Archive for November, 2007

Oops! Site Was Broke!

Tuesday, November 27th, 2007

I did something silly and disabled a crucial plugin, disabling the site for a few days. I have fixed it now, and thankfully it was something simple that occurred to me fairly quickly. Sorry for the inconvenience!

Speaking of inconvenient, I am having trouble with these Japanese keyboards. Not everything is quite where it should be, though it is close…

Tokyo Is Better Than Kyoto!

Monday, November 26th, 2007

This is for our two new great friends, Tsuji and Masa!

Guli wanted to stop at a particular bar / restaurant type place to have sushi for her birthday.  We went in, climbed upstairs, and sat down at the bar to Japanese menus.  Uska (?) gave us an English translation and recommended an item.  The guys at the end of the bar noticed we weren’t from around town and said hello.  One of the guys, Masa, had lived and worked in the states for 5 years and Tsuji had been there several times on business.  Tsuji really wanted to show us some of Japan in a way that we might not ordinarily see.  He’d been well treated in the US and wanted to return the favor to some other foreign travellers.  You could see in his eye that it truly came from his heart.  Sometimes you can worry someone is going to take advantage but they seemed very on the level.  Anyway, why wouldn’t you trust these guys?

Masa and Tsuji

We went out to this out of the way, tucked in down the street type place that was small but very inviting.  I’m not ordinarily a fan of anything uncooked but this place was truly incredible.  We were treated as honored guests and had great food and wonderful shochu (? – can’t vouch for a spelling there :) ) and great conversation, some of which was obvious to all parties involved, while most of it went through Masa the translator.

All of us

Well, it’s late and the full story must wait, but I really wanted to give Tsuji and Masa a shout out because they treated us grandly and we can’t say enough good things about them.  It truly was a wonderful evening and a special birthday for Guli that we will never forget.  And since they wanted us to go on our travels beleiving Tokyo to be better than Kyoto, I’m going to say that Kyoto is going to have a heck of an act to follow!

Tokyo is better than Kyoto! :)

Heading to Japan

Wednesday, November 21st, 2007

Well, it’s time to be off again! In a few hours we’ll go wheels up on our next vacation plans. The destination (I guess the title was kind of a spoiler, huh?) will be Japan. We’ll be based in Tokyo for a few days, seeing the town and surrounding areas, then head to see Mt. Fuji. From there we’ll move on down to Kyoto and use that as our hub for a few days, checking that area out as well as passing through Hiroshima. We might be slightly too late for the turning of the autumn leaves, but maybe we can still catch it photogenically. It’s great to be able to travel.

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Some Oz page updates

Friday, November 16th, 2007

I got to looking at some stuff and realized there were a few gaps in the Ozymandias information. Sometimes I wonder if I should spin that off into something of it’s own but for now I was content with just adding some stuff. I used to have another page on the old website, so long ago, with information on some of the pretend-Ozymandias folks on the net at the time. There were a whole lot less back then. Check out The Other Ozymandias with some details on what’s out there now, some of which is fairly surprising.

Ack! I just noticed that some of these pages are a lil’ off in Internet Explorer. I hate IE sometimes, on account of it sucks. I pretty much stick with Firefox, as it’s a much better browser.  I’ll try and work on cleaning that up here before too long.

Bridge collapses in Dubai marina

Friday, November 9th, 2007

A bridge under construction has collapsed in Dubai, killing seven workers and injuring 15, police said.

The bridge was being built in Dubai Marina, a new development in the United Arab Emirates city which is a regional business and tourism hub.

A large number of ambulances were driving to the scene of the accident.

Dubai’s economy has boomed in recent years, fuelled largely by a construction industry reliant on low-paid workers, many from South Asia.

More than 40 labourers were working on the bridge at the time of the collapse, police said.

This is a shame. You have sooo much construction going on in Dubai and such poor standards that things like this happen far too often. Add in the fact that the workers often get paid late or not at all, and precious little in the first place while paying an agent an exorbitant fee to get them a visa and a job in the first place. Then they find that they don’t get paid what they were told and owe a hefty sum while the contractor holds their passport, so even if they could scrape up the money they couldn’t leave.

Dubai has many things going for it, but humane treatment of the workers building it sure isn’t one of them.

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