Category Archives: Work & Life

Minimal beat

As is the way with the internet, I was looking for one thing, stumbled across another and before I knew it was back ‘down the rabbit hole’ again. This happens to me ALL. THE. TIME. Rarely does it add any value to my life, but when it does it’s a joyful victory.
Anyway one day as the googling began, I discovered Lindsey Stirling. I don’t know much about her and had not heard of her before, but I now think she is very cool and rate this music video as one of the best ever. No booty shakin’. No gratuitous making out. Just a very talented babe, doin’ her thang.

More importantly – she’s doing it all over the world.  I don’t really live anywhere at the moment and am travelling more often than not so I can really relate to this video – especially when your work is the reason your travel as it is with Lindsey.  People seem to think it is a very glamorous life, and don’t get me wrong, there are a lot of cool things about it. However the reality is that it exists because of the work, so just like you, we get up, fumble for coffee, pull all the creative stuff we need out of our brains. We work all day – or sometimes all night as time zones are a huge feature of my job – and wistfully think about hanging out with friends and doing cool stuff.

Anyway check out Lindsey’s very cool video and enjoy a very small round the world trip to break up your day.

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No. THIS is 40.

I will turn 40 this year and as I hit the home straight, exhilaration washes over me, mixed with relief.  There is a certain calm and stillness that seems to have come with getting older and I could not be more thrilled about it.  It’s difficult to tell what in my life is about getting older, and what is about finally living the choices I should have made years ago.  I spent a really long time trying to find my way, and had to, so I could learn all I did to be here right now.  It is overwhelming to see things go right at last, and to know now more than ever, I am at last becoming who I am.

Apologies to all the women over 40 who already know this and are now rolling their eyes at me.

 

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Geeking out in Berlin

I’m based in Berlin, Germany for part of my time and there is a movement going on here that started a year or so ago and has really stared to gain momentum in recent months.  With the help of Jess Erickson and the Berlin Geekettes, the ever growing number of women who are currently working in technology are coming forward to recruite more and encourage those just starting out.

This month a group of very cool gals put together a little event called GeekGirlMeetUp Berlin and I was lucky enough to meet some awesome ladies and share a bit of my life with the crowd.

So if you have a spare 37 minutes, click on the audio link above.

 

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Singapore fling

Today I’m a travel writer.

I have been whizzing about the fab small island of Singapore doing meet and greets all morning with boutique accommodation providers and checking out some very cool new places to sleep in the city, if a sky high infinity pool is NOT your priority. Adrian from Bunc Hostel was the greatest host and we had a delicious classic Singaporean lunch together at Maxwell with all my faves on the menu. 

I have been backpacking for years, and a tight budget is not always my reason to stay in hostels. I actually really like the atmosphere, the chance to meet other travellers, and the fact that you can be more of a person at a hostel. They nearly always have recreation rooms, with comfortable corners to sit in, and there is always a place to make a cup of tea and a well loved book collection to flick through. Bunc has all of this and more! I had a great stay there and highly recommend it.  Not only are there dorms but they also have great double rooms and a very cool rooftop space with bean bags and movies and that glorious Singapore sunset.

Around the corner from Bunc, the inspiring typewriter room at Wanderlust Hotel  has to be my favourite. OF COURSE you want a giant typewriter for a couch in your hotel. Obviously. There is also a bathtub NEXT TO that couch in the lounge room facing the TV. Yep. And a lego inspired jacuzzi on the roof, with chairs in the shape of elephants to kick back in and enjoy the views.

Thanks imagination. you did it again.

IMAGES © MELINDA BARLOW, BUNC HOSTEL MEDIA, WANDERLUST HOTEL MEDIA

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Creatively inspired

Last June I answered an ad on craigslist and shortly after started a 3 month internship with CRE8 Foundation.  I was in Berlin looking for work and new experiences and this opportunity sounded like it would be both.

It’s been almost a year now and I am constantly inspired by them and thoroughly enjoy everything I do for them.

I have learnt so much about myself and my craft and am now a passionate believer in the importance of creativity as fuel for progress and global sustainability.  It’s why we as humans are where we are today.

Check out this post I wrote for CRE8 Foundation’s blog and get a better understanding of why creativity matters.

IMAGES © OLE UKENA

Strange Days

TH flugfeld 2012

‘Look down.  The ground below is crumbling.  Look up. The stars are all exploding. Hey yeah, hey yeah oh.  Hey yeah, hey yeah.  It’s the last, day on earth, in my dreams, in my dreams.  It’s the end, of the world, and you’ve come back, to me.  In my dreams.  Between, the dust and the debris.  There’s a light, surrounding you and me.’ Words by Kate Miller-Heidke and Keir Nuttall. ‘The Last Day on Earth’ – Kate Miller-Heidke.

It’s really been a very strange December.  The world’s exactly the same, but a little bit mad all at once.  People are still flailing about aimlessly, rehashing the same old nonsense.  I slept through a magnitude 7.3 earthquake this week.  I wanted to be somewhere memorable at 12.12pm today, but I wasn’t.  I was just at the doctor. The world will end it seems this week also, making it hard to decide whether to start my Christmas shopping or not.

I’m way too busy freelancing to be overly concerned with my mortality and I feel like I should have at least googled something to prepare myself somehow….?  The days flick by and I move from doing a lap of a racetrack at more than 200kph in a one of a kind super car, to enjoying a pedicure in a luxurious new day spa for review purposes. While my life is ticking on in usual and unusual ways, there’s that fabulous monkey in Ikea in Toronto just wandering about, and totally rocking a sheepskin coat. Bless.

Anyway it seems no matter how strange the days, life just goes on.  So I’m pretty confident we’ll all still be here next week, and the one after that, and the one after that.  Somewhere in the world someone is always saying their goodbyes, and people are doing handstands amidst the flowers in the park. Life is great.

IMAGE © MELINDA BARLOW

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Short story. ‘The Fish And The Hiccup’.

Excerpt from short story. ‘The Fish And The Hiccup’.  Published 2011.  NT Literary Awards Publication

Shortlisted.  Northern Territory Literary Awards.  Dymocks Arafura Short Story Category.

“…clouds skidded across the sky and the damp grass squelched and squeaked beneath their feet.  The girl sat to rest on a park bench under a Jacaranda tree by the creek.  The boy sat by her side, and placed the tea cup with the fish carefully on the ground beneath them.  As he did this the girl quickly opened her purse, pulled out the hiccup and swallowed it.  She was worried the boy might try to kiss her.  They sat together and felt the breeze become wind on their faces.  The girl wondered if it would rain.  The boy wondered if they would kiss.

The fish splashed around and around in the tea cup.  The hiccup took up its own rhythm.  The girl leant forward.  She filled her lungs with a huge gulp of air and…”

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In Transit…

Allepo, Syria. Taxi to a train to Damascus

Around the world, around the world.  Around the world, around the world.  Around the world, around the world.  Around the world, around the world’.  Words by Guy-Manuel de Homem-Christo and Thomas Bangalter.  ‘Around the world’ – Daft Punk   

Well despite my best intentions, this blog has suffered at the hands of me doing actual work. It’s a lucky blogger who can say the blog they set up to generate work has been neglected because they had too much work. But it’s a new year and my time has not yet been all squirreled away so I start afresh in 2011 with the hope that here will always be a little bit of time left for some blogging. Maybe not daily but what I can when I can is better than nothing at all.
I’ve been filling up the creative tank today – pouring stuff in and keeping creativity alive. Some people just call it watching movies in bed but I like to think of it as more than that. A low grade head cold forced me away from writing my masterpiece, and into a quiet, still and horizontal place. I feel well and truly topped up though. I had a couple of hours in wintery LA with the existential 40 year old angst of ‘Greenberg‘, and a very moving emotive visit to India with the fantastic ‘The Waiting City‘ – one of the most powerful Australian films I have seen. I’ve just come back from a couple of months travelling so the usual unsettled feelings are all around me. The escape to the hustle and bustle of Kolkata was just what I needed as I try desperately to shake the call to prayer from my pysche and the tangible sense of disconnection I have as my sense of being ‘in transit’ continues to try to right itself….

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New Year’s Revolutions

“You say you want a revolution.  Well, you know, we all want to change the world”.  Words by John Lennon.  ‘Revolution’ – The Beatles.

At a New Year’s eve party a few years ago, I asked the children gathered around what their new year’s resolutions were, which of course needed explanation. Sometime later, TF, 8 years old came back to me and said “Can I tell you my new year’s revolution tomorrow”. The grown ups laughed and laughed. “Of course” we said. She’s still thinking of one, which probably means it will be a doozy. But I think they’ll be revolutions to me from this day forth. Bless.

Hours later, I also found myself still filled with new year’s merriment (also known as tequila margaritas), and the star attraction in a clown suit at a one year old’s birthday party. What a way to start the year – dress ups and clown tricks and it’s only day 1.

So what are my new years revolutions – I don’t really have any, because I feel like I’m doing everything I want to do with, and for myself.  I of course want to do something big and grand and important.  I want to finish the year having done something that matters.  For a change.  What that is I can never decide because those things seem to creep up on us and before we know it we are entangled in a life changing thing that really, we should have done years ago.

So in the absence of a grand revolutionary idea, I toyed with the same one I have every year – to stop drinking coca cola. I always manage it for a bit but then one day it’s hot, there it is and I’m gone. This year I thought I’d not be so hard on myself and vow to not cut it out altogether, but to only drink Coke in the sky. It always tastes better on planes anyway. So there it is. Small revolution.

Oh and to say yes more often, and to be a better human being. That’s an oldy but a goody. So – fingers crossed.

Happy New Year and good luck with your revolutions ……

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