May 30, 2003


For the next two days I am home alone. R is off with his mate tramping/shooting and C is staying with his friend Bryn and Bryn's mum Shona. I am staying here until Sunday night, when I will join C on the farm. The Great Leader tells me I can take up the whole afternoon if I need to with him, which is drop dead fabulous. I am looking forward to spending a whole afternoon with him talking about the thesis. The GL is the only other person in the world that I could talk to about the Book, and he understands a) what the hell I am talking about and b) why it might matter. Also I always feel better after talking to him, like he makes me feel clever. Damn strange! Rare and handy though.

The other thing I am going to do this weekend apart from get the data sheet done, is to find something to spin/knit. I have reached the end of the baby jacket, and now I need something else. I think I should knit the FIL his jersey, but I might not. I might spin the fabulous pink blue and green sliver, and knit a shawl. Who knows, I don't. It depends what I can find in the cupboard. And there is always the k-nots to spin, or the silver blue corriedale. So many options, when the Book is complete I am going to have FUN catching up on my leisure pursuits...

Posted by Toni at 07:35 PM | Comments (0)

May 29, 2003


The train was late today. Its the first real lateness since I started using the thing to get to work in January (January 13, actually!). We were about half an hour late, which effected/affected six trains, ie there were six trains parked behind us.
The train in front of us firstly found that one of the hook things that holds the powerline up had come off, but found out after the line had got tangled in the pantograph (which is not a scientific instrument for measuring sexual frenzy, but is the tree thingy on the top of the train that sucks the 'lectricity out of the power cable). So they took all the power out of our section so the driver of the train could fix the line and untangle the pantograph. The trick was, after they had stopped our train, they opened all the doors, then when the power got turned off, so all the heaters turned off... Cozy it was not. Some people were getting pretty stressed, and then that phone sharing thing started as some of the passengers rang taxi's, some rang bosses, and some thought very seriously about giving up and going home for the car (the north bound trains Ctinued to run, while we just sat there).
Its interesting how people respond to train/transport breakdowns. Some of us couldn't give a toss, we have the kind of jobs that are then whenever we arrive, there'll always be work to do. Other people are in a real bind, they have jobs at the front of house, like reception or shops, and they have to be on time. Some of them sit and wind themselves up, and by the time the train is moving they are ready to kill, or abuse anything or anyone that gets in their way. The military ones are the best wait-ers. They have been trained to 'hurry up and wait' from their first day in the services, and they wait, as JK Baxter put it, as women wait.
One woman was Cnecting with another train, and I admired the way she coped with the stress. She was catching a flight to England from Auckland, and needed to catch the Auckland train. She was very good humoured, Csidering. And it had a happy ending; she caught her train.


Yesterday I was walking down Johnston Street after a meeting, and was spoken too by a short skinny man standing round on the roadside having a fag. Turns out it is my stats supervisor Chris. He was up for one of his committee meetings, and our paths just happened to cross. Absolute luck really, as I don't normally leave the building from the time I arrive to when I leave. The gym is on the ground floor, so there really isn't any reason to leave (apart from the pleasure of leaving). I've checked the datasheet plan, and got the green light.
And today I finally got hold of TC, the great leader, and we covered quite a bit of ground. I always feel so much more like a successful student after talking to him, and like this whole project could be do-able, and even more importantly, finishable.
Sign of having a great editor, and supervisor!

Bugger incremental, I feel heaps better.

Posted by Toni at 11:12 AM | Comments (0)

May 27, 2003

The Train Team

Every day I go to work, I pretty much sit in the same place. Most days, going to work I sit with Jason. He does something so secret he can't even tell me where he works. That's okay, but sometimes it's pretty hard to take seriously...

On the way home, I travel with the Train Team. I think the central member of the team is Pam, and her guide dog Lorna. They move our train round sometimes, and Pam is pretty much completely blind, so she needs a bit of help finding the damn train!, and I think all of us on the team check to make sure Pam gets to the train. Having the dog there is instantaneous Cversation anyway. Richard is this tall handsome guy who works in IT in a bank. Jo is a seriously blond woman working at the same bank. She has been a temp for a year(!) processing credit card applications. Pam works for the SSC, she's some kind of manager, and is doing a Masters. Dianne is a PA, fairly high up I think, very keen on sport and Michelle does something, but the thing we tend to talk about with her is her rapidly expanding stomach Ctaining an enormous half Samoan girl baby. And me. There are a couple of others than travel with us every now and then, but we are the regulars. I actually look forward to the evening train. Its a bit of a diverse group, and so we talk about a wide range of subjects. Its a great de-stresser for the ride home.
Joing this 'Train Team' wasn't spontaneous. It was the result of a active searching strategy for decent people to travel with. The search started after a Bad Experience.

I used to travel just anywhere there was a seat, but One Night I sat by an irritant from an office. A young woman, with the IQ of a cornflake, who spent the whole 35 minute trip telling her companion (of equal intellectual merit) about her workmate who left a fan on In The Office. This was, apparently, Awful. Both of them were obviously deaf, as the Cversation was Cducted at a very high decibel level. By the time I got home I needed alcohol. And I hadn't needed it when I left the office.

Too many journeys like that could make me progressively homocidal.

Posted by Toni at 08:36 PM | Comments (2)

May 26, 2003

Challenging day

It seems everyone wanted to bug me today. There were Official Information Requests for information that does not exist, the return of the Virus decision (which is an unfading nightmare), late submission on the kaka project, the return of the Pogonatherum problem, cactus hauntings, it just seemed to go on and on. The best part of the day was had in the gym. And there is not likely to be any thesis tonight. But I have worked out how to do the data sheet for the next chapter. If I put the plant in question first, then list each cross, then each replication I should have something that will work! Yippeee!
And then I came home to a bad dinner, late, having lost the credit card and being unable to pay the hairdresser, and the kid stayed up till 8 cos we forgot the time. All in all a day to forget.

And if this entry makes very little sense to you, I have accurately described my response to today. That would be outstanding progress! Communication!!!

Posted by Toni at 09:04 PM | Comments (3)

May 25, 2003

Some acheivements!

The Soldier arrived back this morning bearing loot - the Sunday paper. He then proceeded to look po-faced when I started to read it! The sprat decided he would rather spend the morning with his mum than going to the woodchopping club with his dad, so I got to do more sprat minding. We dug up the weeds in the wee corner garden, then planted some very late Dutch Iris. If they flower at all we will have done well. Next year, they will do better I think. And I pulled out the wierd tree. Perhaps R will plant it out the front to start his native garden.

This afternoon I actually got some writing done, and tried to change the look of this blog. I might have succeeded!, but Explorer will not Cfess to any changes. I have more numbers in the chapter. One of those numbers I got from the paper I submitted to NZPPS, who published it on their website after the Cference. It was a good bit of sideways thinking to remember where I would find that paper. I would say here! but I don't know the link. Perhaps when I understand this program better, there will be links and photos. Maybe not of the thesis, that would rival scrabble boards in uninspiring visual images to put on a blog...

Soon the Great Leader is coming to Wellington to present Pearls of Wisdom to the Ministry, and plans to visit me as well. I am going to send him the work I have been doing today, and hopefully get some feedback on it when he comes here. It would be good to know where I am wasting my time, and what is actually okay.

Today, progress exists!


Posted by Toni at 04:46 PM | Comments (0)

May 24, 2003

A day without progress

Today I was a woman alone. The Soldier was on Duty, and left me home alone to do sprat minding. This means there is no writing, and not a lot else either. I did about half the vacuuming before the enthusiasm vanished, and did mow the whole lawn, about 3 pocket handkerchiefs worth. The mouse of this computer decided an extended holiday was in order, and just Stopped. Windows is almost impossible to do anything with sans mouse.

This entry is short, but it is here. The first version was Long, but it has Vanished.

Bloody computer. An impediment to progress.


Posted by Toni at 09:23 PM | Comments (0)

May 22, 2003

Test test test

This is test text.

Posted by stonesoup at 11:39 AM | Comments (0)