Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Genial, Polite & Sensible (GPS)

I had a road trip down to Sydney last week, in a mad last minute to rush to collect a credit card (but I won't delve into that) and I got to use one of these GPS map display things that more and more cars are turning up with. These things are good.

This model - a Toyota one - comes with a nice, well mannered, lovely accented, female voice that gives directions like "In 800 metres turn right", or "Next intersection go straight" and "You have now reached your destination, would you like to come up for a cup of tea?".

The best thing though about these babies, is the thing never gets mad if you miss a turn. Instead, unlike your travel partner holding a street directory, it will seamlessly reroute itself to get you back on track without missing a beat - without the "What the hell did you do that for? We now have to turn around!".

I am sold .. now for that tea.

Thursday, December 22, 2005

My Toys Are Bigger Than Yours

How many people do you know own a 1950's CAT D8 bulldozer, a Belorussian articulated tractor, two veteran 1910 era Cadillac cars and two 30 metre high wind turbines? For me it adds up to one. My old man.

I have been catching up with him over the last week and catching up with his eccentric buying habits. He is a man of independent financial means and ends up spending it on some big boy toys. Admittedly they mostly have a function .. apart from the Cadillacs which are just big toys .. but the others are either for his farm or a new business venture for wind generated electricity.

The turbines are impressive. I had been told they were big, but it is not until you get up close to one that you grasp that these things are big bits of equipment. Unfortunately they are still in bits, waiting for approval to be erected and working. Still it gives me the opportunity to suss them out up close.

Not a ballistic missile, just a 30 metre wind turbine tower

The car sized bit that sits on top

Dad checking out the guts

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Hello Popular Culture, I Am Back

Back in the world of mass entertainment, and what is the first thing I choose .. King Kong.

Good .. but predictable .. poor Kong, you definately feel sorry for him at the end. Not so much for her though, what was she thinking? And how can you be at the top of the Empire State Building in a flimsy dress in the middle of winter and not shiver once. Tough Aussie bird.

I have also knocked off another thing on the list that I was hanging out for .. heading off to my favourite pub to sample the more than one beer on tap which is on selection

But there was certainly one thing that I didn't miss up north .. the cost. Movies, coke and popcorn = $24. One schooner of beer in Sydney = $5. My savings are going to go in no time at this rate .. and I still need to finish off the dreaded Chrissie shopping. Methinks work will be required in the new year.

Friday, December 16, 2005

For the guys in Lae ...

I am sure a few records were broken over the last month.