January 26th, 2009

Nancy and Marcus arrive fresh off their world tour which involved them going to lots of fantastic holiday destinations and getting married. You will be able to read and look at pictures on Marcus’ blog when they get some time to do it.

Anyway, to celebrate their marriage they held an Australian party for everyone on this side of the world. The venue was Artichoke in Manly in the up stairs bit which is a great venue to hire out.

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Marcus and Nancy at their Australian Wedding Party

The dips were fantastic and there was a lot of friendly faces from all over the Sydney metropolitan area showed up -

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Lorraine, Matt and Nancy

The decoration of the upstairs is very interesting, the walls are covered with famous paintings but with at least one character from the painting replaced with Mister Squiggle, lost of most non-Australians. In the picture above you can just about see Mister Squiggle looking away at the front of the boat.

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Bobby and Tom

Marcus did a nice toast near the end of the night even though he had started to loose his voice partly from all of the shouting and partly probably from all the air miles covered in the recent month.

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Amy and Me having a laugh

I was pleased for the occasion not only for Marcus and Nancy but also because Amy and I got to wear some new clothes that we got in the sales (I got some very good discounts at David Jones on Boxing Day, the only day of the year I actually shop for clothes now).

January 12th, 2009

I recently went up around Sydney in a helicopter taking photos from the sky of the little city below. I’ve had a play at what is called “Tilt Shift” is actually the a type of camera which can be used to produce the affect shown below but these photos use the digital equivalent which is to lens blur the bottom and top of the photo. The reason the images look like tiny models of the real thing is because your eyes are being fooled. Normally when you look at something close up and at an angle things further away look blurred and so do things closer, checkout this article at wikipedia about the Scheimpflug Principle for more info.

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The Manor, Mosman


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West Esplanade, Manly

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The SCG

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Kingsford Smith Airport – Boeing 747 and MD-11 (or 10)


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Sydney Suburbs

January 10th, 2009

Had to blog this, a great video I found on YouTube of some surf wipeouts in the past 40 years or so –

January 10th, 2009

For my birthday last year (2008) Amy got me a red letter day to fly in a helicopter over Sydney. I said I’d wait until the summer to do so I’d get a real nice day to get some great photos. Well that day came and it was a scorching 37 degs out west so I headed to Sydney Airport for the 20 minute joy flight.

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Me with Bell 206L-3 LongRanger at Kingsford Smith Aerodrome

The 206L is a seven seater aircraft but there was six of us on the joy flight so everyone got a window seat. Two other people who went up flew in a helicopter that had no doors which would have been cool but you cannot take your camera on those flights in case you drop it. You have to wear a lifejacket for the flight, I thought a parachute would have been more convenient.

Having never been in a helicopter before it was a fantastic sensation taking off, helicopters don’t require a run up like planes so suddenly going from being on the ground to being up in the air is fantastic, plus the forward speed can be much slower in a plane so you get the sense of just floating in mid-air I really enjoyed it.

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Australia vs. South Africa – 3rd Test at the Sydney Cricket Ground

After taking off from the airport and flying over a couple of parked 747s we flew over the SCG where a game was going on. The strange thing about flying in the helicopter was it reminded me of Flight Simular 2004 for the PC but with really good graphics.

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Downtown Sydney

This is Fort Denison which sits in the middle of the harbour, it looks cool from the helicopter a bit like a Google Maps shot.

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Fort Denison

We then header over to the Northern Beaches, stopping over Manly where I could see our flat. You can see how low lying the penisular of Manly is, I bet one day I do a blog post about how the Corso floods! The beach furthest to the right is Collins Flat, one of the finest beaches in the Harbour.

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Manly with the Manly Ferry

The helicopter swang around and I got a great shot of Fairlight and our flat (three buildings to the left of the furthest right hand white building by the beach.

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Fairlight and our Flat

It was a fantastic experience thanks to Amy, if you like these pictures then you can see all 313 photos at Flickr.

January 1st, 2009

For NYE this year we went to GaƩtane and Coosters house for a party and fish BBQ. We got the last ferry from Manly wharf over to the city and dreaded the journey back to Manly as it is chaos down the wharf as you would expect.

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Sydney Skyline, Bridge and Opera House 1st Jan 2009

The party was fantastic and good to see some familiar faces as well as meet some new people, including a guy from Bruges which reminded me of the great film In Bruges.

When we left we were walking back into the city down Cathedral St. and I said to Amy how good would it be to see a cab come past now with its light on. Well 2009 started well for us because exactly that happened and the guy was happy to take us back to Manly and there wasn’t any traffic jams so it was fantastic!

Happy New Year to Everyone 2009.