Wednesday, 17 September 2008

List 3. Some things I've liked so far about Berlin.

- Riding around on borrowed bikes.
- Coffee at Bonanza, this is the best coffee we’ve found so far in this hemisphere
- Table tennis and beer in just about any park you care to stop in
- The brief week and a half of sun and mild warmth we managed to catch before it turned chilly
- Picnicking in the Grunewald on the last sunny day
- the canals
- The Turkish market by the canal in Kreuzberg
- the bio-wurst from a stand at the Turkish market… I didn’t get what the big deal with wurst was until I ate this
- Ice-cream. Favourite one so far was mango and coconut from a place in Friedrichshain
- Tasty falafels
- The way the streets around here seem so dark and still and mysterious at night but with little lights glimmering here and there off into the distance
- The big comfy apartment we are staying in (but for 11 more days only… I hope we can find somewhere else so nice), these altbaus with central courtyards are lovely
- Eating spätzl with my brother near his place… this is total junkfood, but pleasing.
- the smaller of the two flea markets we’ve been to (see below…)
- big German 'breakfast' last Sunday at 4 in the afternoon... tasty volkenbröt and many types of cheese and ham and fruit and boiled eggs...
- discovering that 'second breakfast' is an actual recognised thing here

Monday, 15 September 2008

List 2: Number of varieties of cheese, ham and coffee I had today

Coffee: Three.
Ham: Two.
Cheese: Five. Yes, Five.

List 1: Things I bought at the flea market today

- A coat. Not quite warm enough for the depths of winter (I have to keep looking for one of those) but excellent, I would say, for the period leading up to it. ie: Now. As soon as I get it some buttons.

- A pink scarf and a red scarf. I had none in my suitcase and the cold today was making this important.

- A white wooly hat, kind've like a bulky, square, beany. See above re. reasons to buy. It looked good when the sweet-talking guy waved a mirror at me for a split second but didn’t look good when I put it on again at home.

- A red wallet. Sold to me by the sweet-talking guy on the basis that it matched my sunglasses.

- A kind've partly floppy partly fitted T-shirt that looks a bit 'fame academy' with what at first looks like the Puma logo on it but then you look closer and it says ‘Punk’. The girl said it was designer clothing she bought in Spain and she went to show me the designer label, only to her surprise she must have removed it.

- A silk and cashmere jumper that feels LOVELY when you put it on.

- My name in metal printing press letters.

- A book called 'Indecision.'

Now you can try guessing which were the silly purchases and which were the sensible ones... It seems hard to manage the sensible without the silly with flea market shopping.

Lists from now on

It’s been 5 weeks since leaving Australia and already I have the sensation of not knowing how to correspond about it in emails and even less so in a blog. My head has been a jumble of four languages and every day has been filled with newness, even trips to the supermarket and street signs are entertaining (sometimes at least). So, how do you choose.

Leaving Melbourne was exhausting so the week in Tokyo was a funny combination of fatigue and sensory overload. Oh, but, I did love it, I think, and I hope I go back. Paris was super-bonne, I had been there twice, no, three times, before, but not lived in Belleville and not in such good company. Being in Berlin, now, for longer (how long?) feels slower-paced, more relaxed but also there are things to get done like getting back to work and finding somewhere to live. We have borrowed bikes and it is good to ride places and let the city take shape. It is turning cold – too soon for my liking! – but maybe it will be warm again just a little? I hope? We start German classes tomorrow, the 4 hours of confusion spent enrolling for the VHS resulted in my getting placed in Beginner’s Level 2, despite not quite passing the entry test, so I have spent this evening trying to remember what little German I ever had and learn some more. I’m nervous about it.

I am going to try writing lists only here for a while, I think, I have still not found my way in to blogging, let along formed a habit, perhaps a restriction will provide some incentive.

Monday, 21 July 2008

Why does my phone not know how to spell "giraffe?"

Predictive text has bad priorities.

Monday, 14 July 2008

Count down

Have started reading the Count of Monte Cristo. Up to page 89. Dantes has been the victim of terrible foul play and trickery and is in a dungeon. My understanding is that this is a book about revenge, which I suppose he will now spend the remaining 1160 pages exacting in some way or another.

Am wondering whether it is a mistake to be reading this now when am heading overseas in the not-very-distant-at-all future. While it seems like promising aeroplane reading, it may be too heavy to lug around.

Thursday, 26 June 2008

From the wee hours

I got up half asleep in the middle of the night and wrote down my dream and when I read it the next morning this is what I saw:

swimming pool
sheep display
"drowning" kid
carlos from canada
french cleaning lady
films inside an orange
swimwear @ The corner shop
skinny hotdogs
meeting U2
off to a party
my brother
Josh Burns
moos/ mobs/ moon
(I can't tell what the last word is)

Hmmm. I invite you to join the dots.

Friday, 13 June 2008


That was tasty.

Time for a pie, I think

Monday, 26 May 2008

If I hadn't wasted the morning panicking

I would have less reason to panic now.

Sunday, 27 April 2008

More "what I did today"

Today I worked in the city. There must be something in the air this weekend - there were people having fights. Real ones, with punching and stuff. Apparently last night too. Fights.

Then I visited my bro. He lives where I used to live. I caught the train I used to catch home. It was already dark so I didn't get to admire the bits along the trainline that I used to like looking at. He has the place looking much nicer than it did when I lived there. We ate out. Shredded duck soup. I imagined a papery duck being fed through a shredder. But it wasn't like that. Then we had ice-cream at his place and talked about the television we don't watch. I would like to watch more TV, I think. Maybe?

I came home. Simon has gone to Sydney. Working. We spoke on the phone. He was in a shopping centre and I could hear twangy shopping centre music in the background and checkout announcements that sounded like Daleks. We talked about the relative merits of that supermarket and our usual Supermarket. He believed they had a wider range of muesli at the Sydney one. And he said there was so much broccoli there it made him feel like he was flying over the Amazon.

While Simon talked about broccoli, I had one of those moments of marveling at the wonders of a technology that is old news. You know, like, there's my phone with Simon's voice coming out of it and it is completely usual to understand that he is elsewhere and fill in the distance between us. Must have been a different feeling when phones were first around?

On the same thought sometimes I look at wee kids now who can have their photo taken and straight away see it in the back of the camera and I wonder what sort of difference that might make. To the way they understand things. If any? I try to remember being very little and wonder if I understood when somebody pointed a camera at me what it was all about. I can't remember though. Can you?

I guess working around technology and children I should be used to such contrasts. This whole 'internet' doowhacky... there's another one right there. OMG.


Simon caught up with Dillon and Skardi and Connor this evening. He said Dillon has been making robot mice. (Them folk and their robots... (How is the robot monkey Simon?)) Apparently the mice have been running away from the light instead of towards it. This wasn't the intention so it counts as a mistake. But would anybody know it was a mistake if you didn't tell them?

Friday, 25 April 2008

No News = No News

I was talking to Dell (typing-talking) and she said blog more but I am still struggling with this blogging thing and how to write news about things that feel like not-news. Or what to write about here. But here is an attempt at 'what has been happening lately'.

Today is Anzac Day, first day off in some time, lots of sleeping and sitting in the gallery in the afternoon with Simon while he drew a giant robot monkey. Luke came by and we made exquisite corpse stories. There have been conversations about biscuits, given the day, but I have eaten none.

Been working a bunch of different jobs. Keep having stretches that feel endless of no days off and late nights trying to finish things. Working weekends is wearing a bit thin... of course it feels like since I have been doing that everybody is having the best birthdays and barbeques and soirees that I cannot go to.

It's all for a good cause. Work = Money and Money = Being Able to Do Stuff in the Future. And Work can be interesting besides and sometimes I learn things I didn't know before. And it beats NO work. But I miss seeing friends and family and doing fun things.

I wonder when the time will come when I am not living with some future time in mind?

Tonight is one of those nights that EVERYBODY has decided to have a party or opening.

And I have to work tomorrow and I feel sleepy and like it might be hard to go back out into the world again just at the moment...

Monday, 24 March 2008

and then simon called and said "let's go to the model train show"

so we went...
and now I am going to go swimming.

sleeping is one of my favourite things

But apparently nobody can explain exactly why we do it. I know I 've read that scientists somewhere are trying to develop a drug that makes you not need to sleep. Or not feel like you need to at least... How horrifying. The secret reasons for sleeping that we don't quite know about, all the secret house-keeping in body and mind that I imagine goes on - what would happen to this?

I have moved from the 7th floor to the 3rd in the Nicholas Building... No sooner had I moved my things into a cluttered tumble in the corner of the space than I got a job and another job and another one and haven't been able to go in to the studio at all. I keep imagining the other occupants of the space glaring at my stuff and am scared they will want to kick me out...

The other night in my sleep I was at my studio, finally, cleaning up. It was kind of the same there as it usually is but also like a constantly shifting maze. To move around was complicated, you had to climb over fences and furniture and peer through vines. There is a kind of trolley-shelf covered in fake turf that I have been wondering what to do with. I can never seem to make it fit, anywhere, but I like it and don't want to throw it away. The other night I was on the verge of throwing it away, finally, when I looked closer. I discovered that if I unfolded it, hiding on the inside was a combined sewing-machine and radio. You pedal the sewing machine and it plays scratchy prickly music. "Oooh... lucky I didn't throw it out!" I said. Simon was there, he sat at the sewing machine and pedalled, and sang me a song.

Today is the first day I have not ABSOLUTELY had to work for a good while. But there is still work I should do, a hundred things to do, really. And cleaning, oh my god. But I can't seem to get to all that. I slept late this morning and I can't seem to shake away the feeling I am sleeping still.

Maybe I will go swimming.

Thursday, 28 February 2008

the good, the bad and

the good...
I got a birthday postcard from germany today, hooray!
I also went to my first ever session of book club.
I used to wonder how you go about having 'book club.' ... I had visions of a Murray-from-Flight-of-the-Conchords type situation where we have a rollcall and all have to say "present" and then follow an agenda... which thinking about it might be kind of cute (it is when those conchords do it...). But it was more like what I alternatively imagined where you start talking about the book but then get sidetracked and eventually talk about the book again, then get sidetracked again, and one person has to block their ears part of the time because they haven't quite finished reading it yet and then you eventually try to sum up with final conclusions on the book but get a bit sidetracked there too and then you spend time trying to pick a book for next month through a process of excluding what everbody definitely doesn't want to read and then you pick one and go home. And in between there's eating and drinking. I liked it. Some interesting different insights on the book. Nice company. And some workplace gossip from not-my-workplace. Yay Kylee for organising. Now I have to read Kafka on the Shore for next time. Do my best...

the bad...
Yesterday I had to go to hospital and get sedated and filled full of tubes to check on a bellyache I have had for a long time. Thankfully no signs of imminent doom, but I now have a bellyache considerably worse than the usual one, from being stuck full of tubes. OWOWOWOWOWOW...

the ugly...
not much ugly actually... lucky me.

Thursday, 21 February 2008

On not having an empty mind

I had a haircut. It's a little bit different to before. I've been trying to catch sight of myself in the mirror as though I was not me but a stranger I am looking at across the room, so I can work out what I think about it. I am not succeeding in not realising it's me, though, so I am still not sure what I think.

It''s unrelated to my hair but I have also tried this experiment, which is supposed to demonstrate the science of how cats are able to turn themselves the right way up when they fall, and also how skateboarders turn in midair. Don't ask why. That's not working either, I can't empty my mind enough to not know which way I'm turning, or else I don't decide quick enough to turn.

Lots of nice things have been happening, perhaps I will write about them later. There are things I am supposed to be doing now other than this and I am running out of excuses not to do them.

Monday, 11 February 2008

Reasons the post below might be boring

When you have a dream, it doesn’t do any good to tell all the details to another person. They won’t understand. A dream is only interesting to the person who dreams it; there’s never a way to convey what was interesting about it to someone outside the dreamer’s brain. If you decide that you need to tell someone about a dream, concision is key. Stick to the highlights and keep it as short as possible.

“I had the weirdest dream last night. I dreamed I was sailing in a boat with my father, and then he turned into my 5th grade art teacher, and we were eating asparagus, and then the boat turned into a disco from the 70s and a monkey was trying to lick my armpits! It was so weird! What do you think it means? Wasn’t that so weird? It was so weird.”

That does not work. No one wants to hear all those details. All dreams are weird; this one is not particularly weird enough to warrant retelling. No one wants to help you figure out what it could possibly mean.

“I dreamed that a monkey was trying to lick my armpits.”

That works. That is a story that people can get behind.

By Kevin Fanning of, via this site

Saturday, 9 February 2008

Skip this if you don't like reading about dreams

For a reason that wasn't quite clear aeroplanes had stopped traveling to Canada. Melbourne was full of stranded Canadians, camping on the beach and beside the highway.

The desperate, homeless Canadians were a big story in the media. Their main complaint, when interviewed, was that they didn't have anywhere to cook. They were living on an unhealthy diet of junk food.

*News story cuts to dramatic closeup of Canadian woman camped on the beach, night time, camera crew's lights shining in her face, weeping in between mouthfuls of a barbequed chicken roll from KFC.*

I turned to my mother, incredulous, upon watching this. "Don't they know they can just go to the Vic Market and get some carrots and fruit and things?" I said. "What's their problem? Sheez."

I was living at home with my parents, in their old house. My mother had insomnia and to deal with it would get up and mow the lawns in the middle of the night. One morning I went out to discover she had mowed so emphatically that there were deep muddy trenches in the ground. No grass left.

I also found a series of five bloodied cat's tails which she had accidentally mowed off of the neighbour's cats. She was surreptitiously handing a tail to a cat that had come back looking for it. "Shouldn't you tell the neighbours?" I said but she got defensive.

I found three cats near the fence that had died after losing their tails. Along with the one tail Mum had just returned to its owner, that left one tail unaccounted for. It was a ginger and white tail. I held it out to a ginger and white cat that was walking past but then saw that he already had a tail. It was just a coincidence he was walking by. The tail remained unclaimed.

I decided to print up some 'FOUND' posters about the lost tail, in case its owner was still looking for it. I asked the ladies at Alice Euphemia if they could put one up in the shop but they seemed reluctant to do so.

[Dream interpretation, anyone?]

Monday, 21 January 2008

i am useless at blogging

I keep writing posts and then thinking 'that's lame' and not publishing them.

Just now, I have written a second sentence and deleted it 5 times.

Does it get easier, or are you either into it, or not into it?

I am trying to keep a diary at the moment too, because memory loss is scaring me. I write more easily without the threat of an audience it seems.

Thursday, 10 January 2008

no longer breaking news

Darn, I did it again.

I should have known this time.

Friday, 4 January 2008


happy new year

breaking news in physics

An empty stomach + a 35 degree day + gin and tonics in a courtyard after work = a fuzzy sleepy brain + a little bit of a headache

who would have thunk it