Archive for May, 2006

Spring Watch

Wednesday, May 31st, 2006

Goodies fans may like to know that Bill Oddie has his own program, called Spring Watch on the BBC at the moment, which follows the passage of Spring through Britain. It gives you an idea of how cold it is here that it's nearly Summer but they're still talking about Spring. ...


Wednesday, May 31st, 2006

The days are drawing out longer than I would have believed, coming from a lower latitude. The sun is rising at 5am and setting at 9am. Solstice is around the 20th of June, so the days will get even longer.


Tuesday, May 30th, 2006

At work there are three Australians, me, Nat and Michelle, sitting fairly close to each other and naturally, we talk about Australian things. The current discussion is Paddlepops. Nobody else knows what we're talking about as you can't get them over here. (In case you don't know, Paddlepops are Australian ...

Welcome to Haymarket

Tuesday, May 30th, 2006

Had my Welcome To Haymarket reception in the boardroom today. Then we had a nice lunch laid on: mushroom risotto, tomato and pine nut salad, green salad, smoked salmon and non-alcoholic drinks.

Fox in the garden

Sunday, May 28th, 2006

You don't expect a fox in the garden at 9am on a Sunday morning, particularly if your garden is a postage stamp sized thing full of weeds in the middle of East Ham. I happened to be looking out my window, at the sunny day outside (why couldn't it have ...

Queen’s Head

Friday, May 26th, 2006

Damn, the British drink a lot. But they're generous drinkers, I'll give them that. I haven't paid for a drink since I started work at Haymarket. Whenever the sales team go out, the managers buy me gin and lemonades. It's rather a good thing when you're a skint Australian trying ...

British Taste Tests #1 and #2

Sunday, May 21st, 2006

Britain has a terrible reputation for food and drink, much of it deserved. Food was far from the highlight of my visit in 1996. Nearly everything I ate was around the level of the worst Australian pub bistro food imaginable. Fatty, tough roast meats, with soggy, overcooked vegetables that had ...


Saturday, May 20th, 2006

Went to the pub with the sales team last night, a very smoky pub call The Queen in Hammersmith. Had a couple of Coronas bought for me and had a good chat with everyone. Most people only started recently, like me. Today I'm off shopping for a business suit. Everyone ...

New job

Wednesday, May 17th, 2006

Wonderful first day at my new job. The first 4 days are going to be spent in sales training, and after today I can say that it's quite the best sales training I've ever had, and I've done uni level marketing courses. The teacher was simply wonderful - experienced, personable, ...

Build up to work

Tuesday, May 16th, 2006

A quiet day. I'm doing all the chores, shopping, cooking, cleaning, before I start my new job tomorrow.

Rainy drought

Monday, May 15th, 2006

London is in the middle of the most serious drought in over a decade, maybe one hundred years, and today tough water restrictions were announced. You can no longer wash your car, water your garden, or fill your fountain or swimming pool. I'm finding the whole thing fairly laughable. Heavy dark ...


Sunday, May 14th, 2006

England's a very good place for me to get writing done. Warm weather tends to lure me outside and away from my laptop. But cold, wet days (like today) keep me inside and writing. I plan to enter the TNT Magazine travel writing competition next week.

East Ham Nature Reserve

Saturday, May 13th, 2006

Just came back from a walk through the local area. I found 2 geocaches, one at the top of a hill, that looked like it might be an ancient burial mound of some sort, though now heavily developed. East Ham isn't a pretty place, it's residential and industrial, but it ...

Three hundred pounds

Friday, May 12th, 2006

I'm querying a mysterious 300 pound charge on one of my Australian credit cards. Apparently it happened on the same day my cards were stolen, at a department store 5 minutes walk down the street from where they were stolen. I'm disputing the charge and waiting to hear about what ...


Wednesday, May 10th, 2006

I didn't bomb the interview. I've got the job! :-) Actually, I was offered 3 jobs in the end. A customer service job in Corby, a government office admin temp job and a sales job at Haymarket, the magazine publisher. I took the publishing job. I start next Wednesday. I can't ...

Watch stopped

Tuesday, May 9th, 2006

Amazing combination of bad luck this morning. I slept badly because of a bad cold, but worse, my watch stopped, and I didn't realise because everything in the house was covered over with dust sheets because the double glazers were in. I thought it was just past 9, until I ...

Going Postal

Monday, May 8th, 2006

I'm reading Going Postal by Terry Pratchett in between e-mailing referees, applying for jobs, doing phone interviews and taking calls from companies. Going Postal is terrific. It's wonderful how Pratchett can write so imaginatively and observantly, yet cram in so many bad puns at once. I'd love to write like that.

Riot police

Sunday, May 7th, 2006

Took a break from scouring the newspapers job ads and walked down to the chemist. There was a game playing at Westham Stadium and I could hear the crowd roaring. The road was lined with stalls selling bad-smelling burgers, hot dogs and chips, or football souvenirs such as flags and ...


Saturday, May 6th, 2006

A surreal day. I wanted to go to the Dali Universe exhibit again. Last time I was there was the day my wallet was stolen. I've got bad memories from later in the day, but I remember my first visit with affection. There's something about the surreal that makes me ...

Where the bloody hell are they?

Saturday, May 6th, 2006

Dad told me there was an article in the Sydney Morning Herald that was very relevant to my situation right now. Here it is! From The Sydney Morning Herald: Where the bloody hell are they? It seems most of them are in Britain. Australia's movers and shakers are ensuring the ties between the ...