Thursday, September 06, 2012

TransAlp 2012

Here are the stages of the TransAlp mountain bike ride I will be starting this weekend! (You may need to replay once or twice to get the map details and terrain to load properly)

Friday, December 05, 2008

Recommended Podcasts

So I'm behind with my "postcards" as always, but would love to share my favorite podcasts anyways.

This American Life (weekly/1 hour):

There's a theme to each episode, and a variety of stories on that theme. It's mostly true stories of everyday people, though not always. There's lots more to the show, but, like we said, it's sort of hard to describe. Probably the best way to understand the show is to start at our favorites page, though we have full guides to our TV show and our radio show, with clips. If you want to dive into the hundreds of episodes we've done over the years, there's an archive of all our old radio shows and listings for all our TV episodes, too.

The Moth (weekly-ish: 5- 17 min):

These are some of our favorites among the thousands of stories we have recorded at our Moth Mainstage shows, Moth StorySLAMs and MothShop Community shows over the last 10 years. The stories range in length from approximately 5 to 17 minutes. Sometimes funny, occasionally sad, often poignant, we hope you will find the stories memorable and representative of many aspects of human experience. Because the stories are culled from many years worth of archives, the sound quality varies.

Studio 360 (weekly/1 hour) :

PRI’s Peabody Award-winning "Studio 360 with Kurt Andersen" from WNYC is public radio’s smart and surprising guide to what's happening in pop culture and the arts. Each week, Kurt Andersen introduces you to the people who are creating and shaping our culture.

On The Media (weekly/1 hour):

On the Media explores how the media "sausage" is made, casts an incisive eye on fluctuations in the marketplace of ideas, and examines threats to the freedom of information and expression in America and abroad. For one hour a week, the show tries to lift the veil from the process of "making media," especially news media, because it's through that lens that we literally see the world and the world sees us.While maintaining the civility and fairness that are the hallmarks of public radio, OTM tackles sticky issues with a frankness and transparency that has built trust with listeners and led to more than a tripling of its audience in five years. Since OTM was re-launched in 2001, it has been one of NPR's fastest growing programs, heard on more than 200 public radio stations. It has won Edward R. Murrow Awards for feature reporting and investigative reporting, the National Press Club's Arthur Rowse Award for Press Criticism and a Peabody Award for its body of work.

Selected Shorts (weekly/1 hour):

A Celebration of the Short Story.

Monday, August 18, 2008

My first photo on Wikipedia

I've had my photos gleaned for many exciting publications, such as Timmy's book report on Mountains - but I had my first one used on wikipedia recently:


I've just arranged shipping of my life (all 5 filing boxes) from New Zealand and with it comes my camera gear. I seriously need to get off my camera bum and hopefully I will start taking photographs again instead of my current stream of snapshots.

First month in Amsterdam

Some of the time it has been pretty challenging and other times have been fantastic, but overall it’s good.

I’ve started work at a place called Schuberg Philis and the place is great. I work with about 50 guys that all posses a technical prowess I’ve never encountered before. I learned more in my first two weeks then I did in my last two years in New Zealand. I’m loving the challenge, but still checking my ego at the door, as I’m not used to be the person asking all the questions. A pretty intimidating place though, as despite being friendly there is a palpable, if not silent, disdain for anyone less than brilliant.

I’ve still been living as a gypsy with my first week of accommodation in the red light district, then a couple weeks with a cranky old Dutch guy who smoked like a chimney, now I’m in a adequate single room in the “centrum” – the only bugger with this place is a shared bathroom with about 7 other rooms (thankfully most of the time they are empty or not showering when I am). I’ve discovered that *all* of my clothes excluding jackets and sweaters fit in a single load. (that’s a front loading European load too – not the US top-load that can fit a medium sized ocean)

View from my temp digs

My weekends have been punctuated by some great adventures already with the “Over the Ij” arts festival the first weekend. A visit from my good friend Simon for a couple great nights out on the town followed by a fantastic weekend to Austria for Griet and Sashi’s wedding. Held in the Austrain Alps outside the Salzburg, cobble stone roads with snow-capped mountains in the background carried Griet to a beautiful old Cathedral for a 12 o’clock ceremony given in 4 languages. I left the party at 3:30 am, by which time I’d met some great people from all over Europe (and the world for that matter). Selfishly, the best part of the weekend for me was seeing all my old friends from New Zealand. We managed to still wake up at a reasonable hour on Saturday and climb the mountain peak next to Griet’s family’s house.



The peak nextdoor in Austria

Then another weekend back in Amsterdam for the “Canal Pride” which was a blast – and I was thoroughly impressed by the large business and government backing and participation in the parade. Not to mention it was on the water, and for me everything is improved by the act of floating.


Then last weekend I hopped the train to Belgium and was treated to amazing hospitality thanks to Tom, Griet, and Griet’s mum. Buggered off after work Friday, Tom picked me up in Antwerp and then drove me to Lockeren to attend a town festival (I was expecting the ubiquitous bad arts and crafts booths and meat on a stick). Turns out it was a music festival with Macy Grey and Grace Jones followed by a great DJ – we danced until 3:30. Not to be held back, Tom took me mountain biking the next day on a 60 KM loop starting in Flanders, through a forest with roads built by the Romans that have managed to sink 20+ feet into the ground from thousands of years of walking, a cruise through beautiful countryside in Wallonia, and finally to Hoegaarden to enjoy a Hoegaarden, before the jaunt back to Leuven for a Stella in a medieval town square. Sleep not being an option; we headed back to the music festival for another night of dancing until 4:30. Then up Sunday for a cruise to Brugges were Griet and Kaat’s family plied us with hospitality at their restaurant before touring the city. It was Sunday and we were tired, but knowing it was still the weekend we drove back to Antwerp that night and enjoyed something thing along the lines of 10,000 Belgian’s swinging glasses of beer and singing drinking songs – do we have drinking songs in the US? (Not written be AC/DC that is) Hit the sack about 2 at Tom’s brothers place before getting up a few hours later to hop the train back for a bright and early start at work about 10:30 with nearly a full beard.


This weekend was bit more subdued with a some great weather (which is less common than a blue moon around here) I caught up with Ehud, an Israeli fashion designer I had met over a couple drinks in Wellington 7 months ago, before I had any idea I would be living in Amsterdam. Not to waste his great taste we trolled a few shops and cafes and I managed to find a couple goodies by the end of the day. I then got a bit more practice keeping myself company, I must say I’m a great date too: a glass of wine watching the sunset over het Ij, then a wicked Turkish meal before cruising home through parks beneath a lunar eclipse. (too bad I’m not an earthworm, otherwise I’d be in love) Today I joined some folks for a bike ride to the next town to the West, Haarlem, where we entertained ourselves with a bit of indoor snowboarding – with which I was thoroughly under whelmed. But then I thought, “if I could do anything this afternoon what would I do?” and I remembered I bloody can do anything, so I left the odd little snow hill and rode my bike to the beach on the North Sea. Contrasting with my general distaste for the highly developed Dutch “country side” filled with motorways, power lines, and a stream of jumbo jets overhead – I was blown away by the national park on the seashore. I rode through coastal forest and along dunes as sea birds flew in to land in the estuaries around me. This was like a hit of Trey heroin – I hadn’t realised how badly I needed to not hear a motorised vehicle for a while. I rode for hours until the sunset and I arrived in Zandvoort for a dinner where I really enjoyed my own company.

I’ve noticed that I’ve spent a lot of time writing old friends lately. I’m really missing folks like Stu and Jo back in NZ and a bit bummed I’ve not met more like-minded folks here yet. It’s only been a month, but I think the 2 months of waiting in London and another month in Texas has made be a bit “new place” fatigued. Throw in the Dutch sense of humour (ha… ha… ) and a bit of language barrier (everyone speaks English, but not out of preference) and I’m getting the chance to notice my social dependencies. In one way it sucks a bit not having any good friends yet, but in another I know it’s really good for me. These are the times where growth happens, where I’m forced to attain that next level of comfort with solitude, and hopefully another step towards quite confidence.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

A first in a bit of catching up

To get back into the swing of updating my blog, I’ll have to gloss over the past… what 18 months?

Well back in May of 2007, I did my “surprise” visit to the states. I had it in my head that I wanted to be out of the US on my own for a good chunk of time to prove my “expat credentials” (something that feels a bit ridiculous now). I had visited for a couple days for my sister Audrey’s graduation, but this was my first proper visit home. My first visit back to Austin to see my friends, back to see my 4 week old nephew Achilles, and spend 5 weeks back in the states.

I’m ashamed to say my carbon footprint was a bloody atrocity:

WLG→AKL→LAX→SFO→APA→AUS→ATL→PHL→NYC→PHL→ATL→CRP→MIA→SJU→SIG→VQS→SIG→SJU→MIA→CRP→AUS→APA→LAX→AKL→WLG (okay, I drove to New York but bloody hell that was a lot of peanuts – oh wait we don’t get those any more)

I started the trip in San Francisco and had a blast with Matt and Jessica, visiting one of my favourite US cities where I especially dug just hanging out with Matt and Jess. Our trip to the Tourist Club in the Muir Wood didn’t do anything to dampen my spirits though, then again neither did the visits to wicked cheese and chocolates shops ☺

Then I made my way to Austin and caught up with the old gang, fell in love as soon as I meet my nephew, and tried to eat my weight in Mexican food and BBQ. By the way, I’d never felt as impressed by anyone as when I saw my brother slip on fatherhood like a custom Italian suit – he wears it effortlessly and passionately.

Then it was off to visit my Mom in PA including a trip to NYC where I spent like I was a millionaire, a habit that will just about guarantee I won’t be one anytime soon. Off all places, I bought my alpine climbing gear in the south of Manhattan. I was impressed no one arrested me for cruising on the subways with ice axes strapped to my backpack – implements that would make perfect props for a horror flick.

After giving my Mom a hug goodbye, it was off to Rockport, TX where with the help of my step-mom Jane I was snuck into my Dad’s clinic as his last patient of the day – the surprise went off without a hitch! (I’m just glad I didn’t give him a heart attack) I only told my mom I was coming the day I left New Zealand, a requirement if I was going to be able to see her.

After a few days in Rockport I was off to Puerto Rico to have a “little holiday from my holiday”. A beautiful place, incredible water, and gorgeous people, what more could you want in a beach holiday? The museum hotel (a recommendation from Kit and Linda) was fantastic. My only complaint with Puerto Rico is that it is RIDICULOUSLY over-priced. Sure it was great, but no nicer than any Mexican beach on the Caribbean, or really any other beaches on the Caribbean, or Fiji, Tonga, Indonesia, Australia’s West coast, the South of Thailand, the Cook Islands – but it was an order of magnitude more expensive than any other beach destination to which I’ve been. For that matter the place we stayed, which again was “nice” but by no means incredible, was more expensive then the Waldorf Astoria in Manhattan where I had stayed a week before. And at the Waldorf they didn’t try to charge you $40 to use the gym for half an hour.

That rant over, it was awesome hanging out with my bud Tamara – one of those folks that always blows me away with their level of certainness and self-confidence. Combine a wicked level of knowledge with a real passion for her opinions and some wonderfully “passionate” discussions dotted the week. We did end up end on the island of Vieques for the majority of the time and it was awesome!

Then an unwinding of travel plans with a return to Corpus, a drive to Austin, some late nights out with Julie and Jess before flying from Austin to Denver, then LAX, then Auckland, and finally Wellington to get back to my life in New Zealand.

I remember often referring to New Zealand as “home” during that trip to visit my family, and shouldn’t the location of family define home? Every time I called New Zealand home I cringing inside from guilt – it’s on odd thing that I feel my jaunts overseas are so selfish and I’m somehow failing to honour my family or meet my responsibility to them. I only feel this responsibility intuitively though, because logically I would say that my responsibility to my family is to make the most of my life, therefore honouring the sacrifice my family made to support and foster my development throughout my youth - enabling me to make the most of this life. After all if you send a painter to art school, would you not expect him or her to go on and then push the boundaries and try new things? If that painter only repeated what had been done before, wouldn’t art school have been a bit of a waste? Not that my life is some “masterpiece”, but I do want to push boundaries and do things that are harder, because I have this notion that when you struggle you are making the most of life. So here’s to living a life that ends with scars of the skin and heart, because that’s a life lead to it’s fullest!

Saturday, July 12, 2008

A New Love Affair

Still buzzing from an arts festival held in shipping containers scattered about a derelict wharf. Rusty cranes, sheds, old boats, the river Ij, and incredible architecture on the skyline worked well to open my mind to some very cool performances. Mix in friendly locals who greet me with smiles and even buy me wine.

Then I hop on my new bike (actually it’s probably older than me) and ride onto the pedestrian ferry back across the river. More incredible architecture, this time lit by sunset, sails by as we reach Centraal Station. Plug my iPod into my head as I gently roll west, when a stream of fantastic tunes come up by random – my idea of providence.

Kaiser Cartel’s acoustic goodness lulls me with “I can not find, distilled silence. It’s my own fault, that I can not listen to myself.” from Okay as I roll into The Jordaan and I’m entranced. Orange flecks of sunset bounce around on silky black water, old barges rest moored along the canals, and 400 year old buildings reach just above the trees around me as I lightly roll up and down the brick bridges’ arches.

I’m beginning to believe I’ll find a home here.

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Updates coming...

So I've landed in my new home town of Amsterdam last night and I'm inspired to resurrect this poor blog. I'm writing stuff up now and will have a "what's been going on for the past... oh... 18 months" post up shortly ;-).

Arriving in Amsterdam

Arriving in Amsterdam is thrilling, yet I could replace “Amsterdam” with European city X. I’ve landed in a new place in Europe – and I’m going to live here.

Arriving in Amsterdam is terrifying. I’m sure my jet lag is not helping, but after my welcomer leaves me at my B&B – a tiny room in the red light district. I realise I don’t know one person in the entire country and to top it off am basically broke so I can’t give up and run back to my good friends in New Zealand or my brother in Texas. I am in new territory – I remember landing in Wellington and realise how much I appreciated being in a hostel and meeting Simon and particularly how nice it was having my sister Whitney there. On top of that I started work about 7 hours after arriving and I still don’t have a start date here, but it will be at least 6 days away.
So I consider my list of to-do’s: hit the lawyer in the morning, IND (Dutch Immigration) Friday, sort out how to get to/from my new B&B Monday - and in the meantime go get a mobile as soon as possible so that I can speak to someone I know. Then start work, explore the city, find an apartment. I’m reminded of how truly wonderful it was to have Dougal as my first flatmate in Wellington – he was an ambassador to the city and he welcomed me (really insisted) that I meet every friend and join him for every dinner out. I don’t want to be negative, but I somehow doubt I could be so lucky twice.

So now I’m sitting up in bed, a little hot, rather jet-lagged, listening to the rain and the teenage tourists outside. There’s a canal right outside and it is beautiful, but I feel so far away from the comfort of friends and loved ones – I believe this feeling is called loneliness. But I remind myself to chin up and relish this challenge – it’s hard, but hard challenges are that much sweeter once surmounted.

Damn, it’s 1 AM and I need to be up at 7 – if only I could disengage thoughts and feelings…

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Still alive...

The Taranaki
Originally uploaded by treyguinn
I'm having a blast, but a bit behind on updates (I'm practicing my understatements)

Happy new years to all! I was home again for Christmas and had a blast visiting everyone there. My first weekend back to summer in New Zealand led me to climb Mount Taranaki on one of the few days a year when it isn't attracting horrible weather like a magnet.

I am still working on getting photos uploaded from a few adventures over the past winter here...

Wishing you all the best!

Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Where have I been?

AIC second weekend 009
Originally uploaded by louise.thornley
I was in the states for May, etc, etc, etc. I'm now doing an alpine climbing course and here is a photo from last weekend. Eventually I'll get some more stuff up soon... promise.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Another weekend tramping

Down Ohau Gorge.jpg
Originally uploaded by treyguinn.
Some (all of 4) photos up from this past weekend tramping in the northwestern Tararuas.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Go Summer, Go!

Originally uploaded by treyguinn.
Summer is holding on with it's fingernails - I hope it doesn't loose grip too soon. (Picture from Sommes Island in Wellington Harbour)

Monday, March 12, 2007

More Photos

Being too lazy to write narratives, I thought I'd post some photos of things I've been shooting lately.

I've finally uploaded pictures from my trip to Arthur's Pass in February




I've also just had some of these pictures published. A circus show called "Gravity & Other Myths" that was playing on the waterfront over the past couple weeks.





This past week there has been a wedding and a portrait shoot for a band called "The Constituents", a music festival this weekend to shoot, and another portrait shoot for "Twinset" next week. I'm stoked to have all this photography work; it's been a blast and thankfully it makes me also appreciate my day job.

Saturday, March 03, 2007

Birthday Bonfire

Birthday Bonfire
Originally uploaded by treyguinn.
I've also loaded some photos from Aneke's birthday bonfire out on Makara beach. (outside Wellington)

Deep Bay Sunset

Deep Bay Sunset
Originally uploaded by treyguinn.
I've got my new laptop, yeah! And with it, here come some photos from the queue and those from my trip of the last two weeks with my Dad & Jane to both the South Island and Stewart Island here in New Zealand.