Friday, December 19, 2008


Spent today snowboarding. We scored three free lessons through work so off again tomorrow and then Saturday. Waaaay to fucking cold though wind chill of -34 or something. I have pretty bad wind burn on my lower ears and tomorrow is going to be pretty cold to. My feet ended up frozen solid we pretty much went inside after every run to defrost. I tell you it is so painful when the feeling comes back into your toes. I was seriously going to pass out in pain!!!!

Question, I got my lessons for free and its just Brendan and I with TWO instructors.. what do I tip them? One of them is tag along training but he has been snowboarding in Switzerland for five years teaching so he has been helping me a lot. He has just never taught in Canada before. The lessons would have been about $540 before tax (whatever tax is) so im just curious what my American buddies think a good tip is. We were thinking along the lines of $40 each in a christmas card!!! I know how cute.

On a bright side I actually got off the chairlift without falling over and only on my third try to!!!! I think we are going on the faster chairlifts tomorrow though at Lake Louise...


Tuesday, December 16, 2008

This country is bloody cold

have been dealing with some pretty extreme temperatures lately. Yesterday was a balmy -32C and today as I walked to work it was -41C. I don’t think I have ever been that hot! I’m surprised though at how easily I managed to deal with the extreme temperatures, granted I was outside for about 15 minutes max and any longer I may have ended up a human popsicle. A lot of people have told me horror stories about Canadian winters and they have been Canadian themselves! I wore about four layers of clothing which didn’t really make me warm but I survived!

One of the things I found most interesting was that when I breathed the moisture in my breath literally froze instantly and drifted little snowflakes onto my jacket. So the front of my sweater was covered in tiny little icicles of my own saliva!

Tomorrow is supposed to be warm -9C. Coming from never going below 15C its pretty bad how I now consider anything above -10C to be warm! My air conditioner back home was on a permanent 21C and I was still breaking out the doona/comforter! If the weather did drop below 20C everyone shacked up with hot chocolate and sweaters whinging about how cold it was! I remember going to Canberra with Brendan and being outside in -1C and just feeling so cold I wanted to die! What a way I have come where I am tolerating -40C!!!!

Don’t get me wrong though, still complaining! ITS BLOODY COLD TODAY!!!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

The Job

So I forgot to say but I didn't get that job.

I was a little upset because they didn't even ring my referances, I think I bombed a bit on the interview so they just assumed I couldn't do it.

Fact is while I am upset that I was deemed not good enough I'm kind of glad I didn't get it in the end. I really want to leave Canada and this job was going to tie me down in Canmore. They have TWO WEEKS annual leave... seriously how do people survive on that little leave. I want to do a road trip in summer to see the east coast. About all the job had going for it was the money oh and that I like working with computers.

I really like the people I am working with now and the flexibility. I like that I'm not here to work I'm here to enjoy canada. But deep down inside I'm an aussie and I always will be. One day I need to go home.

Friday, November 21, 2008

The road trip thats failed

The big plan was to head over to Sparwood for our weekend (Wednesday/Thursday) see my sister and her beau and then drive back to Banff to go back to work.

We set out about 5pm on Tuesday evening. It was pretty dark by this stage and as we left the outskirts of banff we ended up in some pretty horrible weather. I felt like we were in a Time Warp because of how the rain was coming straight for us.

I dont really know what happened but neither of us took a map so we just guessed the road to take, it turned out to be the wrong road so we were headed about an hour west of where we wanted to be.

The overall trip was pretty uneventful until about 7:30pm when we arrived in High River Brendan and I desperately wanted food and were excited to spot KFC. There is no KFC in Banff and Brendan always whinges because it is his favourite food. We pulled in grabbed out food then left, or tried to leave. The car started fine but whatever the squealing noise was that had been on and off for the last few weeks decided to hit us up in this little hick town in the middle of nowhere!!! So smoke was pouring out from under the bonnet basically the AC compressor had seized up and the belt wasn't turning. Some random walked over and told us that the power steering was seized but he also said he wasnt a mechanic.

We walked over to a local motor Inn and was about to check in for a ridiculous $70 plus tax when Sandra phoned and said if we were close enough she might tow us. Turned out we were about 2.5 hours away because of going down the wrong road. The chick at the motel was annoying anyway.

We then ended up walking down to the 711 to see what tools we could buy and I talked Brendan into buying some WD40 to spray on the belt. When we asked for a phone book a crazy lady helped us out and told us a good motel. So we started to walk in the direction of the motel and she stops in the middle of the road and asks us if we want a lift. So I'm like sure why not. As i go to step in I see this HUGE fucking white dog snarling and yanking at its chain in the back seat. The lady goes "oh dont worry I just have my pitbull in the back its ok she likes girls"
As Brendan says "sure likes to eat girls" as for a pitbull it was about 3 times the size of a pitbull and this woman is beating it back as it strains at its leash gnashing its teeth trying to devour me. Brendan said I could sit in the front and he would sit in the back with the dog but I was like fuck that!! and decided to walk.

We didnt end up going to the hotel in the end we just sprayed the WD40 on the belt and it was fine so we decided to drive home. On the way home we took a "shortcut" which was really a horrible dirt road in the middle of nowhere. No cars no lights... Then Brendan had to pull over to spray WD40 (a TRUE bushmans survival kit!!) on the fan and it was so creepy I had to get out of the car I was worried I would see him get attacked and then I would be stuck in the pedestrian seat. I felt like I was in a horror movie!!

Anyway we got out of the shortcut and onto the main highway where we fuelled up in a BLIZZARD!! then back home only to realise we were homeless because we got kicked out of our apartment due to deep cleaning. So Brendan and I drove up to one of the hotels and talked the night audit (it was now 1am by the way) into giving us a free room.

So yea thats my tale of the failed roadtrip :/

Sunday, November 16, 2008


I am very excited! It snowed all last night and all today, the ground is covered in inches of beautiful powder. I spent most of today looking at the three ski hills in the area. I will buy my ski pass on Friday (heavily discounted thanks to BLC!!) Then by Wednesday next week Brendan and I may very well be on the slopes!!!

Oh I almost slipped over about 10 times on my way to work haha

Let is now let it snow let it snoooow

Friday, November 14, 2008

Its not about the money really!

Brendan and my original plan was to stick winter out in Banff, take advantage of the benefits offered by whatever company I work for. Then when the last of the skiable snow melts drive off east into the sunset.

Of course Canada in the east is a bit less giving then the tourist towns of the west. Jobs are harder to find, the pay is a lot less and they don't include HALF the benefits we get on this side. So when the opportunity came up in Canmore (about a half hour drive from Banff) for a desktop support speclist starting at $52K I snapped at the chance. It wasn't like I was desperate but weighing the odds of working for $9 an hour at a job I hate to doing something I love and am good at well the choice is easy. Niagra falls isn't going anywhere quickly!

Imagine my surprise I actually got shortlisted! My interview was on Wednesday and whilst I choked on a few questions I think overall I did ok. I know once they ring my referances they would have no reason NOT to hire my awesome self. Apparently the job has been vacant since June!!

My ultimate dream was to find the perfect IT job in North America then they decide to open a new branch in Australia and ask me to relocate and manage it. Preferably Darwin :D

Anyway I find out on Friday 21st. Fingers crossed!!!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Elom, a random tale

Well my life is random,

I booked this room for this lady who was super nice on the phone she was from Alabama but had married a Canadian and now lived in Kamloops, BC. So I guess because she was so nice I booked her into one of the nicer rooms with a hefty discount. She was adamant that we should meet and I thought why not, the more connections I make the better!

So I saw her last night and she had brought her brother with her he was from Alabama as well the previous state senator to be exact a Mr William H. Drinkard. Not only that but he is a Sience Fiction fantasy author and brought me a copy of his book "Elom" He signed it with this

To Amanda,
The Book is about strong females if you are strong and you seem to be, the book is about you! Hope you like it
William H. Drinkard

I have just started reading it so I can't make an assesment on how good it is at the moment. On the bright side however I have now got a place to stay in Alabama and Kamloops. I'm not sure where in Alabama but does it matter!

Friday, November 7, 2008

Halloween is my new favourite holiday!

Well I am making some kind of good progress at my job. I have met some strange people. This one lady who I was booking rooms for sent me a picture of her and Joan Jett. (yes I had to wiki it to) apparently she is friends with her manager. Her music is old but good!

Halloween was an awesome night. It was my first real halloween since growing up in Australia nobody really celebrates it. When we were kids living in Melbourne mum used to hold wicked halloween parties. Of course Halloween has changed a lot because back then it was about being as scary as possible now its about being as obscure or sexy as possible. So I talked this guy Sam from NSW into coming out with me. The only reason I knew him was because two or three months earlier I had booked his dad into a room and his dad told me his son was coming to Banff to work and I said send me an email and I will see what I can do. So Sam had just got in from a 54 hour busride and I dragged him out because...well its Halloween ffs!!

My costume was Commander Keen and for those of you who know who that is. Yay. For those of you who dont well its a really old video game back in the days of DOS and Windows 3.1. About two people recognised who I was and demanded photos. My helmet was made from paper mache and was way to big for my head so I was dancing all night and it kept slipping down.

But I had an awesome time overall halloween is so much fun. Everyone is really friendly and open there are so many amazing costumes. People over here really get into it. I cant wait for next year!

Other then that my life in Canada has come to a real standstill. Ski season is just around the corner and it is to cold and wet to do much else. Although there has been barely any snow around here. I'm excited to start learning how to snowboard and maybe even ski eventually. I predict my days off to be spent on the slopes, until I break my legs or something.
Here are some photos of Halloween night!

Monday, October 6, 2008


Honestly only in Banff...well maybe a few other places can you see Deer ambling down the main street calmly eating your neighbours flowers.

Or even a couple of Elk strolling across the school oval leaving their business on the ground.

Oh last but not least on Friday around lunchtime a bear decided it would be fun to crawl up the tree outside safeway (our local shopping centre) swiping at passing pedestrians. They had to block off all the street in order to get out the stun guns and remove it without hassle. I was in the office so I missed the excitement :( But what gets me is every morning and every night I walk down that street and back again to get to work in fact only a half hour before I had passed by that very tree.

What kind of liability am I offered for Bear attack???

Monday, September 29, 2008

Best weekend ever!

And that became the motto for a weekend to be rivalled.

Friday morning Brendan and I got up in what I swear was minus 100C. We fueled up and headed out to Yoho National Park. We took a look at Takakkaw Falls which is supposed to be the second biggest falls in Canada. The weather was absolutely miserable and a heavy fog covered most the mountain tops yet we got a semi decant view.

After the falls we headed to The Natural Bridge at Kicking Horse which was absolutely stunning! Even with the crappy weather you could admire its beauty. We then drove up to Emerald Lake which is a really popular destination but shitty weather sort of made that hard. So finally at about 11:30am we drove on to Kelowna. The funny thing was as we drove the closer we got the nicer the weather got and soon I was stripping myself down of layers and turning the airconditioning on!

We stopped at this gorgeous lake just on the outskirts of Sicamoose. I didn't know the name but figured that it looked so beautiful I had to take photos. Only to discover five minutes later the name of the lake was Mara Lake! So in my subconcious I was drawn to my mother hahaha.

We got held up just outside of Vernon because a guy with a motor-home decided it would be a good idea to pass a cyclist on a tiny bridge. He clipped the cyclist and traffic was stopped for about 45 minutes whilst we waited for the ambulance. Everyone was ok to an extent (give or take a few broken bones) Anyway I think we finally made it to Kelowna around 4pm to find my LJ friend Steven, [info]thetar already there with his wife Carrie, [info]playmoby and son Jackson. So it was very cool to meet them all since thetar and I must have been friends for nearly a year now and I love meeting people from the internet. I'm bad that way! It was just lucky that we happened to be so close to each other since I only just got to Canada from Australia. I don't think im quite at the level of flying to another country just to meet someone! (yet)

The place we stayed at was Loft with a view which I definately reccomend to anyone visiting Kelowna.

Friday night we bought some steaks and drank.

Alchol consumed

16 pack of beer
Half bottle of vodka (pretty much all [info]thetar)
2 bottles of wine

We played the Canadian version of monopoly which [info]thetar should have been winning but was so drunk he lost all his money when he didnt notice us landing on his properties.


Went to the farmers market in the morning.
Went to the Jammery which was kind of lame
Went to the park
Went to a Wine Tour.

Saturday night we picked up some chicken which Brendan grilled was so fanfuckingtastically delicious.

Alcohol consumed
2 bottles of wine
The rest of the vodka
8 Large beers

We then played Cranium till the wee hours of the morning. It was the Canadian version so we had trouble with all the brain questions since none of them made sense. The game itself had me in tears and carrie got a few wall of fame diagrams.


So we basically just chilled in the morning then checked out. Brendan and I had a long drive ahead of us 6 hours then we also lost an hour in time turnover so leaving about midday we got into Banff around 8pm. Half the fault was because we took this wrong turn in Revelstoke and ended up half hour out of the way hoping that we would hit the highway. Then we hit the dirt roads and figured that it wasn't going to happen...

When we got back home we went straight up to a work party where I consumed another three glasses of wine and sang some kareoke. But my mind wasn't in it so much because of all the boozing the last two days.

Anyway it was an awesome weekend and I had a lot of fun!

Friday, September 19, 2008

Lake louise

You know what for being only an hour and half drive from a major city (calgary) it makes me wonder why I had to wait two weeks for my internet to be installed.

I shant be grumpy though because it arrived today and I am now the pround user of 10MB high speed connection, gone are the days of stealing dodgy wireless. Expect so much more from me...

Anyway Brendan and I went up to Lake Louise yesterday to do a big hike called Plain of Six Glaciers with the loop trail of lake agnes. About 14.5km all up and took us about 5-6 hours. Was absolutely beautiful. And I leave you with playing air guitar with Lake Louise in the background.

Rock on people!

Saturday, September 6, 2008

NUmber of jackets purchased 0

Pretty good haul lawn/garage saling this morning

Snowboard helmet, goggles & head warmer - $20
Book Rough guide to Canada - $1
Book some vampire novel - 50c
Potato cookbook - $2
Tan leather boots - $2
Little plush canadian moose with tags on - $1

Still on the hunt for cheap snowpants!

A couple of things that bug me about Canada.

The postal(post) codes are different for every street I'm not kidding the way they do their post is attach the codes to the streets rather then "districts" back home the postcode will direct you to a suburb then its quite easy to find the street from here. Banff is smaller the our typical suburb back home yet my Street Address, Work Address and Postal Address all have a different postal code. Oh and 90% of the time if you say "Postcode" they have no idea what I'm talking about. Yet if I say Zip code they understand me.

The phone system here is confusing
The province (aka state) I live in has at least 3 that I know of area codes
403, 780 and ... 1-403. Yes you guessed it every long distance call I make needs a 1 in front of it and for some reason certain 403 numbers are considered long-distance. However the only way you know this is when you get the automated voice on the other end of the phone telling you to dial 1. Or the returned fax! Oh and even better? If you put the 1 in front of the number and it doesn't need it then you won't get through either! So its a bit of a hit and miss situation really..

If you answer the phone you get charged!! Man that drives me up the wall. Some networks even charge you to recieve messages! And Brendan can't recieve anything if he has no credit on his phone!

Disclaimer Obviously no country is perfect and there is a lot I love about this place. (like the super cheap high speed internet) Just not those two!

Friday, September 5, 2008

its a love-hate relationship

You know a week or so ago I was over this fucking place. I don't even know why. I think I just got in one of my moods where I missed my hometown and my friends and family, I was feeling lonely so far away and I just felt like packing it all in and moving on.

So I'm over that :D Everything here is just so beautiful everytime I walk I'm staring at a mountain, there is so many interesting people here and for once in my life I don't really care about what I'm doing tomorrow. I'm just living for the sake of living instead of planning ahead for my so called future. And it feels fucking great.

A couple of things have me excited. I'm off to Kelowna at the end of the month to catch up with my seattle buddy [info]thetarand his family. I'm excited about going on wine tasting tours and just seeing a bit more of this amazing country. Plus its like 3 days before my birthday what a better way to celebrate turning 27!

We got our tax return back so Brendan and I are off to Calgary on Wednesday 10th september to go shopping for his new SLR digital camera. We scored over 5,000 from the tax office so it also means I'm getting a new laptop! Waiting of course for Starcraft 2 to be released before I splurge out since I want something mainly for that. My good ol macbook is doing the job for now!

Some girls from work and I have started a Girls night out knitting club. Gee I haven't knitted anything in about... 2 years. I'm making a scarf. For now. You know I'm actually living in a country where knitted items are useful! Anyway I did about six rows before I was to drunk from all the wine and dropping stiches left right and centre. I was working dangerously close to the top! It was great because now I have a little common ground to hang out with the girls from work.

Went out for Valeska's going away party the other night as well and ate some amazing steak OMG. Seriously The Keg makes the best steak I have ever had. We went out dancing after although the music sucked. I called my mate Simon from back home and chatted to him for a bit. It was so fucking cold my hands were freezing while I was on the phone I had to keep switching. I also had 1/2 a cigarette...*oops*

Sunday, August 31, 2008

August 31st summer and snowing!!

Isn't this supposed to be summer. I'm not even ready for winter :o I don't even have mittens!!!

Friday, August 29, 2008


Elli has left me! My favourite english wench to harass is now on her way to Seattle then San Fran then back home to the UK. It makes me sad because we did have a pretty good friendship whilst she was here but I guess thats what comes from living in a seasonal town!. Anyway I have her details so whenever I am in Liverpool I can look her up! I am going to miss making fun of her posh accent and her crazy laugh.

We went out to celebrate? her departure. Funny story is that day emails had been sent out with pictures of a dodgy character from the Fox Hotel (one of the hotels owned by my company) he ordered a pizza pretended to be a guest gave a fake credit card number and used the hotel facilities. Anyway turned out he had just started working Night Audit at another one of our hotels (which happened to be Ellis) but after the first shift didn't show up. Then proceeded to call 6pm the next day to say he had been mugged. So while we were walking to town out of luck we ran into him walking the other way. Elli & Valeska just started to crack up and ran around the corner and I shouted out at the top of my voice "saw your picture mate!!"

The club was 'ladies night' so Brendan wasn't allowed in until 11pm. Thats ok because we stood outside talking to the bouncer who happened to be from Darwin of all places. You may remember him from....Ducks Nuts? Tall Greek looking guy with curly wog hair. I forget his name.. It was $2.75 Sour Puss all night which tasted like raspberry sour gummi worms. mmmm. I picked up a few men wearing togas as well!

Re: the title. Every single time I say arrow over the phone at work people ask me to spell it. I wonder if the aussie accent makes it sound really strange to Canadians? We have a hotel called The Arrow as well so I say it alot.

Speaking of work a lady asked for me specially tonight I had helped her out with a room the week before. Anyway she was so rapt in the room she wanted to book again for Saturday night and wanted to speak with me personally because of how awesome I was. The result? I now have a place to crash in Ontario and she wrote an email to my supervisor about how awesome and helpful I was. So she pretty much made my night. Who says you can't meet great people over the phone! (me actually...)

Brendan's dragon boat team came 3rd in the B division which is pretty good for a bunch of amateurs

Friday, August 22, 2008

my legs hurt

So the internet stealing frenzy is over which means I've been offline for the last three days and if you know me then you know that I was probably a little bit crazy.

I have some access right now at work but I am unable to reach the nessacities (such as facebook) except by hacking the web filter and last time I did that the department got in trouble so I'm a bit hesitant.

Basically this means I have to pay for internet. When this is going to happen I dont know so expect minimal contact with me.

I climbed Mt Rundle on Wednesday, overall it was a 9 hour round trip. The highest peak is 9,000 ft or so we didnt quite make it because weather pushed us back. The last two hours were spent climbing up a steep slate. There was a HUGE drop 1 metre either side and it began to rain. Oh not to mention that it was slippery. We couldnt see in front or behind us because of fog so in the end we had to give up on the trek. Still we got further then most people dream of. Going down was scary because the rocks were slippery and the angle was steep. Thank god I had awesome hiking boots.

Anyway so my legs hate me now because the muscles were not ready for hiking AT ALL. Yesterday there was a free concert in Banff but the weather was miserable. Still I hobbled out to see K-OS and Theory of a Deadman both Canadian bands and not to bad. Maybe not something I'd pay for but was worth checking out for free.

Brendan has his first Dragon Boat race tomorrow I expect all of you to be wishing him good luck!

Anyway till next time.

Friday, August 15, 2008

Banfflife this week

Our work summer BBQ was on the other day, quite a small turnout considering how many people work for the company. But that meant more food and alcohol for me. For somebody who shouldn't be drinking I'm drinking alot lately. Every time I go to pass something happens and I feel like a drink. Wouldn't it be funny it Banff turned me into an alcoholic.

So I drank a bit and played frisbee with Brendan, Sandra, Joe and the computer geeks Dave, Vince, Mike. I think Sandra found it hilarious that I managed to find geeks on the other side of the world to talk to. After frisbee we were going to hike a mountain to see a meteor shower but iphone told us the best time was 4am the morning passed, so we passed on that and went out.

I went home about midnight but Brendan carried on till about 4am. He had the sense to give me all his money and ATM card so at least he was on the water for the rest of the night! The main issue here was that Joe had driven the car home after the BBQ and then locked the key inside because I told him that we had another set. The other set happened to be in my bag which was lying in the back car of the Jeep.

So Wednesday we are all set for a hike only to realise that we couldn't get in the car. Brendan couldn't pick the lock but he managed to get the side window open and reached down and grabbed my bag off the seat and pulled out the keys! All this in broad daylight people were staring at us and nobody called the cops!

Wednesday we climbed another mountain. It was a bit boring to me but one less mountain on my list of things to do! I can't wait for Mt Rundle!!

Brendan also joined the Dragon Boat team with our work and has been practising on Minnewanka lake for the last couple of weeks. The race is on Saturday & Sunday the 22nd/23rd so I'm going to head up and watch him on the Sunday and cheer for the team. Its vs all the other hotels and stuff in the area but I hear some of the teams hire professionals just to win.

I took on another job, right now im doing 10 hours a day 40 hours a week which gives me three days off so I took a giftshop job for one of my days off. I start next Tuesday. I'm here for a good time not a work time but the shop gives me 50% off all purchases and I need some customer interaction since the phones gets to you after a while.

Tonight my flatmate is making chicken fajitas w00t

Sunday, August 10, 2008

a pox on you

My workplace has an epidemic, called Chicken Pox.

I was first to find out when one of my roomates a Costa Rican girl who was a housekeeper at the original source of the virus was taken down with the pox. Of course our line of work is the hotel business so its not long before the entire workplace is affected.

I had chicken pox when I was around 12/13 all my sisters and I got it at the same time. I got two weeks off school. My sisters were covered in pox and I think in total I had 4 chicken pox. So they say if you got off lightly the first time there is a chance youll get it again. But there are no tell-tale dots on my body so I'm hoping that it just means I'm immune.

I have a 3 day work week this week. Tuesday is the work party with free bbq!!

Did I mention I saw a bear?

... Does anyone actually read this????

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Today I lost my virginity

Well my bear sighting virginity that is!. Driving to the Garage sales this early Saturday morning I was gazing out the window and I saw a little black bear just ambling along the side of the road. I was shocked because I've been keeping my eyes out for bears for two months now and this is the first one I have actually seen. Poor Brendan was driving so he missed out so we turned around quicksmart to see if we could find it, but it was gone.

On Thursday we did a road trip down to Calgary, mainly to see The Dark Knight. We went to the mall in the town centre first only to be repulsed by the eight dollars an hour parking charge. So we turned around and went to the Chinook Mall which is supposed to be Calgarys biggest shopping mall. I finally saw the Dark Knight in all its IMAX glory.. it was a great movie. Heath Ledger was so good in it. I thought there was a bit to much story and not enough action though!

I also got some shopping down and managed to replace the shorts that I wrecked sliding down Mt Norquay on my butt. Been a slow week here. Going to a BBQ tonight for Max's going away he heads back home to england.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

my week in banff

SO the whole thing with my grandfather has been occupying my mind for the week, I've been having shit sleeps, no crying just goddamn thinking all the time!

But how is sunny Banff? Well not so sunny really... I forgot to mention that last Saturday morning Brendan and I went lawnsaling in Canmore/Banff since the prices here are UNREAL. That means expensive. Anyway I got a couple of nice jackets for $3 which helps fill out my meagre winter wardrobe (I'm definately going to be feeling the pain in three months) I also got a bunch of books for $1. I got a reading lamp for $1 then the guy gave me two spare lightbulbs for free! Score!!! But the win of the day was my snowboard and bindings for $20!! Ok so the snowboard is scratched and old and a little chip on one side although Brendan said that he could fix that at work. But for someone who doesn't know how to snowboard and doesn't anything good or flash it will do the trick. Cheaper then renting anyway!

I also have to mention on Thursday the 10th I took Fay out to see Johnston Canyon and we did some walk in Canmore which was beautiful. you can view the photos here Funniest park was the huge roadblock - which we joined. To take photos of a damn elk!! Fay and I thought it was a moose...

Anyway fay left on friday the 11th :(

So LAST night the 17th of July a bunch of us went up to the top of Sulpher mountain and had a picnic drank some beers. I had a bottle of wine but forgot to bring the corkscrew so I just had nothing. So the crew that went was Alli (English, front desk at Hidden ridge) Valeska? (Front desk hidden ridge Australian) and valeskas boyfriend Max who works maintenance with Brendan he is English and this guy Joe who is Canadian and is excutive housekeeper at the ridge so I was the only employee that wasn't from the ridge. Anyway they were all pretty awesome and Joe and I had this connection only nerds can have. Thats right I found me a fellow nerd FINALLY!! So we talked video games and stuff but he is a bit more far gone then me in the nerd department lol.

Oh and my Karma was right on the last few days I dont know if my grandad was having some divine intervention but I was killing with the same day walkins making some great comission. Only problem is I look at my paycheck after 80 hours of work and $160 in commisionf or two weeks and its just under $800! Of course rent and utilities I dont have to pay for but still thats nearly half what I was earning back home. Fingers crossed I can save some good cash whilst I'm here. Hopefully we will save one full paycheck.

Anyway thats bout it I have three days off now so I'm gonna go do something.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Howdy Cowgirl

Here is a quick post just to tide you/ me over. I just finished cleaning my room up and I found my house key which is great because I had been leaving the door unlocked. Anyway so my favourite work friend is leaving back to Liverpool today she failed a uni course and has to head back to do some extra credit. I am very sad about this :(

But last SAturday Sandra, Brendan and I went to the CALGARY STAMPEDE apparently the biggest event in calgarys year. It was good there was lot of good looking cowboys around and I got myself a cool hat photos of the stampede can be found here

I was a little disappointed though I was expecting a full cowboy like event and all i got was something that resembled the Darwin show. Funny because during the Darwin show I usually end up ditching town and abusing the public holiday for camping! We spent the whole day looking at all the free stuff. We watched some shows I saw some mini horse chuckwagon racing also some cattle penning. I got my cowboy fix kinda. I also saw a real life mounty sans horse :(

It was a long day we left town at 8am and didn't get home till 10:30pm. It was interesting though because at the start we were all so excited and loving everything but as it got nearer to 7pm we were crashing quickly. We saw this comedian juggler "Chris Issak" and holy crap he was annoying and bad!!

Highlights would have to be Terry Stokes the hypnotist. I had tears in my eyes. Also the breakdancing crew from the bronx were awesome.

I had a full day yesterday but I have to go to work soon, I may update later


Monday, June 30, 2008

settlement in a foreign country

About due for my week update on what is going on in Amanda's life. So I am right now in Banff and working for Banff Lodging Company I do reservations for the eight hotels they own here. I arrived in Banff on Monday, starting work on the tuesday. They didn't have staff accomodation for me until Friday so they put Brendan and I up at the Inns of Banff in this room for free until it was ready. As nice as living in a hotel room was I really needed to stop eating takeout, be able to unpack all my shit and just settle the fuck down. So you can guess how relieved I was when I finally got my staff accomodation.

Anyway on the Monday Brendan and I walked up to the Hidden Ridge hotel (also of banff lodging company) and Brendan was offered a job on the spot with maintenance. The guy didn't even look at his resume. Brendan started on Wednesday because of SIN card issues. For those of you who dont know what SIN is its Social Insurance Number. aka Tax file Number (Australia) and Social Security (USA) dont ask me what the UK equiv is I have no idea. Anyway you cant work without one I had gotten mine a few weeks before so I was fine.

That evening my work was going on a team building exercise so they took us out horseriding. The one thing I am terrified of is horses and this day was no exception. I have to admit by the end I was starting to bond with my horse Tiago. After horseriding we went out to the pub and work paid for me to get drunk. Only problem was I had to work the next day. Lucky for me I only had the flu not a hangover.

Work is interesting, Saturday was my first day alone on the phones and I actually did ok with everything. In fact I made just over $50.00 in comission which is pretty good. I lucked out though I was working the busiest night of the year in banff and all these fools tried to book last minute and all we had that was left was expensive hotel rooms. Basically comission works that if I book a same-day I get 5%. Hours are great to I work four days on 10 hours a day and yesterday was my first 10 hour shift and it really just flies by doing the extra hours. It doesnt get dark here till 11pm right now anyway so I can still go out and do stuff. Wait till winter however, I may never see the sun again!!

Another perk of my work is all the discounts and stuff we get. Like we can use the canoes/kayaks down at Bow river for free. And we get 40% discount off food in a bunch of resturants and 30% off drinks. Brendan and I ate at one of them on Thursday and saved ourselves over $20.00 and got an awesome feed. There are corporate ski passes we can sign out and I heard that we get one free lesson with the hotels private ski instructor .. YAY. Plus we get discounts on ski rentals and all that sort of thing. I'm sure there is more but thats all I've heard at the moment. My work is great and laidback everyone is nice. Seeing mum and Sandra then leaving them made me homesick though, ok perhaps by the end we were on each others nerves but being so far away from my friends and family I feel it occasionally.

Does anyone know any good online stores in Canada? I was looking for one that might sell like non-perishable foods and ship them. Variety here is slim and expensive. Its hard to cook meals I want to cook!! Also something that sells general household items like soap and stuff.

Oh another lucky thing of my staff accom? In range of someones unsecured network :D

Roadtripping Canada

I got a job!! I am now a Canadian Employee working with Banff lodging company as a reservations sales agent for Banff Lodging company. Pay is minimal at $12.00 an hour but it comes with perks like Staff accomodation, corporate ski passes, discounts with tour companies etc. Also they let you have a weekend away every now and then in one of their hotels for free. They work 10 hour days 4 days a week so that gives me 3 days off to see the sites which I would personally prefer.

Brendan is still unemployed but the girl who hired me said that she would look into getting Brendan a position. They seem really keen for me.

Right now I am sitting in the small railroad town of Revelstoke in British Columbia. We are on our way to Vancouver to spend a week on the island. I have basically been on the road for the last week sleeping in a tent, freezing my ass off. Today was the first day we had real sunshine!. We stopped off at Drumheller home of the largest dinosaur and went through Rosedale where the world record for most bridges in the shortest amount of distance is. Then we passed through the dead town of vulcan and dressed up as Klingons.

We stayed a wet cold night in Waterton Park climbing a mountain the next day only to reach the beautiful top full of snow and ice. Still the view was amazing. On the way down it began to hail/snow and I was only wearing three layers and no waterproof jacket!!!

Who knows where I will be tomorrow but I cant wait to settle down and start working I have been on holiday for three months now and Im ready like hell to get back to work.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Vancouver Island

My week in Vancouver Island has been interesting so far. I think being in close proximity with my sister and mother is starting to wear on our patience. The tent is a six-man tent which in real terms means four people can fit uncomfortably in it as long as they don’t move. We aren’t all miniscule Japanese you know… To add to that showers cost money so we have pretty much been forgoing that and just becoming one with nature. Do like the aboriginals. What has kept me sane is the fact that everywhere here seems to offer free wireless internet. Most people know give me a computer and WWW and I’ll be happy for days! Isn’t it strange that internet is free but showers cost money? What in the world are we coming to…

The trip over to the island was a nightmare we got to the Ferry at around 4pm. 4pm on a FRIDAY. We were told that we were placed on the 9pm ferry. So for five hours we waited in a car park, people were playing hockey or walking their dogs. Once we got on the ferry (an hour late) it took us 1.5 to get to the island so we arrived around 11:30pm no idea where we were and no idea where to sleep. I was frustrated from a night of no sleep so I was no help and just dozed in the back seat. They found a campsite (which was to be our home for the next four nights) and decided to set up tent in the middle of the night and work out the details the next day.

Day 1 was chilled, we spent the day walking around Nanimo and reading books. The local library was having a massive book sale and we scored about 15 books for $1.50. One such find was the Dark Elf Trilogy by R.A Salvatore. I delved into it and am now onto the third book, will be done in time for mum to take them home!

On Sunday we drove for two hours to Long Beach and did a short walk. It was nice but the drive was to long I think overall we spent about three hours just getting there.

Monday was spent seeing Chemainus famous for its murals painted along business walls etc. At one point I fell over and grazed my knee and everyone laughed. We then went on to Duncan which is another town famous for its totem poles everywhere. After that we went to Lake Cowichan where we had lunch and walked the largest floating boardwalk on the island. Then home once more and mum made chicken madras.

Tuesday we packed up our tent and headed out for Campbell River where we settled into a new campsite. We took a famous walk of thiers the Ripple Rock which turned out to be nice, but wet as it started raining the whole way. All my clothes got soaked…the walk was nice 8.5km round trip and the view of the bay was decant. We almost missed the view since the walk abruptly ended at a cliffface and we were lost as to where we were supposed to go – the answer was up …

On the way back we came across all these giant radioactive slugs hundreds of them jetblack. They were about the size of a small sausage and 10x as gross. I was scared to touch them in case they were actually leeches and latched on to my fingers. What if they were really brain suckers from out of space sent to Campbell river to take over the small town and infect all the incoming tourists to infiltrate the world!

Wednesday Day 2 in Campbell river we drove out to Strathcona Park, B.Cs oldest park. I picked Upper Myra Falls walk which was pretty about 3km one way. The falls were nice nothing exciting. We did see the lower falls which I enjoyed more and climbed all over the rocks to get the most awesome photos despite the signs saying how dangerous they were. After Myra we did a 1.5km Loop trail “Karst Creek” which was supposed to only be one way since the bridge was out but the creek under the bridge was dry anyway and Brendan and I decided to climb down the river. At one point I stood on this log and it nearly rolled out from under me. That would have been painful..

After that walk we stopped at Lupin Falls which was a 0.6km loop walk to a pretty waterfall. I always thought that Darwin had nice waterfalls but I swear every turnoff in Canada there is a new waterfall!!!

Thursday we drove straight to Victoria capitol of BC. We booked ourselves in a hostel and then Mum, Brendan and I went to see Prince Caspian: Chronicles of Narnia. It was an AWESOME movie. Omg Ben Barnes was very sexy. I’ve always had a thing for Prince Caspian, only thing that was weird was his accent I didn’t feel like it fit. I can’t wait for Voyage of the Dawn Treader.

Friday we caught the ferry back to Vancouver and spent the afternoon shopping at Metropolis and then onto the Richmond night markets which was a bit overhyped in my opinion. A lot of cute asian stuff and Nintendo Heaven! Really overpriced though so I didn’t actually buy anything but I saw all these plush I wanted so bad..

Saturday mum left back home and Sandra, Brendan and I drove to Sparwood. Then we are onto Banff where I start work on Tuesday, the company has accommodation for me on Tuesday and have put me up in a hotel for Sunday & Monday night. They also want me to come along to a staff horseriding session on Monday which I am a little freaked about since Horses are my one major fear…

Here are some photos of my Vancouver Island trip

Friday, May 30, 2008

New York, New YORK!!!

So I'm sitting here in the beautiful? College point, Queens NEW YORK CITY. I'm stealing some random persons internet so I'm facing an open window enjoying a beautiful! day. I think its about 65F

I've been in new york for about a week now. We drove from Florida through the east coast stopping at Pedro's "South of the Border" and washington DC. I really wanted to see all the monuments in Washington even if America's history doesn't interest me to much just the fact that I was seeing all the things I've seen in movies :D Like Abraham lincoln and the capitol. I was excited though and something about Abrahams monument just felt really inspiring I forgot that it featured in planet of the apes for a few seconds! This was a great man who did a lot of good for a country in trouble.

I was sitting in this same spot when I realised the red carpet premier for Sex & the City was on. Stupid me for the first time I am actually at the location of a red carpet premier and I'm sitting at home on the internet. I LOVE sex & the city and there was even a signing at 3pm I missed...

Anyway I did the whole NYC tourist thing with Brendan, I've actually done it all before even climbed the statue of liberty. This is the third time I've been here that I can remember, just Brendan is a newbie and last time I was here was nine years ago so I'm more then keen to see it all again. I love this place.

Yesterday was pretty funny we were left alone in the city for the first time so we started off the day exploring Times Square and Rockerfella center. First we went to Toys R Us the worlds biggest toy store. It even has a ferris wheel in side. I got to go in a life sized barbie house, and OMG the legos!! Next we walked up to see Nintendo world where I went a little crazy and wanted to buy out the whole store, but thats just me. In the end I got a Nintendo World NY key chain laser light and Weaville Pokemon (my favourite pokemon) Brendan got a nintendo world coffee travel cup thing so he can use it in Canada. I was surprised at how few plush there were and how many I already had! Except of course the giant mario and yoshi I wanted really badly... one day perhaps. We realised we had to rush to get to our cruise around the island but then figured we wouldnt make it so we took a leisurely stroll back down times square and checked out the M&M stores and some other stuff. It all looks so cool.

We decided to catch the next cruise and made it in time but the lady gave us the wrong tickets for the 75 minute cruise instead of the 3 hr cruise we had paid for and we ended up in the wrong place and then missing the 2:30 cruise and the next one wasnt until 4:30pm. So we grabbed a taxi to take us to empire state building but there was to much traffic and we jumped out after a block. We raced to the empire state building and after buying our tickets and waiting in line we got to the top about 3:40pm. We rushed around the top taking pictures and seeing the sites, I have been up there once before at night. We then raced for the elevators and got to the ground at 4pm. We grabbed another taxi and told him to step on it to the pier for the cruise. He got stuck in traffic two blocks away and we only had 10 minutes so we jumped out and ran the last two blocks reaching the cruise out of breath with two minutes to spare.

The cruise was great "Circle Line Cruises" and took us around the island with a guide explaining what everything is. If you have my facebook you can see my pictures. After the cruise it was now 7:30pm we caught a train to uptown as Brendan was sure the resturant I wanted to take him to Jekyll and Hyde was there. Uptown scared the crap out of me, it was nearing nighttime everything was closed and it looked like lots of dodgy people walking around. Brendan wanted to take all these weird side streets in the end I got upset and told him we would just go home. So we were catching the train back to downtown to catch the train home to Queens when it clicked to me that the resturant was in Downtown in the first place and Brendan had been back to front with locations. So with the help of a random woman walking the streets we finally found the resturant at 10pm and starving because we had basically skipped lunch thinking we were eating at 5pm. We were the only ones there at first. The resturant has entertainment every half an hour or so and its interactive so we got picked on since we were all that was there, after a half hour a few other people showed up and it was all good.

After the resturant we tried to get two taxis to take us home but neither of them knew where college point was and neither did I so in the end we just took the train home which was free for us anyway since we still had out metcards. We finally got home about midnight since we started at 8am and walked miles and miles I was exhausted!!

I fly to Canada on Saturday and spending a week with my mum and sister maybe more if we decide, I have been unemployed nearly three months now so I'm ready to go back to work plus the savings are dwindling rapidly. Especially since Brendan just brought a brand new laptop.

Anyway im going to read some entries dont know when I will post again hopefully sooner then later right :D

Monday, May 19, 2008

My life atm

Last week Brendan and I spent 7 days on a caribbean cruise. The ship left from Port Canaveral it was called Mariner of the Seas by Royal Caribbean. It was a beautiful ship and all the staff were amazing. I had a great time, the prices were decant since it was the cheaper time of the year. I don't know why since spring weather is the best weather. Summer is just way to hot.

Man I am a crap writer lately...

Last night went out to the Daytona Beach rum festival since its my last weekend in Florida. Brendan got super drunk with all you can drink for $15.00 It was $20.00 but I sweet talked the transvestite at the door and got $5 knocked off. When we got home he tried to sleep on the floor it was pretty funny.

During the day we went to the beach and Ems boyfriend tried to teach us how to surf but I was more interested in the boogie board. I was catching some good waves and riding them to the shore. Perhaps to close because I scraped my knee from getting to shallow. It was fun though we spent about four hours on the beach. My abs are killing me though and my legs, fighting through the waves you dont realise what a workout your giving yourself no wonder surfers are in such good shape.

On Tuesday we are going to drive to New York for 10 days stopping off in Washington DC to see the whitehouse. Something to look forward to anyway :D

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Lets begin with Epcot

Did I mention I did Disney on the weekend? Oh...yeaaa.

The memory is starting to fade of what we did exactly so I better write it down before it fades completely.

Believe it or not I've been to disneyworld once before about 17 years ago. I went my late Nonno (grandfather) and sisters. So I had vague memories of a few things, like "Its a Small World" and the "Indiana Jones Extreme Stunt show" and I know Mum and I were the only ones who went on "Space Mountain"

What I didn't remember was the hideous amount of people.

So, Epcot. I did the following things

Spaceship Earth

This was the ride inside the Epcot ball. It was pretty cruisy and nice we just trundled along in little carts which told us about how communication had formed through time. If you check out my Facebook videos there is a short video of Brendan and I in our future together. The photo of me was hilarious.

Ellen's Energy Adventure

I believe this was the last ride we did for the day, and we were so drunk from going round the worlds. It went for about 37 minutes and was so boring. My Aunty actually fell asleep during it. We had gone to do it earlier but it was closed because somebody had jumped out mid show - I could see why.

Mission: SPACE

A cool little ride where it simulated being in a real space shuttle. It was pretty weird how it felt the pressure on your skin. Apparently the year before a 3 year old boy had died in the ride, so you can see how it was a little bit intense.

Test Track

A ride which simulated different conditions how they test cars. At one point they speed you up really crazy round a track. We were also drunk for this ride, pretty funny.

The Seas with Nemo & Friends

This was cute we sat in little clam shell boats and went around in a ride where Nemo was hiding from everyone.


One of the best rides in the park we actually raced for this one because it was most popular. It simulates hang glider affects where you float over the United States. I can't wait to see a lot more of the USA now.

"Honey, I Shrunk The Audience"

A 3D show where we got shrunk :( Pretty funny.

ImageWorks - The Kodak "What If" Labs

A little kiddy ride about Imagination.

Turtle Talk with Crush

This was a little kids show but it was cute. Had some funny bits and I like crush :D

Around the Worlds

This was my favourite part of the whole day. We started around 1pm and finished about 5pm. We basically just went from world to world drinking a native drink in each one and having some food.

Canada - Brendan and Lenny got moosehead beer. Im not a bear drinker so I skipped Canada.

United Kingdom - We had fish & chips here and a duck kept trying to steal our food.

France - I had a grey goose lemonade slushy, Emily had some champagne and I think Brendan and Lenny had more beer

Morocco - Em & I had some moroccon wine whilst the boys got into the beer. We brought a combination plate which had lamb, chicken, cous cous, tabouli and some dipping sauce. It was goood

Japan - We were going to get some sushi but all to full so we just got some saki. I couldn't drink all of mine it made me sick, so Brendan and Em finished mine off.

America - We completely skipped this one - whats the point?

Italy - I think we skipped this one to. I come from an Italian family so I'm pretty used to Italian food.

Germany - I had a sweet white wine and Brendan and Lenny had more beer. They also got some bratwurst sausage thing which I had a bite of, not bad.

China - Into the plum wine which tasted like cough medicine but not to badly. We got some egg rolls.

Norway - No alcohol (for once) but Bianca and I got stuck into fruit tarts which were soooo good.

Mexico - A couple of frozen margeritas and we were drunk and set!

Issues arose

Bianca got pissed off because we were all getting drunk at Disneyworld. I think she mainly got pissed off because she was to young to get drunk (only 13) I told her to snap out of it because it was a trip for Brendan and I and not her. My auntys kids are spoilt brats sometimes.

Lenny and Emily had a massive fight on the way out. My uncle brought up what horrible kids she has and Em was going on about how he has been using her for the last nine months. They kept trying to bring me into it but I was not interested in a drunk argument when both of them wasn't listening to the other one.

We got lost trying to find the hotel unfourtanately. This led to more tension because Lenny was just laughing at us and no help whatsoever. The fight continued back at the hotel so Bianca, Brendan and I went inside and played Scattergories. The hotel was really nice, it was a vacation villa with four bedrooms, full kitchen and living room facilities, a pool and games room. Heaps cheaper then a hotel all up cost about $350.00 for the three nights with five of us staying there. So we paid about 80 bucks each. you can view the villa here

We got to bed about Midnight. Tomorrow is magic kingdom...

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Universal Studios

It all began with a 6am wakeup call. My aunty's house is about an hour away from Universal so we wanted to get up and get ready and be there by 9am when it opened so there wasn't long lines. I was unfourtanately getting over a really bad flu and was still coughing and sneezy. Basically feeling like total shit.

But it was Universal... for fucks sakes. So I dragged myself out of bed and prepared myself. We stopped off at a drug store so I could get something for my nose to stop the sniffling. I ended up getting this Zrytec D (on reccomendation) I had to show my ID. This proved more hassle then it was worth because there was no options for other countries and the cashier couldnt fill in my details properly. But he was a nice guy and we got around it with half using my Auntys Address and half using my Darwin address.

We went to Islands of Adventure first since it had some of the best rides and since we were heading in early there wouldn't be as long to wait. So first thing I got to do when I entered the gates just feeling a little better with the medicine was "The Hulk" only one of the scariest roller coasters ever. Way to jumpstart my universal adventure right... Wait times were only 5 minutes which was even better. The problem I have with rollercoasters is...well I hate them to death. I also love them to death. I love to be terrified... but as I was wrenched upwards towards my hulk doom my stomach fell. God it was an awesome ride but god I was terrified.

Then onto "The Amazing Adventures of Spiderman" only my favourite super hero of ALL time. It was 3D and you were in this little roller coaster cart and it just sort of moved around like a mini much safer ride but because of the 3D made it seem like you were going on a much faster more exciting ride. There was this one part where our cart is vertical and the ground rushes towards you I actually closed my eyes briefly at that part I freaked out! And believe it or not that was the only ride I closed my eyes on..

Because the wait times were still low we headed off to another of the popular rides "Duelling Dragons" another rollercoaster ride but with two seperate tracks fire and ice. We took the ice track and because my uncle insisted I actually sat in the very front of the coaster. The two coasters fire and ice rush around at the same time sometimes looking like they are about to directly hit, you can understand me being in the very front of the coaster how scared I was...At one point I swear I was literally rushing 200km/h straight at this wall and then straight up I felt like my feet were going to be wrenched from my body.

So on the way back from the duelling dragons we decided to hit the Jurassic park ride. A much gentler ride but still with a bit of drop and scare attempt. This ride got me wet. It was close to lunchtime now and heating up so we figured now was a good a time as any to take on the water rides. My aunty (smartly) sat them out so just the four of us went on "Dudley Do-Rights Ripsaw falls"which was an excuse to get me (the lucky sap who got stuck in the front) soaking wet. Since we were already soaked from that ride we decided to do the "Popeye & Bluto's Bilge-Rat Barges" and everyone got soaked right down to our socks. Except of course my aunty who once again must have got the brains in the family

They even have these buttons on the walkways above and people can actually spray water at us. These bloody kids did it to us and I didnt even realise it was them till I got off the raft and saw the buttons.

About 1pm now and we decided to head over to the other park Universal Studios. On the way out though we were nearly run over by SPIDERMAN!!! and some others... Storm, Cyclops and someone else. BUT SPIDERMAN!!! So I let them go on thier little all terrain vehicles before racing to find spiderman. I saw the rest of them running around the streets getting photos but I couldn't find spiderman... until I ran into this guy with a sign. Spiderman was in this little dingy room and I had to line up with all these little kids just to see him. But like I was going to come to Universal and not get a picture with spiderman HAH. Even funnier I was still soaking wet from the rides...

Then onto universal we went! The first ride we went on was "Revenge of the Mummy" yep... another scary rollercoaster ride all in the dark. I actually screamed in this one. I think the hulk was scarier but I just felt like screaming. Waiting on line one of the attendents came up behind me and was just staring at me. I turned around and saw him and he had these freaky contacts in.. I was like "what the fuck" We then decided to go on "Disastor" which was meh. Long wait for such an anticlimatic ride. The funniest part was when we were sitting in the fake subway train and they are throwing all these disastors at us and all this water came gushing out of the subways stairs right on my side!! I was still drying up from the last water rides so I practically climbed over Aunty Em to get away from the water. Not because I was scared because I didn't want to get wet again!

We decided to go to Men In Black even though my uncle was against it. On the way I saw beatlejeuce so another guy I had to get my photo with!! Which are all up on my face book by the way add me! My uncle decided to sit out of MIB because it was a "stupid kiddy ride" The line was about 25 minutes long but after about 2 minutes we were like "stuff this lets go in the singles line" which basically means you all get seperated to fill up spare seats. We figured who cares its not like you talk to each other on these rides anyway. We were in and on the ride in less then 5 minutes. Brendan and I were on the same cart anyway but he was in front of me. You got these little laser guns and had to shoot at all the aliens. One guy on my cart got 240,000 points. I got 43,000 and I think Brendan got around 70,000.

Next ride was ET. The wait for ET was so beautiful it was all dark with huge fir trees everywhere you felt like you were in the middle of a forest. The ride itself was pretty calm but nice. You were on bikes with ET on the front taking him home to save his planet! I dont know why my uncle went on that one instead of MIB...

Since time was coming to an end and I was exhausted. All that walking and my sickness I was like the walking dead. So we decided to head back and just do the last few rides. Twister which was talking about how they made the movie and then you stand in this section and they re-create a small twister. Jimmy Neutron. One of those rides you sit in the seats and the screen makes it look like your moving and the seats shake around and stuff. And Shrek 3D a bit like jimmy neutron but 3D and you dont move as much. Although there is this one scene with spiders... I can see Carmen and Heather freaking out.

I know I rushed through Universal and didn't really see any of the shows or anything but I had an awesome day and im more of a ride person anyway. I fell asleep in the back of the car on the way home :D

Thursday, April 10, 2008


The Florida vacation has taken a slide into a real beach holiday. I've been spending my days just chilling, shopping and chilling. We went up to St Augustine to check out the outlets, Brendan and I had a great time getting big name brands for small small prices. My Canadian wardrobe is coming together! I came to Florida completely prepared for beach weather and completely unprepared for anything lower then 20C I guess that comes from living in Darwin my whole life.

We spent about six hours shopping I even got some new sneakers (which I needed) and in that six hours probably spent about $300.00. Which compared to the amount of clothes we got NOTHING!! I am so loving the shopping. My favourite item of the day was this awesome Tommy Hillfiger long sleeve shirt usually $49.00 down to $6.00!! Anyway enough about the shopping!

We also went to a surfing competition down on Daytona Beach which was wrapping up the spring break month. Daytona has big spring break. The waves and weather were kind of crappy so we didn't stay long. Your warm for five minutes then it starts raining and its windy for the next five. Then warm again... by the third rainstorm I was like stuff this. The waves couldn't have been more then a metre high anyway the surfers were getting minimal up time.

I am just loving the chilling out. The buying a car thing is probably not going to happen here so it looks like we might fly to Canada instead and buy a car there. It depends. My uncle is looking at buying a car we might be able to hitch with him to New York. Its just to difficult with registration and importing into Canada. We are better off buying a Canadian approved car and doing the road trip into America on the way back. I'm a little bit sad because I was interested in seeing a bit of the east coast. Maybe I'll check some websites see if any hippies are making the journey and hitch a ride! does anyone know any good websites that I might be able to find like-minded backpackers?

Oh I also went to my little cousins softball game which was so cool. Bunch of under 13s but the parents just went crazy! You would think you were at a serious game. They are screaming and yelling at the kids and every parent knew every kids name. Only problem was it was fucking freezing. Overcast and windy and I only had a tiny jacket. Then it started raining but not heavy enough to call off the game!! It went from 7pm - 9:30pm (late for little kids on a school night in my opinion!!) My cousins team won woohoo.

Sunday, April 6, 2008


I was hoping to beat the dreaded curse of Jetlag but I think I just paused it and made it worse! Every single morning I am waking up at 6:30am. Doesn't matter what time I go to bed I am up in the AM! One good thing about it is I am walking along the beach every morning which is good for my legs especially when I push through the water. I do about 5 miles (according to my aunty) in the morning and 4 miles in the evening.

Wednesday 2nd of April My Aunty took us to Deleon Springs State Park which is the stomping grounds of the guy who discovered the 'fountain of youth' The park has a bunch of beautiful old trees and a natural spring. The main reason we went was for the pancakes! They had this cute little gimmicky resturant where you get all you can eat pancakes for 4.50 a person and there is a hotplate in the middle you cook your own! You pay extra for sides I got chocolate chips and strawberries. Then you just throw them in. That was filling I think I managed about 2 pancakes and I was done. Some convicts were fixing a sign so I tried to sneak a picture of them without being noticed. They must have been good convicts since we walked within two metres of them and they only had these really old guards. There were kids running all over the place!!

Thursday 3rd April we went to the Ponce De Leon Inlet lighthouse. Named after the famous spanish explorer who discovered Florida. It was a hard walk up 203 really steep stairs. Thanks to my beach walking though I was a little more prepared to deal with it. Up the top was an amazing view of Daytona Beach and the surroundings. It just reminds me how beautiful Florida really is! We went and had a drink/snack at a little resturant by the beach. I couldn't get a good drink because I'd forgotten my ID...

Friday 4th April. I stayed up to 2am Thursday to try and beat my jetlag only to still wake up at 6am and be fucking tired ALL DAY. Emily took us out to Bells Outlet store which is a good store that sells lots of brand name clothes at discount prices. Brendan and I got heaps of stuff for about 40 bucks. Yea crazy Brendan actually got a few things! He was trying on some shorts and I was just throwing all these shirts over the change room. Its the only way I can make him try stuff on! I wanted him to get this shirt 'ride the mustang Ford' but we could only find it in small :( Then for dinner we went to this little place called Hooligans which serves awesome hotwings. If you have a movie ticket its buy 10 get 10 free. And the beer (coronas) were $3.50 each I was drinking vodka sunrise for $4.00. For three of us Dinner & Drinks inc tax and tip it came to $53.00. I found out waitresses earn around $3.00 an hour. WHAT THE FUCK! so as a patron not only are you paying for the meal you are tipping to pay for the wage of the waitress. Man to be in the resturant business!

We went to a liquor store after dinner and I got a 2 litre bottle of smirnoff vodka for 20 bucks. Brendan got a litre+ bottle of jim beam for the same! I could seriously never leave with these crazy prices. I also got carded which was exciting for me!! I havent been asked for my ID in years..

Then we went to my Aunty's friends place and somewhere I got drunk. Outside we were talking to these people about the difference in Australians and Americans. Then I met some younger people and we talked to them for ages. The guy said he would teach us how to surf but I was pretty drunk and so was he so I dont know if that is going to Happen...They lived next door so they took us over to play 'darts' but the chick passed out and I got lost. I ended up out the front of the first house just feeling so drunk and sick. I forced myself to throw up then went inside to sleep on the couch. Emily saw me though and dragged me outside to go home. When she went to retrieve Brendan I lay down on a mini trampoline on the lawn and tried to sleep.

I think we got home about 1.30am. I threw up again when I got home and then crashed out. Only to wake up once again at 6am..

Saturday 5th April. Feeling like crap all day because I was so tired I forced myself into bed about 12 to sleep. All I really did was toss and turn. Emily got Brendan to wake me up so she could come get me to fix some computer problem. Her friends place is so nice. They live right near the river which is a rich million dollar neighbourhood. Her house has about 7 bathrooms!! She is a mediator so makes a lot of money. Anyway they had brought this tv convertor so they could watch some softball games which is televised online through thier laptop to the tv and couldnt get it working. They had it plugged in alright they just didn't press FN - F8 on the laptop to output. Lucky I worked with Dells for the last two years hey!

When emily dropped me home I just went to bed. And now I am awake at Jet lag I will conquer you tonight!!!

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Shopping in florida

My jet lag is getting better. I was up around 6:30am this morning. Its funny watching Brendan with jet lag because he is the ultimate snoozer if I don't drag him out of bed he can sleep all day! This morning though he was up the same time as me!

Em took us shopping in the afternoon to a cool little factory outlet where I brought a few things at seriously cheap prices savings of about 30 dollars an item!! Some good brands. Brendan was useless once again shopping with him is annoying. I would prefer to just shop by myself and buy him stuff he always wears what I buy!. We also went to walmart and I checked out the games section. DS games are cheap as here! Problem is I will probably buy more sort of defeating the purpose!

After the shopping we went to Krispy Kremes and Dunkin Donuts where we got a frozen coffee. Like a slushy. It was suprisingly good!. Way better then the coffee with icecubes in it.

Also we went to walmart and coming out there was SELF-SERVICE!! My aunty scanned all the items herself and even paid her money to a machine!! She took us for a drive along the main strip of Daytona.

When we finally got home we all went for a walk along the beach about four miles all up.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008


I've updated so everyone can post on here now without needing to register

I'm here.

The flight was horrible. We had a direct flight originally with QANTAS from Melbourne to LA which wasn't so bad. QANTAS have great service. The only issue was the plane was chockers full and we had a pretty large lady in our aisle seat who had to get up every time we wanted to pee. I spent the whole flight just watching movies. Because we went at 10am I just wasn't ready for sleeping until we got off the plane! The movies were good to there was a little TV in the back of the seat and it was on demand so I could watch whatever I wanted and fast forward/pause as desired. I watched Beowulf, Atonement, Heartbreak Kid(or guy??) Some show on a pageant for transvestites. The Bee Movie, Alvin & The chipmunks and I can't remember what else. The food was decant we got a hot lunch I had chicken in oyster sauce. Yummy but not enough Brendan had beef in red wine I think which was better then mine cause it came with potatoes!!

So we got to LA airport about 730 and spent an hour going through customs/immigration. It was a lot easier then everyone made it out to be just the fact there was so many people made it so slow. The guy who checked my forms was like "I'm so lucky I get all the pretty girls in my line" seeing as I had been on a plane for the last 14 hours it was a nice thing to hear!!.

Finding the checkin for our connecting flight was the hard thing. LA airport is really disorganized. We found it then had no idea what queue one of the guys sent us to the self-service check in and when we got to the front of the line I had no idea how to use the machines and it turns out it only works with the yankee tickets so we had to go to another queue who pointed us to these phones. We called and checked in only to be told our connecting flight had been changed to 9:30am instead of the original 10:30am. I checked my watch and you guessed it... it was 9:31am. So for an extra 100$ US we had to get new flights which would get us in at 11pm instead of the original 6pm. Which also meant we had been awake for 20 hours straight and we no longer had a direct flight we had to go through Atlanta.

We had to sit at LA airport for 3 hours so Brendan and I got some iced coffees from this shop which was just cold coffee with Ice cubes in them... We threw them out and went to macdonalds where I got two chocolate thickshakes and a large "fries" I accidently said chips first and the guy thought I said juice lol.

We both got some sleep on the flight to Atlanta despite how noisy it was since it was the middle of the day and only crazy aussies are probably sleeping. WE were just that tired. Then on the 1 hour flight from Atlanta to Orlando I watched Adult Swim. Brendan found it fascinating that we had to catch a train to get from the departure gate to the luggage pickup. Where emily was waiting!!

So after an hour and a half drive we made it to Emilys where she prepared us toasted 'everything' bagels. With 'cold cuts' I'm pitting all the new yankee words I have to learn in inverted commas!! I think it must have been 2am we finally got to bed which would have been at least 35 hours since we left melbourne and had had any real sleep!!

I got up at 9:30am and I woke Brendan up at midday. Hopefully the 35 straight hours has void any jetlag I might get. Emilys house is great its about 5 minutes from the ocean which I can swim and surf in! (if I could surf) Her tv is massive and there is 400 channels. So I am in heaven :D Oh yea and I have the internet access now reguarly!!

Anyway I do have a big writeup of Melbourne but its on my laptop and I havent got around to unpacking yet. Its really just THANK GOD I AM FINALLY HERE!!

Monday, March 3, 2008

Leaving Darwin

No matter how prepared you think you are to sell everything and move overseas. You’re not. You can never be prepared for that I don’t care how many lists you write you will always forget SOMETHING. Chances are its one of the most important things to.

I blame most of my unreadiness on the fact I resigned from work on the Wednesday 5th March leaving me with only five days to organize the rest of my life. I still had to sell my car, pack up all the extra shit and get together all the paperwork I would need. Oh and I also had to prepare my going away party which was on the Saturday night.

I had a list of things I needed to do and I think I accomplished half of them. Thanks to Tom we got the power of attorney pretty much sorted out easily although thanks to a banksa fuckup we discovered we needed an extra form! I had all the tickets etc already sorted including all the visa information. Except for the stuff required for the American visas which we forgot to get on Friday then forgot again on Monday… Lucky for us we were heading to Melbourne for a few weeks so we could sort that out there.

Saturday night was our farewell party which was filled with mixed emotions for me. I was a lot less prepared once again then I thought I was. I didn’t have enough party games ready – the ones I did have ready were received well thankfully – I was tired and hot and just stressed out from all the preparation. I had had my volleyball finals on that night as well and had even run out on Tom and Simon because of the time clashes. I was in fact sick of organizing everything. I retreated into a bit of a shell and just coasted the rest of the night. I did enjoy myself and the costumes were fantastic!! Liana was in this amazing black sexy pirate wench outfit and in true twin style Carmen was the sexy anime ninja. I do have photos and I will stick up the best. Now there always has to be one cross dresser in the group and in ours it is John. Right down to the manly hiking boots was John the Pirate wench. I could go on about all the costumes I guess, Leigh’s pants were awesome :D, Dions dildo sword did the rounds. But anyway that’s enough of that!

The dildo caused a little trouble to the end of the night when Clayton ran around hitting people on the back of the head and happened to hit Simon who not in the mood swung around and hit him back. This causing a dishonorable sneak attack later in the night when Simon was leaving where Clayton came up behind with a beer bottle and hit him hard enough to split the skin but not to break the bottle somehow. Then after disabling poor Simon but slamming his hand in the door he grabbed him a headlock and began to hit him repeatedly. Mum screamed us over so a couple of Clayton’s mates pulled them apart and then I inspected Simons head for serious injury only to once again become covered in Simon’s blood. I swear that is becoming a regular event to me lately! Anyway no serious injury thankfully just a bad cut and a sore face and wounded pride perhaps as he never had the chance to hit back. You know that kind of dishonour could only come from a NINJA!!!

Sunday 9th was pretty much a write-off but I did manage to get the last few crates of storage stuff out to Dad’s shed and have a swim because it was a really hot day. Monday the 10th on the other hand sucked from the moment I woke up to the moment I left on the airplane it was disaster after disaster. The guy who was supposed to be buying my car turned out to be in Adelaide so I decided to sell it to another guy only to be considerably fucked around by him wasting at least three hours of what precious time I even had! After him calling me asking where I was for the second time I got to the destination only 10 minutes late to discover the person signing off on the car wasn’t even there! Not to mention he demanded I went to MVR with him to make sure the car wasn’t stolen. I was already behind in everything it was close to 4pm and I hadn’t even started packing plus I had dinner at 6pm with my family. In the end I just thought fuck it. I told him not to worry and walked away. I called the guy in Adelaide and told him I was leaving the car with mum. It has since been sorted and the money ended up in my account on Friday the 14th.

Dinner was another disaster the place I booked wasn’t even open on Mondays. I don’t know why they took my booking and didn’t tell me. When we found that out I just couldn’t deal with the stress and yes I broke out in tears. I wasn’t sad I was just so frustrated with everything. I wasn’t going to have enough time to do anything and I was freaking out. Dinner cancelled turned out to be a blessing, we went back to my place and I could fix up my computer whilst we sat around eating pizza and talking.

Mum stayed back and packed my suitcase for me which was another blessing in disguise since I am hopeless at that sort of thing. Rhiannon, Dan and John all took Brendan and I to the airport where we met Mum. Brendan and I had our last Paul’s Iced coffee for who knows how long.. That was a sad moment in time for what is a Territorian without iced coffee?

Now I’ve been in Melbourne for a week and I have two more to go. We haven’t done that much. On Thursday the 13th we had our American VISA interviews. We waited in line for 40 minutes before being pushed through security where I even had to take my shoes off! Then up to the sixth floor where we went through more security at least I got to leave my shoes on this time. I had enough of Brendan making fun of my odd socks. We sat around till our number was called then went to a little window where some bloke took all our forms. Then we had to wait again till we got called to another window where the guy asked a few questions. All I got was
“So doing the working in Canada program hey”
“Are you coming back to Australia?”
Lol! As If I would say no they would refuse the visa on the spot
“Yea I just wanted to see my family in the states and stuff first”
THEN guess what to get the five year visa I needed to leave head down to Australia post and get a money order for 30 bucks. I then had to wait in line again and go through all the security just to drop the damn money order off. We got there at 9:30am we left at 12pm.

After that we went to the F1 Melbourne Grand Prix. What a crappy racecourse they have. That’s all I have to say about that!!

Friday night I met some of my Dota friends in Town. Its funny meeting people you have known online for the last year only to find them to be completely different. Take Dino for example I don’t know if he was shy or what but he barely spoke to me even though I thought we had a great online relationship and he was fully pushing for the meeting in the first place. On the other hand metro boy Rob was really friendly and him and I don’t talk much online or basically just hang shit on each other. I found Jay and Zanes offline personalities so different from their online ones. They are both super nice when online they are super jerks. Zane reminds me of John in the way that his mannerisms are so gay. Scott was to busy hitting on my boyfriend both of them with the weird borat references. Every time I go out Brendan ends up cosying up with another bloke! Maybe I should not be wondering about Zane and John but instead my own boyfriend! We caught this cab home this Indian guy who could barely speak English and had no fucking idea where he was going. The cab cost an extra 20 bucks then it should have. By now it was 7am so we just wanted to get to bed.

Sunday 16th we went to the Markets both Eltham and Wooleys. All I got was a bunch of strawberries. Man they were nice strawberries though!

Monday 17th we went to the city where I hung out with Aunty Maureen and Nanna. We had lunch and they took us to the Eureka Tower which is apparently the tallest tower in the southern hemisphere. It sits at 301 metres with 88 floors. They charge you like 16 bucks to get to the top. I wonder if they just built it to make lots of money. And what’s on the other 87 floors? The view on the top is unreal it sits right on south bank and you basically get a 360 degree view of Melbourne from 300 metres high. So I was quite impressed but the cost seems a little high to me, just to see the top floor!

Thursday 20ST Melbourne decided to get cold. Like 12 degrees Celsius or something. My cousin Gary picked me up for dinner at his place. His place is made out of mud bricks which I had helped create 10 or so years ago. I can’t find the brick I signed though when I go there…

We played Buzz monkey or something on the playstation which was fun then he took us home about midnight.

Friday 21st We went to Melbourne zoo with Nanna. I brought an orangutan. That night I went into the city to meet up with another Dota friend of mine Sam who had flown down from Perth. However the club he was going to with his brother had a crazy dress code and me coming from Darwin where everything is thongs and singlets was hopelessly unprepared. So we had a couple of drinks then Brendan and I said our goodbyes and caught the Night Rider bus home. The driver was really cool and since we were the only ones left on the bus he dropped us right at the bottom of the hill.

Saturday 22nd. Was lunch with some other forum geek friends of mine. I pwned at Mario Kart DS. I was also feeling sick. I was going to catch up with Sam again but I felt like shit so we just went straight home.

Sunday 23rd. Had lunch with my aunty and uncle in Diamond Creek. Then went into the city for the rave. Unfortunately I was still feeling sick with the flu so I couldn’t quite get into it. The setup was pretty cool but the music was just not calling me. I danced a bit and I saw the DJ I wanted to see “Sean Tyas” so that was ok. Brendan and I walked back to Dave and Simon’s hotel room where we chilled out for a little bit before catching a cab home. We made sure we asked the guy if he knew where “Greensborough” was first. Thankfully the guy could actually speak a little English!!

Tuesday 25th Brendan and I caught the train into the city where we hung out at Federation square for two hours waiting for Simon. We had brought the laptop so we just soaked up the free wireless internet in a cafĂ©. I got my hot chocolate and Brendan got his iced coffee. Not Paul’s but still pretty good. Some lady was interviewing people for ABC radio about how technology made us ‘bored’ She came up and asked us a few questions. I bet she never uses our response because it was pretty lame.
She asked Brendan “So do you ever find you get bored?”
Brendan “Um no not really”
*crickets chirping*
We did abuse the 350kb/s download to get some much needed programs we didn’t bring with us, like SUPER (MP4 converter) Itunes and of course firefox. I started searching for more things I could download but Simon finally showed up!

We went to GAME ON which was a history of video games through the ages. There was a heap of playable games. I think we spent a good hour in there before getting tired. Then we went up to Southern Cross station to the factory outlet. Brendan and I went a little nutso on the icebreaker clothes spending just over $200. It was all 50% off though…. Anyway icebreaker is a New Zealand brand the wool ‘merino’ is super thin and soft and traps heat sooo well. Really good to wear under ski jackets and stuff so will be awesome for Canada.

Wednesday 26th We went to Ballarat to visit my extended family. I forget the exact connection. Something like 2nd & 3rd cousins. It was wet and cold the whole day. Topped 9C

Thursday 27th Quiet day. We had a few things to do down at the shops like pick up our American $$ Then about 3pm Gary & Gail picked us up for dinner. We played a lot of pool on a really bad pool table that you can’t bounce off. That’s my excuse for playing like shit.

Friday 28th & Saturday 29th. Spent the time with Brendan’s mother and sister.

Sunday 30th Caught up with Dan for lunch who was down for the day buying a hilux. Then packing and now writing up the last few days of this…

Tuesday, February 19, 2008


Au Revoir, Adios, Dovidenia, Sayonara, Ciao,

Amanda & Brendan invite you to wish them farewell in a night of drunken debauchery

Where: RSL Club Lot 4129/20 Batten Road Marrara (off Amy Johnson)
When: March 8th 7pm till late

There will be finger food and drinks available from the bar.

The theme of the night is Pirates vs. Ninjas come dressed as your favourite so we can once and for all determine which one deserves the winning title in a series of highly challenging and possibly demeaning games.

I don't leave till March 10th so check back later