Tuesday, July 25, 2006

driving 101

heyas. had my left side drivers training over the last couple weeks. after five trips i graduated to solo but that was before roundabouts so there was another couple guided trips but now i'm okay hehe

-approach the car on the RIGHT side.

-key goes in on the right, just like at home, and the pedals are the same. this is to lull you into a false sense of security.
-seat belt is over your RIGHT shoulder.
-gear shift and hand brake are on the LEFT.
-gears lined up same as at home, so you pull TOWARDS you to increase gears.
-looking up to the right and down to your left does not provide any information about what's behind you.
-the bulk of the car is to the left. do not orient your body in the left side of the lane unless you want to have one set of wheels up the curb.
-turn indicator is on the right. wipers not useful for indicating direction. pick a rainy day for those first few trips behind the wheel!
-there is NO LEFT TURN ON RED! who knew?
-at a roundabout, any driver to your right has right of way - just like at a 4-way stop at home. except without the stop signs.
-on the freeway, driving the speed limit in the far RIGHT lane may cause some road rage.
-signalling your intent may actually cause other drivers to apply their brake pedal and let you in. (crazy! i KNOW!)
-if it feels natural and headlights are coming at you, there's a problem.
-if it feels completely wrong and everyone else is doing it, you're okay!

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Bibbulmun Track

This is the local version of home's Bruce Trail. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bibbulmun_Track. It is named for the local indigenous people http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bibbulmun

Got up bright and early Sunday morning and headed for the hills. The Darling Range, that is.

Track Info

Honest... we did see the sun rise on the way there...

Head of the trail

Sullivan Rock - killer intro to the Bibbulmun Track!

On the Track - pretty gentle all the way.

The Waugil (read woggle) marks the trail. Outer layer of bark is charcoal on all area trees that aren't brand new since previous bushfire.

Mt. Cooke "Base Camp" - 6 km in. Feet draggin a bit by this point! Rare occurence: cousin Terri, foreground, shows up in a photographic image ;)

High fashion in trail gear: snake gaiters "say kneees"

Highest peak in Darling Range, Mt. Cooke, elev 528m. Nap time.
Where there's no good spot for the waugil, look for a cairn instead.

At the Peak

Looking back the way we came...


hi all - feel free to comment if u wish, just click the little link below each post :)

Sunday, July 16, 2006

different light!

hiyas! i guess one of the first things i have noticed about the southern hemisphere is the light! they tell me it's winter here.... so how come we seem so close to the sun? it is not just cinematography in LOTR i tell ya - it really is that silvery white light down here.

Sunday, July 09, 2006


hiyas! got some pics off the camera at last. more to come, but here's the auckland instalment:

my view of the outside world upon arrival... sleeping for 12 hours? i don't think so.

devonport from ferry terminal. volcano in background.

climbing up mt. vic/takuranga...

my view of downtown auckland :)

there goes the ferry, enh, hours to kill anyway...

Monday, July 03, 2006

here at last!

okay that was a long few days. left home fri afternoon about 12:30pm for the 4:25 out of toronto and arrived in LA after an uneventful flight. air canada made us buy our food. hmph.

first person i saw coming off the jetway, i thought i knew. then realized, no, that's jack bauer's wife/kim's mom from 24. you know you're in LA when...

LAX departure gate area is lame. nothing seemed to be in danger of blowing up or becoming contagious, it was most unlike 24.

so then on to the insane 12-hour marathon to auckland. this is a far from habit-forming pastime. getting to the end of the first 6 hours was hellish, think i just gave up caring in the last half. decent food on new zealand airlines though :)

arrived at auckland airport with a 12 hour layover ahead. fully intended to sleep. but looking outside was too much for me so i got thru customs (with help from excellent volunteer info ppl) and got a bus to auckland city centre for the day. ate lots of sushi, took a ferry, and tramped up a small volcano. very. small. don't get impressed hehehe.

headed back to the airport in time to get bored waiting for the last flight to perth. arrived perth about 11:00pm sunday, local time. guess that's about 1pm sunday afternoon ontario time. so, roughly 2 days travel, door to door. yikes. canada day was in there somewhere - i'll have to catch up next year hehe

cousin julia and her friend were waiting for me at perth airport and we got all my stuff packed into the car no prob and i'm all settled in now. since then i've mostly been meeting ppl and visiting and sleeping, and everyone's at work all the time, but i am getting all the planning done for school and shenanigans to come.

so that's the update. i'm all happy to have 2 new stamps in my passport. yay!

will keep u all posted as events unfold, ciao :)