Wednesday July 30, 2014
I went to yoga for the first time in my life on Monday.
Then I went again today.
Both times were awful. I am unfit and inflexible, and my hamstring injury was not contributing to my general well-being. It is something I want to try and like, because I know it will be good for my joints in the future and that it will strengthen my leg to prevent injuries like that from happening. But it is a very steep hill to climb and I am having a very bad time.
I spent most of last week cleaning and packing for my big shift 20 metres away. Everything went pretty smoothly, thanks to some help from Wei and my new flatmates. Though my leg was starting to give me some serious grief, I was able to rest it often enough to persevere through the whole day and get everything shifted in. After a trip to the Southern Landfill on Sunday, it all started feeling settled again. As a bonus, Vodafone sorted the Internet out on Saturday so I was able to get that all connected with my new powerline adapters to my desktop. Home is where the Internet is.
We were at the opening night of Mexico on Dixon Street for Jill's birthday and at Dragons for yum cha on Sunday. Then on Monday was the first bake day for the Wellington on a Plate Bake Club - I'm the co-ordinator for two teams at work who are battling it out to be PikPok's top baker. Wellington on a Plate sets a series of challenges each week and it's up to our teams to go out and bake up a storm and bring in the goods on Monday (sometimes Tuesday) for judging. We award points based on appearance, flavour, texture and usage of "Wellington ingredients" and the sum of the scores for each category over all the weeks determines who is the winner and thus who will advance to the Wellington City Bake Off!
The two PikPok teams are Fondante's Inferno and Flour Power: Into the Bread, and the first challenge was slices. There was an assortment fantastic edibles - lemon meringue, honey lemon and ginger, strawberry and chocolate mascarpone, chocolate and star anise, lemon passionfruit and coconut, and almond, peanut and chocolate. Absolutely awesome job by our eight bakers and looking forward to next week's exciting installment!
Sunday July 20, 2014
We had some epic karaoke on Friday night at New Kor. Ants, Jo, Luke, Mike and I met at 8pm for dinner there, but unfortunately the restaurant was full, so Mr Lee let us have some pre-karaoke while we waited for a table. And in the 45 minutes that we were there, we belted out some amazing numbers: Ants and Mike dueting Creed's "With Arms With Open" perfectly, in the exact same style; Luke and I hitting some sweet harmonies with Bette Midler's "The Rose"; some smooth baritone versions of "My Heart Will Go On" and "I Will Always Love You". So good.
After dinner, we were joined by Matt, Ben, Jill, Charlie, Jimmy and Thomas where the festivities continued for another two hours, hitting max crescendo with Bohemian Rhapsody as the night's epic finale. There was plenty of soju and plenty of song, and it was a fantastic night indeed.
It was an early start to the next morning however, as I played badminton for the first time in almost six months. With my leg feeling marginally tight, I was able to play on and off for the full two hours without too much strain and had a great time easing back into an activity I have been missing so much this year.
That night, I was at Jordan and Chloe's for their flat warming - a classy wine and cheese night. Another great night of fine conversation and an amazing selection of wines, cheeses and condiments, including's Nic's Cob Loaf, a hollowed-out loaf of bread filled with cheese, sour cream, spring onions and bacon. The night's activities included Josh and Damon visiting the rave party downstairs, and a flurry of selfie bombs on Damon's Facebook page.
Music at Central Baptist went well this morning. I wanted to spend more time reflecting on the devastating news on MH17 - yet another tragedy for Malaysia Airlines as one of their planes was shot down over the Ukraine killing all 300 people on board - but there were plenty of other wrongs in the world to pray for. There sure is a lot of conflict these days... it's pretty depressing.
Monday July 14, 2014
I guess it's official. I'm moving house - 20 metres across the driveway of the apartment complex I'm in. I couldn't find a replacement flatmate for Matt so I decided it's probably time to find a different place to live. This place is slightly cheaper, my room is larger, I still get a carpark and because I'm essentially in the same location, it's still a 15 minute walk to work.
The past few weeks have been socially busy. We celebrated the Fourth of July at Goldings, where Jill kept asking people if they wanted to ride the mechanical horse at Dakota. We played Cards Against Humanity and Mario Kart and had KFC at Ants and Jo's on the following Sunday (it was actually an excuse for Jill to come over and play with the cat.) and we had some delicious steaks at Portlander on Wednesday.
We played Bubble Soccer at Shed 1, Queens Wharf last Saturday. Thankfully my leg had healed up enough for me to have a good run around for twenty minutes in a gigantic insulated bubble, barging into others while trying to kick a small yellow ball around the court. My team of yellow bubbles - Thomas, Sarah, Beau, Simon and Jimmy - played against the team of blue bubbles - Will, Josh, Andy, Dwayne, Neil and Vigz - for three 10 minute thirds, and we came out victorious with four goals to two. Afterwards, we enjoyed some food and beer at Mac's Brewery where Sarah, Thomas and I shared a gigantic antipasto platter of breads, dips, cheese and cured meats.
I was at Cami's house in the afternoon playing the Firefly board game with Tim and Juliann. The whole ordeal took five hours but it was a pretty fun game and would have been more enjoyable had I known what I was doing. I kinda got into a cycle of doing missions, just slowly building up my strength without knowing how strong I needed to be to go for the final goals, when Tim and Cami raced for the finish, leaving me far, far behind. Would try it again... possibly! It is a very heavy time investment.
Come Sunday however, my body would just not move. Every muscle was aching from the Bubble Soccer and I was having a bad time. Thankfully, I felt much better after heading to the sauna in the afternoon, and I'm pretty much back to normal now.
This morning, we gathered at work early for the finals of the World Cup, with Germany playing Argentina. More importantly however, were the scones, croissants and pancakes stationed conveniently around the office for us to enjoy while watching the soccer. And watch we did, there was much cheering as Mario Gotze struck a brilliant ball into the back of the Argentinian net in extra time, sealing the Germans as the Football World Cup 2014 Champions. Exciting times!