Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Petting my food 2

I have been spending more and more time in Nuriootpa. In person, I usually use the word "Nuri" but then I found out that most of the time, people in Adelaide do not know what I am talking about. It is only people from there who call it Nuri.

It is nice to talk to Steven's family and cook for them. They do not have any non-Aussie in their family so they are just delighted to have a taste of Asian cuisine. At the same time, I also get to taste fatty country food.

Here is a new photo of Skippy. You may remember a previous posting of Skippy as a joey (click here). She is grown up now and refuses to be touched except for Steven's aunt. I hate babies when they grow up.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

The Hobbit or There and Back Again (novel)

I know this novel is not really that long but it took me some time to finish it because of several concerns. Well, if you visit this blog often then you would be able to know what those concerns are.

Instead of going straight to "The Two Towers" after reading "The Fellowship of the Ring", I decided to read "The Hobbit" because it is currently under production. I want to have an idea of what the movie is going to be.

This Tolkien novel is much much easier to read than "The Lord of the Rings" series. The language is simpler and the plot more straightforward. The characters are easy to follow because there are not that many of them.

Tolkien takes his readers to the simple life of Hobbiton to the perilous journey that Bilbo Baggins takes. If you have seen the three gigantic movies, then this book will explain a lot of things like Bilbo's riches and why he wanted to join Frodo in the latter's own adventure.

The world that Tolkien created is tamer compared to the succeeding series. Though evil is lurking, Middle Earth does not seem as bad as the time the fellowship left Rivendell.

As always, it will be extremely difficult to put all the important adventures on the big screen. I am sure there will be lots of encounters that will not be included. I just hope that the last battle scene will be presented in its entirety.

Casting will also be a challenge. Gandalf is not that different in this novel so I hope that the producers will be able to convince Sir Ian McKellen to reprise this role. Ian Holmes cannot reprise Bilbo Baggins' role as Bilbo here is much younger and he needs to be super charismatic and funny. The actor who will play Thorin has to be very strong as a leader, imperfect but very relatable. He needs to make a huge impact at the end of the adventure.

Guillermo Del Toro is reportedly directing this movie with couple Philippa Boyens and Peter Jackson as writers. I really would love Jackson to stick to directing but I guess he was traumatized by the earlier three movies. Del Toro is a great director but he is a bit too dark for the theme of "The Hobbit".

I will definitely watch this movie on the big screen in 2011. The next installment will be in 2012.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Missing Fog

It is still winter in Adelaide. We had a cold snap last week and it was about 4 degrees Celsius in Alberton where Steven and I live. After experiencing it, I can say that I really really prefer the heat wave that we had last summer. But that is selfish to wish for every summer as the farmers need the water for their crops.

I am still fascinated by the mist coming out of my mouth, the dew drops on leaves and the toadstools sprouting from mulch. But my favourite is the fog. On the way from our Payneham gym, Steven and I stumbled upon an eerie looking football field. It was blanketed by a fairly thick blanket of fog.

I immediately got out of the car and ran towards the fog but then it actually disappears as you go near it. But Steven took this haunting shot of silhouette.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Adelaide Model Railway Show 2009

Steven + Trains = Childhood obsession

You know that Steven has to drag me to a show like this one. I used to play with my GI Joes when I was a little gay boy but you do not see me fondling them now. They are in a box somewhere in the Philippines where spiders and cockroaches are impregnating them.

Anyway, it is amazing to see these tiny toys come to life with the help of wood, meters and meters of tracks, fake foliage and unmarried ugly men. No, I am not kidding. Most of the owners look like they do not have interest in sex but I did not take photos of them.

Instead, I took photos of their creation and it does take a lot of time and love to create beautiful creations like these.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Winter in Karoonda and Nuriootpa

I spent the long weekend with Steven in Nuriootpa and Karoonda. I welcome the distraction and relaxation as things have been tough here lately.
I spent our time in Nuriootpa sleeping most of the time. Steven reckons that I feel relaxed there and I had a difficult week. We also played a few board games, baked gingerbread and cooked a few Filipino dishes.

Our Karoonda trip was short but nice. I was able to meet Steven's family and friends again. We also visited the farm and boy, it looked so different from what it was in the summer. It is much much colder now and there are grass, moss and paddy melons. The latter is delicious-looking but Steven told me that they are poisonous. I swear they look very sweet and tempting.

Anyway, I hope you like these photos taken in the farm. Please notice how vast the farm is.

Monday, June 1, 2009

Waterfall Gully

Settling in another country is not easy and doing it a second time does not make it easier. There is one challenge after another. There is one setback after wrestling the first one.

Making decisions could have been simpler and quicker if I were single. I could just snap my fingers and off I go to Thailand. But I am no longer single. I am sharing my life now with a special person. Many people have said this and it will sound corny but I really cannot live without this person anymore. He gives me motivation to do the best I can for us and our home.

Steven has a good way of relieving my stress though. We go driving--and this time, we also went mountain hiking. We cooked food at home and drove to the conservation park Waterfall Gully. We admired the environment, took a sip of the cool water and took our picnic bag to the top of the mountain. There we had lunch while looking at Adelaide.

My knees felt like jello by the time we returned to our car. And planted a kiss on Steven's lips before driving home.