Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Duck Day

There are duck pictures today – but only one small duck is apparent. There were a whole bunch last week and two yesterday. They are either resting in the undergrowth or (more likely) have been eaten by something furry.

Cate got quite excited this morning when I put on a T shirt that wasn’t black. I told her that this was just a temporary aberration and was not the start of a trend.

I will be Back in Black in Krakow.

Merisi has told me how to insert a link that opens in a new browser page. (She is not just a world class duck eating photographer!). I shall give this a try. (But – you can do this yourself when you are browsing).

In fact – I regret to report that I will once again have to delve into HTML. I have agreed to look after the OzCon (Australian Connection) website in Wien so I have to re-learn those skills.

(Despite its name OzCon is not the name of John Howard and Peter Costello’s new company).

Oh – Sorry – SMACK – Ouch!

Years ago I was building websites using Dreamweaver but never got past kindergarten stage. The only websites I built from scratch were so bad that I had therapy so that I would forget the URLs and never see them again. These are probably now used as case studies:

“How a website should not look and function”

My specialty was losing pages (and occasionally the entire sites). Using FTP software I would download the page – build it or change it and then upload it. Sometimes it would vanish – and sometimes the entire site would vanish and take hours (or days) to recover. I wonder if I still have this particular skill.

Should I warn OzCon? Perhaps not – they would only fret.

So I am dusting off my Dreamweaver and HTML books ready for the fray. I have ordered a new book from Amazon as there is now something called CSS that I may need to know about. I am not looking forward to this.

I didn’t mention my birthday dinner. As Cate did not get back until 6.30 AM on Friday I did not know if she would be up to dinner – so did not book.

As it happens, she was so we went up to Landstrasser-Hauptstrasse to find a Japanese restaurant so that Melissa could have some Sushi.

We looked at a couple and chose the worst one (I assume it was the worst – it is difficult to imagine anything beating it). It was not a happy occasion and we got out as soon as we could and scuttled home to sulk.

The Water Heater has stopped squeaking. I turned the temperature down and this seems to have calmed it down.

The main reason we are going to Krakow is to go to Auschwitz. This is something we have both wanted to do for a long time. In recent times there have been many unhappy incidents in Germany and Austria perpetrated not just by neo-Nazis but by seemingly intelligent and rational people.

This incident was reported a few days ago:

“A group of students from Vienna has been thrown out of Auschwitz after they shouted Nazi insults during a tour of the death camp.The pupils from the Gymnasium Albertgasse in Vienna-Josefstadt said: "There must have been a reason why Jewish people were gassed" and "All Jews should simply be gassed" while a survivor of the camp, who guided the group on a day late April, looked on”.

This is by no means an isolated incident here – these types of things happen weekly – without much comment.

There is – I regret to say – a strong undercurrent of racism and anti-Semitism in Austria and it is not made any better by the activities and slogans of the right wing parties – who have an astonishing amount of support.

When students behave like this it makes you wonder. What do they get from their parents and teachers?

I may not get to Blog tomorrow because I can’t imagine that my Drei mobile Internet connection will work in Krakow – it barely works here. Therefore I have to bring you up to date on news:

“Terrified workmen called in police after they came face to face with a 1.3-metre long deadly snake.The two men had been working on in a forest in a power supply line in a wood near Mürzzuschlag, Styria when they spotted the snake in some grass.A vet, who rushed to the site after the workers called cops, identified the animal as an albino boa constrictor and took it away to be re-homed.”

Deadly? How can a 1.3 metre boa constrictor be deadly? At that size it would be struggling to deal with Muffin.


  1. I love the ducks! specially with dumplings and rotkraut! next time melissa comes to town go to a GOOD sushi place such as dots on mariahilferstrasse:
    Enjoy Krakow, and throw BB's blackberry out of the car window while driving... she needs a break!

  2. Ta - I was going to ask you about Sushi. I wish ducks weren't so delicious. If I take BBs BB away she will just talk non stop to me about you know who and you know who and you know who - and I will go Mad!

  3. Delightful duck photos spoiled by JH :(

    Sorry I raised html but must confess to some elementary experience myself. You're very brave(?) taking on the OzCon website. I explored the Blogger platform and couldn't see how you could act on my request, so I just have to "Control + click" to make a link open in a new tab. Sorry, probably too much information ... :(

    Lack of internet in Krakow, does that mean that the blackberry will have problems operating? That may give Cate a break :)

    Breaking News: I've just seen a great duckling rescue video on the SMH website:
    If it's not there anymore, search for "Spokane" + "duck rescue" + "video". You'll love it!

  4. There's a great little Vodka bar in Krakow. It's called Wodka and it serves Vodka. If you like Vodka, you should go there. It's at Mikolajska 5.

  5. Didn't get there - but we had some great Pouilly-Fumé.