Friday, December 6, 2013

I write poems, apparently.

273JK via Dubai

Up, up, up.
Drumming, thumping
In my head, drums burst, overwhelmed
Churning stomach, nausea
Don’t look down.

Up, down, up,
Lurch, an invisible bump,
Gripping, finger nails
Carving the seat rest
Acid traveling, up, up.

In, out, in,
Breathing, shallow, cheeks
Puffing out, in, out,
Like a blow fish,
Out of the water.

Out, out, out,
Unnatural, Out of depth, out of control,
Drenched, wet, sweat,
Sticky, clammy, air-conditioning
Cold sweat.

Down, down, down,
To darkness, from consciousness,
Stuck in my dry throat,
Forcing down liquid from plastic and ice
Now it lets me escape.

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Gay marriage, freedom of speech, clean green? Being a Kiwi can be a love/hate experience.

The same-sex marriage bill was passed last night – making New Zealand the 13th country in the world to legally allow gay people to get married. It’s wonderful. Our politicians burst into song (Pokarekare Ana) and the whole thing makes you want to dance, sing and hug someone. Everyone’s proud. Proud to be Kiwi.

Tom Chivers from The Telegraph writes “Good old New Zealand. They get everything right.” But I’m sorry... I have to rain on this gay parade right here.

In my opinion this bill is fantastic. It’s as simple as equality: you don’t discriminate against anyone, whether it’s race, age, sex – or sexual orientation. Everyone should have the same rights and equal opportunities for education, jobs, health and yes, marriage.

If only the New Zealand government voted as wisely on another pressing issue that seems to be flying under the media radar. In the month leading up to the passing of the same-sex marriage bill, many people missed the fact that a law was passed which takes away a fundamental democratic right: freedom of speech, freedom of protest: our right to protest at sea against oil drilling off the NZ coast.

What’s more, on the very same night as the same-sex marriage bill is passed, there was a story about the government allowing deepsea miners to dive under the ocean, with the intention of mining our sand for minerals to send across to Asia. The Tongan government has already spoken out about it in their waters and ran a workshop about it last month:

“Don’t open up Tongan waters to deepsea mineral exploitation. Environmental damage far outweighs unsustainable economic benefits.”                     

So why would the NZ government allow it? Money, jobs, industry:

“Valuable copper, iron, zinc and gold (seafloor massive sulphides)… are minerals potentially worth many billions of dollars.”

Is it worth it? I think not. Little is also known about the ecosystems associated with the seamounts on which seafloor massive sulphides are found, which means poorly planned mining could result in major environmental damage.

Despite our forward thinking government policy on same-sex marriage, I am terribly afraid New Zealand will suffer for environmental policies being passed. Take deepsea oil drilling as an example. Never mind the catastrophic oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico: In January 2012 the government announced further proposed petroleum exploration permit blocks covering over 40,000 square kilometres within New Zealand waters.

Would David Lange have allowed deepsea oil drilling? Should the government take away our democratic right to protest? What is happening to our 'clean green' image and political stance?

Come on John Key, we can't afford to make mistakes when it comes to New Zealand's beautiful sealife, wildlife and environment; it's what makes me feel lucky and proud to be a Kiwi.

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Doing a triathlon feels pretty good

I finished my first triathlon (mini-tri) this morning! 

There was a bit of training, a lot of huffing and puffing, hugs, sweat and relief. I have to say it felt pretty good to have finished it and awesome to have done it in a team.

Huge thanks to Rose - basically our inspirational coach who encouraged me (roped me in) to take the challenge.

And, thanks everyone for supporting me and helping raise $420 for breast cancer.

Photos to come!

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

You can cook with tea

Tea Laquered Salmon...

A little too much honey in the marinade, but otherwise love the idea of infusing rice and marinating meat in tea! Check out the recipe at

Monday, January 7, 2013

A monkey isn't always your friend

Ha Long Bay, Cat Ba and Monkey Island

We travel by boat to Monkey Island and Danny's feeling better - finally over his food poisoning. 

I'm pretty afraid of monkeys so I make sure to pick up a big stick as soon as I land on the beach. These monkey's still freak me out but they are awesome though and Danny loves them - the boys share their beer and snacks with the cheeky animals.

The Aussie couple we saw at the Lotteria in Hoi An give us some M&Ms and when I hold it above Danny the monkey climbs up on his back, check it out...

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Discovered a new colour - it's called 'food-poison green'

On the train to Hanoi

The overnight train to Hanoi. Danny parties pretty damn hard on the train, along with Dylan the Aussie and the conductor. He then takes three Valium and falls asleep.

He wakes up green. At first we think it's just a bad hangover, but he's sick for a good 48 hours and we're all genuinely concerned when he power-chucks into a rubbish bin. I don't think any of us will forget that moment.

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

How to celebrate New Year's Eve in Vietnam

Hanoi is a fantastic place to party. 

You can easily pop from one pub to another, locals are friendly, the food is full of flavour and drinks are as cheap as they come. The gorgeous little terraces on the river create a unique atmosphere, the river alight with colourful floating candles.

A ridiculously affordable hotel is also easy to find. I recommend the Grasslands Hotel - it has a pool, the movie channel and watermelon smoothies on tap for a guaranteed New Year's Day recovery.