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
  44. Take a French/German/Dutch course and SPEAK THE DAMNED LANGUAGE WHEN I HAVE THE OPPORTUNITY EVEN THOUGH IT MAKES ME SOUND LIKE AN IDIOT!
  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!)
There is possibly nothing worse than…
Wednesday, 1 November 2006
...tights that are too small.

Okay, maybe the whole environmental damage, extinction of species, cockroaches, war, famine, flood, fire etc….but really: let’s face it. They’re not actually affecting the blood circulation to your left leg, are they? Not directly at any rate.

This sort of thing would never happen to Angie. I grew up with her, in Doha. We had a marvellous time, and when we weren’t driving round in boys cars (yes, dear parents, it’s true) with the windows down trying to locate a good party, we were lounging on the pool chairs at the Falcon Club, or wandering down the souq attempting to buy stuff that we’d seen in English magazines. But she was always the cool one - the “pretty one”. I used to wonder why people would drop anything and help her, or be around her. Yet, she always seemed so unruffled, like a ballerina, while I would be stressed out in the heat, sweatstains belying my fear of being acutely inappropriate.

Oh hang on, is that the answer?

I was the “smart” one, who “organised stuff” and had a camera. I was the loudest at charades, whereas she was the demure one acting out “Black Beauty” by tossing her ringletted (see?!) hair like a horse for half a second. For the same “movie/book” I would have been on the floor, hands and knees, before pretending to be shot in the head and collapsing sideways. I’m adult enough now to understand that we simply had different approaches, but as a selfconscious 17 year old, I was truly, TRULY puzzled by it all.

Anyway, Mo (half Somali, half Qatari, called me for first time in 7 years when I was in a hotel room in Slovenia…as you do…to inform me he had two children and a beautiful wife) called the other night. International calls I interrupt films for, so we paused The Constant Gardener (currently accruing late fees on a friends membership at the bottom of my bag…oops) and I spoke briefly to him, before he made a three way call and linked Angie and myself. Bizarrely, she recognised me from my laugh. I didn’t think it all THAT identifiable, but there are worse things to be known by. It was the first time we’d heard one another’s voices since we hung out for Christmas in 1996.

I love having long-time friends in far-off lands. That’d include you too, naturally.

I think I may have solved the running shoe debacle. Shop #1 from Saturday (a public holiday – wouldn’t you know – which explains why things weren’t open) WAS open last night (and is open every night after work). I only had to take one bus for 40mins to get there. As soon as I walked in the door, the blonde, tanned, weasel behind the counter *she shoots, she scores* asked (in Czech) if I wanted help. I asked if he spoke English, and he did. With an Australian accent. After having lived in Sydney for two years, he mistakenly thought he was missing out on something back in the homeland. He’s been saving for a one-way ticket ever since! So we had a bit of a talk about lifestyle differences etc. and then he showed me the shoes. They didn’t have many, but he used all the right words, then pulled one off the wall and bingo. It was on my magic list. I tried it on. Alas, the size was too small. I needed a tiny bit larger…but they didn’t have it in. “I can order it for you, it should be here by Friday.” I nearly fainted.

I developed a stammer while I was at the Air France counter, changing my tickets today. I blame the fact that the 50 year old female ticket agent was wearing glasses. They fit the fashion for oversized (she looked like a “rimless owl”) but, horror of horrors, they actually had diamante decorations on the bottom outside corner of the left lens. I was transfixed. I fear I may end up in a similar way if I don’t have children – with no idea of the sartorial hanging offences??

On the way back from the airport, I read the Guardian. It was, predictably, filled up with commentary and ‘reportage’ (including the word “bitterest”!!!!) about the Stern report.

I find it disheartening to know that what the environmentalists have been saying for years already has only finally been deemed “important” when an economist summarises it all. Because, clearly, environmental scientists simply cannot be trusted to write reports in an objective manner. It seems (without actually having read the 579 pages) that he’s just paraphrased them, and then stuck their reports in as appendices.

It means that in order to try to promote treating people for diarrhoea (simple solution saves lives: 1l boiled water, 1/2 tsp salt, 4 tsp sugar), TB or influenza, we have to work out what the cost of the loss of that life to the labour force is.

Or am I just being cynical?
posted by Nomes @ Wednesday, November 01, 2006  
3 Comments:
  • At 7:19 pm, November 01, 2006, Anonymous Tinuola said…

    Equally as annoying as tights not fitting comfortably is pulling tights (fitted or otherwise) all the way up to your ribcage, you take a deep breath and feel them roll back down and settle just underneath the jelly rolls.

    By the way, I like the three-column look. Please tell me how you did that. I've been trying to get my blog set up similarly without much luck.

     
  • At 2:48 am, November 02, 2006, Blogger Mums said…

    Hi GNomes,

    Glad you were able to find the shop open and are perhaps on the way to purchasing the correct shoe. I'm not going to put a blight on it by saying that you will get the shoes on Friday - I'VE SHOPPED IN DOHA!!

    Of course environmental scientist are not believed - haven't we been telling you that all your life? It's only ever been economics that run the worlds, hence my desire to ALWAYS turn things into $ and c. People listen when you attack their wallets. And the same is true for governments. It's why people will only give up smoking when the cost of a packet of cigarettes jumps - in one fell swoop - to double what it is now. And that's why governments will never allow it to happen. Cynical? No, realistic unfortunately.

    All one can do is try, so don't beat yourself up about it. This is where, were I American, I would say, "have a nice day", but being me I'll just say - get over it.

    Anyhow, gotta dash. Got to make chicken satay and put it into a picnic bag (in bowls of course)so that we can have lunch after our lunchtime swim. That way your Father only has to be away from work for 90 minutes, instead of two hours. All go on the exercise front - gotta keep that heart ticking.

    Love you heaps, Mamma

     
  • At 12:24 pm, November 02, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Okay, true tights story. Stay-ups (when they stay up) feel dead sexy on but you've got to remember to roll the tops down when going to the loo, just to play it safe. After sashaying around the office feeling slinky I ducked into the ladies, rolled down said stay ups, commenced to pee and, to my horror, realised too late that I still had my knickers on... Let me tell you, it is only marginally scarier than having to brave a gusty day in an A-line skirt without any knickers on to buy a replacement pair...

     
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