New old furniture and peanut butter bars

I forgot to mention yesterday that our new neighbours from South Africa finally got their furniture delivered. They moved in in mid-January and shipped their furniture over from South Africa, but it was held up in customs and strikes and so on, and only released last week. So all day yesterday there were movers bringing things in, and causing Scully to growl at the noises in the hallway.

I kind of wondered why they’d go to all the expense of shipping furniture internationally, rather than just sell it and buy new furniture here. From what I saw, I think a lot of it must be antique, so I guess they were attached to it.

Today I wrote my next ethics class; this week it will on the topic of Artificial Intelligence. I had too much to talk about – there are more questions than I can possibly ask in most of the class groups. But that’s better than not having enough material!

I did some comics stuff. And I took Scully for a walk at lunch and got myself a Ridiculously Delicious™ cherry and coconut peanut butter chocolate bar at the grocery store.

Ridiculously Delicious peanut butter bar

I tried this brand some time ago and found they were indeed ridiculously delicious as claimed on the wrapping. They come in three flavours: orignal crunch, salted caramel, and cherry coconut. I think last time I had the original crunch one, which was fantastic, and today’s cherry one was too. They’re not too sweet, and have a very adult blend of flavours, which is better than the overly sweet taste of most chocolate bars.

Oh, and I had a weird dream last night. I was playing some sort of 500-like card game with people. I got dealt a hand and it was like 40 cards or something – so many I couldn’t sensibly hold them and see them all of them in my hand at once. I had a lot of hearts, so I started confidently bidding hearts, and I guess my partner thought I had high hearts so joined in, and we ended up in some huge hearts bid.

Then when we started playing, a few tricks went by, and then suddenly an opponent played something like a 14 of hearts. I was surprised, not expecting to see anything different to a normal deck, since all my hearts were in the range 2-10. And then they explained it was like a 6-handed deck with numbers that go up to 13, except this deck went all the way from 2 up to 25 before the face cards and ace.

I told this dream to my friends on our Discord and two of them immediately said that it couldn’t have been a hand of 40 cards – it must have been 28. Nerds. 🙄

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Meeting the new neighbours in a strange way

I mentioned a few weeks ago that I’d briefly met our new neighbours across the hall from our apartment. And that they had a dog and cat in quarantine after emigrating from South Africa.

Early this evening as I was bringing Scully in from a toilet break outside, I heard the sound of a dark barking from their apartment. I figured they must have their pets out of quarantine. Scully reacted to the barking by barking back, and my wife and I discussed and thought it would be a good idea to get the two dogs to meet each other and become familiar, so they won’t be barking through the door at each other all the time. We thought now was as good a time as any, and knocked on their door.

They answered, the woman coming out holding their dog – a west highland terrier which we learnt was named Sophie. Scully and Sophie had a bit of a sniff and started to get used to one another. The woman’s husband stepped out to say hello to us as well… and accidentally let the door slip closed behind him. He asked his wife if she had the key, but she didn’t. They’d locked themselves out of their apartment!

I asked if they had anyone with a spare key, and they said no, since they’d just moved to Australia recently. They didn’t have phones on them, so I got mine and found a 24-hour locksmith nearby and called to have them come over. They said they’d be about half an hour.

Rather than let them wait in the corridor, we invited them into our place. They turned out to be very nice people and we chatted about our dogs, their move from South Africa, and various other things while we waited. It turns out all their furniture is still sitting in a shipping container at Port Botany, after several weeks of delays in arriving, and then a port workers’ strike, and now customs inspection of everything they’ve brought over. The man said how nice it was to sit on our sofa – at the moment they only have some folding chairs in their place to sit on! We also learnt that their dog Sophie had only arrived at 4:30pm today, after having been flown from the quarantine facility in Melbourne, so they’d only had about an hour with her before we knocked and they got locked out!

Eventually the locksmith arrived and let them in. We felt terrible for having started this chain of events and apologised repeatedly and offered to pay for the locksmith, but they were very gracious about it and insisted on paying themselves. A bit of a misfortune, but at least we had the chance to sit and have a bit of an introductory chat. They said they’d invite us over for a drink when they get their furniture.

In other news today I received a mail order of some more board game expansions for Root. I decided to take the plunge and order some of them now in case they go out of print at some point. There are a few small ones already out of print and hard to find, but fortunately I managed to get those in the special Kickstarter edition of one of the other expansions I bought from the game store.

I had four classes to finish off the “Why?” topic for the week. And I put together a presentation to give at the next ISO Photography Standards meeting next week, on details for the meeting I’ll be hosting in Sydney in October. It was finally approved by Standards Australia, and now we can start giving delegates information on things like visa requirements, hotels, and so on. So it’s been a busy day.

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New neighbours and old ankles

Friday was board games night at a friend’s place, so no post yesterday. I arrived just in time to join a game of The Guild of Merchant Explorers, which was new to me. It was a fun game of exploring across a personal hex map (each player had an identical map), establishing towns and trying to connect trade routes to earn coins. I liked it, but I ended up significantly behind everyone else, finishing with about 130 coins while all the other three players were within a few coins of each other around 150.

After this we played a game of Mysterium, at the medium difficulty level. I was going really well, guessing my character and location quickly, but I got stuck on the weapon, guessing wrong 3 times and ultimately being the only player not to correctly get all of my information! Being a cooperative game, that meant we all lost, alas.

Then we finished off with a game of Just One, which I’ve played a lot online, but never with the actual boxed game equipment. That went pretty well and we scored a lot of matches.

Another thing that happened is I met one of our new neighbours, who moved in this week. It’s an older couple, retiree age, and they’re from South Africa. I met the woman and she met Scully, and was delighted to meet her. She said that they had a Maltese terrier and a cat, but they are in quarantine after arriving from South Africa and wouldn’t be moving in until February. When they arrive we’ll have to make sure Scully meets the dog and becomes friendly.

Today I slept in a bit and then went for a 5k run in the relative cool of the morning. Unfortunately at one point I had to step off the footpath to go around a clump of pedestrians and I twisted my ankle on the grass. It wasn’t bad at the time and I finished the run, in better time than my last couple of runs. But through the day it’s gotten more sore and swelled up a little bit. I’ve started putting ice on it to reduce the swelling and inflammation. But I doubt I’ll be doing a run tomorrow. I can walk okay, and in fact we did a couple of long walks today with Scully, but I don’t want to risk running on it.

We went over to Naremburn after lunch for a sweet treat from the bakery – I got a cinnamon roll. And then we went out again for dinner, to a seafood restaurant that we really like. I had mahi-mahi, which was really nice.

I spent a few hours today refining an adventure for next Saturday’s Scum & Villainy game that I’ll be running at the local science shop. I’ve found a one-shot adventure outline for Blades in the Dark, and I’m reskinning it from fantasy to science fiction in the Star Wars setting. It’s coming along nicely, and hopefully should be a lot of fun.

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