Friday, March 28, 2008

Making Time for Joe

After a slight technical bungle which left me half an hour late for work, I ran to the stop near my house just in time to see the bus roar off, the driver's scarf hanging out the window, rippling in the wind as his malicious cackle faded into the din of the early morning traffic.
Stepping onto the street to be sure I wouldn't miss another I glanced at my iPhone to check the time. Certain I had at least 11 minutes before the next bus arrived, I then did what only a desperate man would do in his final pitiful hour... I ordered a Grande Vanilla Latte from the Starbucks behind me. As I stood waiting for the drink however, as if punishment for actually paying $4.73 for a coffee, a bus rumbled into view. "Impossible!" I thought. This thing seemed to have appeared from some rip in the spacetime continuum, I was certain it hadn't existed 20 seconds beforehand. I barely had time to blink however, when a second appeared behind it.
As my hope of catching a bus to work 'on time' this particular morning faded like Roxette's fabled 'flower', I glanced back to the girl pouring my drink, who shrugged and told me "At least it's not raining?", (her inclusion of the question mark signifying that perhaps she wasn't so sure that would remain so)..

Either way, the 22 minutes I then had to wait gave me time to think about whatever it was that it seemed I had forgotten about this particular day. It took me all of 20 seconds before I realised it was my birthday. Indeed, I'm 24 now! For some reason I've always loved the number 24. I don't know why but it probably runs along the same lines as why I like that baby custard they sell at supermarkets... too much info? Right, my apologies. Anyway, working it out quickly in my head, I figured that as of this morning I've officially been breathing for 8760 days, give or take a couple for leap years, which roughly equates to 210240 hours, or, in total: 756864000 seconds. Yes... in my head.

Closing Calculator I remember what I told myself on New Years Eve; that this was to be my year. I figure if 24 is my favourite number, then this year is going to be something special, something big. For some reason I then open iCal and begin flicking through the months, which is when I stumbled upon the entry marked with a single sentance. I can't remember putting it there, but it does seem strangely familiar. The date is in July, July 1st actually, and it simply says: "You had better be ready by today."

Jimzip :D

Monday, March 24, 2008

Relocation, Reflection, and the Burger From Hell

So, the trip is over. 24 hours in transit from Sweden, through London, a short stop in Belfast, and I'm back to the rainy pre-spring weather it seems only Vancouver can deliver, looking through masses of photos & wondering if I'll ever put the video together. (Note to self - putting together the videos from the last 4 vacations may be an idea also..)
Rather than boring you with more paragraphs of tiresome drivle however, I thought I'd make this a photo-post. So I'm going to slap up some pics from the whole trip, and see what you make of them.
Here they are, have at em folks! (Mouse over for description, click for larger ones.)

Click for phoots!

As you can see, there was quite a lot done on this trip, posing on cars, posing with celebrities, posing... again.. But despite all this posing, the trip was amazing, Troy & I both had a blast, and I'll be returning to Sweden one day again, this I know with certainty.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Britney, Hitler, and the Viking Ship

No, I'm not turning my blog into a tabloid.
Last night I saw something that never in my life I dreamed I would see. It's possible that seeing Hitler & Eva Braun two feet away from you is shocking enough, but to then have Adolf then start singing Britney's 'Oops I Did It Again'... well that's just downright disturbing.. disturbingly hilarious anyway. No, this wasn't some alcohol-induced stupor (again), this was what they classify in Stockholm (at least at this particular venue) as a drag show. I should have payed to see the thing. These performers were... well they were actually performers let's put it that way. After Hitler & Eva was a Finnish a capella group, which had the house roaring with laughter (apparently the Swedes think the Finnish mode of speech is hilarious and non-sensical as we think Kiwi's are). The show finally ended with a spoofed version of 'My United States of Whatever', and the applause was thunderous.
Interestingly enough, the venue only held a hundred or so patrons. Either way, I think drag shows everywhere could learn a thing or five from these guys (or girls.. I can never tell which). Having some drunk old coot up on stage making fun of people is wonderfully entertaining for 10 minutes or so, but it gets old. In all a great night, Troy & I ended up hanging out with some great people we met at the start of the evening, and will probably be meeting up with when we go out partaying again this weekend.

Yesterday afternoon also brought some spectacle & intruigue to the scene with Troy & I visiting Stockholm's 'Vasa Museet'. Off the top of my head (and forgive me for the history lesson!), the Vasa was a ship built for King Gustav's naval fleet in the 1600's. On her maiden voyage in 1628 (On Sun August 10th to be precise, hey maybe my memory is better than I thought..) she hit heavy winds in the bay, and because of a lack of ballast, sank to the floor. Yah, that's one heck of an expensive owie.
For 331 years this thing sat in the freezing waters of the bay, until it was discovered by a man taking core samples. In the late 60's it was lifted from the seabed and in the 70's moved to it's own museum, and that's where it sits to this day. This thing is incredible. It was preserved really well because of the conditions (the video said a lack of woodworms, but I say because of the freeze-your-ass-off water up here - which probably leads to a lack of woodworms.. darn! Foiled again.).
In any case... well it's a freaking Viking ship! It's hard for that not to be cool..

So there you have it.
We've been in Stockholm 3 days now and - well for a start I'm broke.. it's really expensive here. But I can't get over the people in this place! For those of you wondering, yes, the rumours are true. Sweden is blonde-haired, blue-eyedville.. It would be creepy if they weren't all so damned good looking really.. Anyway, we're off to explore the old city, so I'll end it here!
Cheerio ladies (& lads!)


Saturday, March 8, 2008

Traverse Atlantia

So we arrived in London yesterday morning after the 9 hour flight over the roof of the world, and hopped the tube from Gatwick airport to Westminster. Despite the maze-like realm that is the London Underground, its staff mulling about elusively & impossible to catch for questioning, we landed at the backpackers on schedule (actually, earlier than schedule!). Think of the sleaziest, nastiest hostel you can imagine, vermin running around your bed in the broad light, sheets dirty and mattress rotting... got it? Ok good, that's not where we're staying. Our hostel is smack in the middle of Picadilly Circus, and is pretty shmick. Shower in room? Hell yes. 6 other randoms (potentially snorers) sleeping around us? You bet. But we brought earplugs, so I laugh inwardly at their unconscious clamour. Hawhawhaw! Yes quite.

Anyway, we settled in quickly and launched into some sightseeing. Initial observation: this place is absolutely amazing - like nothing I've ever seen. Due to Troy's familiarity with the place we've been constantly on the go, and the grandeuse, decadent nature of the entire city has me awed, and my camera constantly in hand (though I suppose that's not unusual).. There's so much history here, too much for one person to ever grasp I think, but driving past the Tower of London, down Fleet Street and over London Bridge, along the river Thames and past Big Ben, I can't help but feel the want to know as much about it as I can.

Anyway, pictures will appear whenever I can upload them, possibly after we get back, but right now I've got to go, we're heading to Madam Tussaud's!
Peace all.

Jimzip :D

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