August 29, 2003


The problem with filling out a time sheet is that is does not really work with a huge motivation problem! The boss calls them lie sheets, but I didn't realise when I started here how true that was. True lies.

A friend at work is a great fan of the Harry Potter books, her sister who has recently become a christian of the bible thumping variety has decided the HP books are evil. A brief look on Amazon has shown me there are a lot of people out there who want guidance on whether you can be christian and also enjoy HP. There are a lot of people out there who are not willing to think for themselves.

Posted by Toni at 03:55 PM | Comments (1)

August 27, 2003


Every now and again life goes a bit spastic. This is one of those times.

Work is re-organising, and stress is everything. My position is pretty much untouched, I just sit down here and watch the machinations above me. But the machine is grinding up people, making them stressed and worried and scared, and so I cannot stay unmoved. The process has instantaneously politicised our workplace.

And then there are the applications. There have been so few for so long, but suddenly there are so many, and some of them are so strange! Another bear application - who would have thought bears would be such an issue?

The thesis plugs along, I ain't bothering it and it ain't bothering me.

But I have to give another talk, and this time I have to give a science one, so I need graphs and tables, and even worse, I need to find out enough about my own graphs and tables to be able to answer questions about them...

Today is our wedding anniversary, 9 years now. We both forgot this morning.

Tomorrow R gets a medal for 15 years 'long service and good Cduct'. I am taking the afternoon off to watch the parade. It is the only project in our house longer lasting than the thesis...

Posted by Toni at 02:50 PM | Comments (4)

August 22, 2003


Pregnancy did funny things to me. Apart from the changes to my body, which mean I will never fit in my wedding dress again, I became more sentimental. Silly ads on the television would make me weep. Stories of babies being sick or dying still make me weep. The changes, both physical and psychological seem to be permanent. I am a sap, dangnabbit.

So when I read in the paper that the latest suicide bomber in Israel/Palestine was a father to three (one unborn) who is responsible for the deaths of several children, I am left without understanding. How can a father do that to any child? Where is the empathy?

What kind of life would drive an educated man, with children and a wife, who is respected and liked and with a future, to blow himself and sundry others up?

I know the basic story of how Israel was formed, and what has happened (in a brief form) since then. This level of hatred is more than 'difficult' to overcome. I have no Cfidence in there ever being a stable long term peace between the Israeli's and the Palestinians. Ever.

A friend and I have just read Lucy Crocker 2.0 by Caroline Preston. It is about a family who change. My friend believes the changes will be permanent, I believe the changes will be evolving. I think I have lost faith I can make permanent changes to myself due to single events or groups of events. And what I can't do I think others can't do either. But. The Northern Irish seemed to make a long term change to themselves as a community after the Oma bombing - and the hatred between the two groups seems lesser now. Still there, but the advantages of peace seem to weigh stronger than the hatred. The hatred in the Middle East seems stronger than the pain of losses. On any scale.

The roadmap to peace is going no-where, but to the battlefield.

Posted by Toni at 03:58 PM | Comments (0)

August 20, 2003

Just wondering?

Did you see that Idi Amin died this week in Saudi Arabia? He is survived as the phrase goes by his four wives and sundry children. The article in the paper said he had killed one of his previous wives by chopping her into pieces. Wonder why anyone else married him after that? The lure of wealth? Perhaps, like Winston Peters, Idi was charming in person when he chose to be. Being all powerful maybe he just told women to marry him and be done with it. Must be a totally different dynamic in a marriage where there are four powerless women and one man.

Must go and get the eyes tested, they are weak and feeling exhausted at the moment. Do you think it means anything?

Posted by Toni at 08:21 PM | Comments (1)

August 19, 2003

The woman who talks

Today, a presentation. Yesterday a presentation. Next week, a presentation. Last week, a presentation. Good thing I like speaking in public, or I'd be a quivering wreak by now.

Posted by Toni at 08:09 AM | Comments (1)

August 18, 2003

fast approaching financial failure

Mad cat needs surgery to re-attach her 'elbow' tendon to her bone. Will cost hundreds, and maybe more than a grand... Poor Taj has to be caged to reduce the damage to the minimum, she is sad and depressed about it. So am I having to do this to her, and she will need to be caged for another two weeks.

Hubby is going away, and so Cn may be going away to Nelson to stay with his grandparents. I will need to take him over, so will need to book for two to fly over, and one to fly back. Then grandad will bring C back and stay for a bit to help out. Really really helpful, but not cheap!!!

I thought when we were both working the saving would just rocket ahead, but with all the extra costs that seem to be dropping down on us, saving are more likely to be raided than anything else. Still, at least we have the savings to raid.

Friend Jo had to quit her job last week, as she had her childcare subsidy cut by WINZ and now can't afford to have her kids in fore and after school care. So now she is back on the DPB. All because of her ex spending $70 on groceries for them each week. That was counted as goods and services, added to her income, and presto. Ain't that silly? All three of them live on the $70 of food a week. And now Jo doesn't have to buy train tickets, she will be $10 a week down on where she was working. And she gets to spend more time with the kids.

Posted by Toni at 09:38 AM | Comments (0)

August 15, 2003

Mad cat

Mad bloody cat was singing a siamese song to me from the kitchen window sill, and fell down. Has hurt her foot sufficiently that she has to have it x-rayed today.

She had to spend the night in her cage so she couldn't move too much. I now know most of the words to the Locked in Cage When I Haven't Done Anything Wrong Song. She nearly spent the night in the cage in the garden shed...

Thought cats landed on their feet! Maybe its only true for real cats, not siamese!

Posted by Toni at 08:29 PM | Comments (0)

movie people are different

Normal applicants sent us stuff that is pretty good, but take forever to do so, and even longer to produce any changes. Movie people spend months thinking about what they are going to do, then produce an application in about 2 days, THEN the changes come back within 2 days. Everything is rush rush rush, after spending months gently Ctemplating.

So I better rush back to my report!

Posted by Toni at 09:47 AM | Comments (0)

August 14, 2003

Happy day

Had a night without the husband (no that is not why it is a happy day), and managed to get everything done really fast without any screaming from the sprat. Cn seemed pretty relaxed about it being him and me alone, and then still relaxed when I went out dancing. I am going with the thought that he is secure happy and well balanced, rather than the thought we are not important enough for him to care whether we are there or not... Nice to know I can do solo working motherhood briefly without freaking out as R may be in Waiouru for 3 weeks in September, so its important to know I will be able to cope.

Stunning view out the window now, glassy harbour, sunshine, no wind. When I moved here I thought it would be unremitting horribleness about the weather, now I believe Canterbury has worse weather than here.

The supervisor is actually reasonably happy with the progress, and is coming to Wellington in the next month so we can catch up and plan some more too.

Dancing was great, we are learning dances now with much more unusual steps, patterns and progressions, and it is great fun. Though hard when the brain shoots off home one dance before the rest of me, and the body is tired from a gym session. And I have decided to make a dress for dancing - we have the new dancers celebration in October, and I don't want to cook like I did at the Club annual.

Don't know when I will find the time however!

Posted by Toni at 02:11 PM | Comments (0)

August 13, 2003

rapid reversals

Yesterday I was busy but not overwhelmed, today I am drowning in work, and not all of it mine either. I loathe doing other peoples work when they are not doing it because they are not competent. Think of it as one of my introlerences. But I did get a really good project to work on yesterday - someone wants to bring a grizzly bear here for a movie. If it gets approved, I'm gonna try to meet the bear. He's nine foot tall when he stands!!!, and it is such an unusual project, it will be a fantastic change from the normal plant stuff.

No thesis last night, but I did cut out a polar fleece vest. I don't think that qualifies as being good... nor as progress.

Posted by Toni at 08:38 AM | Comments (0)

August 12, 2003

Somehow odd

Just read in the paper that George Bush approved the change of name of Custer's battlefied to the Indian name Little Bighorn Battlefield, and approved the plans for a memorial to the Indians who fought there (and won). Seems out of character for the Pres.

Four thousand people came to the dedication ceremony where they unvieled the memorial, seems a good turnout!

Posted by Toni at 09:50 AM | Comments (1)

Progress review

Yesterday I had my performance review here at work. I was pretty nervous in that I thought I had been doing pretty good, but wasn't sure what the boss thought. Turns out he thinks I've been doing better than pretty good, and agrees that I deserve a raise. I put in for more than I actually expected I would be able to extract from the place, but that way I am more likely to get what I realistically want. But don't tell him that - maybe I will get the figure I wrote down!!

I also have to do the progress review for the thesis - that will not be as glowing I think, but I know what the problem is and have already started to solve it - I need to spend more quality time on the book.

So one of my solutions is to blog at work - after all if the boss is more than happy with outputs, and they don't change, and if I spend less time fluffing round at home and the other boss becomes happier with outputs, then its win-win all round.

Posted by Toni at 08:53 AM | Comments (0)

August 06, 2003

bit pissed off

I would have really liked to go to the Stonesoup lunch, but the great and mighty bosses round here decided that they would have a meeting at 1. Being a virtuous emplyee, I put work first (actually I had no choice) and said no to lunch. I went to the gym instead. I just got back and They have changed the meeting to tomorrow, blast them. Its piss poor planning

Posted by Toni at 12:57 PM | Comments (2)

stars in the sky

Even the stars recognise this great land...

The thesis made some good progress last night, I re-worked all the discussion I had, but as it is only a page and a half long, I need to find some more things in my tables that are worth discussing. Or some literature to compare it too. There is a paper by a man called Halfhill on a related aspect - but isn't that a perfect hobbit name? I have given myself a deadline to write this damn thing too, and with the parental ones coming this weekend and going to Shona's place next weekend, there is some chance i am going to miss this deadline. Not a good start to anything much! Bugger...

Pussycat had her bits removed yesterday, I felt awful leaving her at the vets the night before. She was pretty relieved to be home last night - and very tired. Anaesthetic seems to be tiring - wonder why?

Posted by Toni at 08:47 AM | Comments (0)

August 01, 2003

To the furtherest reaches and beyond

I'm going to Shona's this weekend, which is in the Wairarapa. Her place has no cell phone coverage, no television coverage and no internet Cnection. It doesn't feel right anymore, life without the internet.

I'm taking the sprog, the dog and the kitten - its the kitten's previous home so it should be okay. She will be visiting her Mum. I'm predicting a terrible drive though with a grumpy tired kid, and a howling cat!

R is doing an exercise without troops in Burnham. Its what you do in the Army when the budget doesn't stretch to an exercise WITH troops...

Posted by Toni at 08:37 AM | Comments (0)