Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Last Night's Blog

Well now, here I am.  6 nights left in Auckland, yay!!  I'm actually genuinely enjoying being here, so far - it's partly Auckland, partly the company, and partly the overnight allowance.  I get to buy ready-prepared food every day instead of making my own, I get to dump my used towel on the floor of the bathroom and find it removed, a new one replaced, and my bed made, every evening.  I would, however, absolutely hate to live in a hotel, but a week is ok.

I won't actually be able to post this blog until tomorrow morning, as the internet is so limited at the hotel.  The good news is that the place we go for breakfast gives free wifi, and there is also wifi available in the simulator building.

I was strangely excited walking in to the simulator building this afternoon. Despite it being just 3 months since I last was in the sim, this is my first time ever in the Southern Hemisphere, and I was looking forward to it.  Another bonus being that there were three of us vying dor two seats, and ML was gentlemanly enough to take the hot seat and allow me to observe for the day.  I had a few minutes' opportunity at the end to practise, but really my day one is te day after tomorrow (by which time this blog should be posted).

Tomorrow is a free day, so the instructor, who from now on I will refer to as Mr C, has offered to take us sightseeing.  He has a car here, so he will drive us around Auckland showing us lots of interesting stuff - hopefully.  He has already pointed out a extinct terraced volcano, which used to be a Maori settlement, which I forget the name of and also have no photos of, as we were driving at the time.  (Does that count as a preposition at the end of a sentence -  or was the explanation sufficient to neutralise the bad grammar, Mum?) 

I'm really excited to see Auckland tomorrow, and I promise I will take photos, although I will be unable to blog these until I return home on the 3rd, at which point you will wish you never asked!!!  I also need to get lots of revising done, so I shall do a bit of both, after posting this update in the morning, and you will probably not get to hear about my day until some other time! - sorry!

I must close off now as it is already 0040 and I am meeting the others for breakfast (and wifi so that I can post this) at 0900.  Unlike some of you, I cannot function on 3-4 hours of sleep!!


Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Part 2

Part 2 Disclaimer - I took tons of pics to post on the food blog but blogger is being dumb so It's not happening! sorry!! I am now checked in to my hotel in Auckland.  The instructor met us at the airport, and in all but voice reminded us all immensely of a certain TRE back home, the only one who owns a hat, without mentioning any names!  From the glasses to the moustache to the black leather jacket, the resemblance was uncanny - until he opened his mouth, that is, and started talking in a thick NZ accent! The hotel room is almost identical to the HIX back home, although the hotel itself is immense in size.  Similar to the HIX as far as internet access is concerned too, although we fo get 20m free access per day in the lobby!  So now I will head to the lobby and post this. TTFN!

Part 1 - the flight

Currently, I am sitting on board an airplane, somewhere over the Pacific Ocean, on my way to Auckland.  I presume that the wet stuff between Australia and New Zealand is the Pacific Ocean, but I could well be wrong - geography was never my forté.   This is the first time that I have ever travelled business class.  I find myself not knowing what to do first, feeling like a fish out of water and surrepticiously observing others' actions to determine the correct way to go about things.  Does one use the footstool during takeoff and landing?  Can one adjust the seat at this time?  How does the electronic tray table work?  Wine before lunch - yes, please, red.  Pinot noir or merlot?  Well, frankly I have no idea what the difference is, as long as it's red and not too dry...  I figure if I make my decision straight away and sound confident about it, theymay get the impression that I know what I'm talking about.  Merlot, please! I think it is relatively impossible to remain sober on a business class flight, especially a 3h one.  What if I had to hire a car or something at the other end?  Would I have to decline the glass of champagne on boarding?  Say no to the glass of merlot before lunch?  What if they offer something else with lunch - or afterwards?  Some port or Baileys to polish it all off, perhaps? The waiter - or rather, flight attendant, who insists on addressing me as Ms ----, while consulting a list in his hand, extends the table in front of me and covers it with a white tablecloth.  The cloth is slightly larger than the table, pergaps 1.5ft square, and not quite large enough to droop down at the sides, which gives it a rather untidy look.  My glass of merlot is pooling scarlet on its serviette, and the attendant apologises profusely for the clumsiness.   The starter has now arrived, a small platter of smoked salmon, dribbled elegantly with tartare sauce, sprinkled with fresh cress( and accompanied by a pad of butter and some freshly (yesterday?) ground pepper.  I presume that the bread is yet to come, and on cue it arrives, a little wooden basket offering a selection of garlic, brown, rye and sourdough.  More wine?  A top up of water?  Ah yes, madam, sparkling Perrier is no problem, here you are. I pick up the silverware - two forks and two knives, startlingly cold, and cut open my bread roll, which is soft, fresh and warm.  I have decided to make an exception to my hitherto unbroken rule - never eat airline food that is not in a sealed wrapper.  The smoked salmon does not have much flavour, and could do with some lemon juice, but as far as lemon juice is concerned, it's not bad. What would you like for your main course, madam?  Steak, please.  Now I shall sit back, relax, and hope that the fillet eye is not overdone - how dare they not ask how I prefer it cooked?  I paid good money for this flight!  Well - someone did. GR and ML, both sitting in front pf me, are watching a movie while eating their meal.  Personally, I think the audio on airplanes is terrible, and continue to refuse it even in business class. It's not a bad main course, by all accounts.  A typically sized airplane meal, although in a rectangular china dish, as opposed to the tinfoil or plastic of cattle class.  Sweet potato au gratin on one side - which ML is kindly polishing off for me, as I am opposed to sweet potato, and fresh - not even overcooked - french beans on the other side.  The fillet eye is medium rare, fairly tender and not bad going, considering it is being offered however many miles up in the sky.  I now await my dessert, and considering I was not in the least bit hungry to begin with (I ate a considerable amount of complimentary breakfast and lunch in the business lounge before boarding) I think I am doing well. I cannot imagine going back to cattle class, perhaps from now I will pay an extra few grand to enjoy this sort of comfort - or not.  I think that despite how good this is right now, it's pretty obvious I could spend an awful lot less and get a far better experience by just going out to a restaurant!  However, considering how much I truly hate travelling, this really isn't bad at all.  In fact, I havn't even arrived in Auckland and I am already looking forward to the return flight - and doing it all over again in a couple of months!  Actually, I'd even say that I am looking forward to travelling back to Europe - the seat/bed I am assigned to is pretty much the same size as the room I had in Rivervalley - which isn't saying much! Icecream or cheese, madam?  Well icecream of course, you nincompoop,  who do you think I am???  The icecream is vanilla and berry flavoured - as I am feeling fairly full, I eat the berry scoop and leave the vanilla - sorry, Dad!   I presume that shortly they'll be around once again to ask if I would like another drink - well I would, but... maaaybe on the way back!?  Now I will recline my seat once again, rest my head on the soft pillow, and doze for an hour or so until we descend into Auckland.  Apparently we get 20 minutes of free wifi a day in the hotel, so I should be able to post this, otherwise you will only see it once I return home... which will rather spoil the fun - don't you think?? TTFN!  

Monday, June 25, 2012

Outta Here

Im out of here in 25 minutes, just thought I'd write a quick post to let you know, just in case you wondered!  Welcome home to my sister who has just travelled all the way back from Switzerland, I hope you had a great time.  Sorry I couldn't call you but I've been manically trying to pack and organise myself in the very little time I left myself after I was done procrastinating.

It is difficult for me to fit a week's supply of shoes into a tiny hand luggage bag, but I think I have finally managed it.  It hasn't left much room for anything else, but that's okay!  I'm a little worried that Auckland is going to be really cold - and I haven't brought any warm clothes with me!  Perhaps this means I will have to go shopping in Auckland - hoorah !  (The problem then being that I've nowhere to put my purchases)


Last Day

Today is my last day in Australia.  Okay, okay, until next week, but still, it is my last day in Australia.  Tomorrow I'm heading off to Auckland for a week, which I am really looking forward to!  Business class, for the first time in my life!  

Today, I bought a chest of drawers - not the chest I actually wanted, but rather the cheapest one available!  So exciting - not.  Also, we got internet installed at the house - although no one has been kind enough to tell me the password so I'm still using my stupid dongle.  GRR.

Today, I reflected on how much I really ought to study, and also how I really ought to clean my car.  Needless to say, I did neither, but I did get quite a bit of shopping done!  My

Right, now I will go to get something done!  A bit of packing, perhaps, or maybe a few memory items?


Saturday, June 23, 2012

Blogging etc.

I like blogging.  I like writing something, publishing it and knowing that it might possibly be read by someone else.  I find it enjoyable to proof read my posts to hopefully eliminate grammatical errors, and I like to try to make my writing humorous and include interesting photographs.  However, I don’t particularly like blogging about how I feel.  
I don’t like putting pen to paper (or rather, fingers to keyboard) and writing down emotions.  It feels like an intrusion of personal space, and I am in awe of those who have the courage to spill out what’s going on inside for public criticism.  I would never criticise, you might say - but in reality I think everyone does, at least to some extent.  
I enjoy reading other people’s blogs, and reading those that do delve into their inner feelings.  I like to see that I am not the only person who feels a particular way, or even that other people think entirely differently to myself.  I would, however, hesitate before doing so myself.  In the same way, I find it very hard to talk to other people about how I feel about something.  It’s difficult to confront people, and much easier just to go along with the flow.  Indeed, it’s much easier to have a conversation with someone via text rather than verbally, and verbally is much easier than face to face.  
You will be happy to know that it will be a long time before I consider writing anything personal on this blog - if ever !  For now, it is back to the mundane.
This afternoon we’re going shopping.  Like, proper shopping.  Like, proper shopping for whatever takes my fancy.  So excited - it’s been waaay too long !  So now I must go and get myself ready - riot shield, helmet, taser... I think this blog has been way too serious so far today, so I must make an end to such things.  Did I mention that someone stole my cat?  The rudeness of people nowadays daring to steal things from my possession.  Do they not realise that possession is 9/10ths of the law?
Also, did I mention how much I like bats?

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

My New Friend Part 2

hi baby !

My New Friend

I would like to introduce you to my new friend.  He came to visit me this evening, while we were outside on the front balcony.  Housemate 3 jumped up in alarm and screamed something about a snake.  Overreaction much, I must say.  I think my new friend was a lot more alarmed than she was, as he made a run in the opposite direction.  However, after a little coercion, he came back and inside to visit.  

Here he is.

No?  You don't see him?  Or do you? 

I'd really like to keep him.  I'm estimating him at about 6 months' old, or less.  He's very very cute and likes attention, but is more interested in exploring the house than staying put for attention, I must say.

NOW do you see him?  Surely it must be obvious by now, I can't really get more obvious than in this picture.  

He ran away because ML jumped up loudly to take a picture of him, and he spooked.  He hasn't come back, although I have left the door open for him just in case he does.

Once I know that at least ONE person can identify him... I'll post an even MORE obvious photo !!!


Tuesday, June 19, 2012


OMG these things are absolutely AMAZING!

I am in love with bats.

In fact, I want one as a pet.  I want to hug it and snuggle it and take it to bed and use it as my pillow.  They're so absolutely awesome I've just got to share them with you!

I don't have any good pics.

As I said, I don't have any good pics.

We stopped at the side of the road, got out of the car and gazed in wonder at the clouds of bats flying by.  Or rather, I got out of the car and gazed in wonder at the clouds of bats flying by.  Housemate 2 suggested that we could be spending our time doing something else, but I would have happily stood there all night watching their massive wings beating at the sky.

They had got to be at least 1 metre wingspan, you could make out their feet and stuff, flying from South to North all very purposefully, and I have no idea why.  What food did they sense, and why was it all in one place?

here's a video someone else posted on youtube:

This is a picture someone else posted.  I loooooooooooooooove bats !!!  

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Warm and Sunny

I thought Australia was supposed to be warm and sunny, not so cold that I have to get up in the middle of the night and locate a hoody and fold my comforters (plural!) in half to get double the thickness!  It must have dropped to about 7 - 8 C in the night, and right now at 0900 it is steady at a chilly 12 C.  How I rue the day I left all my warm clothes and especially my fluffy slippers in Ireland, to transport "in the future".  By the time that happens, it will be summer and too hot to wear any clothes at all!  At least, that's what I'm planning on !


Father's Day

Today is Father's day, and this is for my dad.  If you're not my dad, you can still read it, but you're not my dad, so it's not actually for you.

My dad's name is Michael.  He was born a long long time ago, before the world began.  I don't have a picture of him as a baby, but here he was when he was little:

It was so long ago, that they hadn't invented clothes yet.  A few years later, the first clothes started rolling in.  Here he is a little older:

Quite a handsome boy, right?  I'm not quite sure what happened, or whether he stole someone's childhood photos, but you got to admit that this next photo does not look like the same person:

 Yeoouch, that's quite some hairstyle going on, dude!  However, after a few years he managed to clean himself up, and once he had invested in a razor, and grown many many many years older, this is what he looked like:

He became quite a talented man.  Let's show you a few of the things he became able to do:

  he can dress up

he can sew (ok he can mend sewing machines)

he can climb into water tanks and septic tanks without dying of asphyxiation

he can multitask

he can avoid getting decapitated by his son
and he can daydream.

there are lots of other things he can do, which I don't have photos of.  Such as, write software, make hamster cages, build goat pens, plumb, paint, build houses, the list is pretty much endless.  In fact, I'd say that he's a pretty useful type of father.  In fact, I'm pretty content with who he is, and wouldn't change him for the world!

I love you, Dad!

Saturday, June 16, 2012

The new house (pic heavy)

I now have internet.  Not very much, mind you, and at great expense, but internet it is.  Hoping to get fixed broadband sorted out next week, which can't come soon enough!

I took some quick photos of the house on my good old phone, and here they are.  All hugely out of order, but then, putting them in order would require extra effort, and you ain't gettin' that on a Sunday.

This is the living area as you walk in the door.  Along with Housemate 1, who is unaware of being photographed for the sake of El Blogo.   It is quite interesting actually, as you will see in the first photo, that the house actually has 3 front doors.  The left door is locked and we do not have a key for it.  The middle door has windows and the key is in the lock, and the third door, which is open in the photo, is the main door that we use.  Beyond that is a patio area maybe 2 metres wide, and the door you can see in the photo is the door to the patio area.  I think I may have previously posted a picture of the front of the house, so I'm not going to bore you with a repeat!!

This is the messy kitchen, ants and all.  Just one grain of sugar left on the countertop and they all come swarming in.  Thankfully only the teency weency black kind so far!

This is the other upstairs living area, with Housemate 1's bedroom in the distance.  You don't get a tour of my housemates' bedrooms, so deal with it!

These are the stairs that go down to the garden and basement, they are positioned between the second living area and the kitchen.
Above is my bedroom, complete with new bedding, although still waiting on the new mattress.  The rug came with the room, hopefully not as diseased as the old bedding...

In this photo, I would like to introduce you to the basement, and Housemate 2.  The basement is directly under the main living room, and myself and Housemate 2's bedrooms.  Separating it from the floor above is a simple floor made of wooden boards.  No insulation, no nothing, except perhaps for the occasional termite.  There is actually a small hole in the floor in the living room from which you can see down into the garage!  In the far right of the photo you will see my little car peeking out.

Here you go, a close up of my little car.  Maybe I shall name it Oliver, although it will never come close to the real Oliver.

From the garage, here is one side of the house.  To the left, there are the stairs going up to the kitchen/second living area, but you can't quite see that in this photo.

This is the garden, of which you can see a little bit in the previous photo.  There is a small patio area here where we can put the BBQ.

The other side of the house, facing the garage.  Above is the second patio area, where the BBQ currently resides.

This photo is of a heap of palm fronds that Housemate 1 was going to clear.  However, on consideration and from our instructor's advice... he has decided not to clear them, as apparently this is where brown snakes usually reside.  Brown snakes will even chase you if disturbed, and are deadly, so I think this pile will be left well alone!

Facing the rear of the house.  Downstairs is another living area and Housemate 3's bedroom, which of course, you're not going to see, are you?

 These two photos are of the downstairs living area, along with Housemate 3, who decided she wanted to be in the photo, so here she is.

That's about the house in a nutshell.  You ain't getting the address on the blog, obviously!  That's about all to report, so now I must get back to studying!


Friday, June 15, 2012

Lack of Internet

Just a quick post to let you all know why I haven't been blogging!  Just moved into the new house yesterday and we don't have internet here yet.  Of course, I brought my internet dongle with me, however it ran out of data yesterday, and I haven't topped it up yet.  We're currently looking in to get proper fixed broadband at the house, but it isn't set up yet.  

Right now, I'm tethering my iphone so that I can update you on the blog!  I did my last jumpseat this morning which was good, and the guys showed me some more things which will help me along with line training when it happens, and also some tips of what to revise for the simulator.  Lots to do in the next few days!  

I met my first Australian cockroach within 30 minutes of moving in to the house, which was a disturbing and not particularly enjoyable experience.  Also, trying to get people not to leave sugar etc. in the kitchen is very difficult!  If you leave just a grain of sugar on the draining board the little ants swarm around in minutes.  It's definitely going to be the dishwasher for us!

I have a couple of pictures of the area, but due to the lack of internet I won't be posting any until the broadband is sorted out.


Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Banana Bread

I got banana bread!!!  I can't decide what was the best part of my day - the banana bread, or... no wait, I don't want to spoil the surprise.  Suffice it to say that with this airline, not only do you get a meal allowance when you go to work, but you also get free banana bread, at least on the breakfast duties!  It wasn't enjoyable getting up at 0245 to go to work, but the banana bread almost made up for it...  I took the box and peered at it dubiously.  Plastic wrapper 100% sealed - check.  Where airline food is concerned, that means it is safe for me to eat.  I then asked what it was like.  "Well," said the captain, "it's sticky and sweet, and doesn't taste like bananas, which is good because I hate bananas."  That pretty much summed it up!

I really enjoyed the duty, flying up to Emerald, which is pretty much as isolated as it gets on the East Coast.  It was fairly cold there too, just 5C, so I was glad of my big company issue overcoat.  Unlike the previous airline, it actually fits, looks good, and is warm - and it has nice shiny buttons.  We had a wee bit of an incident (disclaimer: nothing to do with our aircraft or the operating crew) on the way to Emerald which I'm not going to blog about as such, but suffice to to say - it gave us something to talk about for the remainder of the duty.  A first for me, too!  The crew were really sound, and I'm looking forward to doing it again tomorrow - all except for the 0245 reveille.  Bring on the banana sticky-sweet-doesnt-taste-of-banana bread!!!

I didn't get any pictures today - I was sitting too far back in the flight deck to get anything decent, as it was very bright outside and very dark inside, so you could get a picture of the instruments with a white patch where the window was - which I figured wasn't very interesting.  Besides, Emerald is just a runway in the middle of a brown expanse of nothingness.

After that, I came home and collapsed into bed and slept for a couple of hours.  When my alarm woke me it felt like the end of the world, but I forced myself to get up as otherwise I wouldn't sleep tonight.  I then went out with RM to look at cars, and ended up with this:

It's not amazing.  In fact, it's not remarkable in any way.  It will simply get me from A to B, and hopefully in one piece!  I could only put a deposit on it today as my money hasn't arrived from home, but once it does, this baby is mine!  It needs an awful lot of cleaning inside - looks like someone died in it - but I saved 50 dollars by saying I'd clean it myself.  It has 6 months' rego on it and all transfer fees etc are included in the price - which once again I'm not going to blog about as such.  Payday seems so faaaaaar away...

That's about it for today, folks!  I can't decide what was the best part of the day but... I got banana bread!!!


Monday, June 11, 2012

get out of my country !

"So, couldn't you get a job over there?"

The above is what we were asked during the course today.  A few of us figured perhaps the facilitator was stung by a wasp on her way in to class, as she was in extremely bad humour for its entirety.  The course today was called DAMP, otherwise known as Drug and Alcohol Management Plan.  The facilitator didn't actually (and still doesn't) work for the company, but instead was contracted in last minute to take the course.  

She asked, thirty minutes or so into it, whether we were all from Queensland.  Choruses of "Espain!" from the back of the class, "Ireland!" from JB, and then Ian's loud shout of "We're all British!!!" drowning everyone else out.  Thanks, Ian, you might not have noticed this, but you're the only Englishman in the room.  This is when she came out with her priceless comment.

Those who didn't hear her initially, heard her when the murmur went around the room.  I said, rather louder than I intended "that's so rude!" but sure, if she heard it, I'm glad, because it was so rude! I've got to say, she's not the only Australian who has shown that sort of attitude towards our group.  Just in case they forget, it was the Australians who approached us to emigrate - not vice versa!  

I also picked up my uniform today - bar the blazer and the boots - and retain my distain of the hat - which is on Facebook if you want to see it.  First jumpseat is in the morning, so I shall be wearing the uniform trousers instead of jeans!  Will take my iphone and try to take some photos...  I'm excited to get to go flying, at least in the jumpseat, but not so excited about the time of day.  Report is 0430 which means being at the car park at 0345 and leaving here at 0300... ouch!  I wonder if I can do my makeup the previous night............

What else did I do today?  I picked up my staff parking permit (which is like the Dublin staff car park in being trillions of miles away from the crew room) and I got some lunch with So'R.  Now I should really do a bit of studying but in reality will probably go back on Facebook.


A Day In The Life Of Moi

Here we are again!  I shall start this post with an absolutely adorable picture of Jude Chris.

Admit that's cute.  Go on, admit it.  Obviously he is related to me, the funny looks he gets off RKB... :)

So about today.  Today was another hugely interesting day in the life of me, myself and I.  What did I do, you ask?  Well, I drove to the airport twice, first dropping off some people and then picking up the same people (actually that came almost at the end of the day so I'm getting ahead of myself here).  I bought a towel - yay, excitement much!  I read one or two SOPs (didn't want to overdo it), and I went swimming.

Well... I got knee deep into the swimming pool before chickening out and getting in the hot tub instead, having to submerge almost completely to keep moderately warm, as the wind and slanty Australian rain blew into my face.  Not the most enjoyable experience ever, but hey, I'm outta here on Thursday so I have to make the most of the hot tub, right?  Even in the rain!

What else did I do?  *thinks hard*.  Oh yeah, I went on facebook and read all my blogs, and the Daily Mail, watched a bit of the crime & investigation channel.  We don't have a remote control, see, so if we turn the TV on we are subjected to programs like The Boston Strangler and He Stole My Foetus. Very interesting, you know.  Anyway, I am only able to subject myself to so much of that sort of riveting information before my brain goes into Explosion Mode, which is why I went to the swimming pool in the first place.  It does seem to look an awful lot more inviting in 25 degrees with the sun shining though.  Wish that sort of weather came to order.

Anyway, that's all folks!!!  I'm a very boring person!



Saturday, June 9, 2012

6 Weeks

I've been here for 6 weeks now, and I still don't feel like I've moved here.  This is probably due to the fact that I am still living in a hotel - although actually I have downgraded from an apartment to a couch.  It is a sofa bed though so that helps.  I'm now going to treat you to my to do list.  You're welcome.

1.  Arrive in Oz - check
2.  Take 4 CASA exams - check
3.  Survive ground school - check (there is one course left to go but I'm not counting it)
4.  Do 3 jumpseats
5.  Go to the sim
6.  Finish line training (although, starting would be good enough)
7.  Find somewhere to live - check
8.  Find a car

On the subject of find a car, I went car shopping yesterday down by Archerfield.  Apparently there are loads of car dealers down there and they actually call it The Magic Mile for this reason.  I'm not quite sure what is magic about it - perhaps something to do with the prices of the cars, all mostly in the 20,000AUD range...

I did meet two cars more suited to my budget, and I shall list them below.

The first was a 1996 Honda Civic.  Manual, but electric windows, MP3 player, etc. drove really well, the major downside being that it had (and still has, I presume) 296000km on the clock.  You can see the price below!

Then there was a 1991 Toyota Camry, looks like the sort of car my grandmother would drive.  Yeehah!    21 years old, manual windows, lovely cassette player (has a cd stack in the boot), amazing A/C though.  243000km on the clock.

it doesn't really have that much of a gap under the bonnet - but RM decided to pop the bonnet just as I got ready to take a photo...

Vroom vroom!!!

Anyway that's where the car search stands at this point!!!  AAAAAAAAARRRRRGHHHHH!!!


Thursday, June 7, 2012

Here I am again

I'm sorry people, I have been neglecting you!  The fact of the matter is, that life is incredibly boring right now, so I didn't want you all to die of boredom too.  Today was day 3 of ground school, in other words being initiated into the company's procedures, some of which are similar and others are hugely different, and in ways make it hard to believe that I will be flying the same airplane!

Tomorrow a few of us are doing CAR214/215 training.  What's that, you may ask.  Well, apparently we'll learn how to set up the refuelling panel and do a walkaround, etc. which will be very useful...

I have also put down the deposit on the property so I am officially moving!  Yay!  Tomorrow at least six of the Irish contingent (although they're not all Irish) are taking their CPL Law exam, so hopefully they all pass!  Then on Saturday I plan to head south to Logan to visit IKEA - I don't really like IKEA, but suppose it shall suffice.

We don't actually move to our new place until the 14th so another week on the couch it is!  Not actually a bad sofa bed to be honest, although I am looking forward to having my own room again, it is definitely nice to close the door and shut out the rest of the world once in awhile!

Right, that's all for now as ML has just turned up to do some Australian Incantations SOP drilling.


Tuesday, June 5, 2012

More groundschool

More groundschool, and yet more groundschool again.  Learning how to use FOS tables entirely differently from how I thought they would be used.  Strangely enough, the ATR groundschool instructor (who was observing) also found it different and did not exactly agree with using the F50 method on the AT72... ah well!

We got performance, cold weather operations, PRM ILS and fuel calculations out of the way.  Don't ask - I don't know the answers!  Tomorrow I think we are doing some CBT (computer based training) and loadsheets, and then the next day will be SOPs.  Right now I should be reading what they call the FOPPT, I don't know what this stands for, but it's a document about 800 pages long.  I don't think I'll get very far tonight - maybe a page or two?!

I shall leave you all with a picture of my father aged fairly young, which I swiped from Somewhere.  


Sunday, June 3, 2012


I forgot to say in my last post, because I was way too excited about the property, that I have now got my roster for the rest of June and first half of July and see that it's all kicking off!  I fly to Auckland on the 26th of June for the simulator there, four days in the sim and two days off, which is great because it means an opportunity to actually visit Auckland as well.  I am rostered to go with ML, which is also good as I know him and will be able to practise beforehand.  It does however mean that we will have to switch seats throughout the training, as we are both FOs over here, but we'll spend lots of time going through the procedures from both seats before we get there, and I'd say he'll be willing to put in plenty of effort!

My first day of line training is on the 8th of July, and I'm very excited about that too.  It will be 2.5 months since I have flown, and given the fact that I can't go a week without missing flying, it is none too soon!  Unfortunately a few of the guys seem to have big delays for their training.  The two I have spoken to have looked at their new roster and seen that they are not down for the simulator at all in the next roster, and it goes until the 15th of July, yet one of the two finished their exams just days after myself.

This morning I dropped the remainder of our group into their Induction day at Aviation Australia, mostly because I wanted another opportunity to drive my car rather than any particular wish to be helpful.  Now I am about to head into town to do some shopping!  The weather is a lot brighter today which is great, and then tomorrow is back to class.


My new pad

Apparently the landlord has accepted our application, and we are now officially moving to Northgate!  Of course, we haven't sent off the final paperwork or paid a deposit yet so there is the possibility that it falls through - but hopefully that won't be in the case.  In the meantime, I'll post a few pictures of the new gaff!
The front (below there is a large garage/storage area, and probably lots of snakes and spiders)

the garden at the back:

two views of the main living area:

the second upstairs living area (I don't have a picture of the living area downstairs): 

my bedroom (won't have that bedding):

the main bathroom:

Sorry, I don't have pictures of the other 3 bedrooms, bathrooms or kitchen!  Suffice it to say, I'm really excited that we're going to be moving there!