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Year View| Summary| Highlights| Month View| Thursday 28 August 2003 (Day View)

28.08.2003Thursday 28 August

Pleurodesis Operation
This day, one year ago, I had my pleurodesis operation. I guess it’s gone well so far. My lung still hurts at times, and still worries me a little bit, and I still can’t talk or think about it for more than about five minutes at most before I start going a bit weird, but apart from that, I seem to be doing ok. I’m still too scared to do anything too physical, but I’ve done my fair share of running for trains and things now, with no ill effects. The main worrying thing is that I don’t think I’ve mentally gotten over it anymore than at the time, although I think I handled myself well.
Toothfish Pirates
Can you imagine Columbus or Cook reading the news, hearing that a fifty-metre boat was spotted by an unarmed Australian customs patrol around four thousand kilometres off the coast of Australia, practically in Antarctica, dodging icebergs, and a three week, six thousand eight hundred kilometre chase ensues through a mountainous, freezing ocean dotted with icebergs, with both boats sometimes less than a kilometre apart? The boat was eventually boarded in six-metre seas and forty kilometre winds by forty Australian troops on a South African navy vessel that had joined the chase a week ago, having fought their way through snowstorms, rough seas and treacherous icebergs while a British patrol vessel raced east from the Falklands to the interception point in the Roaring Forties. Why? The vessel was suspected of poaching Patagonian toothfish. Last year a similar sub-Antarctic chase ended after two weeks when Australian forces abseiled onto two Russian fishing vessels from a South African naval helicopter. The running costs of the Australian patrol boat are estimated at $35,000 a day. Amazing.
I slept in, but through the utilisation of specialised high-speed transportation techniques, commonly known as running, I managed to deposit what was left of me onto the train, and remove myself at the other end. The pleasant stroll down through the park was marred only by the impending destination, which promptly arrived. My first lecture occurred and no more need be said. Upon walking into my second lecture, I was informed that no one who knew basic HTML or had taken the “Internet Interface Design” course should attend the lecture, so I didn’t. I spent the next five hours, two practicals and a tutorial in a computer lab alternatively chatting on IRC, coding “Hello World” applications in various formats, reading web pages and shifting uncomfortably in my seat.
I entrained for my residual habitat, planning to get off at Woodridge and walk back via the shops but encountered an insufficient vigour exception and got off at my station instead.
Joe wanted scratchies, so I drove down to Woolworth’s, bought some much-needed sustenance – ice cream, cream, chocolate topping and such like, and drove back again, by which time Joe had made me dinner. Dinner resembled Noah’s Ark in vegetables – two of every known kind. I’m sure it was very healthy.
Comment by Michelle – Friday 29 August 2003, 11:53 AM
  For those of us who are non-Aussies (oh, the shame!!) what are scratchies? Do you mean just generic junk food/snack food, or are you referring to something else? BTW, here in North America, Patagonian toothfish is also known as Chilean sea bass, and is quite a delicacy. I never knew it was endangered and that Australia protected their resources so vigorously. Is 4000 KM away from the coast still considered Australian territorial waters?
Comment by Ned – Friday 29 August 2003, 1:28 PM
  “Scratchies” are a form of lotto gambling where you scratch off a panel or panels revealing something underneath. They’re generally formulated as some type of themed game, crossword of similar, and you usually win by displaying three of a kind, more than a specified amount of words and things like that. Australia, in case you weren’t aware, is the best country in the world, and, as you can see, fishing in our waters isn’t recommended :-) It was 4000 km’s from the mainland, but Australia claims most of Antarctica, and some small Antarctic islands – which is where the boat was spotted. We also have some of the strictest – some say draconian, immigration laws in the world, which a majority of Australian’s appear to support.

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