Archive for October, 2018

Game of Thrones, Season 4, Ep 6 “The Laws of Gods and Men”

Monday, 22 October, 2018

Intro: I’m watching Game of Thrones for the first time. I don’t know anything about it more recent than this episode.

It’s been a long time since the last episode. I’ve had a lot less free time since we got our puppy, Scully, and TV was one of the things to fall by the wayside. But things are returning to normality now and we had time to watch a new episode.

Meereen: A goatherd is herding goats, when a huge dragon appears and scorches his flock, carrying a burning goat off for tea. Later Daenerys is holding court for supplicants inside a grand pyramid. Ruling like a Queen, as she stated last time we saw her.

The goatherd approaches humbly, choosing his words carefully. He says he really, really likes dragons, but now that one has eaten his goats he has nothing and his family will starve. Daenerys generously says she will repay three times the value of the goats. The goatherd backs out in a flurry of genuflection and thank yous.

Next is a noble, one of the sons of the former city rulers. He begs to be able to take down the corpse of his father from the crucifixion stakes, where it is rotting in the sun, and give it a decent burial. Daenerys is defiant, saying that the rulers crucified children and let them rot in the sun, so they deserve no better. But the guy is the right mixture of flattering, humble, and appealing to her mercy, and says his father was actually against killing the children. Daenerys relents and lets him go bury his father. Daenerys, tired of seeing supplicants, asks how many more, and is told over 200. She sighs and calls for the next one.

Not much to be gleaned from this scene, except that this new noble might be catching Daenerys’s eye. Also perhaps Daenerys might get bored of ruling like a queen and decide sooner or later that she should go do some more conquering.



Sunday, 21 October, 2018

On my trip to Tanzania back in July, I saw three different big cats: lions, leopards… both of which I’ve posted photos of before today.

But the most exciting was the third, which our guide had to drive us a long way across the Serengeti to find, devoting a full half a day to tracking one down for us.

I present my first photo upload of the third cat, the cheetah:

Cheetah alert

Germany diary, days 1 & 2

Monday, 15 October, 2018

22:15, Friday 28 September. Sydney Airport

Our plane is over an hour late departing Sydney, and we are still sitting at the gate waiting to close the doors. We left home just before 17:00, catching a taxi to the airport. We thought the traffic would be bad during the Friday evening peak hour, but it wasn’t except for a bit of a bottleneck entering the Eastern Distributor off the Harbour Bridge.

On the way, it started raining, a storm breaking the hot spring day. We saw lightning as we approached the airport, but the sun broke through as we arrived at the departures terminal and a huge rainbow arc shone over the runways. I commented to M. that planes could be delayed by lightning, but the storm passed and was over as we left the cab and entered the terminal.

We’d checked in and printed boarding passes online, and the instructions said if we had no checked bags to drop off we could go straight through security into the departure lounges. So we did that, passing through fairly quickly as there weren’t very many people going in. However we both got pulled over for a bomb residue check, which took a few minutes.

We checked the duty free shop and bought some gin and Campari to pick up on the way back in. Then we looked for something to eat as M. was hungry. We tried the food place we ate at the past couple of trips, but they had run out of vegetarian quiches, and M. didn’t fancy anything else they had. We looked around a bit and settled on a nearby place that did pizzas and pastas and some other things. We got a spaghetti with tomato sauce and a margherita pizza. The spaghetti was really good, the pizza very cheesy and with a thin but doughy and chewy crust.

After eating we walked to the gate at the far end of the terminal and relaxed for some time as we had arrived fairly early. At the indicated boarding time we went to the gate and stood close to the entrance for the economy passengers. But we’d seen the cabin crew arriving and they were all still sitting around the gate area, not on the plane. I realised there was some delay, and we ended up waiting quite some time before anything happened. At one point they called our names to come to the counter, and M. went over. They needed to scan our boarding passes for some reason, maybe because we hadn’t checked in any bags.

After a long delay they finally began boarding, letting everyone on at once. Since we were right near the front we got on quickly, finding our seats in the front section of the downstairs deck on the Airbus A380. After everyone had boarded there was more delay, as the flight crew announced that “some people have decided not to fly with us tonight and their baggage needs to be removed”.

Now, we’ve finally pushed back and begun taxiing, an hour and twenty minutes late. Oh well, at least we’ll have less time hanging around in Dubai waiting for our connecting flight to Frankfurt.

Read more: We arrive in Germany on Saturday and walk around Cologne a bit (with photos)

More frequent blogging here (due to G+ shutdown)

Sunday, 14 October, 2018

With the announced shutdown of Google+ as of next year, I’ll be losing one of my most active social media outlets. I still haven’t worked out what I’m going to do about all of the communities on there that were very active and that I enjoyed being part of. Some are moving to new platforms which I don’t entirely trust and so I’m a bit reluctant to just follow.

But to replace the function of me posting short bloggy things on Google+, I’m going to start posting them here instead. Or try to at least.

My habit had been to post short anecdotes and things I could get through in a couple of paragraphs at most over on G+, and longer things here. But from now on it’ll all be here. So expect an increase in number of posts on this blog.

That’s never happened while grocery shopping before

Sunday, 14 October, 2018

I was doing the grocery shopping today. We keep the shopping list in OneNote, synced live via cloud so wife and I can both add/remove items at any time wherever we are.

So as usual I’m deleting items from the list on my phone as I pick them up, to keep track of what I still need to grab. I got everything and the list was completely empty. Headed towards the checkouts…

The fire alarm goes off. Staff tell everyone to leave their unpaid groceries behind and evacuate the building immediately.

So I’m standing outside with about a hundred people, without my groceries, and with my entire shopping list deleted.