A year of being more active

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A little over a year ago I helped host a panel session at the Paris OpenStack summit. The panel was three telco people talking about NFV, but that’s not the bit I really remember. The bit that really stuck with me was how fat I looked in photos from the event. An example:

I weighed just over 110 kilos (240 lbs). I decided something had to change — I have a new daughter, and I want to be around to see her well into her life. So, I joined a gym and started bush walking. My first walk was documented here as a walk up Tuggeranong hill. That rapidly became an obsession with climbing hills to survey markers, which then started to include finding geocaches.

I can’t give you a full list of the tangents that one photo from Paris has caused, because the list isn’t complete yet and may never be. I now run, swim, ride my bike, and generally sweat on things. Its all fun and has had the unexpected side effect that its helped me cope with work stress much more than I expected.

I’ve lost about 15 kilos (30 lbs) so far. Weight loss isn’t really the main goal now, but its something I continue to track.

I thought it would be interesting to list all the places I’ve walked in Canberra this year, but a simple bullet point list is too long. So instead, here’s an interactive map.

[kml: canberra-2015_canberra-2014]

There are a lot more walks I want to do around here. Its just a case of finding the time.

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Mount Tennent

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    Ok, so I want to do Mount Tennent from the “wrong” side (Apollo Road up the fire trail). The reason for this is that there is a series of 20 something geocaches along the route that I’d like to tick off as well as walking to Tennent.

    I think the total route should be about 13kms, with about 800m of ascent. I propose we leave at least one car at the Apollo Road car park, and then drive the rest to the start point at the Namadgi visitor centre. We can then do the walk, and send one car back to collect the others while we wait under a tree (or something like that).

    Naismith’s rule says this walk should take about 5 hours.

I’ve been meaning to do this one for ages, but finally got around to doing the walk with a few friends. We went up Tennent from the Namadgi visitor’s center, but walked back down on the far side of Tennent which seems less common. The far side is less scenic, but less steep as well I think. Along the way we collected 23 geocaches along the way, and a lovely walk was had by all.

Just over 1,000 meters vertically, and around 16km horizontally.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

[kml: 20151228-1]

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Skimpy

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I’ve had a bit of a thing about biographies recently, having just read the very good The Crossroad by Mark Donaldson. This book is a very different story, but I think still quite interesting. Kellie was a country girl with no real plans and an impulse control problem. While the book follows her formative years as she parties across Australia in a generally northern direction, I think the underlying story about growing up and finding your way in the world is quite interesting.

Is this great literature while will enlighten the masses? Probably not. Was it a fun read on a flight and mostly about a teenager with no direction finding her place in the world? Yes.

Skimpy Book Cover Skimpy
Kellie Arrowsmith
Country life
July 28, 2015
352

Kellie Arrowsmith was a country girl whose idea of a hairdo was tying a ponytail whenever she wanted to go horse riding. But in her early twenties she left her sleepy hometown of Albury on the NSW/Victoria border for the bright lights of the Gold Coast, and soon found herself working in a succession of unexciting jobs just to keep up with her now-glamorous lifestyle. After spending two years as a frazzled receptionist for an adult entertainment agency, Kellie decided to stop booking the jobs and start taking them. So it was that she found herself travelling to Gove, a mining town in East Arnhem Land, where she had her first stint as a skimpy: a barmaid who wears not much clothing for big money. Skimpies can work in the NT, in WA, in the Hunter Valley of NSW - wherever there's a bunch of blokes with a fly-in fly-out lifestyle who enjoy a cold beer at the end of their shift. Kellie thought her new job would take her all round the country, but she hadn't planned on falling in love - not with Dave, a rough-and-tumble outback character with a big heart and the world's worst four-wheel-drive, and not with the Northern Territory way of life. But she did, and instead of diamonds and dust, Kellie got crocodiles and denim cut-offs - and a whole lot of stories to tell about a side of outback life that's a long way off the beaten track.

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The Chronicles of Old Guy

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I found this e-book on Amazon while randomly poking around and read it on a recent set of flights. It was of interest because if looked like another bolo tank book, of which I have read many over the years. That said, its not in strictly the same universe as the other bolo books, and seems more like unofficial fan fiction than something which maps into the universe seamlessly.

The book is competently written and readable. However, it regularly strays into what I would consider fantasy fiction (medieval warfare, vampires, battling Godzilla) in a way I found jarring and annoying. Overall I don’t think I’ll read the other books in this series.

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