Saturday, 30 September 2006

Testbunny

I am a testbunny again and therefore haven't posted for a while. I am in a clinic since a week ago and am here till Friday. Not a clue what I am testing, as I never really care. I am just here to make some easy money. We all die some day, so why not risk a bit more (although I do not see this testing of medicines as very risky)?
Being here you do start to appreciate the simple things in life: open toiletblocks, decide for yourself how many slices of bread you will take, how much needles can hurt, and getting up when you want (or sometimes have to..).
It is fun here though as I can study, read my email and the newspaper, watch TV and DVDs, play pool or pingpong, play games and sleep. :-) You are being lived here though, as I have to eat at specific times, give blood, lie on the bed for an ECG, get my bloodpressure measured, and more stuff. The fact remains, that I make more than 100Euro/day here, so why not? :-)

PS: I haven't been sick or anything and only had to throw up during one study of the 10+ I have participated in.

Monday, 18 September 2006

Pictures

As you can see from the pictures I just posted, I love to take pictures of people when they are not aware that they are being photographed. It makes the pictures a lot more natural and real in my opinion. A friend of mine told me once: "Lily: a picture needs to hold a story in order to be good." I agree that for a lot of pictures, a story is needed to give an explanation or extra meaning/dimension, but pictures of people can just be beautiful by itself. In my humble opinion that is...

Himba woman. Posted by Picasa

Himba Unawareness. Posted by Picasa

Music in the Wind Posted by Picasa

Slovenian Unawareness. Posted by Picasa

Unaware Jaume. Posted by Picasa

Another sneaky one. Posted by Picasa

Just a sneaky-shot. Posted by Picasa

Just a nice picture of Borja. Posted by Picasa

Hockey season

My team is determined to end first in the competition this year and I have to say that we have some good chances for that. Unfortunately, we dropped some points yesterday, as we drew 2-2. Not the best of matches I agree, but my team got nerved by the referees and got rather frustrated. At a certain moment we even played with 9 for 5 minutes, so I am just happy that we drew 2-2, but it could and should have easily been 1-3 for us. Hope we will get some decent referees when we play them at the home match.

Questions

Usually you get the basic questions from people who don't know you very well. Like:"what do you do, how old are you, where do you come from, which music do you like, etc. Today I got a strange question from a far away friend. Did someone ever ask you:
"Aviane: are you a serial killer?"
To the ones who didn't know: No, I am not. Sorry.

Visitors

In general, I don't have many visitors over who also stay the night and come from abroad. Last weekend was an exception, as Christoph, my fellow board member during my ELSA Germany year, came to visit me here on Saturday and Sunday with his girlfriend. Was nice, as none of my former board members had visited me yet after the end of our year in August 2003. Not because they don't love me (well, they might not, but they never said that :-) ), but more because I am/was away often and live in a different country. All the other board members were (and are) Germans.
But it was fun to have someone over and I showed them the city and we made a tour to my part of the province where I originally come from. On Sunday they joined me to my hockey match and then went back to Eindhoven, where Christoph's girlfriend does her PhD. More visitors are always welcome...

Wednesday, 13 September 2006

Russian course

I am taking a Russian course at the university. For one, because it helps me to get into the election observer team of the foreign ministry. They see Russian as a huge asset and since I was not let in last time, I hope this helps and hearing from the ministry it hopefully will. Secondly, I would like to be able to understand, read and even speak a little the next time I am in Russia or the Ukraine. I know some very basic words and can read very little, but I hope this will change and for sure improve after a couple of weeks. The course is till December, so I still have a couple of months to learn it all, but it is much harder than I hoped and expected. For the writing I know mostly the print-letters and we use also the handwriting letters and it gets me confused quite a lot.
In the course some people take it because they have some free time, some need a language for their studies or have to fill up some free space in their curricullum and some have a girlfriend who speaks Russian. It is mostly men in the course though. Strange... :-)

Monday, 11 September 2006

Relocation

Cas is outside the normal round being transferred to the embassy in Pretoria, where he will start in November. He will become the new head of the Development department, so it is a step up from his current position. It is sad though that now the 4th person I worked with in Tirana is moving. Not many Dutch I know are still in Albania, as some already moved to Washington, Pretoria, Bamako and Belgrade. Only my Albanian friends are still in the country. I love the country and I got really attached to it during my work there, but there are less and less reasons to go again. Perhaps when the Netherlands plays against Albania during one the qualification matches of the EC...

Sunday, 10 September 2006

Video

I added some videos on my blog as you can see, but it is not to my satisfaction yet. My template is not wide enough to fit the videos in, so the sidebar moves way down the page (at least in my browser, please tell me if this happens with you as well). I might have to put another template on, as I cannot change the current one. I can make it wider, but the colours (the grey) don't move with it, so it wouldn't make sense.
I do hope you like the videos I put on though. So far they are from the field hockey camps I coached this summer in the USA. I opened a YouTube account and added some more on there. Too bad that the maximum size is 100MB, as the most funny videos are larger. :-(

 

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