My Blog is Three!

Source – Daily Mail Australia

So my blog turned three in the last few days.

It survived the “Terrible Twos” with sporadic posts on topics ranging from travel, music, books, What’s Next, and study.

What my blog celebrates most is the period of transition that the last three years have been. It started three years ago with a post about The Adelaide Crows close loss to Hawthorn in the 2012 Prelimanry Final and just a week before its third birthday, The Adelaide Crows had a not so close loss to Hawthorn in another final. Most significantly my blog’s third birthday coincides with completion of my Honours Thesis (due in just a few weeks).

Three years ago I decided that I needed a reason to write as I pursued options to position myself  for What’s Next and a blog seemed a good idea. A reason to write a thousand words a month, a goal that has well and truly been achieved in each and every month since, by way of blog posts, articles for The Adelaide Review and University assignments that will culminate in few weeks time with about 20,000 words in the form of my Thesis.

So my blog’a third birthday is perhaps best described as the first chapter of What’s Next. It has been a place to experiment; writing about different things and recording thoughts about the stages of What’s Next. Importantly for me it has provided a contemporary record of what I was thinking across a significant period of my life. 

Now as my blog enters its fourth year I expect my blog will record events  that occur as I move past What’s Next, exit transition and get on with it. It will be a place to write about our three months in Italy, my progress into academia which hopefully next year will see me commence my PhD, and to continue to write about books I’ve found interesting and of course music.

Happy Third Birthday

Source :

Posted in Italy 2015, Study, Stuff!, Travel | Tagged , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

The heat is on!

While I still have three months until my thesis is due, it’s really only two months and then it’s actually only about three weeks. This is because it needs a preread by a non-examiner to make sure I’m on track(hope I am!)m a full read by my supervisor and then submission. So what seemed a long time when I started no longer is.

I’m really feeling like the heat is on! The pressure is building and it’s not like something I’ve experienced since my professional entrance exams because it’s so personal. In the past  the pressure has been to deliver for a client with the backing of a massive infrastructure now it’s just me with the support of a supervisor who has been truly awesome(I’ve been so lucky on that count).

It’s been code data, analyse, write, then  read, write, review, read, write, review and over again. It feels relentless. I’m struggling to find time for my bike and my music choice is either a Spotify Playlist or NZ’s The Sound – no time to think about what to listen too.

In fact there’s no more time for this post either as I need to get on with it!

Posted in Study | Tagged , , , | 2 Comments

Thousands of Words and Thousands of Tracks

With just ten weeks to go until my formal thesis draft is due for review  I was reflecting on what music has accompanied my recent studies. Each week I listen to so much music with the result that across the period of my Honours i could have listen to more than twenty thousand tracks.

It’s been a mix, sometimes a playlist that comes up on Spotify because I can’t be bothered thinking about what I want to listen too. Maybe it’s listening to The Sound, an Auckland based radio station that streams, listening to the audio of a Pay TV station or a focus on an artist. 

Generally it’s been low key smooth music. Generally it’s stress less music.

I’ve been listening to Tori Amos’s Gold Dust quite a lot. It’s a remix of some of her earlier material. When it was released I thought it was OK and that it was a bit of a rehash however on reflection I can see how it repositions some of her classics and lesser known songs with an orchestral feel. The highlight of the album for me is Girl Disappearing.

When it comes to soft rock it’s hard for me to go past The Shins. Continue reading

Posted in Music, Study | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Are Cyclists like Cats on a Rainy day?

Our Cat!

Our Cat!

I was struck by a thought as I walked back from University on a wet cold Adelaide winter’s day.

Are Cyclists like Cats on a Rainy day?

On rainy days our cat wanders from window to window seeing if it is raining outside each. I found myself effectively doing the same on my walk home. It wasn’t raining behind me which was towards the coast but it was in the hills which were in front of me. So, maybe a flat ride might be OK? Then once home the sun was shining out to the north – maybe that was the direction for a ride?

In any event, shortly thereafter the wind came up, the clouds took over and down came the rain. Like our cat everywhere I looked there was no respite. Another day without a ride.

As a result, just 25kms on the bike in the last 10 days but it has enabled me to spend hours and hours on my thesis. Not a bad thing as a recent discussion with the Honours Co-ordinator confirmed that I have just 12 weeks to finish it. With that thought has come the first hint of panic. Continue reading

Posted in Cycling, Study, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Planning – Italy 2015

Mt Etna

Mt Etna

For the very few of you who have followed my blog since it early days (apart from thank you) you will know that as I focussed on “What’s next” I have wanted to spend 3 months in Italy. In Novemebr 2015 we will – well almost- Insurance and Visa rules mean it will be a few days short.

Agrigento - Sicily

Agrigento – Sicily

On insurance, my new post fulltime work cost saving regime means we will use our credit card policy which allows only 90 days for the trip. While on the cost cutting, yet again, I couldn’t face the cost of Business Class (just over double the cost of economy). We have decided however that we will only do daytime flights – we are not in a hurry.

To do this we enlisted the support of a travel agent something we haven’t done on recent trips given the resources available online. Our initial discussions weren’t that fruitful with agents suggesting that it really wasn’t feasible. Then we stumbled upon a very helpful travel agent who seemed to immediately grasp the idea. She understood that we are not we weren’t in a hurry so flying in a number of steps is not a problem to us. Infact the whole idea of this holiday is slow travel – apparently this brings the cost down? Using stop-overs in Singapore,Sri Lanka and Dubai we land in Milan having flown only during the day. Our return will be Rome, Dubai, Singapore, then home via Perth. To claim the Perth leg is a day flight is a stretch (lands at midnight) but it is only a short hop from Singapore – so I will claim it. We won’t have to attempt to sleep on the plane which is something I really struggle with. It also provides an opportunity to spend a few days in Sri Lanka, something that wasn’t on our agenda previously and for my favourite person it will be her first visit to Singapore. Continue reading

Posted in Italy 2015, Travel | Tagged , , , , | 6 Comments