October 27, 2009

Well, it's not bad news

I've gained back a tiny bit of hope regarding the possibility of moving to Australia via my company. I was talking with someone in HR there and she made it sound so easy and possible, but I started to worry that it might not really be so easy for me, someone who would not be looking at manager positions or IT jobs or things like that which are probably much easier to be transfered for. So I wrote her again and ask what the likelihood really is. Of course she can't predict whether it will actually work for me or not, but if I can find a role I really fit and can bring in specific experience, and if it fits a certain salary minimum, then it should be ok. So. In a few months I'll be watching the job postings like a hawk.

The minor downside in all of this is that the Australian office has a pharma division that does work similar to where I work now. This should be a big plus, it would fit my experience the best and I could maybe talk with them and discuss what unique knowledge I could bring to their office. But they have taken a hit this year when news got out that a few years ago they published some medical "journals" which were not actually peer-reviewed and were really marketing materials. So they don't have the best reputation right now and it may affect my decision to work there, or their ability to hire.

October 22, 2009

Late 90's Quasi

Quasi's new album has been pushed back to February, but they (a trio now) are out there playing some shows, which I would love to go to, especially the New Year's eve show they are apparently playing at the Doug Fir.

But to step back in time for a sec, here's some video of them playing at Satyricon in the late 90's. I got to see them there once, I think it was my only Satyricon show actually. Not this one though, I remember Sam was wearing heavy boots at the show I was at because they came very near to my face when he would lie on his keyboard.

When I am old, I will use the f-word

Going into old-lady mode...

To the city of Leiden: If you don't want people parking their bikes along the small fence at the back of the station, how about investing some of that money you must be making off of people when they come to reclaim their bike that you've hauled away and put up some fucking signs warning people that if they park there their bikes will be carted off? I know, I know, you would probably argue (and probably do argue to the people who undoubtedly protest when they come to get their bike) that there are signs around the edge of the station area that state where you can and can't park your bike, and according to it, parking along that low metal fence isn't kosher. I will point out in return that in the direction I come to the station from, there is only one sign, on the other side of the Rijnsburgerweg, which gets less cyclists, and it faces in the opposite direction to the direction of the bike traffic. Which is just cheeky. So just put up some fucking signs near that fence already, there's poles already there, it can't be that hard.

To the NS: Pleeeeeeeeease stop fucking using such goddamn short trains on my route. Besides the commuters we have going to Amsterdam, we stop at Schiphol, where a bazillion travellers with their bazillion bags get on. 4 carriages is a fucking joke. 4 carriages is hardly a train. I know, you've probably taken a chunk of the train that used to be used for my route and given it to some other new route that's opened, but I want it back. I'm tired of fighting for foot space across from some too-tall Dutch guy. Or Monster Dutch Woman. Or tourist who shoves their suitcase in between us. And I know, I should be happy I even have a seat, but this is a downgrade, not an improvement.

October 16, 2009

Open Monumentendag

For this year's Open Monumentendag in September (which I don't really remember being aware of before, though it's a national thing) I went with some people around to some of the historic buildings in Leiden. It was great, sort of like playing tourist in your own city and getting to see places you normally never would be able to go into, including some private homes. I finally put some of the photos I took online.

October 10, 2009

The party ferry

A few hours after I arrived on the Croatian island of Vis, I was sitting along the waterfront in a little park-like area shaded by palm trees, enjoying some lunch and catching up in my journal. After awhile a whole group of people carrying musical instruments came walking past. I would say they were a high school band, except some of the people were way too old to be in school. They were gathering to board the ferry which was soon about to leave to go back to Split. Once the ferry was open for boarding, members of the band went up to the topmost deck and started playing songs. At first it was just one or two trumpets and some drums, but later more and more of the band joined in.

People both on the ferry and on shore were definitely enjoying the impromptu entertainment. A somewhat strange barefoot older woman was hanging around and dancing. I managed to catch a bit of her dancing before she headed back into the town.

By the time the ferry left, the band had a strong and enthusiastic audience. The people on the ship were clapping and dancing, making it seem more like a party cruise than just the regular ferry back to the mainland. For those of us on shore, we stayed around until the ferry had turned out of view and the sounds of the band had fully faded. I wonder for how much of the 2 1/2 hour trip the band played.

October 4, 2009

Decemberists video

I came across this the other day from a Decemberists show last year in Seattle. A onstage perspective of Colin and John singing Raincoat Song. I can't wait to see them again, though I'm not sure there'll be antics like this at Crossing Border.

I have no idea why someone is on the corner of the stage signing the lyrics.

And even though this song is a few years old, I'm just falling in love with it now. A very good song for the fall.