the week, end

I wonder if any other couples have a sport-watching routine that would resemble what the boy and I do. We’ve been really sad to see the London Olympics come to an end, and since I stupidly deleted the last day of the Tour de France from mysky, we’ve been watching the Closing Ceremony as the backdrop of dinners and dish-washing. I was so impressed by Matt Bellamy’s vocal abilities that I’ve re-wound and watched the bit where he hits that amazing note and transitions from piano to guitar (why did he step away from the mic?! Argh, I hate that note being cut off like that!!) over and over and over again. And then we speculated as to whose decision it was for George Michael to debut a new song that nobody knew, when he could’ve easily done another crowd pleaser. And whose call was it to blind us all with Jessie J’s 3x horrendous nude bodysuits?! Oh yeah, and to have to sing repeatedly too. Many, many others would have been far more qualified and deserving of the honour of singing along side the remaining Queen members, say. Yikes. So, just as the Olympics have wrapped up, the boy’s soccer and my own hockey are just heading into the business end of the season. I was sad to have missed his two very impressive sounding goals yesterday, since our game times overlapped. And I’m sad to say that my team lost to an opponent who are technically not as good as us, but are proving to be our bogey team. We probably needed the extra motivation though. We’ve had a few decent wins in a row now, and we have the semi final in a couple of weeks’ time, so maybe we needed a decent wake up call. Also, Liverpool probably got a bloody decent wake up call last night. After a night of beer pong and chandeliers (both fantastic beer games, by the way), I dozed off during the game, but to be honest, there was hardly any desire to stay awake considering the shabby loss to West Brom. Embarrassing.

A few food recommendations, then I’m back to nursing some battle wounds and studying with the cat. This Glass Eye Creek Wild Meat Sauce is one of the greatest sauces I’ve ever had. Considering the fact that I’m not a sauce person at all (tomato sauce is about it, and only on average-tasting fries, no less), this is a big deal. They only sell them in selected supermarkets and I’m positive they don’t sell them overseas yet, but I’m definitely sending my sister in Malibu a bottle of this when I get around to it! (Am happy to take requests too) I haven’t done all that much with it yet, but I was introduced to it in the easiest, most amazing manner of consumption: well-toasted Vogels (amazing NZ bread), buttered, sauced, then topped with feta cheese. Too easy.

Oh by the way, I have to confess now that I am turning into one of those people that relies on their phone for photos. So they’re all sub-standard to me (especially of the beautiful restaurant below!!!), so I need to umm, you know, get back into a camera-carrying routine. Damn. Cos all of these were taken on my phone, shhh.

I also put a spot of that sauce in my burger (below). Which was also made in quick-and-easy manner, but tastes so sooo good! The boy and I have been improving with each burger we make, haha. The below features two sorts of lettuce only because it sort of had to be eaten… For the patty, all you need is some mince, mixed with pan-friend onions (maybe garlic), an egg, mustard seeds, salt and pepper, mould into the right size (press down the middle part to a slight welled shape so that it goes flat when cooked) and grill in a regular pan. Flip only once. Let the cheese melt on the cooked half once it’s been flipped. And compile on toasted buns with anything you like. I had an egg with this one. Butter, salad, mustard seeds, Glass Eye Creek Wild Meat Sauce and some ground black pepper.

Just a token chocolate shot. Brain food.

On Friday night we managed to get around to going to a Japanese restaurant which the boy had been planning on taking me for quite some time. It’s located in the oddest of neighbourhoods (next door to a Chinese takeaways), and I can’t say that the shop front looked all that promising – in fact it was rather blinding. But after we were lead through this…

… a sliding door opened to reveal some stairs leading down into a quasi-basement area that was very industrial-loft-looking with a high ceiling and the most amazing framed windows on one side, and a lovely wall that was entirely painted with cherry blossoms. The waiters and waitresses (and chefs) all spoke or were Japanese, so it definitely passed my standard of what they advertised as “authentic Japanese” should be. We had the most amazing, drawn out meal that consisted not only of our absolute favourites such as karaage chicken and tempura prawns, but we also had shabu shabu. Not to mention the three bottles of Japanese marble soda that I could not resist!

Photo of the beautiful iris flowers in my front yard. One of my favourite, favourite flowers.

And this is what winning beer pong looks, like, heck yeah! After some warming up, the boy and I made a killer team last night. I had to crack open some beers on the side in order to drink any haha. One more week of tests and such, then it’s study break. I miraculously did better at my combo recital last week, (the best public playing I’ve ever done so far, I think), so yay for improving. In the meantime, Jacam Manricks is back and we’ll be attending his show at jazz school on Tuesday night, but check him out online!

we learn together over time that tolerance is more appealing tn theory than in practice. ah, we wait at ease, we wait to see – we are waiting here for catastrophe

I’m getting terribly behind on travel posts (I can’t believe it’s been two months already!) but I don’t want to rush them and want to do justice to all the fun and photos we had. This… putting off of sorts has definitely been brought to attention by the boy, so it’s definitely not like I’ve forgotten about it, it’s just a matter of time…

The truth about me is that I’ve been very lacking in motivation since circa 2004, and the sort of motivation I’m talking about is something of an all-round kind of motivation. The sort of drive that isn’t limited to one area of life or activity at hand – rather, something that spans across daily life in general, and dreams at large. But I’ve completely surprised myself these past couple of weeks by my new-found resolve to, well, put bluntly, try. I feel like I’ve spent the better part of the last decade running away from expectations of me, and avoiding the deadly word that gets thrown around a lot when people talk about me: potential. (Don’t even get me started on the whole idea of “potential”… trust me, I’ll never shut up.)

Anyway, what have I been doing away from the blogosphere? I’ve stayed ahead in my course readings, I’ve actually practised the bass (I know, right? It’s my bloody major and I often neglect it more than I should) and I’m determined, bloody determined to get things the way I want them. I want to get myself to where I want to be, or at least, in the direction of where I think I want to head, because frankly I have no idea where I want to “go”, as such. Today the boy and I washed our cars in the rain, as it was our mutual day off from uni. It sounds either more romantic or more dreadful than it actually was – and downright stupid, I know. But we did it despite the rain since it was already planned, and both our cars were dirrrty so it really couldn’t be ignored any longer. The “me” a month ago would’ve probably just sat inside and kept reading whilst the boy went and washed his car, or somehow negotiated another day to do it – but I’m glad that I got off my arse and did it today.

Also, I joined a gym last week, and I made sure to join the new fancy 24-hour franchise gym, because then I’m not limited to the crappy opening hours of traditional gyms. Believe it or not, for once I was the one urging my friend (who has been a member there for sometime, but I know doesn’t go often enough) to make a gym date with me, so that we can’t let each other down and have to show up. And show up we did. Yes, yes it was well after nine that evening, but I pounded out around 3-4km on the treadmill at a decent pace, and I didn’t even need Angie to hold my hand through it. I did my core exercises and other things and then… I felt fucking great. Then today I had a complimentary one-hour session with the personal trainer that also happens to manage the gym, and I am getting a programme made up for me so that I have more of a sense of direction as to what exercises I need to do for the fitness level and strength areas I want to achieve. He said he was really surprised by how motivated I am, and how a lot of people are all groggy and laid-back about it all, but I seem really determined to achieve things. And I guess I really am. I hadn’t really thought that much about it until then – how suddenly motivated I have become. All-round. Not just in one degree, but both. Not just with uni, but with hockey, with trying to be a better and happier person all around.

Then yesterday at my hockey trials I ran my butt off and tried my very best, even though I didn’t get put in my ideal positions. They’ve restructured the grades and so there are 3, maybe 4 teams’ worth of people trialing for the one team. I think I did well enough yesterday, but I’m definitely going to step it up for the second round of trials next week. Watch this space. Hopefully this time next week I’m gleefully chirping about looking forward to the hockey season… rather than being disappointed about it.

I thought I’d share the dinner that I whipped up for my mum, cousin and myself tonight – I have a tendency to make recipes up as I go, so today I’m pretty happy with how my pasta turned out. I started off with a bunch of tomatoes… then the next thing I knew I was all, phew, sorry to say so myself, but this sauce is bloody delicious. It’s a shame the boy had football training and missed out on it. (On the topic of football, did anyone see Barcelona and Messi’s ridiculously amazing result today?!!!) So, courtesy of a very full fridge, I’d cooked: sirloin steak, fish baked in lemon juice and ground pepper, butter pan-friend zucchini, pasta in some randomly concocted sauce, and mushrooms with melted butter and bacon. Ahhh I’m hungry all over again just thinking about this!



By the way, how do I hold onto this surge of motivation? Is it even possible/probable?