Friday, December 28, 2007

Mississauga to Flushing in Nine Hours?

I drove down to New York City today. The drive was only supposed to take 7.5 hours... according to the GPS that is.... but because of frequent stops to pee and allow for reperfusion of my right gluteus maximus, plus the fact that I got side tracked after getting off the George Washington Bridge, it ended up taking me 9 hours to reach my friend's place in Flushing Queens. I've usually done the ride down to New York with my trusty and very hot navigator Tu Anh, but this time I did it solo. It was a pretty good ride all in all, no traffic, nice weather, no lines or hassles at the border. I thought I'd take you along with me on the ride, since I haven't been taking y'all anywhere on this much neglected blog in a very long time.... Hope you enjoy the scenery. I started my trip at 3AM on a full tank of gas.... I reached the US-Canada border at Lewiston New York in about 1.5 hours. As you can see, not a very long line....
3.5 hrs later: Here comes the sun.... Here comes the sun.... And I say..... It's alright.... Taking a washroom and strech break here....
Here are some icy cliffs....
Ended up stopping the picture taking at this point, city driving needs two hands.

Had to refill my gas tank with only an hour left to get to my destination. I got 676.5 Km on a full tank of gas though, the Mazda 3 gets pretty good mileage....
More pictures from New York to follow....


Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Saturday, September 08, 2007


As I walked by the waterfront, I heard some MUSIC coming from the bushes.....
Music Garden 01

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This week I'd like to share some pictures from one of my favourite spots in the city.... The Toronto MUSIC Garden.... Located between Queen's Quay Blvd, and the edge of Lake Ontario, the garden was built as a horticultural interpretation of Bach's Suite No. 1 in G Major for Unaccompanied Cello. I blogged about it a long time ago here. These pictures are from the section of the garden representing the Gigue or "jog", a type of dance...
Music Garden 013
It serves as an open amphitheatre where free classical concerts are performed on the flagstone stage beneath the weeping willow.... I took these pictures in early spring, before the concerts began...
Music Garden 6 Gigue
But here is what it looks like on warm summer day....
Music Garden 03
Unfortunately, the concert season ends on Sunday, September 16 at 4pm, if you can catch it... If not there's always next year. The schedule is here if you're interested.

Happy Photohunting Folks!


Sunday, July 22, 2007

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

7 Radom Things About Nermal

Nermal and I have missed playing with all his kitty friends on Tuesdays! I was really busy with offline studying, I don't know what Nermal's excuse is.... I'm not done with my studying, but we have a little bit more time to play right now. We'd like to start off with a quick tribute to our good friend Oscar, purrs and nudges to him in kitty heaven, we'll miss you.... purrs and nudges to his human Robyn too....

Gattina gave us an assignment some time ago, and we've been meaning to complete it for the longest time, so finally, here are 7 random things about Nermal:

  1. He's the best alarm clock.
  2. He used to hump people's legs when they were sleeping....that's before he got fixed.
  3. He likes chicken and tuna, sometimes salmon, but never trout, go figure?
  4. I think he has arthritis.
  5. He's always curious what I'm eating or drinking. He'll always beg for some and only quits when I let him see, smell or taste what I'm having.
  6. It takes about 5 to 6 months for his hair to grow back after a haircut.
  7. I just shaved the hair around his butt. I think it's time for another haircut Nermal.
We don't have 7 kitty friends to tag, but maybe I could tag nos amis Laurence et son joli chat Harissa.
Happy folks! To visit more participants, click here:


Saturday, June 23, 2007


Whoaw! I haven't played in a while.... but I'm glad to finally have some time to spend on my much neglected blog.... Here is a picture of the brand spanking new, and very SHINY "Crystal" at the Royal Ontario Museum.....ROM Crystal

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You might remember that I posted this for the "architecture" PhotoHunt....
ROM Crystal
So here is the finished product.....
ROM Crystal
Here is a peek into the interior of the Crystal.... It's pretty SHINY inside too....
ROM Crystal Interior 052
I should probably devote an entire blog to this thing.....

Until then, Happy Photohunting folks!


Monday, June 04, 2007

Long Time No See

I'm really sorry for just dropping off the face of the blogosphere, but with a little over a month to finish memorizing all of this....going on my blog, and on the internet in general for anything longer than 5 mins, elicited feelings of dread and impending doom. I tend to get caught up and lose track of time when I'm on here, and I couldn't afford to use any time unless it was for cramming information into my head. As a result, my brain now feels swollen, my neck muscles have stiffened into a permanent book reading position, and my vision seems a little blurrier. Oh well, it needed to be done if I was going to be prepared for the 8 hour, 350 question ordeal I endured yesterday. It was an exercise in intellecutal diarrhea, or in a little less disgusting but equally gastrointestinal analogy; an excersise (I can't even spell properly now) in academic bulimia nervosa.... i.e. binging on all that information contained within those pages you see above, and then vomitting it all out on test day.

As a result of my hiatus, my blog assignments have been piling up! So today I'd like to get caught up on a number of tags that I've been meaning to respond to...

First Mel's tag, which was way back in April! Sorry Mel....

1. What are the five blogs you visit when you open your computer?
>>> Mel's blog, Ghee's blog, Tina's blog, Sasha's blog, and my blog of course

2. What browsers do you use?
>>> Mozilla Firefox, I hate IE!

3. What are your top 3 favorite categories in your blog?
>>> Nermal, Travel, and Photography I guess?

4. Pretend that you’re a spammer. What comment will you leave on the blogs that you visit?
>>> hmmmm.... can't stand spammers but since most of the spam I delete from my comments moderation are plugs for other sites, I guess my spam comment would be something to the effect of "nice blog! visit me!"..... actually I don't delete those comments, just the ones that lead to commercial sites...

5. Who are the 7 bloggers that you will tag?
>>> hmmm.... sorry I don't have anybody to tag.

Okay, now for Sasha's tag, sorry it's so late Sasha:

“DoFollow is the latest way to spread link love to your readers – those who deserve it because they have read your post and liked it enough to leave a relevant and meaningful comment. Their comments become links to their pages; links that are counted by Google spiders to improve their rank. ”

These are the instructions: (Start copying here.)

1. Write a short paragraph at the beginning of your post and link back to the blog that put you on the list in the paragraph. This isn’t a suggestion. You need to break up the duplicate content. Someone took the time to add you so the least you can do is give them an extra link back.

2. Copy the list of originals below COMPLETELY and add it to your blog. If you would like a different keyword for your blog then change it when you do your post and it should pass to most blogs with that keyword.

3. Take the adds from the blog that added you and place them in the “Originals” list.

4. Add at least 1 new blog that you KNOW is using the DO FOLLOW plugin to the list in the “My Adds” section. (Add no more than 5!) Let the people you’ve added know, so that they can keep the list going!

My Adds:



Neng aka Sirena
Ju aka The Border aka Juana of Femjo
Keep the Faith
Suncoast Scribe
Blogging Kenneth
My 2 Centavos Worth
Manila Mom
3 Dogs, 3 Pigs and A Family
Cafe Romanza
Earn Global
Credit Ability
Flee the Cube
Smart Wealthy Rich
Fellow Eskimo
Pajama Mommy
Meredith’s Weight Loss Blog
Pink Blog
Tricia’s Musings
Ugh!!’s Greymatter Honeypot
Midlife Musings
Utterly Geek
Whatever I Feel Like
My Dandelion Patch
Surviving NJ
Simple Kind Of Life
The Hockey Dad

Don't feel obliged to continue the tag ladies, unless you want to, just wanted to spread the link love to ya!

Finally, Meeyauw's tag, again, sorry it's late:

Here are the rules:
Each player starts with seven random facts about themselves. (Cats who are tagged need to write on their own blog about the seven things and the rules. You need to choose seven cats to tag and list their names.) Don’t forget to leave them a comment that they have been tagged and to read your blog!

Here are my seven random facts
  1. I have allergic rhinitis.
  2. I'll eat almost anything, or at least try anything once.
  3. I love sushi.
  4. I can't eat dairy products.
  5. I drink way too much coffee.
  6. I just discovered that I love falafel.
  7. I love trees.
Okay! That's three assignments down I've got one more, but I'll save that for tomorrow coz it's about Nermal. I don't really have anybody else to tag, but everybody's free to pick up this tag if they were so inclined. I'm gonna go out and get some fresh air now, but I'll be back....


Saturday, April 28, 2007


It may look like a regular, everyday, run-of-the-mill pigeon hiding behind that leaf.....Luzon Bleeding Heart Pigeon 02

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but it's actually a RARE species of pigeon known as the "Bleeding Heart Pigeon"....
Luzon Bleeding Heart Pigeon
It's rare because it's only found in the Philippines, and because it is being theatened by hunting, and deforestation. Five separate species have evolved on different islands of the Phillipines: Mindoro (Gallicolumba platenae), Negros (Gallicolumba keayi), Mindanao (Gallicolumba criniger), Sulu (Gallicolumba menagei), and this particular one, which is the Luzon Bleeding Heart Pigeon (Gallicolumba luzonica). As its name indicates, it is found on the island of Luzon, but also on the Pollilo Islands. It's scientific name not only alludes to the bird's home island, but to its character as well... galli=chicken and columba=dove.... in fact, this bird spends most of it's life on the forest floor, much like a chicken, foraging for food. It will fly up to low lying branches to roost, or nest. It is very shy, quiet, and quite stealthy. I'm hoping it only stays rare, and never becomes endangered or extinct.

I took these pictures at the Eagle Point Dive Resort in Anilao, Batangas, where they have an aviary.
Luzon Bleeding Heart Pigeon

Happy Photohunting folks!


Monday, April 23, 2007

A Stellar Earth Day

A belated Happy Earth day everyone! Yesterday's Earth Day weather for us here in Toronto was stellar... 23C, breezy, and sunny. I ended up spending the entire day outside, doing my reading under the gazebo, and cleaning up the yard and planting some vegetable seeds in between.

The evening proved to be just as stellar, not just weather-wise but astronomically speaking as well. It was the first time this year that the conditions were so favourable for stargazing; warm temperatures, clear skies, and lots of stuff to see up there....Crescent Moon and Venus So I ended up spending the entire night outside as well. That's a beautiful crescent moon that's joined Venus up there in the sky....
Crescent Moon and Venus
Tonight I thought I'd try an experiment.... my hypothesis was that my run-of-the-mill 5.1MP Sony Cyber-shot was totally unfit for astrophotography... I was wrong, it's not totally unfit, it actually took some pretty decent images! So maybe I can combine my hobbies of astronomy, photography, and blogging without having to buy new equipment? Here's what that beautiful crescent moon looks like through the telescope....LunaYou can see the Sea of Crisis (a.k.a. Mare Crisium - the darker circular region at approx. 4 o'clock), the Sea of Fertility (Mare Fecunditatis - left of Crisium), the Sea of Tranquility (Mare Tranquilitatis - above Fecunditatis), and the Sea of Nectar (Mare Nectaris - to the left of the previous three) pretty well.

Here are some close-ups....
Luna 030Luna 083
The crater left of center, is called Theophilus and is 100 km in diameter, the crater beneath it is called Cyrillus and is 98 km in diameter, the darkened crater to the right of the first two is called Catharina and is also 100 km in diameter....Luna 063
Unfortunately, this is the best I could do for Saturn...can you make it out? The Cyber-shot doesn't do it justice....Saturn
At around 1AM, Jupiter popped up, but again, the camera doesn't do it justice. Through the telescope you can actually see the lines from Jupiter's clouds, and you can see Jupiter's moons as well.... the Cyber-shot doesn't pick up any of that stuff....Jupiter
There was also a meteor shower going on up there tonight (Lyrid Meteor Shower), but I couldn't stay up for it anymore. You can still catch it up to April 25th, just click the above link to find out more about it....

Maybe I'll try to get some more shots of the moon when it's fuller, but as for the planets, I'll need to get some better equipment before I can really blog some decent astrophotography for y'all.... Okay, I need to sleep! Keep looking up.... zzzzzzzzz......


Saturday, April 21, 2007


There really are STEPS hiding underneath all that snow.....

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And I'm happy to report that all that snow has finally melted away... no more risk of broken butt bones here. Happily, this weekend is supposed to be filled with sunshine and 20's C temperatures (which I learned from my Atlanta trip equals 70's F).... I'm keeping my fingers crossed and hoping that Old Man Winter has finally decided that the last couple weeks' crazy weather was his final word for the year.

Happy Photohunting folks, hope you have a sunny and warm weekend!


Friday, April 20, 2007

Georgia On My Mind

It's been two weeks since I got back from my trip to Atlanta, and I haven't even blogged about it yet, so I guess it's about time I shared some of my pics.... Hop on board, it's just a quick tour...Welcome to the United States of America.... That's the Atlanta skyline in the distance...
Whaaaat? Spring's almost over down here.....
As I mentioned before, I stopped off at the Atlanta Cathedral of Christ the King....
Guess where I am here.....
Just the day before, I was watching CNN's coverage of that man who shot and killed a woman here....
Are we's in Canada!? (I actually recognized the Peachtree Tower from playing SimCity!)
No, It's just the plaza of nations that have hosted the summer games at....

Centennial Olympic Park....Those fountains look like fun....I think this is where that bomb went off back in the '96 games?....This is titled "Gateway of Dreams", it is a sculpure of Pierre de Coubertin, the founder of the modern Olympic games.....The Georgia Aquarium, it's the largest aquarium in the world.... It was closed when I got there, darnit. The hotel shuttle driver told me that they had a whale shark, but unfortunately it died... I was supposed to go diving with whale sharks in Sorsogon.... but I digress...
At this point in my walking tour I had a hankering for a coke.... and then it appeared, a giant coke in the sky.... too bad this place wasn't open yet, I really needed a drink....
In my excitement, I almost forgot that I had just come from a nerve-wracking 7 hour exam, after sleeping for only 4 hours the night before.... the setting sun reminded me that I was actually dead tired. I wish I had more time to explore this great city, but I still needed to take the train to the airport to meet the shuttle back to the hotel. Plus, not only was I thirsty for a coke, I was starving too...
So long Atlanta! I'm gonna come back now ya hear!
Flying back home felt like I was Goolgling the Earth.... here's a cool body of water, you could see lots of cool houses/cottages around it....
Check out this nuclear power plant....
New York City!? Ever since 9/11 I find it difficult to recognize the NY skyline... can you find Lady Liberty?.... she's at 10 or 11:00....
Okay there's the Empire State, this is New York....I'll leave you with this image... flying home to Toronto, there was a wicked rainbow-like halo around the plane's shadow.... cool!