The Adventure Continues...

Rants, raves and random observations from an itinerant epidemiologist.

100 in 1000
  1. Spend a week up a mountain learning to ski
  2. Visit Karoline's place in Moravia
  3. Hold a conversation in Czech (only)
  4. Drink 500ml of each of the following beers:
    1. Pilsner
    2. Staroprammen
    3. Budvar
    4. Velke Popovice
    5. U Fleku
    6. Gambrinus
    7. Krusovice
  5. Respond to at least one GOARN request (WHO and MSF are also acceptable)
  6. Travel across the Atlantic
  7. Return to South America
  8. Read a book to, or with, an impressionably aged child
  9. Participate in one NanoWriMo Challenge and come within at least 10,000 words of the goal length
  10. Have my nose pierced
  11. Have my next tattoo drawn
  12. Purchase the perfect jeans (x 2 pairs)
  13. Attend a spin class 3 times a week for 8 consecutive weeks
  14. Bake Viv's cheesecake
  15. Make David's casserole
  16. Make David's Chicken Cashew-nut Stirfry
  17. Invite 4 people who don't know one another too well to dinner
  18. Ride from Vienna to Venice on a motorbike (pillion acceptable, those less desirable)
  19. Attend a book group for at least two books
  20. Go on a choir weekend (learn and perform difficult piece in two/three days)
  21. Visit Madame Tussaud's (in London)
  22. Take an architecture appreciation course
  23. Join an all-girl group and sing a solo
  24. Publish in a scientific journal (top two authors)
  25. Cook a duck or other 'waterfowl'.
  26. Locate the Al-Timimi's from Doha Veterinary Practise
  27. Have a pedicure
  28. Maintain a Brazilian (ouch) for three months.
  29. Find a trustworthy Czech hairdresser
  30. Treat my inner-6-year-old twice a week (at least)
  31. Do the liver-cleansing diet properly (12 weeks)
  32. Don't eat out for one month
  33. Find a flat and flatmate
  34. Purchase one Joseph sweater
  35. Purchase one of the following pairs of designer shoes (they MUST also be COMFORTABLE, and be able to be worn with 4 different outfits and 2 types of occasion): Jimmy Choos, Manolo Blahniks, Christian Louboutin (Ebay or 2nd hand are acceptable)
  36. Send 5 books to the booksphere and track them.
  37. Go hanggliding
  38. Read 10 'classic' books (from 1001 Books to Read before you Die)
    1. Moll Flanders
    2. Everything is illuminated
    3. Madam Bovary
    4. Zen & the Art of Motorcycle Maintainance
    5. Catch-22
    6. Odysseus
    7. On the Road
  1. Run (non-stop!) for 5kms outside (preferably in a street race thingy)
  2. Send Christmas Cards on time
  3. Make a collage/mural out of street lights on my wall
  4. Buy a bed, build it, and sleep soundly in it
  5. Go to Africa
  6. Host an 'event' (classified as and when)
  7. Organise a 30th Birthday Party
  8. Wear a costume
  9. Sing on stage
  10. Buy a painting that evokes memories of Prague (cannot involve queues!)
  11. Learn a god-damned card game that stays in my memory (other than fish/snap)
  12. See sunrise. Be sober. Have woken for it. Excludes months Nov-Mar
  13. Take a walk and flip coins at each intersection
  14. Win something
  15. Draft a will
  16. Take a roadtrip
  17. Go to Italy already
  18. Sea Kayak around Abel Tasman Park (NZ)
  19. Get plants
  20. Take a train to another Eastern European Destination (accession countries are acceptable) alone preferably.
  21. Get UK to give me a provisional motorcyclists license and simultaneously get a 'card' license.
  22. Go SCUBA diving again - at least two dives lasting 30mins each.
  23. Go to a dentist. *sigh*
  24. Do a Czech Wine Trail. And live to tell the tale
  25. Make an 'outbreak emergency kit'.
  26. Go to bed prior to 11pm every night (inc weekends) for four consecutive weeks.
  27. Marvel over lack of tiredness
  28. Dine at a Gordon Ramsey restaurant (or Nobu)- preferably for free.
  29. Bet on the nags
  30. Do something for charity (applying and getting a 'red card' will count)
  31. Walk along the Champs Elysee
  32. Do 100 sit ups in a row
  33. Do 50 pressups (arms in tight)
  34. Make branston pickle (or nearest substitute)
  35. Cook something 'new' and 'adventurous' at least once a month
  36. Find a mentor
  37. Be a mentor
  38. Learn what mentoring is all about
  39. Meet an online person in real life
  40. Resist the flirt. Once. Just one night. It's okay if people don't immediately succumb to my natural charm. Really it is.
  41. Spend time at a spa (spa towns in the CR don't count)
  42. Send a care package to someone
  43. Get a Tata Bojs CD
  45. Order new contact lenses.
  46. Make a list of things I take with me when I pack for different occasions
  47. Eat lobster. Prepared by someone else.
  48. Back up the blog
  49. Put everything onto an external hard drive
  50. Find a DDR mat and console and 'dance, I say dance!'�
  51. Go to the beach and lie on the warm sand. For an hour. (with sunscreen on, natch)
  52. Take and complete a course in either: Tango, Salsa or Flamenco
  53. Join the Municipal Library of Prague
  54. Move to another country
  55. Go to a live concert of a band I actually like
  56. Pay off debts (student loan excl.)
  57. Send thank you cards for every gift I receive (other than the gift of happiness, blah blah blah).
  58. Get an agent (literary or theatre)
  59. Go to a sports bar without cringing, by personal choice
  60. Ride a rollercoaster
  61. Hold a snake
  62. Spend a day wandering around a museum (not art gallery!)
Wednesday, 26 April 2006
Is not as gorgeous, lively, vibrant and clean as Madrid. The advantage it has over teh big smoke is that it DOES have the scent of the Mediterranean hanging around it. THat means that all activities are performed in a haze of ´must visit sea´ ness, which was nearly overcome when I climbed (okay, okay, took the ascensor!) to the top of the Colon tower (OUCH!) and took more photos of the city. Which I would immediately upload were I to find osmeone in an ostentatious 'sleazy' orange top (to go with the 'easyinternet' and 'easyjet' combination...) to find out how to do it. There are signs on the wall saying it's possible. that's just cruel.


Prior to travelling within the EU, I'd never been able to sleep unaided on aeroplanes. I think it's an altitude thing. SInce I've been over here, I've been on many flights that have a, sort of, mountain shaped flight profile. YOu're up, they throw something at you (or, more often, race a cart down the aisle asking you to pay extortionate prices for dried sandwiches and luke-warm cups of tea) and then the cart's stowed, the tray tables are up, lights are down and so are we. It's quicker than the Wellington-Porirua!!!

That said, both Nis and I fell asleep on the trip from Gatwick to Barcelona - which is short in anyone's judgement.

And it's amazing how reliant I've become on ANna's instructions (Which are similar to my 'get into Prague without passing GO or collecting 200Kc' instructions) because we found ourselves on a train heading for the city, which appeared to carry on INTO the city, but actually returned to the airport. Just as well we'd paid little attention to the landscape outside the train windows then. We did much better on our (second) return trip...

Travelling with a pack was something I was quite nervous about. Namely because I hadn't really done it before. My previous experience of packs was using Johns *spit*, which meant that it was a suitcase with straps, more than a proper camping-I-could-go-anywhere-and-cook-me-some-eggs (b*tch) pack like the one I bought a while ago. It's like travelling with a small child.

ALthough I'm sure I'd be slung in jail for my behaviour to the small child, were I to (mis)treat it similarly to the pack.

I do, however, feel completely fraudulent. My pack has the ability (and clips/straps etc) to cope with a 'water system'). As far as I know, these come in the form of 'taps' (or, most confusingly, faucets) and I'm not quite sure what my pack's 7 'tabs' mean. I think there are instructions how to build a cairn and to read compasses (and topographical maps) and make a help signal to an aircraft under the lid of my pack. ALl this, and I'm staying in a cushy hostel (complete with hostel cat) in the heart of the 'concrete jungle'. I don't even have 'guy ropes' attached to my pack. *sob*

Katkomakova: Spanish men do the Czech woman stare. Freaky weird. Am countering with my own. So far, I've only had one indecent proposition. And quite frankly...


My supermonsters are now reading this. That's why some previous entries from my missions have been somewhat, um, altered.

What I want to know is, where the hell did this persecution complex appear from (DAD!?). Why can a non-confrontational, totally reasonable conversation put me on knife edge (for most of the day, until the sangria hits at least!). Is it because the topic of the conversation was my blog, and that I spend so much time trying to make sure that I'm happy with what I write on here (knowing damned well it'll be read by all and sundry)? Is it because I believe I've been relatively careful and don't like the idea that someone doesn't recognise teh care I've attempted? Or am I feeling the guilt (catholic - of course) of someone who's let her editing standards slip of late?

Regardless. Several blog entries have been brought to my attnetion as possibly dangerous to my program and all who sail in good ship EPIET, so I've taken them down.

Many of you probably recall my views on censorship, but, honestly, if I bite the hand that feeds me (literally...I'd certainly lose a lot of weight if I weren't being paid by other than my institute! remember that part-time-administrative-assistant thing!?) then who shall employ such a big-mouth in the future? Much as I'd love for TIME/NEWSWEEK etc (hell, who am I kidding, Cosmo/Marie Claire would probably be the height of my writing career?!) to come a-knocking, they're hardly door-beating-down to retain my services are they?

So, *sigh*, you, my dearly beloved, will have to forego the (occasionally) pithy comments made in response to my situations (regarding work - at any rate. I'll still continue to have moments of weirdness I feel compelled to share with y'all) - you're gonna have to wait until my memoirs are published. By which time, all incidents and people to whom they may inadvertantly refer in a manner as which to identify, will no doubt be long gone.

Meanwhile: I've decided that while I like Dali, I don't like Gaudi. It's too colourful - such that I can handle the weirdness of sculpture. I can handle weirdness in painting. But when the two collide, and a sculpture looks like a painting, I feel vaguely nauseous. Like there's too much going on.

More as and when we hit somewhere else (or something amazing: other than me being on the phone for more minutes than I've actually spoken to Nine today, happens). She aint' happy. And I don't know why, which means I don't know if it's my fault or if I'm doing something wrong, or if I'm being daft and self-centered by thinking that I have ANYTHING to do with it.
posted by Nomes @ Wednesday, April 26, 2006  
  • At 1:36 am, April 27, 2006, Blogger Mums said…

    Hi GNomes,
    I've read your blog but can't think of anything pithy to say - I think it was all said during our mammoth telephone conversation - nice to be able to actually have one!!
    Good plan re work discussions. Your blog is NOT the right forum, especially if you wish to remain in paid employment. Too right one doesn't want to bite the hand that feeds you.
    By the sounds of things you are enjoying your hols, though it would be better for you to enjoy real people rather than the nebulous quality of bloggers. I think this is where I should say " Get a life" - tee hee.
    Anyway Hon, for someone who didn't have anything to say I've done quite well - as usual. Have a great time on your hols. Enjoy Marrakech. We'll speak upon your return, now that you have a white noise free phone.
    Love Mums

  • At 7:25 am, April 30, 2006, Blogger mx said…

    This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  • At 7:25 am, April 30, 2006, Blogger mx said…

    Hey Nomes :) Seriously, they have a Colon tower..? And instructions for burying your fellow climbers (wearing, natch, a lesser brand of backpack) is kind of weird... I've just sung my first Mozart aria in a church! Very exciting. Oh, and a duet with an unassuming, dreads-clad electrician who has the most beautifully pure voice (I felt a complete vocal scruff next to him). Not bad for an afternoon's work (and two jam-and-cream pikelets for our pains). Re censorship, it all gets a bit tricky, really (Frodo), when you step outside your own diary. The internet catches your words and who knows where it will carry them off to (promise that's the only Tolkien I shpiel on your blog ;) Anywho, you must give us the *uncensored* version of your birthday party (when you have it). Have you got big plans? Where will you be having it? (and more importantly, what will you be wearing??). Tell all in your May expose' - you owe it to us, your beloved fan base. mxxx

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