My corner of the oval

… thoughts from a Kiwi cricket fan

Book review – Until Tuesday

Finally finished reading “Until Tuesday” by Luis Carlos Montalvan.
This is the story of a service dog and how he changes the life of wounded war veteran, Luis. It actually took me a while to get “into” this book, for some reason – it may possibly have something to do with the descriptions of the war time activities that needed to be said, but really didn’t interest me at this time; in saying that, however, the book did remind me in a way of another “dog lover” book titled Emma and I, from my high school reading list.

It was an encouraging and uplifting story about how a simple thing like owning a dog (well, a special service dog!) can bring so much joy and brightness and “life” to someone’s life, who was struggling before the dog came into their life.
I guess in a world of war and war stories, this is something positive to come from it all and is worth a read if you like encouraging stories.

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Year of firsts!

Bravely had my first motorcycle lesson on a 250cc powered bike tonight!

Up until now, I’ve just been zipping around town on my 50cc scooter, which is VERY cool, but a motorcycle is a whole different ball game altogether!  Well, not entirely, as in, it still has two wheels and is pretty economical to run … but you’ve kind of got to learn a whole new balancing skill; not to mention getting your head around the gear system and learning how to change gears without sitting in one spot in neutral for an age! Ha ha!

Anyway, I’m so glad I had the courage to do it … and even gladder that I’m not too short for the bike and I can at least get my feet on the ground if the worst happens and I need to stop!  😉

How about you?  Is there anything you’ve been thinking “I really should try that” or thinking that you should summon up the courage to have a go at?

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Accountability …

I decided to go for a walk tonight when I got home from work … since it’s still daylight outside till after 9.00 at night at the moment!

I managed to do a 3km loop around the suburb I live in, however, I’m going to need to poke myself sternly tomorrow and in the future to make sure that I go out again.  Is there anyone around who can send me an “accountability” message to make sure I keep to my ideals of a walk each night?  😉

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Currently reading …

I do love a good legal thriller, for some bizarre reason, and so I was most pleased to receive John Grisham’s latest novel, The Litigators, for a Christmas gift last year.

I’m actually finding I haven’t been able to set aside time to just sit and read since Christmas, however, so it is actually quite nice to be “savouring” the book, as it were; not reading it in two days and then having nothing to read!

The basic premis of the story is a lawyer who is sick of working in a leading law firm, battery-hen style, and he gives it up one day to work in a tiny two-lawyer (well, three after he comes on board!) struggling law firm that fights for the “little guy.”

I’m only early days into the story but already I’m loving the way Grisham, as always, enables the reader to imagine exactly what is going on, yet manages to put twists and turns in that you don’t see coming (I reckon there’ll be a major twist towards the “end” of the story too … or maybe he’ll fool me and NOT do what I expect!)

And I just know there’ll be a film out soon based on the book – it’s one of those stories that you can just SEE a film director getting hold of and making a really intriguing picture out of it!

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Reminiscing …

So I went for a drive this morning and found the old driveway up to my first school from when I was five years old!

Where's the cattle stop?

Of course, when we would trudge up the steep path to the school house, it wasn’t quite this overgrown … and I recall there being a cattle-stop at the bottom, as well as the top which is quite humorous considering the residential area that has built up around the old school!

I could’ve actually driven up the driveway but preferred to retrace my steps and walk up, thinking of those tired little five year old legs that would’ve had to make the trek before!  The driveway opened into a field, which I thought I remembered as a playground but maybe it was always grass …

Smaller than I remembered!

And I do remember there being an awesome playhouse/climbing thing near to where that Pohoutukawa tree is in full flower!

Anyway, I do recall playing games of “What’s the time, Mr Wolf?” down by the fence to the left that lead down to the bottom field …

Turning around, I was suddenly struck that the school house was TINY!!!  I mean, really?  A class full of five year olds were taught in here?

We had school here?

Ah well, I guess things always look bigger when you’re half the height!  I’m pretty sure there wasn’t a garage door in the side of the building either!  I do recall being so short my school uniform practically dragged on the ground too – ha ha!

Do you have any memories of your childhood that you remember fondly … or maybe not so fondly? 😉

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Interesting observation I made today …

I had been much looking forward to the new TV series being made by NBC in the United States of “The Firm” – based on the film of the same time which was based on the John Grisham legal thriller.

I had the opportunity through the wonders of the internet to watch the premier episode of the series this week and, although at times it was a bit hard to follow through the first half of the episode, it increased pace and interest through the latter half and was actually quite a good watch.  I was left looking forward to the second episode to air!

Following that, I had the opportunity to watch the first episode of the second series of the BBC production of “Sherlock,” a a TV mini-series based on the well-known detective … and was left marvelling at the brilliance of the writers and the production team to be able to put together excellent actors and actresses, along with witty dialogue and an intriguing story … and somehow The Firm just paled in comparison!

I mean no offence to the Americans of course (this is someone who is addicted to the CBS-produced TV series “NCIS : Los Angeles”) but the British Broadcasting Corporation just always seems to be able to “win” when it comes to amazing TV and films!

I definitely can’t wait for the next episode of Sherlock!

Oh and PS watching a show online, i.e., not downloading it and watching it, doesn’t constitute file sharing 😉

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100 Questions – final chapter!

Thanks for taking this 100 question journey with me – hope it’s been as enlightening to you as it has been to me!

81) What would you want to be written on your tombstone?

“I got by with a little help from my friends!”

82) What is your favorite word?

Tiger … okay, I just can’t help smiling when I think of them!

83) Give me the first thing that comes to mind when you hear the word; heart.

Love … okay, cheesiest answer ever but it was the first thing I thought of; must mean something …

84) What is a saying you say a lot?

“Gotta love Tuesdays!”

85) What’s the last song you listened to?

“Already There” – Westlife version.

86) Basic question; what’s your favorite color/colors?

Forever my favourite colour has been blue; lately though, I’ve been loving dark red as well!

Happy Christmas!

87) What is your current desktop picture?

The NCIS:Los Angeles toasting me for Christmas!

88) If you could press a button and make anyone in the world instantaneously explode, who would it be?

Ok, I can’t say the person that immediately came to mind just then … going to have to think about that one some more! He he he!

89) What would be a question you’d be afraid to tell the truth on?

Actually, no question because I always tell the truth anyway 😉

90) One night you wake up because you heard a noise. You turn on the light to find that you are surrounded by MUMMIES. The mummies aren’t really doing anything, they’re just standing around your bed. What do you do?

Ask them if they want a cup of tea … even though they can’t really eat or drink with their faces bound up! Ha ha!

91) You accidentally eat some radioactive vegetables. They were good, and what’s even cooler is that they endow you with the super-power of your choice! What is that power?

Instantaneous Travel … so that I could just visit each one of my friends around the world whenever I wanted!

92) You can re-live any point of time in your life. The time-span can only be a half-hour, though. What half-hour of your past would you like to experience again?

Medley section, Croke Park, 1 June 2008 Medley section, Croke Park, 1 June 2008!

93) You can erase any horrible experience from your past. What will it be?

The last three months?!

94) You have the opportunity to sleep with the music-celebrity of your choice. Who would it be?

Okay, Nicky Byrne – there, I said it! :p

95) You just got a free plane ticket to anywhere. You have to depart right now. Where are you gonna go?

Dublin, Ireland and from there, get in a car and drive around Ireland and Scotland!

96) Do you have any relatives in jail?

Not that I’m aware of!

97) Have you ever thrown up in the car?

No, but threw up on a school camp once :S

98) Ever been on a plane?

Yes 🙂

99) If the whole world were listening to you right now, what would you say?

Be who you are, but don’t forget who has helped make you who you are and who your friends are!

100) Give me your top 5 favorite blogs .

http://www.rachelcunliffe.com/

http://www.cre8d-design.com/blog/

http://angelstar1632.wordpress.com/

http://www.westlifetards.com/

http://textsfromtheboathouse.tumblr.com/

Okay, some of those questions were actually really difficult to answer, just so you know 🙂 Hope you had fun – I did!

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100 Questions … part 3!

Okay, ready to hear more?

51) Do you tend to hold grudges against people who have done you wrong?

I try not to, but there are just some thing you just can’t forget about and sometimes, it helps to keep them in mind as it makes you stronger yourself!

52) What is your astrological sign?

Apparently, Taurus, although that’s the extent of my astrological studies and I only know that cause it’s on so many calendars nowadays!

53) Do you save money or spend it?

I like to save as much as I can – but bills always have to be paid each week, so it seems to get harder to save; I always just make sure I don’t spend more than I earn (that’s my motto!) 😉

54) What’s the last thing you purchased?

A new charger for my phone as the wire was going on the old one.

55) Love or lust?

Definitely love … lust just causes SO many problems!

56) In a relationship?

No, but I wish I was right now; things would be a lot easier …

57) How many relationships have you had?

I assume the question relates to romantic relationships so none 😦

58) Can you touch your nose with your tongue?

No, I don’t have this skill! Ha ha

59) Where were you yesterday?

Half day at work, other half day having lunch with Mum and relaxing at home

60) Is there anything pink within 10 feet of you?

Yes, my wallet and my ipod!

61) Are you wearing socks right now?

No cause it’s quite warm this morning.

Tiger 'feeding' at the zoo

62) What’s your favorite animal?

Anyone that knows me should be able to answer this question for me 😉

63) What is your secret weapon to get someone to like you?

I wish I knew … so then I could turn the secret weapon off right now – ha ha ha!

64) Where is your best friend?

Australia 😦

65) Spit or swallow?(;

Spit or swallow what?

66) What is your heritage?

Celtic origins.

67) What were you doing last night at12 AM?

Actually, watching a you tube recording from The Voice of Ireland episode one at the weekend.  Was interesting to see it from the start, actually.

68) What do you think is Satan’s last name?

I don’t think he needs one – satan is bad enough to be known by! 😉

69) Be honest. Ever gotten yourself off?

Errrrr, I beg your pardon?!

70) Are you the kind of friend you would want to have as a friend?

Absolutely 🙂

71) You are walking down the street on your way to work. There is a dog drowning in the canal on the side of the street. Your boss has told you if you are late one more time you get fired. What do you do?

I’d phone for the fire department or someone to come and rescue the dog, as I don’t swim too well, so it’s not like I’d be able to get the dog out of the water!

72) You are at the doctor’s office and she has just informed you that you have approximately one month to live. a) Do you tell anyone/everyone you are going to die? b) What do you do with your remaining days? c) Would you be afraid?

I don’t know that I would tell EVERY one actually – I’d discuss my options with the people I knew really cared about me and decide together what to do.  And of course there would be fear – how could you not be afraid of something bad?  But it wouldn’t be being afraid of dying – it would be afraid of living unfinished business and letting people down afterwards.

73) You can only have one of these things; trust or love.

Trust, cause if you can’t trust, you can’t love, in my opinion.

74) What’s a song that always makes you happy when you hear it?

Straight to the Heart, by Michael W Smith, cause it’s my best friend and my favourite song 🙂

75) What are the last four digits in your cell phone number?

Yeah, don’t think I’ll answer that question 😉

76) In your opinion, what makes a great relationship?

Two people who trust and love each other willing to compromise, sacrifice and give up something to make the relationship work and last.  Yeah, yeah, I know, I’m living in a idyllic dream world 😉

77) How can I win your heart?

See above 😉

78) Can insanity bring on more creativity?

I think it helps that we’re all a little crazy sometimes! 🙂

79) What is the single best decision you have made in your life so far?

Giving my heart to God!

80) What size shoes do you wear?

Sevens, usually.

Well, that was an unusually deep set of questions for today – hope you learned something 🙂

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100 Questions … part two!

Well, what else is there to do on a rainy Sunday morning but answer some more interesting questions (hopefully!) about myself …

21) Who is your celebrity crush?  

Chris O'Donnell on set of NCIS:Los Angeles

Ok, Chris O’Donnell – there, I said it :p  Ha ha!

22) Have you ever gone skinny dipping?

No

23) How do you vent your anger?

Well, I’m trying to avoid my habit of slamming a door … cause that usually ends up damaging the door!

24) Do you have a collection of anything?

Does every John Grisham book he’s written count as a collection?!

25) Do you prefer talking on the phone or video chatting online?

Never tried video chatting online cause I don’t have a webcam so the point is moot really.

26) Are you happy with the person you’ve become?

I don’t think I’ll ever be totally happy cause my life and who I am is a continual work in progress and there’s always things to work on, to hopefully become a “better” person.

27) What’s a sound you hate; sound you love?

I hate the sound of someone whinging or complaining 😉 … I love the sound of cicadas on a summer’s day cause it usually means it’s hot and sunny out too! 🙂

28) What’s your biggest “what if”?

What if … I had spoken to him when I had the chance and let him know how I felt?!

29) Do you believe in ghosts? How about aliens?

No, and no.

30) Stick your right arm out; what do you touch first? Do the same with your left arm.

To my right, the cupboard on my desk … to my left, my tiger from Dreamworld, Gold Coast, Australia!

31) Smell the air. What do you smell?

Rain 😦

32) What’s the worst place you have ever been to?

That’s a tricky question cause I don’t tend to go to places that I don’t want to go to, hence there isn’t really any “worst place” for me 🙂

33) Choose East Coast or West Coast?

Probably West Coast.

Nicky Byrne in Lighthouse music video

34) Most attractive singer of your opposite gender?

It’s close, but I’m going to have to go with Nicky Byrne!

35) To you, what is the meaning of life?

To be doing what God wants me to be doing!

36) Define Art.

Art: what you find pleasurable to look at for artistic entertainment at that time.

37) Do you believe in luck?

No.

38) What’s the weather like right now?

Raining!  Which totally bites cause I’m supposed to be watching cricket in an hour and a half!

39) What time is it?

11  in the morning.

40) Do you drive? If so, have you ever crashed?

Yes, and yes, although, I maintain that it was the dirt/gravel road’s fault!

41) What was the last book you read?

I’m in the middle of The Litigators by John Grisham.

42) Do you like the smell of gasoline?

Not particularly.

43) Do you have any nicknames?

I didn’t have many nicknames growing up but seem to have picked up a few over the last few years:  BIMI immediately springs to mind; Jem is another; a rather mean nickname I had was Tumbleweed 😦 … and of course, now I can’t think of any of the other ones!  Ha ha – if you remember any, leave me a comment 😉

44) What was the last movie you saw?

Cool Tigers!

We bought a zoo!  Actually an enjoyable, family-fun film; even had tigers in it 🙂

45) What’s the worst injury you’ve ever had?

Probably cracking my finger when I was 14 – it’s never healed straight 😦

46) Have you ever caught a butterfly?

I’ve certainly tried to catch a Monarch Butterfly in the past – you know, just to have a look at it up close, of course!  I would let it go again afterwards 🙂

47) Do you have any obsessions right now?

Do Chris O’Donnell and Eric Olsen count?!

48) What’s your sexual orientation?

Straight.

49) Ever had a rumor spread about you?

Yep, some quite nasty ones from someone I’ve never actually met too!  I will never understand why some people feel the need to spread nastiness about total strangers – they would have to be really sad people themselves, I reckon, to do something like that 😦

50) Do you believe in magic?

I think magic is really just clever illusions!

And just in case you’re interested, yes, it’s still raining 😦

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100 Questions …

Okay, found this post on another blog I read so I thought I’d see how many of the questions I could answer; although, 100 questions might be too much for me to answer, let alone to make someone read, so I think I’ll go 20 at a time …
1) Put your iTunes on shuffle. Give me the first 6 songs that pop up
Mandy, Grace, Beautiful in White, God in this place, Save me from myself, Safe
2) If you could meet anyone on this earth, who would it be
Michael W Smith
3) Grab the book nearest to you, turn to page 23, give me line 17
“mysteries could be solved with a few hours in therapy.”
4) What do you think about most
At this time of year, cricket!

Firebirds v Wizards in the HRV Cup

5) What does your latest text message from someone else say
“Cool, see you in about ten minutes!”
6) Do you sleep with or without clothes on
PJs
7) What’s your strangest talent
Probably rolling my tongue – don’t have many talents, strange or otherwise!
8) Girls…. (finish the sentence); Boys…. (finish the sentence
… put up with so much that boys just will never understand!
9) Ever had a poem or song written about you
I’ve had a song dedicated to me – does that count?!  🙂
10) When is the last time you played the air guitar?
Can’t say I ever have really, since I don’t know how to play guitar for real!
11) Do you have any strange phobias
I’m afraid of falling … probably why most nightmares I end up having, I seem to end up falling into or out of something 😦
12) Ever stuck a foreign object up your nose
No, cause I’m too freaked that it would get stuck and I’d have to go to hospital!  Hate hospitals!
13) What’s your religion
Not religious, I’m a Christian.
14) If you are outside, what are you most likely doing
Watching cricket …
15) Do you prefer to be behind the camera or in front of it
Definitely behind; people always seem to manage to pick out my worst feature in photos! Ha ha!

Westlife's photoshoot for last single

16) Simple but extremely complex. Favorite band
Westlife.
17) What was the last lie you told
I was just in a shop and didn’t hear my phone ringing in my bag …
18) Do you believe in karma
No.
19) What does your URL mean
Not much, actually; wasn’t feeling particularly imaginative when I created this site so just thought of something off the top of my head!
20) What is your greatest weakness; your greatest strength?
Greatest weakness:  being too concerned for family and friends in my life to the point where I get emotional and so afraid if the smallest thing happens;
Greatest strength:  creating order out of chaos!
Tune in next time … if you dare … for the next instalment!
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