August 2004 Archives
But the real answer is that Europeans didn't just "put up with it" - they treated terrorists like the criminals they were and didn't allow them to completely disrupt their way of living. They did not suddenly get behind an excited drive to gut their treasuries and impoverish their countries and their people by setting off half-cocked on some stupid permanent state of war that would wipe out the very civil liberties and trust in law that made their nations worth living in to begin with.
Well, I'm back, and as you can see, I've sorted out the template files. I have a few entries I started doing while I was down in Australia to sort out, and I'll probably be making some changes to the site in the near future as well.
Right now, I'm flying over the red centre of Australia. Looking out the window (pic), you can easily see just why they call it the red centre.
Stretching out below us to all horizons, the barren red landscape goes out as far as the eye can see. A flat layer of clouds scuds below us, casting dark shadows on the ochre wilderness. At the horizons, the curvature of the earth is apparent. Looking upwards from that, the sky darkens towards space, with a deep purity of hue which is very restful.
One thinks of the Chuck Yeagers and other assorted pioneers who would fly at this altitude and then head up. Up into the wild blue yonder.
It's a deeply strange landscape from this vantage point — it looks more like the surface of Mars than any terrestial landscape. All of this hot arid dryness is frightening to behold — it almost makes me want to have a drink!
Hang on while I summon a glass of wine from the very helpful cabin crew here on CX104. They've been serving a very nice Hope Estate Merlot, which is quite a pleasant introduction to the wines of Australia.
One of the great things about being in Melbourne is the quality of the local wines. There are great local wines available in most restaurants, and many of the bottlo's (bottle shops, or off-licences for those who don't speak Strine) will have a great selection of decent local wines.
They say that if you really want to get to know a place, you should work there. That probably doesn't mean work 16 hours a day, seven days a week somewhere and you'll know it. I know the stretch of Collins Street between the Westin Hotel and the office very well now, and I've had a chance to look around the city centre a bit, but I certainly wouldn't claim to know much about the whole city of Melbourne or the State of Victoria.
In the summer time, the air is clear, the weather is warm, it's not too humid and there's plenty of extra daylight. Right now, in the depths of winter, it's very cold (at least for this tropical pundit!), it's damp, and windy. The prevailing winds howl down Collins and the other straight streets in the middle of the city, slashing their way straight through a light business suit.
The view from the office overlooks Federation Square and the Yarra River, as well as the Port Philip harbour. On a day like today, you can see for miles and the deep blue of the sea contrasts with the lighter hue of the sky. The sea looks boundless from here - next stop Antartica indeed. White flecks of sails spatter the harbour water, while long, lazy clouds drift overhead.
What have I been doing here? Well, first I signed an NDA and then, well, I [Did Stuff] to [Enhance Project Value]. And that's taken me away from my family for the last four weeks, and over two months in total.
But, any road up, as we say in Hong Kong, the long dark cliche of the project is drawing to a close and I'm booked on a flight back home to Hong Kong tomorrow. Now, the only remaining task outstanding on this project is to clear the fridge of beer. Wish me luck!
From what I can see, my Individual Archive entries are FUBAR, a technical term for 'not working'. It looks like MovableType is getting confused with which template is which and building the wrong files and not building the right ones.
Whatever is wrong, I can't fix it through the web interface, and I don't have access to my webserver from work down here in Melbourne, thanks to a proxy which won't allow SSH through it, even if I use other ports. I'll have a look at it when I get home, whenever that is.
UPDATE: Now it appears that Movable Type has overwritten my templates with one of its own and the front page is looking odd. I've patched in one of the standard MovableType Stylesheets for the moment. This is really annoying.
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