Friday, January 27

Oh no oh no oh no oh no

Just found out that one of the nicest guys from work may have either acute leukemia OR a very serious and exotic viral infection. He has a 7 year old girl and two 3-year old twins that are just adorable. Will find out on Monday, and it's horrible to wait that long. At this stage, I am hoping and begging for an acute, serious, exotic viral infection. Oh please oh please oh please.

He called me this morning, right after I had sent an email asking them all to come celebrate my birthday. I wrote my usual phrase, "Turns out, we all get old(er) and eventually, die. " AARGH.

He first asked about how was my australia day. And then told me his news. Oh no oh no oh no oh no.

I guess one of the things in becoming an adult (?!) is that you face the prospect of death and disease more frequently than you would love to (never). I just hope to wake up Monday and see it was an infection. Oh please oh please oh please.

Wednesday, January 25


Really have a sense of humor. Or maybe south australians really have a sense of humor. In SA and I think throughout Australia, you can customize the number plates on your car. And of course, while you get the occasional ANDY 032 or whatever, some of those I see are priceless. Sometimes, I even have the phone with me, to take pictures.

You gotta love this one

Well, at least he is not a fan of "The Young and The Restlees"!

Definitely a surprise there!

Guess the race!

A little bit of irony, as queenslanders are considered a bit of rednecks around here

And of course, just in case you forgot what make your car is...

Friday, January 20

Australians have a sense of humor

They DO! And it shows in many many places (see my next post), but where it shows unexpectedly is in the name of various products.

Like the diesel ether-based engine starter spray called:

Or the anti-possum spray to be sprayed on various plants (including chilies - this is how i found out about it)

Tuesday, January 17

One picture Tuesday

Just got back from the grampians (trip report to follow). Among many other things, we climbed for 10 hours on Saturday. Felt like this lizard on a rock and totally loved it.

This little bugger spent about two hours with us, before leaving to take care of its own business. Life is good.

Saturday, January 14

Loving it in the grampians

Decided to take the weekend off and go bouldering in the grampians. This is despite the numerous deadlines and stuff, but I reckoned I needed to get the Motherfucker out of my system. It is amazing that a week and a half has passed and he hasn't said anything to me... Coward!

Anyway, loving it in the grampians! Sent a v2, v3, and 2 v5-s - the grade itself doesn't matter, but the routes were beautiful!

Wednesday, January 11

The three second brain

I can't remember where I shared my new year's (climbing) resolution. Was it here? was it on facebook? Or did I twit it to my three other halves? Or whatsapp with only one of them? Did I talk about the latest book I've read at a dinner party? Or was it on goodreads? Was I able to say something convincing about it or just blab: "it was so cool! by this author whose name I can't remember, let me google him"

When did I have a good, significant, important thought? It was definitely last year, because I've spent this whole year getting over how it started*. And if it was last year, where in god's name did I share it? And what was it?

Have I always been like this? Or is it just stress? Or still shock? (Motherfucker, i am looking at you). More importantly, do I need (another) holiday? Welcome to the new year!

*I am still not over it, Motherfucker. May your balls drop off you like the coward that you are.

PS. T. and I made it to the forums! Motherfucker complained about us! Here's the whole story! (Guess who fatclimber is, hahaha)

Tuesday, January 10

One picture Tuesday

Last night T. wanted to talk to F., to get closure or make up. Although I knew that this was the worst possible thing ever, I drove him to F.'s place. This makes me partly responsible for whatever extra pain T. is going to get from this relationship. Because I am absolutely convinced that, while apparently T.'s love knows no bounds, F. is just a motherfucker. And also, the pain is only going to go up - I should know, I was driven or drove myself many times.

Here's to better things in life.

Saturday, January 7

The irony

The route that generated all the batshit craziness was called "Sincerity".

Friday, January 6

Life is much better ...

Than the movies. Or, "A series of unfortunate events".

I met my colleague (F.) and his partner in the Blue Mountains, to climb. I was incredibly psyched by this trip, because as most people would know, I am a wuss when it comes to leading, and as such I really needed the practice. My colleague's partner (let's call him T.), is a very good climber, at least by my standard (not very high, but still). He also weighs 54 kg and is about 1.75+ meters tall. Hence, he has everything going for him. Damn! F. on the other hand, outweighs him by 28kg, and I guess all those 28 kgs are muscle - you will see soon why I'm talking weights here.

You may remember F. as my new-found beginner climber. I do enjoy introducing people to climbing, and I always say that if somebody long ago took the trouble to show me how to climb, I should do the same for other people. Anyway, F. had everything going for him, being a colleague and very fit and also, from a latin american country - can practice my Spanish!

And so we met on the first of January. We climbed a bit then and everything seemed to be going smoothly. I had my first lead with a very bouldery start. The feeling between the three of us seemed to be quite cool and it looked like we were going to have a blast.

And then we got to the campsite and realized that one of the tents (a 2-person tent), in which I was supposed to sleep, got stolen. And so, suddenly the three of us were sharing a 4 person tent. Not bad, plenty of space, but definitely and invasion from my part on their privacy. Damn!

The second day went by just fine, with all of us, especially F., being a bit more grumpy. The plan was for F. to climb as many routes as possible on the third day, and for T. and I to do a 10 pitch sports climb (FIVE STARS in the guide book, 345 m!!!!!!) on the fourth day, and then leave on the fifth day.

In the third day, we climbed some cracks (I do hate them), and then T. decided he was going to climb this face that only had bolts in it but the bolts had no bolt hangers. Normally nowadays people buy the bolt hangers and put them in, but in times of emergency it always works if you tie a sling with a crab. Anyway, the route was very easy (an australian 13, which is like a 4b, 6a if we count how hard the routes in the blue mountains are) and T. started climbing it. While he was climbing, we were talking cock about how he shouldn't fall in case the bolts are rusty and he will fall on us and die etc. Anyway, he climbs the route and puts a top rope on the anchor (two rings with a chain between them). I lower him down.

F. starts to yell at him that the route was not safe and that T. should not have climbed it etc. I tell him to relax cause T. was safe all the time. At which point he tells me in a very agressive manner to "Shut the fuck up". I move away from the area because I want to give them some space to let it all out. They continue to argue and then F. slaps T. over the head (thank god for helmets). At this point F. starts to pack his stuff up and leaves us with all the gear.
This leaving thing will continue throughout the day. As he is leaving, he tells me that "the trip is over" and that "he will leave stuff at the camp for us".

T. and I are shaken by the whole affair and spend about an hour at the base of the wall. I then clean up the route and we proceed the looong trek to camp. Seven kilometers from the parking lot, and about 2 km from the crag to the parking lot. Full gear on for the both of us, as F. left us everything. After trekking for a while, and almost reaching the gas station that was 5km from camp, F. drives past and asks us if we want to take our laptops from the car. He gives us two options, he literally says: "you have two options, either take them now, or I leave them in the tent". Seeing how stuff got stolen, we decide to take the laptops out of the car.

Eventually we reach camp. He had left everything. Literally T. and I were left to somehow carry 60kg of stuff to Adelaide, 1,300 km from the blue mountains. The stuff he left included a four person tent, stove and pots, clothes, books I had lent him three months earlier and where somehow in the car. He left no food, but we had four granola bars, a bag of banana chips, a small parcel of almonds. I had 28% left on my phone battery. And we had absolutely no idea how to get back to Adelaide.

But we did get back. The next day we packed everything. I still don't know how it fit. It didn't actually fit all, but my backpack was 70l and it could take a lot. Thank god for that.

We still had three extra bags between us, which weighed 3, 6, and 9 respectively. A climber (may he climb 8c!!) offered to drive us to the train station, thus saving us the 5 km trek. From there we took the train to Sydney. We tried to get a train to Adelaide, but for that you need one month prior booking. The guy at the ticket office actually laughed at us: "where do you think you're going?!" In the end we bought a plane ticket for the next day at 6am. We sort of walked around Sydney looking for food. We spent the night in a McDonald's near the airport and arrived in Adelaide yesterday. Our checked-in bags weighed 29 and 27 kg respectively. It is not much if you don't have to carry it, I guess.

I am still incredibly shaken by all this and trying to process it in any way I can - hence this blog post. What I forgot to say is that F. even called T.'s family in the states, to tell them that T. is doing risky dangerous stuff. Imagine, getting a call like that in the middle of the night.

Motherfucker. Sleezeball. Asshole. Bastard..
I have never felt that i will totally erase somebody from my memory, like I feel now.