March 6th, 2005


Stuff happening in Wellington!

Yesterday they were building a film set down by Red Rocks. It's the first one I've seen and gave me an insight into how much planning goes into such things. They had built a swing-bridge coming off the quarry face (well, half of one - the other end was all scaffolding) and were using a cherry picker to set up lights and stuff on it. There was a fire engine and a large tanker which we presumed were going to be used to make it rain. There were two Britz campers (full of famous people?) and various vehicles of support and construction, along with a crew of about 30 people working on building. All for what will probably be a 30 second sequence. There were also the obligatory shirtless men.

Also, there was an oil spill in Ngaio Gorge last night. The tank at the bottom of the gorge had ruptured and when I got there the place was swarming with police, firemen and other types who looked happy to have a change from busting people for drunk driving. The road was blocked at both ends and I had to sweet talk the coppers into letting me through so I could go home. I haven't been down yet today to see what the result was, but they told me they were expecting it to collapse completely.

Not bad for a wee backwater where nothing ever happens..

Something odd

So we're at training, and we're doing this drill which is all about practicing setting up for a hip throw (the name of which escapes me but probably has at least four syllables and ends in 'ee'). The deal was, you were supposed to stop short of throwing your partner while they were balanced on their stomach across the back of your hips. Cool.

So I'm practicing with my well-chosen lightweight uke, he's balancing away up there in an easily-carried fashion, and along comes Mike and adds himself to the pile. Mike is Russian and chunky and probably weighs around 100kg. And I didn't notice him do it. I didn't know he -had- done it until my uke told me. I simply did.not.feel.his.weight. Uke did but that's a whole other story.

Apparently aikido is supposed to be effortless. I didn't realise that it meant carrying 160kg of manflesh on your back effortlessly, but I'll take what I can get. ;-)

I saw The Aviator. Howard Hughes was brilliant and very disturbed. Tell me something I didn't already know. Good flick though, with a cool cameo by Gwen Stefani. I enjoyed it.
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