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Friday, February 25, 2005

Lots and lots of Diving

I was on a Liveaboard trip during the last 4 days. We did 4 dives a day! First we went up to the Similan Islands where we stayed the first two days. During the afternoon of the 2nd day we went north to Koh Bon. There we did two dives and on the first dive we saw a Manta Ray!!!! On the second dive we were waiting at the edge of the island in hope of seeing another Manta, but no luck. The third day started at Koh Tachai with an early morning dive (7am), afterwards we continued north to Richelieu Rock. The diving there was fantastic, the visibility was 40 meters and there were millions of fish around. I felt like in an Aquarium, there were fishes everywhere I looked... On the last day we returned to Koh Bon, but unfortunately no Mantas were around...
Overall it was a fantastic trip and I'm looking forwards to more diving in the next week.

Sunday, February 20, 2005

A very long day is not yet finished

I took full advantage of the in-flight on-demand-movies. There was a choice of 60 different titles, I watched:

  1. The Final Cut: an interesting Sci-Fi-Thriller with Robin Williams

  2. Sky Captain and the world of tomorrow: a Sci-Fi-Fantasz where the story is set in the year 1940

  3. Sideways: A multiple Oscar-Nominee was very entertaining

  4. Ladder 49: A good Firefighter-Action-Movie.

  5. The New Police Story: A brandnew Jackie Chan film which orients itself a bit more on the classic Jackie Movies, that means more Action than Comedy, but still extremely fun to watch, especially because Jackie is still "as mad as a Hatter"

I have to add to this that I, of course didn't find the time to sleep...

The connection flight to Phuket was uneventfull, I tried to sleep a little but without success...

At Phuket Airport I let myself talk into taking a cab instead of a minibus, which would have been significantly cheaper, however, the taxi brought me directly to the location of the dive-center... or where the dive-center was supposed to be....

I was quite shocked, when I walked the final meters to the dive-shop to find an empty window... the neighours, didn't know either where they moved. Since I knew from last time, that the dive-shops are a very close-knitted group, they surely would know where they went...

The next shop didn't open till 11am, but I remembered seeing a divecenter in the road below this one and so I went there. And they did know where Ocean Lovers moved, so they gave me a descritpion of the way there, unfortunately, because of the burning heat and me wearing jeans and a t-shirt and an undershirt, I got a bit confused and turned at the second traffic light left, instead of walking past... Another dive-shop was fortunately located in this street and they confirmed my guess of the right way. She did mention that it was quite a long way. Nevertheless I started walking, however, after the 3 turn, it was going up-/downhill constantly and took a cab for the last stretch.

Finally at the office there was some small talk and I mentioned, that I'd like to do a "refresher"-dive to get back into using equipment etc. Simon then told me, that two swiss girls, who would come along on the Liveaboard as well, were doing just such a dive this afternoon... since I was feeling ok I decided to tag along, and so it happened, that after Lunch I had 10 minutes to check-in and gather my diving equipment (e.g. camera).

The dive wasn't spectacular, the visibility was quite bad, only two to three metres with lots of plankton in the way. However, it served its target by getting us a feeling again for diving and how to operate camera etc.

After this everyone was pretty well knackered and I went to my room to get a refreshing shower, but there was no running water in the bathroom, a short trip to the reception and 15 minutes of waiting cleared the problem.

Since I had quite a lot of time till Cyrille was supposed to arrive, I first went to Kata to buy essentials (Aloe Vera, the best thing against sunburn and beach shoes).

Time was still left so I decided to check the shops at Karon, wich was close. I then saw that there was not much to see, there were a lot of hotels and a construction going on. So I crossed the street and walked along almost all of Karon Beach. And then I walked back along the road to see what was around. It took me 1.5 hours...

and now I'm sitting here, tiping this sentence and killing time...
... after 30 hours without sleep...


Saturday, February 19, 2005

Singapore Airport

I'm currently at Singapore Airport and wait for my connection-flight to Phuket.

A short breakdown of what happenend throughout last week:

Tusday: A reading by Christian von Aster at the Boschbar in Zuerich, the main topic were Sci-Fi, Vampire and Satirical Stories. The place was packed and people even had to stand at the back, it was extremly well received.

Wednesday: Another reading by Christian von Aster, again at the Herzbaracke in Zuerich. This time it wasn't sold out, but still well filled... The main aspect were stories with hidden meanings and word-plays.

Thursday: Early morning a physics exam... I'm not that confident about it, but from the feedback from my fellow students I gather I'd be placed somewhere in the middle... Afterwards a Presentation in English about the technical side of Scuba Diving, mainly Equipment used. This one went very well...

Friday: A concert at the Grabenhalle in St. Gallen. 4 bands played, Labia was the third to perform. There were about 250 people present, unfortunately, by the time Labia performed (close to midnight) a lot of people left to catch the last train...
Labias performance however, was well received by the attending crowd. They focused more on their newer songs, than on the old favourites.

Saturday noon: Plane from Zurich to Singapore. More on that subject later...

Tuesday, February 15, 2005

Christian von Aster's Readings - Part 1

On Friday was the first reading of Christian von Aster's current "Tour de Suisse". It took place in the Herzbaracke at the Bellevue in Z├╝rich. The Herzbaracke is a fantastic location, it is a small houseboat decorated with dozens of things, which on its own would be kitsch, but together it leaves the feeling of having entered a world of fairy-tales. The audience was completely different from Christian's prior readings. A lot of older people were present. The reading, fortunately, was sold out and very well received. Inspired by the surroundings Christian included a couple of fairy stories, whilst his main focus lay on time-critical satire. Some people were smiling discretely, whilst others laughed out loud. I'm curious how the reading on Wednesday will work...

On Sunday, Christian was guest in Burgdorf, where he read the second part of his fairy-tale "Der Harem, der verschleierten Geschichten". The reading was accompanied by a fine meal, and each chapter was followed by a new course. The meal was delicious and the story mesmerizing, even though I had already read it a couple of months ago. The room was lit only by candle-light which emphasized the special mood of the evening perfectly. However, I had to leave early and missed the last too chapters. The reason for that is, because of the heavy snowfall during the day I decided to take the train, and my last connection left at 10.50 pm...
Nevertheless, it was worth the trip.

Saturday, February 05, 2005

Finally

After a long absence Labia returned to the stage. The first concert of this year took place in the "Kraftfeld" in Winterthur. The location was packed, especially during the concerts. Labia played a great gig, which was very well received by the audience. During the show they played three new songs which will be on the forthcoming EP. The new songs focus a bit more on melodies, they show the versatility of the band perfectly. That's what I like about them so much, the diversity of their songs. All in all, the concert was fantastic, I had a great time.
The second band of the evening was Backwash, they play old-school kick-ass rock n' roll. They had good songs and enthusiastic fans, however I was content with sitting at the back and relaxing a bit.

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