Thursday, December 31, 2009

2010: the year of h

this image has been sitting in a draft 'new year's resolution post' for almost two weeks. while it perfectly depicts how i feel about 2010 and what the year will mean for me, i haven't been able to find the right words to fall underneath.

my solution to writer's block is usually just to type. stop thinking and type. that's what i am doing right now. i hope it works.

i usually make new year's resolutions. i don't sit down and write a list but there's always a few things in my mind that i'd like to achieve and i use the turn of the year as inspiration. why not?

i am embarrassed to say, although i am sure i'm not alone, those resolutions are oft related to physical changes. lose 5kg. find abdominal muscles. etc. surprise, surprise - in 2010 i would like to lose 5kg. but the weight loss is a distant second this time around.

for me, 2010 will be about two things:

my head and my heart

so, you know, just minor challenges.

by now you know i am a little crazy, and there's a whole lot about my head i want to sort out, but ultimately i want to learn how to let go. let go of past hurt. let go of present insecurity.

my heart is a victim of my head. in committing to dealing with my head i imagine and hope my heart will benefit. i imagine and hope my heart will open.

i feel good about 2010. i am excited about the year's potential, my potential. and i have the greatest motivation. another 'h'.


happy new year, team camelshoes. i hope 2010 is one to remember.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

t(w)o three or not t(w)o three?

i'm still fiddling with my layout. you can probably tell. i am basically happy with it but it's not perfect and i am pedantic about this kind of stuff. you should have seen the uni notes i used to produce. talk about your time-waster.

anyway, there will no doubt be tweaks to come but i wanted your advice on one major thing: two columns or three?

right now, obviously, camelshoes is sporting three columns and i think i have the columns widths just about right. i think.

when it was two columns, the width of the entire blog was quite a bit smaller (ie: on a computer screen the size of mine, there was more white space either side of the 'stuff'), the main column was on the left and there was one sidebar on the right.

which did you prefer?

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

drum roll please

firstly, apologies to camelshoes. 200 posts and i didn't bat an eyelid. i'm embarrassed to say, just days before posting entry 200, i noticed i was on 199 and vowed to celebrate accordingly when i clocked my double century.

then i forgot. and there's the story of my life.

anyway, i am here now ready to discuss my best of 2009 list. i've shamelessly pinched this idea from snob nicky and altered it to suit. without further ado....

{the year's best stuff, according to me}

best book: yes, i really am going to plug it again. the book thief. read it, read it, read it.

best movie: i'm not big on flicks. i would watch a season of flight of the conchords, scrubs, the office et al before i would commit to a movie. i am actually struggling to think of movies i watched in 2009. as for the best....ummmm, perhaps the reader.

best tv show: it wasn't new to 2009, but it was new to me. the inbetweeners. funny shit. on this topic, i really miss british television. apologies to my beloved australia, but we're really not up to scratch.

best song: london took me out of the music loop a little. seems silly given the plethora of live music at london's fingertips. but i traditionally discover music loves on the radio and i traditionally listen to the radio in the car. no car in london. since returning to oz, triple j has reunited me with fantastic music and right now i cannot get enough of home by edward sharpe and the magnetic zeros, little lion man from mumford and sons and dan sultan's letter. and it would be remiss of me not to give boom boom pow a commercial thumbs up. drop the beat now.

best album: i was introduced to this album in 2008 so i am totally cheating but i cannot go past girl talk's feed the animals. it was definitely my 2009 soundtrack.

best destination: paris. je t'aime. closely followed by salzburg.

best trend: shoulders. who would have thought?

best story: michael jackson. to clarify, i don't mean to imply the news of his death was the best, just the fascinating way it was covered. i couldn't stop reading about it.

best blog find: i can't really complain about this being too hard because i put it here. it just seems kind of relevant. there were lots of new blogs i took a liking to in 09. a huge kudos to seema for her drive and courage kick-starting side street, sydney. five stars to tavi the style rookie for displaying words and style exceeding her tender years. and eternal gratitude to matthew at fuck you, penguin for his sublime combination of hilarity and originality.

{what about you? any standouts in 2009?}

Monday, December 21, 2009

mandatory christmas photo

A big, fat Merry Christmas readers.
I hope you love it and I hope Santa rocks all of our worlds.

Friday, December 18, 2009

look what i made...

...and i'm giving it to rick.

there are these blog awards which float around the interwebbysphereson. they're just random little blog badges which one blogger passes on to another as a mark of recognition.

i don't know how they start. i don't really know how they work. so it's with an air of 'why not?' that i've created the 'love your words' award.

the 'love your words' award will work on a tag-you're-it basis. i'm tagging rick and i'll tell you why in a minute. once rick finds out he's 'won' (i guess i'll tell him by commenting on his blog - if you know a better way, do tell) he will be completely obligated to post an entry of his own informing his readers of one, the recognition, two, where it came from and three, where he is going to send it next.

yes, it's also a pretty good networking exercise.

because i am really good at googling stuff super technologically advanced, i have created a html code which means rick, and all future victors, can put the above badge on their blog - if they so desire. trophies are so 1990s.

have i covered everything?

it's important to note, i follow and enjoy a lot of blogs. sure, it's a great procrastination tool but i also get a lot out of it. i love good stories. i love amazing words. the combination of both completes me.

rick's blog is the first i ever followed. admission: i know rick and he is a friend. but biased i am not. his writing is utterly fantastic and many, many strangers think so too. he will write a book one day. it will be successful. and i will tell everyone it all started with the 'love your words' award (even though it didn't).

tag. you're it, rick. and i look forward to following the domino effect.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

i'm not crying. it's just been raining...on my face

it is with great sadness that i bring to your attention the retirement of flight of the conchords.

here's a little something to remember them by. it's a favourite scene of mine and mike's. we laugh almost daily at the five seconds of deadpan brilliance from 3 mins 38 secs.

"oh no, do you?"

"yes, we do."

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

giving: it really is a gift

inspired by karls, i am going to tell you all a little christmas tale. a tale of love. a tale of generosity. a tale of what-the-fuck-kind-of-christmas-present-is-this?

disclaimer: i love, respect and very much miss my late grandparents.

moving on.

when i was young, and my sisters were younger, we were the envy of our friends come december. they would come over to play but instead be transfixed by the mountain of presents sitting under our tree.

i couldn't blame them. it was spectacular. the pile was as high as it was wide and it was pretty wide. so many presents.

but while our friends stood in awe, we remained apathetic for we knew what was in store for us come christmas day.

most of the presents were all from our grandparents. our loving, generous grandparents. no, i am serious. but if there was ever a case of quantity, not quality, this is it.

i once got, among other things (many other things), a top which still had the price tag on it. it had been reduced from $49.99 to $39.99. from $39.99 to $29.99. from $29.99 to $19.99. and lastly, from $19.99 to $9.99. talk about your bargain hunters.

but middle sister was the lucky recipient of the most memorable gift. or gifts. again among many other things, she had the thrill of unwrapping...wait for it...waaaaait for it...a packet of 1000 cotton buds.

yes. cotton buds.
even better: for her birthday the next year - which is in JANUARY - she was delighted to score five packets of 100 cotton buds. they were individually wrapped too which just added to the fun.

i can't say i remember her having particularly waxy ears. or a baby with lots of snot. and what the hell else to you do with cotton buds?

oh, now i see.

to be honest, at the time it annoyed us. we were young and we were brats. but as we got older, it got funnier and now i am glad i have such a memory. the bottom line: they cared enough to think of us every single time they spotted a mean deal. it's sweet. and it scored me heaps of electrical tape over the years.

Monday, December 14, 2009


i don't like when the entry proceeding a blogtography monday post is a blogtography monday post. alas, that is the case today. i guess it's been a busy week. december always kicks my arse. with my christmas shopping almost complete, i am going to try to do better this week.

meanwhile, this photo makes me smile. it also makes me want to travel. it also makes me envious of her clothes.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

all i want for christmas is for no one within ear shot to play mariah carey

dear santa,

i've been heaps good this year. on to a completely non-related matter, i want these things:

{clue: it ain't from kmart}


so i can make lots and lots and lots of:

away from the kitchen, i'm thinking:

that's season two for those playing at home. plus:

because mine is crap.

Merry Christmas xx

ps: i'm out of liquid eyeliner. *ahhhstockingfillerchoo*

Thursday, December 3, 2009

now i'm in love with two rangas

this is nonja. she's 33. has red hair. loves photography and throwing her own poo.

nonja's camera dispenses raisins. bonus.

her photos of her mates and surroundings at a vienna zoo are the bomb dot com.

i particularly like this one.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

de ja vu

i've thought about disowning my sister. i mean, she's fun. when we're not fighting like passionate sisters do, we get along like a proverbial house on fire. but she didn't rate the book thief and that's just not on as far as i am concerned.

you might recall, although you more likely don't, that i billed this the best book in the history of the world a while back. this will jog your memory. nothing's changed. it still rocks my world. i talk about it often. i don't see that changing any time soon. **
the reason i am bringing this up again is not to bore you. promise. it's because i am testing the blog this waters to see if it's something which works for me. fyi, blog this is a network for australian bloggers and offers weekly inspiration by way of post topics, this week's topic, you might have guessed, is basically 'most memorable book of 2009'.

i like to mix things up.i've displayed that here with the cunning use of the 'upload-a-different-cover-to-last-time' method.

easy. no contest. the book thief by markus zusak. and i've read some pretty damn memorable books so far this year. in fact, the book i read immediately before the book thief, a thousand splendid suns, had replaced the lovely bones as my favourite only to topple weeks later.

and, realising favourite is not necessarily a synonym for memorable, night by elie wiesel - an utterly harrowing memoir of the holocaust - must also be among the unforgettable.

but the book thief...i just fell in love with those words.

i read only today, while looking for that picture up there, that the book thief was marketed towards the young adult demographic. i scoffed. unacceptable. you cannot pigeon hole this book. it is, without doubt, for anyone.

the book thief is narrated by a cheerful, affable, amiable character who the reader meets very early. that narrator is death. and there it is, page 4, the reason i love this book. zusak starts, progresses and concludes outside the square. his risks, and there are many, pay off making for not just an amazing read, but an inspiring one.

set in germany before and during world war II, you'd be forgiven for assuming the book thief would be graphic or heavy, especially considering the grim reaper is telling the tale. and while death and dying are major themes, zusak's words work in such a way that there is little to feel uneasy about. you will, in fact, likely empathise with death as a down-trodden employee working for the man.

literature itself is celebrated in the novel and forms the foundation of a number of key relationships. the friendship formed between protagonist liesel meminger (a young girl, endearing but feisty) and max vandenburg (a jew who liesel's foster parents are hiding in their basement), for mine, one of the most touching.

shall i go on? i could. i really could. i could talk about the book thief all day. but it's no good reading what i thought. just get your hands on a copy. sink your teeth in. and if you don't love it, don't tell me or i'll have to disown you too.

**enter. enter. enter enter ENTER. it won't work. i don't know why, but it's not doing my OCD any good at all.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

monday 23 nov: possibly the worst ever (in melodramatic land)

i woke up with the remnants of sunday's outrageously painful hangover. it was a delightful combo of throbbing headache and mild depression, having somehow been so drunk that i threw up for the first time in more than two years. shame. i truly detest crossing that line. but the 'episode' was at home and in the bathroom so kudos there. and, as i told myself while watching the day's champagne, beer and red wine intake (and there's your problem) flush away, it had to be good for the weight loss.

in the adding-insult-to-injury department, the UTI (google it) which popped by on saturday also lingered. i'm not sure why i feel it's okay to tell you that, but there you go.

so, ouch in the head. ouch in the *coughvjaycough*. awesome start to the week.

i left the house for work at 815am. i am staying with a friend for the next couple of weeks and this was the first time i had made the journey from her suburb to my place of employment. i was giving myself an extra 15 minutes for 'justin'.

i spent the next five to 10 minutes trying to find the car. the boy was the last one to park it. his detailed "it's-just-down-that-street there" directive was accompanied by a misguided finger point. well, that's my memory of the convo. his was different, and his brain was working a hell of a lot better than mine on sunday. still, i am probably right.

i tried to call him for specifics. my phone was dead. i wandered up and down wrong street for five minutes. changed tact. found correct street. found car.

not the best start to my journey but i still had enough time to be at work by nine - if i managed a flawless trip. i didn't.

my friend's directions were quite likely perfect but they were delivered to me the night before. my poor fried brain was, let's face it, not listening. i nodded along while telling myself i would call her in the morning when i had the map in my hand.

as you'll recall, dead phone.

so i tried to map the route myself. thought i'd done okay. proceeded.


at about 930am, i found the southern cross drive exit - southbound. wrong direction. at this point, i am still about five minutes' drive from my starting point and already half an hour late for work.

of course, i can't call work. dead phone. i can't call mr direction, whoever that may be. dead phone. and i can't use google maps. DEAD FUCKING FUCKED PHONE.

my anxiety was hitting the roof. my inexperience in sydney traffic was not helping. the inability to pull over, collect myself and reroute the trip only added to the stress. i mapped out another route in stop-start traffic. i cannot believe harry the yari survived. i opted for parramatta road via botany. i know parra road. i figured it may not be the most direct, but it would at least work.

driving in sydney. fun for the whole family.

anxiety needles were still burning my skin but i was travelling sweetly along botany all the same. but wait, what's this? a FORCED FUCKING EXIT OFF BOTANY ROAD. FUCKING FUCK SHIT FUCK.

calm the drama. the exit wasn't nearly as bad as expected. i found parra road and arrived at work a mere two hours after leaving the house. and just 75 minutes after i planned to arrive.

so, bad day, huh? read on.

my head was still ouch. 'she' was also still ouch, getting oucher. i needed coffee but was petrified of weeing.

lunch time arrived. dear god, please can this day go faster? i decided i had the time to spare to head to the RTA. i bought a car last week and have to register it within 14 days. i had not yet had the time to duck out during my lunch break so i thought i'd take advantage of the spare moment while i could. i got in car and then realised the boy still has my license in his wallet from the weekend's activities.

i just sat there for a while. i needed a breather. i decided i'd go for a drive anyway although i am not sure why i thought reuniting with sydney roads was a good idea. i found a chemist which was a bonus because i needed 'stuff'. during the five minute period i was out of my car, the sky had opened. it was absolutely pouring and i was umbrella-less. there was a crowd under the awning, waiting for a break in the downpour but i didn't have that kind of time to spare. i hot-footed and made it to my car. looking like a drowned rat. feeling like a drowned rat

so, back at office, still drowned-rattyish, i tore off a 'medicinal sachet' to help calm the ol' UTI. i have done this so many times before. but this time was different. this time it ripped open and spewed pink crystals everywhere. i am still sweeping them off my desk, out of my handbag.

i laughed at the same time as i cried. this day was not going to end without a tantrum. i had to go home.

anxiety was rife before i even saw harry. would there be a repeat of the morning's performance? the nerves didn't evaporate but i did seem to be doing well. mind you, i spent about 15 minutes marking every page required and writing the corresponding page number on the printed off whereis directions. about 30 minutes in, and just a few more from 'home', i was slammed in the face with a decision i had no time to make. i veered right. if you'd like a prize for guessing which way i should have turned you can FUCK RIGHT OFF.

oh look, sydney airport. great. just what i need to fly the FUCK OUT OF THIS FUCKING CITY.

luckily for me, i went in such circles that morning i stumbled upon a street i recognised. via an unbelievably roundabout route, i made it. i finally fucking made it to the front door.

and you know how it's not until you reach your front door and can't find your keys in the abyss that is your handbag, that you feel the overwhelming need to wee? i was running on the spot like a mad women which, in turn, made it even harder to find my keys. i am sure i pulled every single item out of my bag twice before i found those keys. and why did i put them back in my bag in the first place?

i made it up three flights of stairs just in time. but wouldn't pissing myself have been the perfect way to end the day?

of course, i didn't get to enjoy that peeing-when-you're-busting feeling because i was still peeing razorblades.

there was nothing better than waking up last tuesday. a brand new day, ladies and gentlemen. a brand new day.

i couldn't post this last week. computer probs. i think my peripheral ports were all out of whack. and sorry for the personal joke but, trust me, it's hilarious!

Monday, November 30, 2009

down the garden path

it's a bonus to holiday with someone who has a eye for photo ops. i love this and i am in it. the two are often mutually exclusive.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

lady in red

i'm pretty, so pretty...

not me, my blog. this is not what i had in mind when i conducted this ramble. but last night i found myself so bored. boy was watching mission impossible 2 and i just cannot do tom cruise. so i logged onto camelshoes and kind of sighed a little bit. i really was done with the layout.

but i'll remember you fondly retro typin' gal

knowing that the layout i had in mind was, to return to tom, mission impossible (see what i did there?) i thought i'd just stick with something simple as a temporary measure.

and now i love it. perfectly simple. it might be here to stay.

oh, and if you've followed my link here hootie, scroll down. it's the next post.

Friday, November 27, 2009

my entry titles have been really shit lately

oh for freaky freak's sake. i have a blog entry. i wrote it tuesday. and it's stuck in my computer. select copy paste, why do you hurt me so? i am starting to think it's a sign. that blog god is telling me you've gone to far with your mentioning of your ailment that's hurting this space.

anyway, i have emailed the entry to myself and will post it from boy's computer tomorrow. actually, no. i think i'll wait until tuesday. i have my reasons. but how, how can you possibly wait that long? i recommend watching this. you'll need 10 minutes but it's worth it.

alternatively, here's a story. my mate won a walkley last night. freakin' ay!! this, for those who don't know, is totes awesome. it is the best, most prestigious journalism award in australia aaaaand he won 'scoop of the year'. scooping is what the biz is all about. i am so stoked for him.

not my friend. not a walkley.

congrats hootie!! who would have thought we'd actually grow up and achieve stuff?

Thursday, November 19, 2009

employment 101

job job job job job job job. i have one. i've had one for more than a month now which means this post is seriously tardy. soz.

i am all about media and pr at undisclosed location. and i can't quite believe my luck. not only is the gig just about perfecto for me, it also waited around for me. serendipitous.

it started a few months back. the last three weeks of august marked my last three weeks of work in london. the grand plan was to apply for jobs en masse so i'd have a few balls rolling once i got back to oz.

i did not do this. i was too busy saying goodbye to the city and the people i had loved for the previous 15 months. there was no room for in my life. i forgave myself the indiscretion and enjoyed my last weeks in the old dart.

thanks largely to a oz-based friend in my field of work, i did apply for just one job. said friend had seen it advertised and passed it on, presuming i would be interested. i was. i applied. i waited.

i checked my emails every day or so for the next three weeks but heard nothing. that's not an issue, just the truth. come september, i packed up my bags and embarked on travel, travel, travel. new york, krakow, san sebastian, hong kong and some seriously special, sad, fun goodbyes during the fleeting london-based moments in between.

i honestly cannot not tell you whether i was simply too caught up to keep checking my emails or had figured i had been unsuccessful. i think it was probably a combo of both. but, bottom line, the travelling lifestyle is not conducive to following the job trail.

on october 8, sitting on the balcony at mum's house in the aussie sunshine, i checked my emails. i had one from undisclosed location. a rejection email i assumed. and, of course, i assumed wrong. of course, not because i am so damn good i obviously would never be rejected (boast rejected letters to prove it) but because this story would be damn pointless other wise. the email was in face a request for an interview. a phone interview since i lived in london. 'what time would be best?' it asked. in a fluster, i scrolled up. when, when, when was this sent?

september 10.


what a waste. what a fuck up. i felt stupid but, even worse, i felt utterly unprofessional. i mentioned my stupidity briefly here.

i quickly replied without hope, only courtesy.

so sorry...blahblah...was globetrotting...blahblahblah...assume you've found a suitable cadidate...blahblah...if not, would love to meet wishes...blah...sincerely...blah.

my phone rang. it was undisclosed location. they had completed the interview process but not yet made a decision. they invited my for an 11th hour interview.

that was a thursday. my interview was that tuesday. i was offered the job thursday. i started the next monday.

in a nutshell, the job search could not have gone better. add to that the fact i landed in australia during the three hour window sydney airport was accepting planes on 'the day of the dust' and the fact i found the perfect car for me the second i started looking aaaaand the fact my amazing boy is cooking us dinner as i type -

no dole queue for me. shame. looks like i missed out on a mean cuppa.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

ch ch ch changes

i desperately want to change the look of my blog. i loved this retro-orange-martini-type writery layout when i started. and i loved it for a long time after. i still like it, but it's not me anymore. i have grown out of it. camelshoes has grown out of it.

problem one. i vividly recall the trauma of trying to get this layout right in the first place. when i finally did make it work, i didn't even know how i managed. it was highly stressful and i don't want to go back there.

problem two. well, it's kind of the same as problem one. in the past month, i have twice tried to refurbish camelshoes and twice failed. a completely indecipherable error message is all i have managed to create.

does anyone know how to crack these codes? and can you come to my house please? i'll buy you an ice cream.

to appease my need for change, albiet temporarily, i have dropped the 'i think, therefore i blog' title. i think it was, again, a case of growing out of it. so i am glad it wasn't available as a URL. camelshoes is something i don't imagine growing out of because it means nothing while, at the very same time, meaning quite a lot. plus, to the naked eye it's non-descript. i like that. i like you.

Monday, November 16, 2009

an inspiration...

i am a little slow on the uptake here but that's no reason to suppress my praise. this is a photo of tavi. tavi is the style rookie. she is simply amazing and i kind of love her.

her style, which i love is one thing. her words, which i love more, another. but this girl is 13. THIRTEEN!! is it patronising to be so impressed by the combo of her talent and age?

Thursday, November 12, 2009

sad? certainly. evil? not so sure.

at times, i develop a temporary but irrational fear of things which might happen to me one day. it's not the obvious 'death' that scares me. although i hope i am not travelling towards a premature one and, regardless of timing, i am not looking forward to it. but i do often worry about, say, dementia one day taking hold of me. i so desperately don't want my mind to go. when i think about it, i create huge, unnecessary anxiety. but then i see something shiny, or chocolately, and i forget all about it - until next time.

in the same vein, the recent tragedy in randwick has instilled great fear in me. i don't fear being stabbed to death. i mean, i'd rather not be stabbed to death but it's not something i commonly think about or have even pondered in the aftermath of this sad story. but i do, very much, fear one day having a child who suffers from a condition as significant, as debilitating as schizophrenia.

someone commented about the story of the double murder on one of australia's news websites today: "so sad. such evil".

i clearly see where the reader is coming from. it's not difficult and i am sure a lot of people share the same point of view. but i can't help but think evil is not the right word. i wish it was. it would be easier for me to comprehend if the son slash brother - the suspect - was just an evil man who, i don't know, wanted his dad's money a la the menendez brothers.

but the truth is, assuming the newspapers i read are to be believed (and they never lie), the suspect is schizophrenic. a paranoid schizophrenic. as far as i am concerned, that turns the tale into tragedy for everyone involved, not just the murder victims.

i don't pretend to know more about schizophrenia than the next person but i do know it sounds frightening. it also sounds like it's almost entirely out of the sufferer's control. i am sure we'll all learn more as time progresses.

but i believe that, in the light of day, with a balanced state of mind, the 'real' anthony waterlow will be just as shocked and disgusted as 'KLM'. but he will feel indescribably worse because the blood will be on his hands.

Schizophrenic or otherwise, if you need help call 1800 18 SANE or click here.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

throw me a frickin' bone. seriously...i'm marvin'

It’s 1:23pm. I am eating sushi. It’s delicious but I’ve always been a sucker for sushi. Plus, I haven’t eaten yet today. Two coffees to offset the hunger which feels more like starvation.

I did the same thing yesterday. And the day before. Two coffees (no fat milk of course) before a light, 1:30ish lunch.

I also haven’t eaten dinner yet this week. Oh, and no snacks. Except for yesterday when I crunched through a Batlow Apple at about 3.30.

It’s just that I am so super busy with my new job (new job related post to come) that I haven’t had time to think about food.

Hmm, what an ever-so-noble excuse that would be.

The truth though, is that I am completely incapable of finding a balance between fat-sticks and extreme diet and exercise.

And, you know what? It really gives me the shits.

Between mid-February and mid-June this year I lost about 5kg. More than that, I lost a hugely impressive amount of body fat and equally remarkable number of cms off all the relevant ‘problem’ areas. These claims are by my standards and you don’t know how high or low those standards are so don’t judge.

So, anyway, that was really awesome. Except for the process. That wasn’t awesome. That was shit. I was at the gym two hours a day, six days a week. I drank awful ‘meal replacement’ milkshakes which wouldn’t satisfy a Kate Moss-sized hunger for lunch most days, snacked on fruit when I couldn’t bare the tummy grumble and slurped soup for dinner, if I allowed myself the luxury.

dinner's ready

I think that’s basically anorexia…without the results.

The three to four months which followed included summer holidays (no gym, new flavours - yum, yum, yum), a bunch of farewell drinks/dinners in pub-friendly London, a whole lot of on-the-way-home travel and a heap of homecoming celebrations comprising more drinks, more dinners and still no gym.

I haven’t dared weigh myself but my clothes tell the story.

FUCK MAN. I have to start all over again.

But the real problem lies right here…

I am fit.
I am healthy.
I am not fat.

If someone my size whinged to me about being a fatty boom ba, I would kick them in the face. Untrue, I grant you. But gee, I would tell them they needed a good kick in the face with gusto.

But while I can tell myself, and my blog, that I am not fat, I still feel fat and I can’t shake it.

So, I’m perennially hungry all over again. I am back at the gym which will rule my life soon enough. And I have already put huge restrictions on my alcohol intake which means the anti-social (or at least significantly less social) version of me is on her way back.

Yep, I hear you. Everything in moderation. I totally support this mantra but it honestly doesn’t shift a gram for me. I also know skipping breakfast is a huge no-no but starting my metabolism at 7am lures me towards snacking right through until lunch. Appetite-suppressing coffee is my new snack. The jitters, my new state.

And the best part? I'll lose 5kgs and swiftly find something else I hate and need to fix. FRICK.

Is this my life? Will the gym always be my second home? Will I forever be hating something that’s too big, too soft, too cellulitey (it’s my blog and I will make up words)?

Or is there a magic age where I will stop placing so much importance on my size or, probably more significantly, shape?

I hope so. And if there is, I really hope it’s 29.

PS: I wrote this last Wednesday. I guess I was too weak to post it. Breakfast is now back on my agenda. I feel better. Still fat :)

Monday, November 2, 2009

it's a boy (and he looks exactly like his dad)

Isaac Harrison: born October 14, 2009
He's beautiful. Even when he threw up on me, he was beautiful.
He's going to make his Wagga-bound parents so proud.
Congrats again Sara and Leigh. Selfishly, I wish it didn't
mean your departure, especially since I just got here.
But I can't help but feel you're going to love it.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

time heals all wounds. no wait, i meant money

"My wife is very stressed. We are
all okay - my wife and my baby
are okay - but we really just need
some time to get over this."

The father of ‘miracle baby’ Saurish was quoted saying this in the Herald on October 19. And it’s a fair enough statement. Or at least I thought it was when I read it on October 19.

Now, just a week later, his wife is gracing the front cover of Woman’s Day. Bless her. She just needed some time to get over this. And it would seem 'getting over it' meant having a cuppa and a chat, an iced vovo maybe, with a glossy journalist carrying a large cheque.

I give chequebook journalism a big “whatevs”. It’s not how I chase my stories but that’s really because I don’t have a chequebook, large or otherwise. If you inadvertently land in the middle of a cash-worthy story, a la the Beaconsfield miners, best of luck to you in the bidding war.

It’s not like Shweta, the mum in question, pushed the pram on the tracks now, is it? But don’t cry wolf with the ‘need some time’ bullshit. Unlike Woman's Day, we're not buying it. Boom tish.

Monday, October 26, 2009

wedding 'bells'

i haven't asked permission to use this which is pretty slack because i knew i wanted to use it last week and saw both mr and mrs bell, also known as the photo's 'subjects', on saturday night. but my memory is terrible and i guess i figured, who wouldn't want to show this photo to the world? stunning, yes? add this plug and i'm keeping the photographer happy as well.

i suppose this marks the end of the blogtography mondays hiatus. it was an unintentional break but i needed it. thanks for your patience.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

justice for who?

i read this with mouth ajar. fascinating. thought provoking.

how can a nation be so far advanced yet so backwards at the very same time?


Tuesday, October 20, 2009

so, in conclusion...

i just got in trouble. boy, let's call him mike (because that's his name) logged onto camelshoes and was, once again, greeted with the post dated october 13. not only has it been too long between drinks, said post was a pathetic 'sorry-it's-been-so-long-i'll-be-back-soon' entry. i had clearly not been 'back soon'. pathetic.

although i am not sure what's worse. the aforementioned effort or what i am about to do: type the pen-to-paper scribble which i created on a sun-drenched hostel balcony about five weeks ago. you decide.

with each new drink, the once-fleeting consideration to bail on my san sebastian trip became more serious. i was drunk. i was still at the pub. and my pre-ordered cab was picking me up ahead of my stupid o'clock flight in six...five...four...three...two hours.

two hours of itchy sleep and i had wearily collapsed into the passenger seat of my eight pound cab. at liverpool street station i forked out the almost 30-pound return train ticket to stansted airport. the return flight cost me about the same. and at bilbao, i relinquished another 15 euro for the bus to san sebby. one way.

this day had already cost me a fortune and i hadn't even done anything.

but when i was presented with san sebastian, still feeling the pain of a night spent replacing sleep with pimms, it was clear the earlier cash hemorrhage was going to be worth it.

my first impressions of cities have rarely changed throughout the course of a stay. as on this occasion, every destination i have loved has captured my heart immediately.

last week, while discussing my recent trip to NY with a friend, i questioned whether i would even put the big apple - so many people's number one city - in my top five. now i know i wouldn't.

my top five do not meet a strict criteria. i know some destinations would have been influenced by external factors like the company, the weather, the expectations. all i can go on is which cities most brought a smile to my face - both at the time and with each nostalgic moment.

for ease, i have discounted australian cities. if i didn't, sydney, melbourne, byron bay and, of course, wagga wagga* would all be strong contenders.

so, without further ado...


it's such a cliche, which is why i didn't expect to fall in love with the french capital - which, in turn, is probably one of the key reasons why i did.

i'm not big on travelling by the book, on ticking boxes the lonely planet tells me to tick. i bought europe on a shoestring when i first got here and haven't taken it on one holiday. so, i thought a city with so many iconic, box-tick worthy sights would prove tedious. oh, i loved it. stunning, romantic, glorious. the world-famous attractions were simply the backdrop to a city i could wander forever.


plucked from a fairytale, relocated to austria. a picture perfect city. jaw-dropping beauty. the one full day i spent there (of course, not nearly enough) was as close to perfect as i can imagine a day being. the fact it started with a heart-warming coffee and mouth-watering (read sugar-laden) breakfast: incidental.


it may seem biased, since i live(d) there and have the benefit of great friends and local knowledge, but i did do london as a tourist in 2006 and it's absolutely world class. there are so many reasons why. here are a few.


i am travelling solo, i am exhausted and i am dying to get back to oz but san sebastian has still managed to claim a little piece of my travel heart. i thought i was going to sit on the beach all weekend - god knows my body needs to be horizontal right now - but there is too much exploring, too much atmosphere, too much fullstop.


i spent two days here in 2006. again, not enough, but ain't hindsight grand. i was instantly smitten by sorrento and its postcard beauty. not one of those shitty, 10-for-a-euro postcards but the ones which force you to inhale, as if trying somehow to breathe it in. on the amalfi coast, sorrento was simply charming. there are grand plans to be there again in july 2010. it will happen. and it will be loved.

and there you have it. my top five. i have tried to put these in order but it's hardly set in concrete.

i wonder how my list compares to yours. agree? probably not. tell me, what's your favourite city in this amazing world?

* lie.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

g'day mates

home again...again. still no cord but boy has a nifty little gadget which made the photo problem redundant. so, here's that blog. probably not worth the wait really....

ahhhhhhhhhhhhhh, home sweet home. and been kind of busy so sorry about the big, huge hiatus.

arrived in oz two weeks ago now*. amid some mad dust storm the likes of which sydney (or was that oz) hadn't seen since the 60s (or was that in 60 years? i really should start paying more attention).

anyway, there was heaps of dust. it was hugely unseasonal. every plane scheduled to land in sydney before 9am was diverted to brisbane. every plane scheduled to land after midday was diverted to melbourne. we landed at 1130.

thank freaking god. the love of my life was waiting at sydney airport so landing a good half day drive south was not going to cut it. not after 15 months of the longest long-distance in the history of crazies who think they can make a relationship work long distance.

cleared customs. picked up bags. launched myself into strong, safe arms of man of dreams. spent every minute since looking at him, loving him.

needless to say, that's where all my blogging time has been going.

some of it in terrigal - a beautiful part of the word i had never experienced made even more beautiful by the crown plaza's ever-so-kind upgrade to what MUST have been the best suite in the house.

some of it in the hunter valley - another beautiful part of the world i had never been to, this time made even better by the fact we were attending the gorgeous wedding of rohan and laura. cue photographic tribute.

presenting: mr and mrs bell (and one of THE most
gorgeous wedding dresses i've ever laid eyes on)

since then we've done a little sydney (my new home), a little gold coast, a little noosa, a little byron, a little's been the perfect way to forget i actually have to get myself a job, apartment, regular day-to-day life.

ahhh, it can wait.

*if i had've published this when i meant to that is

Thursday, October 8, 2009

home sweet home

i'm alive.

i'm busy being in love.

naaaah. i mean, yes, but i also have an entry for you but i can't find my cord to connect my camera to my lappy and add the couple of photos i want to show you. and my OCD won't let me upload the writing without the pictures.

i also have a story brewing about how i do really stupid things sometimes. like applying for amazing jobs and then not checking the email address i put on the CV until today - one month after i was asked for an interview. umm, so that's kind of the story told.

i also have a story about some things i have been observing in this great southern land i live in. like how hearing ray warren on channel nine a couple of days after my return epitomised this country more than anything else i had yet experienced.

and there's this list of things compiling in my mind which are making me realise i am crossing over to the real world of adulthood. ie: my knees hurt after i sit cross-legged, i picked up the donna hay magazine instead of vogue while breakfasting cafe-style, i have gotten up to pee for about six consecutive nights. i never (used to) night pee.

there, that should tide you over. and rest assured, there'll be plenty of blogging during my dedicated 'apply for jobs' time which starts tuesday. eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeek.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

tomorrow his patience will be rewarded

I'm good with words. But sometimes, someone else has put it so perfectly, I need not bother trying to improve on their efforts. In this case: the talent is Jason Mraz.

“Lucky I'm in love with my best friend.

Lucky to have been where I have been.

Lucky to be coming home again."

See you tomorrow, baby. Finally, a reunion which won't be promptly followed by a farewell. I can't wait to love you in person.

**Oh, and because I've scheduled this post, I know the formatting is going to be totally screwed. Sorry, I'll fix it when I get home. You know, when we run out of stuff to do.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

a little shout out

so, i am totally leaving london tomorrow. for good. i’m packing my life – well, my shoes (so many shoes) – into my backpack and i’m starting again…again…in sydney, australia.

i have had such a wonderful, amazing, jam-packed time here that i am sad to be leaving. yet i am so excited about what’s ahead for me and that excitement trumps the sadness. i think about how lucky i am to feel that way every day.

although i’ve only been in london just over a year, what i am leaving behind is significant. beyond the convenient geography, the never-ending to-do list (the good kind) and the plum job, i am saying goodbye to some of the most amazing people i’ve ever had the pleasure of meeting.

a few examples

my london crew – and you guys know who you are – are simply beautiful. it started with summer fun in the south of france and continued with countless hours, days, weeks, months of hanging, laughing, playing, drinking, loving.

and i woke up with chocolate in my pocket. best night ever.

and i do love them. i love the people they are and the kind of friends they’ve each been to me. as well as the fun times, it would be remiss of me not to mention, albeit vaguely, those times they’ve been there when things weren’t so happy-go-lucky. when life was kind of kicking me in the shins.

sisters, by blood and otherwise

so, i would like to say thank you for taking me in, thank you for chasing after handbag thieves, thank you for letting me cry on your shoulders, thank you for being happy for me when those tears finally dried up, thank you for making me feel part of something special.

you shall be missed

Monday, September 14, 2009

carpe diem, carpe de words*

it's times like these i am reminded i really need to buy a notebook. i think my blog is partly to blame, but i forgive you camelshoes. it's just sometimes i want to write 'right this very second'. like now.

i felt exactly the same yesterday too which is why i asked the hostel i'm staying at for some scrap paper and a pen. i am currently** utilising both, cafe con leche to my left, the kite runner to my right, overlooking san sebastian's playa de la concha (on of its three stunning beaches).

it may seem silly, but to me, it's different writing the 'old fashioned' way. i like it. the words actually seem to flow a little better and i find an odd comfort in the rustic sight of my scribble. i don't look forward to typing the transfer but it's a small price to pay for the release of the words which time would otherwise forget.

so, the reason i wanted so much to put pen to paper has a lot to do with the picture i just painted. the coffee's almost gone but there will be a second cup because i am not ready to give this moment up. a moment punctuated minutes ago with a simple thought: 'how good is this?'

my body gave in to a wave of goosebumps. a tear or two, representing nothing but overwhelming contentment, welled as i absorbed my situation. soaking up sunshine in a stunning city, more than comfortable in my solitude but excited beyond my imagination, beyond words, by the life which awaits me in nine sleeps. NINE SLEEPS.

what a dramatic turn my life has taken. thanks heavily to the decision to 'get the fuck over it'. get over the bullshit that happened years ago. the bullshit i had stubbornly held onto, unwilling to forgive. bullshit that will continue to be a part of me, but will no longer define me.

am i josie alibrandi, or what?

*may not make actual sense.
**'currently' at the time of pen to paper, not typing. obviously.

i will miss you (rain and all)

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