Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Home again

Back in Bris Vegas! The trip home wasn't too bad. Flew from Vancouver to Los Angeles - which was spectacular, the highlight being Mt St Helens (see the photo). It was truly massive and beautiful!

Los Angeles is truly massive as well, and I guess beautiful in it's own way (as Ben Lee would say 'living proof that people need to be together...'). I visited a customer for work, and then did a little shopping and also drove aimlessly around downtown for a while since I had never really done that before. Amazing how one avenue changes from being swanky downtown office blocks to a block with hundreds of homeless people on it in only a mile. The scale of homelessness in some parts of LA is really shocking.

The other major story of the day for me was that I ate donuts from both Tim Hortons (in Canada) and Krispy Kreme (in LA) in the same day. A feat worthy of note methinks.

Monday, April 24, 2006

More Wedding Photos Here!


It is DONE!

Yes, Benjamin Peter Briese is married! The day quite possibly the most beautiful day ever seen - SERIOUSLY. Not a cloud in the sky, snow capped mountains in the background - the first beautiful day since I've been in Vancouver! The wedding was fantastic, Ben and Charlene are happy, and perfect for each other and I'll be posting many more photos soon!

Monday, April 17, 2006


Just hanging at what's become my chill-out / internet catchup place - Prado Cafe on Commercial Drive. Why don't cafes in Brisbane offer free WiFi?? Out of the eight tables occupied here, four of them are people on laptops, one couple of guys playing chess, someone reading a book, a couple of girls hanging out and one freak sitting in the cold outside doing a crossword. Speaking of cold... I went to the dawn service this morning at Trout Lake, near Ben's place. It was outside on the shore of the lake. It must have been hovering near zero degrees, and started raining halfway through the service. Then to top it all of, at the end of the service it started hailing. I haven't been that cold in many years... I'm definitely heading back to MEC to spend some money on warm clothes tomorrow!

Sunday, April 16, 2006

Me and Benny!

Originally uploaded by luckyforehead.

Coopers in the snow

Originally uploaded by luckyforehead.
Mount Seymour

coming down the mountain

Originally uploaded by luckyforehead.
This family was pretty lucky they didn't go off the OTHER side of the road

Commercial Drive

Originally uploaded by luckyforehead.
The main street near Ben and Charlene's place. Lots of great places to eat, coffee shops with WiFi and bookshops with dogs in them. Love it.

Owen and his favourite Sushi joint.

Originally uploaded by luckyforehead.
It's my favourite sushi joint now too... (But not Ben's Mum's favourite sushi joint) I think his Dad likes it. Esepcially the wasabi.

DJ Turtle, Skyping Corrina

Originally uploaded by luckyforehead.


Instead of posting heaps of photos here, it's a little easier to put them on Flickr - Photos at Flickr.

Mostly just walking around Commercial Drive, hanging out with Ben/His Parents and Owen. Today we hit Mountain Equipment Co-op. I managed to resist buying anything - but I do need to head back there to get some mountain biking shoes. And probably a warm coat.

We then drove to the University of British Columbia (UBC) campus. Huge place, nice drive and interesting anthropology museum. Sushi for lunch, including one of the funniest moments I have ever experienced as Ben's Dad put a lump of wasabi in his mouth despite Ben, Owen and I strongly urging him not to. A general drive around North Vancouver was next, including Lynn Canyon (forest / suspension bridge), Mount Seymour (where it snowed - yay!), some of the North Shore Mountain Bike trails (no biking for us...) and Deep Water Cove (I think that was what it was called). Fun day!

I'm off to Owen's place to be reprogrammed as an ice hockey fan.


Friday, April 14, 2006

How to take photos from an LA freeway

Hi from rainy, cold Vancouver! The locals assure me that it's been sunny for the last few days, but I'm not so sure...

Had a whirlwind trip to LA - straight off the plane, drove downtown to our customer, spent the afternoon there doing Vigil engineery stuff, back in the car to the airport and on the plane to Canada. Toni Collette was the person in front of me in the immigration line which was pretty funny. I learnt never to try saying hello to big movie stars. Not their fault... my fault for not being able to think of things to say, whereas I was able to have a normal pleasant conversation with the person behind me in the immigration queue...

Got to Vancouver around 11pm - great to see Benny and to finally meet Charlene! We basically just went straight home and straight to sleep. Today I'm hanging with Owen!

Ben's place on a rainy Vancouver morning.

Sunday, April 09, 2006


Di and I drove the 700km down to Coonabarabran this weekend for the wedding of Lizzie and Doug. Lizzie was a student at Googa when Di worked there, and ended up at uni with Di for the last few years.

The wedding was at Doug's parents place, in the Warrumbungle Ranges - just outside of Coona. His Dad, John is an astronomer so had some very fun toys on their block of land...

I didn't know anyone else going to the wedding. Di knew a couple of girls who had also been to Googa. We had an absolutely fantastic time - getting to know some great people, dancing to Cat Empire and doing the usual fun wedding stuff!

Doug's parent's house is made of mud brick and feels like something out of Lord of the Rings. He has a couple of observatories - one is a completely automated, computer controlled telescope, accessed remotely by Muhlenberg College in Pennsylvania, USA. When it is day time classes in the USA, students can see the Australian night sky.

Inside the observatory accessed remotely by American college students. Yes - real NASA stuff!

The front door of the beautiful hobbit house. We were being shown around by none other than beautiful Lizzie the bride!

Di, exiting the observatory after viewing Saturn and it's rings, Jupiter and it's moons, the Earth's moon and a globular cluster of a million or so stars. Fun!!!

This is the BIG telescope at Siding Spring Observatory, where Doug's Dad, John works.

The Warrumbungles - viewed from the observatory.