Short day

After our late night last night watching movies with Brock, we got up late and lounged around the apartment until the housekeeping lady kicked us out so she could vacuum, change linens and rifle through our stuff (just kidding!). Our first plan was to go to the IMAX theatre and see the Mt St Helens movie.

We rushed madly across town on foot and made it there just in time. While the documentary itself was interesting, it wasn't very exciting... no lava, no flames, just lots of ash and smoke and devastation post-facto. Oh well. After seeing the movie we decided not to waste a whole day driving out to see the real thing.

However, we have just found out that Snoqualmie has had an unexpected amount of snow... so we might try to get out there for some skiing!

Anyway, the afternoon was spent walking across town to visit the Public Library (an impressive piece of modern architecture) and Pioneer Square and Occidental Park, which are historic landmarks.

The evening was another interesting experience. We returned to Seattle International Church for a very charismatic and spiritual service. Very different from our church back in Perth, let me assure you! But these people are filled with an energy and enthusiasm that is encouraging and inspiring and it has been wonderful to meet and worship God with them.

And now... sleep. Diana, of course, is already asleep. After the dishes, I will be too.

PS. It was a sunny, beautiful day today. No rain! But the lady on the news forecast "Rain, Wind, Sun... Repeat" for the next 5 days. hehehe

New Pictures!!

I've uploaded new pictures HERE.

A sample:

PS. Gap Stress-free Jeans are COOL. Water runs right off them. I'm like a kid wearing a candy shop. :P


The Needle

First thing: we headed out to the Space Needle to check it out, and after a little indecision as to whether the weather was appropriate, we decided to go up the Needle.

Wow, awesome view. I took some great pictures of the entire Seattle area, and I must say it is a beautiful city. The water and mountains and trees are plentiful! The wind at the top of the needle was insane, and we could only stay outside for a little while before freezing and running back inside for some coffee (Starbucks, of course). This started a debate between Diana and myself over whether Starbucks or Seattle's Best Coffee was the better coffee. In fact, I think we should try Tully's as well before deciding.

After some grocery shopping and lunch, we were picked up by our new friend, Brock, who took us to Bellevue (a suburb not far from town) for some more shopping. We got Gap discounts and even saw a Lego store where Trooper got a taste of home. Tried an Orange Julius (fruit drink thing... must be an acquired taste) and I got to have my first Cinnabon since arriving in the US!!! Yay!

Afterwards we headed to Brock's apartment where we made dinner, chatted, and watched a movie on his projector/powerbook combo. It was really great to be able to chill out with a fellow believer, and we had a great time.

Got home quite late, but it was a great day. Praise God!


Casual Day Out

Well, hoping for a clear day today we headed out to the Pike Place Markets again in search of the famous fish guys. We found them, and it was relatively underwhelming... but they did seem to be having a good time and were very friendly.

Next up, we did a bit of shopping in Downtown then set off for China Town (the International District) to see what all the fuss was about. Had curry at Kurry King (funny name) :). Then after checking out Uwajimaya (which has heaps of good Japanese and Chinese stuff) we realized that it was actually pretty quiet.

So, in search of other things to do, we found ourselves at the Seattle Aquarium where we used a voucher to go in and spent quite a while ogling the fishies. The touch pool was OK but once you've felt a few fishies the cold water froze our fingers so much that we couldn't feel anymore. :) Took some OK pictures, although I had to expend my knowledge of my camera's settings just to get acceptable shots. I pity the point-n-click photographers who were there!

Headed back to the apartment with all intentions to do the Space Needle... but the cold weather and laziness got the best of us. So, another night in, and some well-deserved rest. :)


A day of blessings

Wow, today was awesome.

We started out by trying to find a bus stop to get to Mars Hill Church, but when we couldn't find it we headed for another church we saw in the white pages... but... a few streets later we passed Seattle International Church and decided to go in.

Firstly, the people who greeted us were very friendly, inspiring us to come back later when the Easter service was on... then, the service was awesome! It was like a musical play and the whole thing was focussed on God so well... it was great, and the church is truly blessed with great musicians and singers.

We met a guy named Brock who took us to lunch with another attendee named David. Brock also showed us around a bit, inadvertently, as we hunted for open food places on the public holiday (a Sunday, no less). And, he works at Gap, and his offer of a discount will not go un-used! hehe

After that, we dropped by Pike Place Markets and looked around... sadly, it was mostly closed, either due to the late hour or the holiday. We will return. Across the street was the very first Starbucks, which was cool, in a dingy little cafe kind of way. There we bought a mug, and took a trooper pic.

After a little more shopping, we returned home to have some nice home-made pasta and do out extremely glamorous laundry. Well, that's it for today.


First Day in Seattle

Today we arrived in Seattle after a quick 2hr flight from San Francisco. The ride was rather bumpy, but survivable.

We had separate seats as the planed was rather crowded.

Anyway, we arrived in Seattle and the weather was... rainy. Ha, who would have guessed?

We caught an airport shuttle to a hotel near our apartment, then walked 5 blocks to the building through the rain.

The apartment building is pretty good. It's located right near the Space Needle, and while the apartment is small, it is good enough for us. It will make an adequate home for the next 2 months, I think.

In the afternoon/evening we went for a walk around the block, ate dinner at a Japanese restaurant (run by Chinese) and went shopping at Safeway for some essentials.

The evening is going to be a relaxing night in, checking out all the TV channels and the apartment facilities.


New mac. Bad mac.

Well, iBook repair was going to cost too much so I bit the bullet and bought an ex-demo Powerbook G4 1.5 for cheap. Its a RevB(?) the revision before the current model... anyway, its cool.
But man does it suck having to dish out that kind of money while on a world trip! Well, its all part of the experience. :)

On another note, Diana and I are having fun here in beautiful, but sadly homeless San Francisco... We're not homeless, but it seems that so many people are. :( I hope Seattle is a little less depressing in that regard.

Weather was rainy for the first day, but since then we've been blessed with beautiful days. Bummer that Alcatraz was booked out for days. Hot tip - book in advance by at least a week!

Anyway, off to bed or some coffee or tea or something.

Peace out.



Hi everyone, just a quick message to say that I now have some pictures online!

General Highlight gallery


Artsy photos!

And... my mac is on the blink... screen backlight dies if I open it more than 30deg. Argh! But, luckily, there's an Apple store two blocks away! hehe. Taking it in now.



hi from tokyo

Wow, what a busy few days in Tokyo!
We've seen some amazing sights and had some great fun and interesting experiences!... but no photos online yet. Sorry!
I've taken over 400MB of photos (200+ pics) and will upload my favourites as soon as I get internet access from my own computer, in SanFrancisco or Seattle.
Tomorrow, Odaiba!


New Camera

Got a new digital camera yesterday... a Sony DSC W1. Very nice... a bit heavy and block-shaped, but features are great for the price.

Sample photo:


Trooper's farewell bbq

Trooper's farewell bbq
Originally uploaded by ntt.
We had a farewell BBQ on Sunday with family. Trooper was sad to say goodbye.

It is now only 7 days before we fly off! Things are getting exciting. Work is getting busy as I try to divest myself of all responsibilities for 3.5 months.

I wonder if companies will agree to not send any bills for 4 months...