo 650 PDA phone into a pretty brick. It was my fault entirely: I was trying to upgrade the firmware on it with an unofficial version. It's ended up in a constant reset loop and no amount of soft, warm, hard or even zero-out resets is making it behave properly. I'm waiting for a fix to come out, so in the meantime, no more blogging on the move! (So much for that idea!!)

More updates later.

Posted at 3:21 am by alkam

Sunday, December 04, 2005
Mobile blogging

I'm sitting in MacDonald's in Randwick, Sydney doing a bit of blogging on the move. I'm actually opposite the University of New South Wales and grabbed a few bargains from the Computer Fair that they were holding there.

I'm not really sure how much of a bargain they really are because I don't really know what the prices are in Australia, but they seem cheap when I convert the prices to Pounds Sterling!

I might take a picture on my phone and see if I can post it to my Flickr photo stream thing!

My car has been fixed, by the way, but I'm very tempted to trade it in for something that doesn't break down every month! Stay tuned.


Sent via Treo 650

Posted at 5:25 am by alkam

Thursday, November 24, 2005
Car Sick

No, I'm not referring to travel sickness here. My car is sick again and I'm looking to rent a car for the next few days until my car can be looked at. This time it's an overheating when it's idling, and I suspect that the radiator cooler fan may be broken.

I've uploaded a small number of photos to flickr, and they can be seen here:

I haven't completely mastered the features of flickr yet, so they're not organised very much!

Posted at 12:07 pm by alkam

Thursday, November 10, 2005

Things are starting to get hot here in New South Wales, Australia. The temperature was above 30 Celcius and it's only spring time! When I was saying I was starting to get a tan in the UK, that was nothing compared to the ferocity of the sun here. I'm having to remember to put on the SPF 30+ sunscreen before I go out!

There are thunderstorms predicted tonight, so we've been advised to tie down anything that might fly away and to park cars under cover because there may be hailstones! Nice!

I've got some pictures, but haven't had a chance to upload them yet. The good news is that I now have broadband! Woohoo! I'll have photos up as soon as I around to it!

On a housekeeping note, I used to have a mirror site that was a standby in case this site on blogdrive had a problem. Since the mirror page was on a free site, I'm not surprised that it's disappeared off the net! Ah well. C'est la vie!

"Appreciation is like looking through a wide-angle lens that lets you see the entire forest, not just the one tree limb you walked upon."

-Doc Childre and Sara Paddison

Posted at 11:32 am by alkam

Saturday, October 22, 2005
Car back

Well, I've had my car back for the past few days and I'm glad to say that it's running more smoothly than it has been doing since I bought it.

Of course nothing ever happens without incident, it seems. I had occasion to use emergency braking on the freeway towards Sydney the day after I got the car back. Luckily the brakes worked fine and apart from quite a scare, no-one was hurt. I guess the positive side is that, had I still been in the Ute, I would probably not stopped as quickly!

All's well that ends well.

And now I'm on-call for 24 hours! :)


Sent via Treo 650

Posted at 6:16 am by alkam

Monday, October 17, 2005
Ute Adventures

I've been having a spot of trouble with my car for the past few days. I'd bought this second-hand 10yr old Mitsubishi Lancer from a car dealer in Sydney, and managed to get him to throw in some warranty.

Unfortunatelty, I had to get my car serviced as a condition of the warranty agreement. The car was starting to stall anyway, so a service seemed like a good idea.

Alas, they could not fix the stalling problem, and said the carby needed refurbishing. On the safe side, I took out some breakdown cover just in case the car stopped working.

What I didn't expect was for the car to stop working the day after! It just wouldn't idle.

Anyway the garage is telling me that no-one had touched the carby for the 10 yrs it had left the factory! The garage were going to see if the cost could be offset by the warranty but it doesn't look promising.

Right now I'm driving a rental Ute! How Aussie is that?


Sent via Treo 650

Posted at 11:27 am by alkam

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

I saw a spectacular view of a newly formed rainbow from my office yesterday afternoon. Unlike the UK where it's overcast quite a bit, it gets overcast here in New South Wales only when it's about to rain (which sadly isn't very often so the country a bit on the dry side). Once it stops raining, it gets bright again.



Sent via Treo 650

Posted at 2:41 pm by alkam

Sunday, September 11, 2005
Still alive

I've finally managed to get the chance to post an update here. I've settled into my new place in the sunny hamlet of Terrigal in Australia's Central Coast. It's been a rush the first few weeks trying to find a place to live, get a car and start work!

It's now spring time here and the weather is great. It was actually very good in winter too, and it's so nice to get away from the wet and overcast weather I was experiencing in the UK.

I'll have some pictures to post in due course, but I've just finished a 24hr on-call, so that'll have to wait for now. It's also a bit of a bummer that I'm not allowed to have internet access from my work account, so have to use dial-up at home.

More later and thanks for all the comments while I was away! :)

Posted at 10:37 am by alkam

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Greetings from Taiwan! I've stopped off here for a week or so before I continue on with my trip to Australia.

In contrast to the weather I left behind in the UK, it's swelteringly hot here and I'm still trying to get used to it. The jetlag hasn't been particularly bad, but get me in a car with air conditioning and I'll happily fall asleep!

Well, it's just a few more days before I make that final flight towards Sydney!


Sent via Treo 650

Posted at 12:18 pm by alkam

Thursday, August 04, 2005
Flight of Ideas

Maybe it's just me, but I've always noticed an increase in news and TV programmes about air disasters just before going on a flight myself.

I mean there was that miraculous crash in Canada where the plane split in two but nobody got hurt. Today I hear about a mayday distress call from a plane whose engines started smoking as they were flying over Leeds.

It could be just that I'm flying soon that I'm more sensitive to noticing these things!

That's all for now.


Sent via Treo 650

Posted at 5:08 pm by alkam

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