The Pencil Guy: Hourann's illogical blog

Off to the mountains

Saturday 31 December 2005 at 7:47 am

I am currently in a town called Katoomba, on the outskirts of Sydney, and right in the middle of the Blue Mountains. Although the place I’m staying at is somewhat dodgy, there is a lot of very cool scenery within walking distance of here, and the area is littered with awesome hiking trails through the forest.

Unfortunately this post does not come with any photos, because the computers in the place I’m staying (see above) are running Windows 98 (!) and don’t have any available USB ports. At least the Net access is cheap, and it’s using Firefox (the Internet Explorer icon on the desktop has been renamed “Don’t Use”).

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Mansions and zoos

Wednesday 28 December 2005 at 8:30 pm

After some hassles with a stupid bus that doesn’t run on public holidays (even though it goes to tourist attractions that are open), I spent my last day in Victoria down at Werribee, home of the open range zoo and a cool old mansion set in massive parklands. The zoo was awesome, although our safari bus ride was slightly spoiled by selfish, er, international tourists who neither controlled their small children nor followed the zookeeper’s instructions.

Mansion at Werribee Park   Gardens near the Werribee Park mansion
Lions at the Open Range Zoo   Male Rothschild giraffe at Werribee   Meerkats!

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Xmas in Melbourne

Monday 26 December 2005 at 9:03 pm

Merry Christmas, happy Hanukkah, and a wonderful Boxing Day to anyone I haven’t contacted recently. Christmas Day was for me a walk through Melbourne’s (very nice) Royal Botanic Gardens, which was awesome in all aspects … except for the fact that I could have sworn those clouds and that wind was the kind of thing that only happened in winter.

Christmas tree in Federation Square   Melbourne from the Royal Botanic Gardens

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O city of churches

Thursday 22 December 2005 at 9:33 pm

So the first few days of my holiday in Adelaide have been fun, as was the train ride over.

The Indian-Pacific   Adelaide from Victoria Square

Somewhat annoyingly, one of the generators in the train died, taking the air conditioning with it, only a few kilometres out of the Nullarbor (so there were trees, but ’twas no less hot). Equally annoying, our first day in Adelaide was their first 38-degree day of summer.

Ancient tram at GlenelgBut I’ve seen plenty of cool things as well, such as the funky old tram we took to Glenelg (which is a mix of Subiaco’s Rokeby Road, Cottesloe’s beach, and Fremantle’s vibe).

Massive plastic Santa in Rundle MallThere was also a giant Santa in Rundle Mall!

I’m posting from our hotel Internet connection in Melbourne because the café I’d meant to go to in Adelaide was closed by the time I got there. (10pm, d’oh!) So there will soon be more posts and more photos. Well, maybe.

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Woo! New stuff!

Wednesday 14 December 2005 at 10:19 pm

Late, over-budget, and not quite as good as in the original plan. Heck, I couldn’t be more like a government contractor if I’d tried!

So yes, this blog is all new and different-looking, and I’ve finally gone and replaced the back-end software with something that doesn’t suck. (On that note, WordPress is awesome, although the import plugin I used was kinda dodgy and I had to modify it myself.)

I’m not 100% confident about making this site “live”, since it’s still very rough around the edges and I’m sure there’s something critically important that I’ve forgotten. But at least it gives me a much nicer admin panel for when I go off on holiday and use those crazy Internet café things, away from the comfort of my laptop’s dev tools.


Firmware that works!

Monday 12 December 2005 at 5:56 pm

Yay for the smart people in the Whirlpool forums who know the best firmware for my Netgear DG834G. Having followed their advice, I think the issue I was having with random drop-outs is now resolved. As a result, I now have a reliable ADSL2 connection at 4.5 Mbit … w00t!

In other news, I’ve finally sorted out what I’m doing next year, having just handed in an enrolment form today. The order of the day is Honours in politics, which narrowly edged out my two other (science-ey) options. Of course, whichever option I chose, I was always going to continue in the long term goal of world domination … this is just to keep me out of trouble in the meantime.

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