Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Here are a few things that have happened over the past couple of days - in no fixed order - keeping in line with the non-linear time I seem to be in right now

ADR for 'Eruption' : Went well
HP8 - Carlton Gore: Disappointing
Nightmares/Sleepless nights: Frustrating
Random catchups with Amarbir & Sapna: Random
Gear Shopping for April Trip: Exciting
Statelessness: Annoying
2 scripts in mail box to read: Excited but afraid
The Wolfman: Frustrating

Thats me for now
Amit

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Sunday, February 14, 2010

Fragile

I spent the entire weekend in bed fighting off a fever. Not the best way to spend the weekend. On top of that next weekend's Tongariro walk trip has been called off because Kit and Kelly can't do the weekend because of personal reasons. The only thing you can do when you are in bed is contemplate and I have to say it hasn't been the best of times doing that. My current state of affairs overall induces massive stomach churning and heart ache - even writing that right now gave made me think about things.

To distract myself - I started reading and finished 'Sun After Dark' by Pico Iyer and it was an insightful read. I also managed to finish reading the rest of 'Testosterone Planet' and different stories evoked different reactions but all in all it made me want to travel. April-end can't come soon enough.

Still feeling very fragile but I am hoping that a good night's sleep will have me ready for what tomorrow holds.

Later,
Amit

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Sunday, February 07, 2010

Teaser, Armed Cops & Sichuan

Crazy week!!! This whole week I've been pre-occupied with conceiving and then editing the teaser trailer for 'The Moments In Between'. I finally managed to finish editing it today and here is the trailer for your consideration.



Besides that we had a crazy morning on Friday when one of our flatmates had to call in the cops because she heard someone in our house. There did turn out to be a man in our house and he had armed himself with our kitchen knives. Quick action by the police meant that the intruder was quickly subdued without anyone getting harmed. The incident in detail would make for a whole post {it was about 4 and half pages of writing when one of the cops took our statements about the incident} but that would be sensationalism. The long and short of the story is that pepper spray is nasty stuff and the landlord is getting a second set of front door locks put in.

Last night went to dinner at HP8 {49, Nuffield Street, Newmarket} with Benji, Shuzhen {Benji's girl friend}, Vicky & Vincent {Shuzhen's friends} & Lance. It was an amazing Sichuan meal and it works out very reasonable when you share the dinner amongst many. All the dishes were great but my firm favorite is Spicy Sichuan Fragrant Eggplant. Most of the dishes were not that spicy accounting for various tastes of the group but I did manage to convince Benji & Lance to try Dan-Dan noodles along with me. It was the spicest dish we had and Benji couldn't finish his bowl and also said that he is not going to let me talk him into trying any of my recommended dishes in the future :-). Well worth the visit.

Sichuan dishes

Trying another awesome dish

Vicky & Vincent

Benji & Shuzhen

Lance enjoying a beer to ease off his Dan-Dan noodles

Benji & Me

Shuzhen & Vicky

Me finishing off a bowl of Dan-Dan noodles

That's me for now.
Later,
Amit

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Saturday, January 02, 2010

Resolutions

A New Year is a time for resolutions and I'm usually pretty good at keeping them. 'Memories of Tomorrow' started as a new year resolution in 2004. I just did a quick search on the interwebs and found this article. Out of the top 3 resolutions that people make - I am going in the opposite direction on 2 of them {while the third one is invalid as I don't smoke and I don't intend on taking up smoking}.

1) I don't want to loose weight. I am happy with my weight. My resolution though is to loose more body fat %age. Last year my aim was to get it down to 15% by the end of the year and I achieved it. This year the target is to get it down to between 8-10% - which automatically leads to the next resolution.
2) I don't want to exercise more. I 've infact reworked my fitness schedule so I'll be spending half the time that I spent at the gym last year. The key is increasing the intensity in the 1 hour at the gym, so I'm not overtraining myself - which leads to more injuries and muscle loss and is also detrimental to health in the long run. I'm also cutting down the active workout days from 6 to 4.

And the last resolution for 2010 that is not fitness related is to finish off 'The Moments In Between' by August 2010. Voila!!!!

That's me for now,
Amit

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Friday, January 01, 2010

I'm good, Thank you.

People who wish me 'Happy New Year', in person, must think I am a retard {sorry correction - mentally challenged} or something. I'm usually so startled by that unfamiliar phrase that I end up looking blank and after a minute I leave the person confounded by saying 'I'm good, Thank you.'

Why am I startled? I don't know - maybe because I've been working through the holidays {to save up for my Borneo trip} and for me - today is just another day. I'll eventually get used to the greeting and will probably start saying it as well out of courtesy in following social norms but it's still a pretty bizarre phrase to me right now. I am not mentally challenged - I am just stunned. Like I said 'I'm good, thank you.'

Here's to a great 2010.
Amit

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Friday, November 20, 2009

Transition

Transition is permanent and I am caught up in it's tides.
Nothing seems permanent,
except for each moment that ticks by.
A speck of dust in this cosmos,
so insignificant and so adrift
moving away from everything
like the stars in the crying sky.

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Friday, November 13, 2009

Space

A very small and quick update. I am fine. The journey was long but uneventful. I love Hong Kong airport. Watched 'The Brothers Bloom' and '500 Days of Summer' on the flight from HK to Auckland and slept for the rest of it. The girl sitting next to me was fun to talk to. It took a day for me to get over the jet lag and just getting used to the space and the order in NZ. First day at work was cool - just slipping back into the thick of things. First day at the gym was hard work and could only manage 30 minutes of cardio and I definitely need to work harder to even get back to the fitness levels before this trip.

That's me for now.
Amit

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Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Netbook

Netbook - yeah - I am actually writing something called a netbook. If you are reading this blog then you obviously know what a net book is but incase you don't then - in simple terms, netbook is a poor man's laptop used primarily for light work while on the move. Laptops tend to be grunty beasts with the battery life lasting you a good 2-3 hours before they fizzle out and then there is the matter of weight - they are heavy bastards -weighing anywhere upwards on 3KG's. Netbooks on the other hand have a small screen - meaning smaller body and they tend to use non-energy intensive processor which aren't as powerful as fullspeced laptops - which in turn means that your average battery life would be anywhere between 7-10 hours depending on what you are using the netbook for. And the best thing about them - they weigh under 1.5 KG which means you can carry it in your bag without bothering too much about developing a right leaning shoulder. To read more about netbooks - click here.

Anyway the reason I am writing about netbooks is that with the upcoming trip to India where I am away for a month and a half I was tossing up with the idea of lugging my faithful old Precision M60 around with me but somehow it didn't feel right. One of the reasons being that it is pretty heavy to carry around and second I am using it right now to edit 'The Moments In Between' and I would hate for anything to happen to it which would prevent me from completing the movie. So I started looking at netbooks with the main purpose being so that I could work on stuff {including working on my assignments for the business leadership course} while I am away without having to rely on someone else's system and also to use it for keeping in touch while travelling. So after weighing up the pros and cons and financial status I decided that the wisest thing to do would be to buy a netbook.

After a fair bit of research I narrowed down to ASUS 1005HA and Samsung NC10 - I veered towards Samsung because it had a non-gloss screen and as I was about to buy online {Samsung doesn't sell netbooks in NZ for some weird reason} I found that they had just released an improved version of NC10 called the N140, so I went ahead and bought it. Another week and it should be here - just in time for my upcoming journey. I could have bought it in Hong Kong but they apparently sell only netbooks loaded with the chinese version of Windows - which would have become a slight issue in the overall scheme of things. :-)

So here is fingers crossed that it comes through quickly.
Later,
Amit

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Friday, August 28, 2009

Meltdown

Went out for a quiet dinner with Benji & Lance at an underground Korean BBQ place on Queen Street last night. It was a great eating experience and is highly recommended mainly because the BBQ is not gas run but by wood/charcoal - which gives it a different flavour. The 3 of us were the only non-koreans there and it looks like 'white' Aucklanders really haven't found this place yet. We followed up the dinner with a beer at the Belgian Beer Cafe on Vulcan lane - it was a mildly disappointing experience as their standards seem to have dipped slightly. We ended the night pretty early because I had work this morning. All in all an enjoyable night and thanks to everyone who called or emailed me their wishes - I do feel connected and alive.

Lance drinking sake while Benji cooks some meat on the BBQ

Last pickings..3 happy amigos after the meal

Sake does strange things to you

Quiet dinner

Me feeling contemplative

The Casual Dining Bar

Intersection

Empty Car Park Building

Lance trying his best gigolo impression - Benji ain't interested

Connected

A bar on Vulcan Lane

The drive back home

As far as the meltdown is concerned - it looks like it's gonna happen sometime within a year if things don't go my way with a fair few things I am involved in right now. My nightmares reflect the reality of my situation and that in itself is a worrying sign. Doing a fair assessment on how things play out with me - nothing is had easily and I always have to fight for everything, especially since not many people believe in my capabilities. My self-belief combined with stubbornness and lots of support from the family is why I am where I am today. It takes it's toll and there are times you start questioning your own belief system which inevitably leads to existential/identity crisis and I feel like I am hanging by a thread over that chasm. Hopefully I can claw my way back up. I know I am lucky to be in the place where I am but we humans never got anywhere by being content with what we have. There is always scope for improvement and there is always that elusive dream that you are chasing.

That's me for now,
Amit

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Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Moments

Good chunk of my free time over the last couple of days has gone into planning workshops and shoot days/dates for 'The Moments In Between'. We had one workshop on Monday and aiming to have another 3 workshops by the end of Sunday with the aim of shooting 3 scenes by the end of this month. The aim for next month is to film atleast 6-7 scenes and the rest we film once I come back from my trip to India. Busy times!!!

In other minor tidbits - I walked down 3 days in a row to Britomart but no hot dog vendor which was slightly disappointing - I really want to try the hugarian crepe; I finally got the filters {a UV filter and a CPL filter} and LCD screen protector and an extra battery and SD card for my LX3 - so the kit is complete for now and I just need to save up to buy a wide angle lens; a surreal moment was having dinner with Kelly at the Albert Street Food court and everyone had shut their shops while we were still having dinner and we were the last ones there even though it was only like 9.30 PM.

It's going to be a very long day at work and I better get prepared for it.
Later,
Amit

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Sunday, August 09, 2009

Hot Dogs

A walk through Queen Street can sometimes throw some pleasant surprises like yesterday I chanced across this hot dog vendor right across Britomart station. I had a hot dog with hungarian sausage and it was fantastic - very nice taste. I went there again with Benji earlier this afternoon but the guys hadn't set up the stall today. I really wanna try some hungarian crepes there. Highly recommended if you are around the city. I personally think that Auckland needs more roadside eating joints like this where you can grab a quick and cheap bite that's also tasty and interesting. The roadside stalls generate an experience and a vibe and add to the atmosphere of the city which money can't buy, so hopefully the Auckland City council recognizes the fact and gives permission to more road side stalls to be setup.

The roadside 'Hot Dog & Crepe' stand

Drew - one of the actors in 'The Moments In Between' and also the producer of 'Bollocks' asked me if I wanted to take some publicity shots for the play on my new camera and I happily agreed as it gave me a chance to play with some more settings [especially in low light and a tight location] and also because I like helping out people who are helping me out - it is a 2 way street. I ended up watching the play again since Drew offered a free seat to me and I enjoyed it the second time around as well even though it was a different experience watching it on a closing night.

The cast of 'Bollocks' on set

On closing note - I just came across this article about Sleep Paralysis that explains one of the experiences I had during my school days when I was living in Delhi [this must've been 14-15 years ago]. I can honestly testify that it is truly terrifying experience and hard to put the fear into words and can only be measured by the fact that I can still remember that incident so clearly. Thankfully it hasn't reoccured since.

That's me for now,
Amit

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Saturday, August 08, 2009

Anticipation

October can't come soon enough - I am waiting in nervous excitement for the trip to Hong Kong and then India. I don't know if I mentioned it earlier but I had to curtail the Mumbai leg of the journey because the indian film market is feeling the impact of recession as well and the financiers and producers have tightened up their purses. In such a scenario the most sensible thing was to cut the loss and make the best of the remaining time there, so I will be spending a month with my parents in Hyderabad - which would be equivalent to the total time I spent over the past 2 trips to India over a 6 year time frame and needless to say I am excited.

Those who are close to me know that I've been working as many extra days as I can get at work, so I can save up for next year's planned trip. I hate not earning money and worse still taking a holiday when I am not earning anything, so working extra circumnavigates the problem. At this point I am planning on doing an intrepid journey in Borneo and then with air fares permitting do a stop over in Hyderabad before going to visit my sister, Veni in Vegas, since it's been 4 years since I last saw her and I've never met Sandy, her husband, in person yet - which I am pretty ashamed about [I couldn't go to their marriage because of work related issues when I was teaching at South Seas Film School]. If the tickets end up being too expensive then I might have to do a trip to India in the later part of 2010 and just do the Borneo-US trip in early-mid 2010.

When you are in New Zealand, you are pretty insulated from rest of the world because of the distance but it also means travelling anywhere is such a big undertaking and it is pretty expensive. Now I can see why so many young kiwis are so insistent on taking their OE {Overseas Experience} where they travel and work in different countries - I think it is a mixed blessing because we end up with a generation who are more enlightened about the world around them but at the same time I think it creates a disparity of a different kind, which I am not even going to start speaking about in this post.

A street artist painting a portrait

That's not to say that travel is the only thing I am excited about - I am also excited about 'The Moments In Between' because I think it is a special project and we have a lot of work to do to finish it off but it definitely will be something special. I am excited about my job at TVNZ - with constant job enrichment process taking place with support from my bosses and the hours definitely give me the freedom to carry on my film making pursuits. The only thing I am not really excited about is my personal life because it is non-existent (so much for work-life balance...heheheheeee). But overall more positives than negatives, so I am pretty happy with the way things are progressing.

The TVNZ building

In anticipation,
Amit

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Friday, July 24, 2009

Chocolates & Smoke

Lights, Smoke & Apartments

A new shop that opened recently near Queen Street - there was only guy in that shop and he was behind the counter. Women love chocolate or what?

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Friday, July 17, 2009

The Chaser

The flatmate hunt is not going as well as we would like and since the lease is in Lance's name and mine - we'll be shelling out more money to cover the empty room's rent. I guess the only good thing that comes out of flatmate hunting is that you meet some really interesting people and some weird ones as well. Fingers crossed that we find someone soon.

SDGNZ had some free passes to give away to their members on first come first served basis and I managed to be quick off the mark and scored myself a free ticket to 'Disgrace' - one of the movies on my original list of 12 - that I had culled out to save on money. Wohoooooooo....I love free movie screenings - especially at an event like NZ Film Festival.' The Chaser' turned out to be fantastic experience. The movie becomes a little long at the end as they try and finish tying up all the story threads but even then it is a taut thriller which keeps the twists and turns coming while keeping you engrossed with the characters.

TVNZ gave everyone involved with appearing in the TVNZ7 Idents a $100 gift card to say thank you and I promptly went and bought a Outdoor Research Trio jacket with the money. It was at 50% off it's normal price and it meant that I got a real good deal with this one - as the jacket is an all-in-one mountain/all condition protection jacket with an outer rainproof shell and an inner insulation jacket - essentially 2 jackets in one that's good for tramping or any adventure sports where you are exposed to extreme weather conditions. I figured that with the consistently rainy weather we have in Auckland - it would be wise to invest in a rain jacket plus I would've needed it for my next year's Borneo trip because it tends to rain a lot in Borneo {because of the rain forests}. So yeah - I'm very happy with the purchase.

In other news - I'll be doing a National Certificate in Business (First Line Management) from August through TVNZ, my employer. Needless to say I am thrilled and excited because it is an opportunity for me to upskill and have more practical skill sets which are sure to come in handy with the changing technology and practises at the company. It is an ongoing training spread over 8 months or so and it'll be good because I can try and implement whatever skills I pick up back into work.

Thats me for now,
Amit

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Sunday, July 12, 2009

Sleepless Pain

I hope I am not becoming an insomniac because I had a terrible sleep last night and I woke up with a painful left shoulder - obviously from sleeping in an awkward position. My misery was compounded by the fact that Lance forgot to close his room window {before he went to Thailand}- which meant the storm like conditions and wind in his room were trying to pry open his locked room door and that created a constant low level banging that I could hear all night. I'll probably do something about that later tonight but the end result of last night is that I feel like I've been run over by a truck or something.

Last night was random - almost got run over by a stupid (and I mean a special kind of stupid -especially when he had a very close shave with 2 cars at the same intersection) tourist jumping a red light in their camper van; bumped into Brett Gallagher {one of the music composers on 'Memories of Tomorrow'} in person for the first time ever as I was going to watch 'Red Cliff'; ordered a chicken wrap at Burger Fuel and waited for 20 minutes for the order to come through with no luck - and then got the chicken wrap and the money refunded by the duty manager for their poor service; finally got to 'Red Cliff' but was annoyed at the number of people sneezing and coughing in the cinema theatre.

'Red Cliff' was an excellent movie - I now want to see the original 2 part asian release with run time of 4 hours plus instead of the 2.5 hour foreign version because there were parts which felt rushed and aspects jumped over plus I think it would've had more impact if you knew the politics behind the war instead of the over-simplified foreign version. Don't get me wrong - in it's current form it is still a fantastic epic and the time really flies by quickly and the action scenes are rivetting, though some of the CGI to show the scope of the battles is sometimes just passable. It is a recommended watch if you are into war movies or epics.

1 down - 4 to go.
Amit

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Friday, July 10, 2009

Fading memory

Everything is a fading memory and every memory is a fading reality.


I've been having vivid nightmares since Monday - it must be something to do with working night shifts and still waking up by 8 AM. It's been a long week by that account and I am hoping to sleep in tomorrow since I have a day off.

Looking outside in - I don't like some of my inherent character flaws that I see from time to time. I would like to fix them instantly but it doesn't really work that way does it?

Later,
Amit

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Tuesday, July 07, 2009

The Chase

People say if you really want something then don't try too hard and stop thinking about it and it'll come to you. Well that's not exactly my experience and it definitely doesn't help my cause or dreams or aspirations or needs. Just have to keep chasing.

Lauren P has confirmed her involvement in 'freedom' and will be catching up with her later this week to get the ball rolling on our story front. Also met up with Sarah G yesterday and she is keen to get started on it as well and she likes the overall direction this project is going. Now have to focus on shaping up our storyline.

The flatmates who are couples are moving out soon because the girl is moving back to Dunedin to finish off her law degree and the guy can't afford the rent for 2 people. So we now have to find new flatmate(s) - which is a pain as always. And the annoying thing is that the change always happens when you least expect it or want it. In this instance - Lance is going off to Thailand for a month later this week while I am working night shifts this week - which makes showing people around extremely hard and for some reason there isn't as much interest in the flat. That's some more of my Borneo holiday savings about to disappear into covering the rent for the room. Anyway that's my grumble for now.

That's me for now.
Amit

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Monday, July 06, 2009

Limbo

I hate having down time - even though I know it is essential from time to time to recharge your batteries and I do crave it occassionally but still. Things are busy as usual but somehow I still have the feeling that I can fit more into my work schedule.

Got another scene shoot for 'freedom' coming up on Wednesday and I am trying to get more workshops up and running so we can pick up some more speed. I hope to have most of the project shot before my trip to India.

Amit

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Sunday, June 07, 2009

Who are you?


'Who are you?' - that's a question one needs to ask oneself from time to time and I am asking that question right now. Not that I am getting any answers. A couple of words came to mind but they are not so pleasing or easy to digest. I don't know why I go through this process every now and again.

Amit

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Thursday, June 04, 2009

The Hangover

Just back from a media screening of 'The Hangover' and it is a brilliant, funny, fun movie. Never laughed so much in a movie in recent times {i mean in the movies that are supposed to be comedies}.

While walking to the car I saw a asian couple learning how to dance in a closed asian food court with an older lady supervising their steps. They were dancing to Celine Dione's track 'My Heart Will Go On'. It was surreal to say the least. I wanted to take a photo but that would have been very intrusive.

Amit

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Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Circles

I sit down to try and write a blog and then at the last possible minute I decide I can't be bothered with it. :-( Busy week till now with long hours at work and I am now really looking forward to the weekend break.

Only major news for now is that I found this awesome indian takeaway joint that has the most amazing and authentic indian curries and biryani. Oh and then there was the incident yesterday where my car got towed away by a towing company.I was fuming about it and I have put a formal complaint to the towing company as well as to the parking company for the refund of the amount I had to pay to get the car released because they were so in the wrong and I have proof of that. I haven't been so angry in a long time.

I recently finished reading the script of 'Apsara' the script that Angelique is writing for my trip to India and I gave her a good set of notes and I am pretty sure that she is wanting to kill me. Weren't they saying something about 'the invisibility cloak' is close to being real. Will those scientists please hurry up?

'The Hurt Locker' is one helluva movie. It is probably the most gripping and most authentic war movie that I've seen. It takes you right into the battle field and it is nerve wracking. It is a worthwhile experience. Does anyone else think that the poster to 'New Moon' the next part of Twilight is gay looking? What's their target audience? Who knows? Who cares? And as a sign off note have to say that 'Land of the Lost' trailer looks funny and I would love to watch that movie.

For now,
Amit

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Monday, April 20, 2009

Perception is Reality - Mostly

Synechdoche, New York’ was a good film as the vision for it was grand and ambitious. The acting is top-notch and there is no weak performance to speak off in the entire movie and that in itself is a big achievement by the director. It does get a tad confusing towards the end but somehow it still makes sense. It is definitely worth a watch.

 

I spent the weekend doing nothing – after 2 long weeks I needed to recharge my batteries and I spent most of yesterday fighting off an onset of flu by sleeping through it and it seems to have worked. More workshops for ‘the freedom project’ are taking shape now and it will be a busy couple of weeks again.

 

That’s me for now.

Till later,

Amit

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Thursday, April 02, 2009

Finance

When I was younger I always got confused whenever someone talked about spending more than they had or could afford by taking out loans in order to invest. I guess to a small extent I still don’t believe in spending more than you can afford in hard cash or through recognized channels of income and maybe that’s why I haven’t made too much progress in building a financial empire :-). But seriously – looking at the economic crisis happening around the world – to me it seems like the main problem is that people borrowed to buy what they couldn’t afford and the banks and financial institutions allowed it in order to make a quick buck and look where that 's got us. As far as stocks are concerned – the thing that always bothered me was the future of a company could rely so heavily on what the shareholders thought how the company was doing and to me that is a major risk because share holders are not privy to all the information and decision making that goes on within a company plus if they don’t have an appetite for calculated risks and instinct of the leaders within the company then a company with good and sound fundamentals can still fall apart. Add to it the fact that people dabble in shares to make a quick buck.

In asian countries people don’t buy a house till they have saved up most of the amount for it and sometimes it takes almost their entire working lives to do that. In complete contrast are western countries where you cover a small upfront deposit and the bank covers the majority of the amount while you pay them interest only payments to survive on existing income and have the satisfaction of saying that you ‘own’ a home. You sell it off a few years later when the property prices have risen and you make a capital gain out of it and that’s how you create wealth. But the problem is that if you have unforeseen emergencies like loosing your job or a major life event and you default on your payments then you’ve made a huge loss because your financial wealth creation security has just disappeared from beneath you.

I am obviously over-simplifying a complex set of financial issues but the fact is that we live in an increasingly fragile world where people are loosing jobs, loosing their homes and barely scraping through a living and the question I have is – is it worth living beyond your means? I don’t have a financial empire but the only thing I can say in my favor/defense is that I am debt free. Something ingrained in me hates being in financial debt.

Till later,
Amit

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Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Fitness Update

Well - I keep getting teased by Lance that I've become obsessed with my fitness, so thought I would cover that in this post. The truth is that I might be slightly obsessed now - the fact is that I want to be healthy and fit 20-30 years from now. A fit body is the key to a fit mind in a lot of ways. It's been roughly 6 weeks since I've started going to the gym regularly and there have been small improvements through out. I took a fitness test today and my resting heart rate has come down to 65bpm {from 71 bpm}; my weight has gone up from 66.9 KG to 68.2 KG but my fat content has gone from 20.8% to 19.5% which means that the extra weight I've gained is muscle; my cardio levels have improved and lie half way between average and good with a scale rating of 47.5 [a significant improvement over the last time];and finally my blood pressure is within normal range. So there have been small improvements all around because of the regular exercise. No time to bask in the glory of these improvements because my aim for the year is to get my resting heart rate down to low60- mid50 range and try and decrease the fat content to maybe 15-17% of body weight.

Things are picking up momentum with the 'freedom' project and we will be shooting the first scene later this week with Liz and Drew. Lance and Benji will be shooting the scenes and we had our technical meeting last night. Add to it I've just kick started the process of developing the scenario with Claire for the scene that we will be putting on for the project.

The script development process for the scripts I want to take to India are going at their own pace and Angelique has taken my suggestions on board for the script she is writing while Simon is coming up with some nice stuff to enhance 'Rejected'.

I've finished reading 'The Forever War' by Dexter Filkins and I can't recommend it highly enough. It is such a hard read because of the emotional punch it packs through it's simple but profound observations that you feel for the author. By the same token it highlights human nature in it's stark nakedness.

We have new flatmates and they are a pretty chilled out couple who are into sports and stuff and do normal hours and don't have any crazy hidden agendas like doing band practises or anything like that. We had a BBQ to mark end of summer, mini flat warming for them and it turned out to be a chilled out event and got to catch up with old friends.

I am now eagerly waiting for the daylight savings to end because it sucks waking up in the morning {according to the clock} and still finding it pitch black outside. On a different note - tax cuts kick in from tomorrow, so will have a very small additional amount to spend/save.

Anyway as you can tell I am pretty fragmented right now and waiting to catch up on my sleep.
Till later,
Amit

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Thursday, March 05, 2009

Watchmen

It's been a busy couple of weeks and can't think of listing all the things that have transpired but will try and list the main important ones. The music video is finally coming to a conclusion - the rough cut is good and hopefully it will be even more better after the fine tuning. Hats off to Benji for putting all the hard yards in.

The new couple are moving out of the flat because of various things that didn't quite synch up like the guy having his band practise in the house [he hadn't even mentioned that he was in a band when they were first looking for the place]. So flatmate search is on and we should have a new couple in another week's time.

The TVC I was in is now online and you can watch it HERE.

Major things going on at TVNZ that has become national news - like the company trying to shave off $25 million of the operating cost to turn in a profit during this tough economic times. Everything is up in the air at the moment and will get to know exactly what's happening in 15 -20 days time.

Another 2 weeks and it will be the sweet end to the acting classes.

I bought a whole bunch of books and surprisingly all of them are by indian authors. I am currently reading 'The Forever War' by Dexter Filkins.

'Watchmen' is a good movie if you get past the first 20 minutes and then ignore the last 5 minutes.

I think that's me for now.
Later,
Amit

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Saturday, February 21, 2009

Compassion (less)

While at a cafe with a friend I came across my yearly predictions according to chinese astrological signs and it specifically tells me 'not to be too compassionate to others - take care of yourself first'. Maybe I should start following the saying or maybe I am already doing it. You can test your luck by asking me something that would involve me having to show compassion.

Later,
Amit

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Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Scream

I am just sitting here wondering if I should just scream out loud or just scream quietly. Nothing much to report really except the fact that love life sucks and otherwise work has been uber busy.

'Would you like to buy this adult?'

Reworking of 'Rejected' has started and hope to have a good working draft in a couple of month's time. Music video is almost coming to an end - will get to know tomorrow where it is at.

Like a lonely shoe on the side of the road

That's me for now.
Amit

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Friday, February 13, 2009

Vitals

Well - another busy week and don't really have the energy to expand my thoughts very much. I'll leave this post with 2 things - results of my fitness test and cooking.

I got my first fitness test done at the gym to see where I am really at with my overall health. Results were a mixed bag. My weight is 66.8 KG ; Fat percentage is 20.8% and my cardio levels are below average @ 34.5 on the scale and my resting heart rate is 71bpm. What it essentially means is that I am healthy but my cardio health isn't exactly upto scratch completely. According the trainer a month at the gym will make a big difference in my cardio health if I keep at it and that is what I intend to do.

I cooked my second thai dish, Fried Chicken with Holy Basil {Krapow Gai}, that I learnt during my time in Thailand. I couldn't find minced chicken so I just replaced it with boneless/skinless chicken strips. I took this:


and converted it into this -


The results might not look that great but it tasted bloody marvelous. A huge improvement over the first dish I cooked.

That's me for now.
Till later,
Amit

P.S - I have a new cellphone number - it is 021381914. I am still holding onto my old number for a while, so I can be contacted on any of the 2 numbers.

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Monday, November 03, 2008

Rush

I've been trying to put more hours in at work, so that I can save up for the upcoming holiday and needless to say days don't mean much anymore but I am still loving it since there is a specific aim in mind. Here are some pics for a quite night out at Tanuki's cave sometime last week - the suspects in crime - Benji, Lance, Ainsley and me.

Mouth and Arms

Sake

A hand

The Cave

The Wall

Keeping an eye out for the usual suspects

Minor happenings in between: Lance broke my favorite pair of sunglasses while we were playing tennis. Watched 'Traitor' [Blah!!! Predictable because of some poor directing choices] and 'Pineapple Express' [Pissed myself laughing for the most part]. Sorted out issues with GST returns filing as well as ACC levy. Bought myself the backpack I was contemplating about in the last post.

The broken heart and the broken sunglasses

Something that my drama tutor said today that I thought I would write down - 'Time doesn't heal - it is what you do in that time heals.' How true but how it is so easily forgotten.

Till later,
Amit

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Thursday, October 30, 2008

Amit in a Shell

I think I might be coming out of my shell that I have been over the past couple of months. Not too sure about it yet but I think I am. You'll know soon enough.

Currently procrastinating whether to buy a backpack for the trip or whether to stick to my existing suitcase..Hmmmmmmm......

Later,
Amit

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Thursday, October 23, 2008

Suspended Animation

Self-explanatory really. Everything is in suspended animation.

Amit

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Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Blur

The past 10 days have been a blur and the only thing I can recall is that I watched 2 movies [Mongol - average but beautifully shot & Full Metal Jacket - brilliant and engaging] and have still kept at the physical routine and had a couple of important meetings in relation to film making.

Here are pics of the new place:







Till later,
Amit

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Monday, October 06, 2008

Yay!!!!

Broadband and phone line working - check
Microwave - check
Washing Machine - negative but the upside is that the technician is coming in on Wednesday to have a look.

2 out of 3 ain't too bad. Wohoooooooo

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Sunday, October 05, 2008

Status Quo

OK - now this is getting slightly annoying. After a week - still no broadband and the broadband company seems to have problems getting the technicians (from another phone company) to give us a ring and come and fix the problem. They randomly appear, seem to do stuff and then disappear without explaning what the problem is and if it is fixed or not. So I still don't know what the problem is and neither does the broadband company. I have spent close to an hour each day over the phone to the broadband company and all they know is that something is wrong and that they will try and get this problem fixed, hopefully in this coming week. Grrrrrrrr........

Other electrical malfunctions in the house which I trying to sort out is the second hand washing machine that I bought before moving into this house and Lydia is trying to sort out the microwave that she brought as it doesn't seem to be working either. So all this has definitely got me angsty.

To counter all the angst I decided to do several things - first amongst them was to try and do something physical every evening - it was tennis on tuesday; swimming on wednesday; yoga on thursday. Getting back to swimming after a year and half was a little harder than I thought- I think I will have to increase the frequency to twice a week in order to get my body working again. Then yoga the following day was refreshing but painful. It is amazing how much the body grows brittle if you don't flex it all the time. On saturday morning I had a quick game of tennis with Lance and then I got started on my gardening ambitions - to try and grow some flowers and plants to beautify the house and also to start my own veggie garden.

First I bought Yates Simply Gardening book and poured through it to get some essential information. After that I spent a good couple of hours in the gardening shop pestering the staff for various kinds of info and I ended up buying a bunch of flower pots and gardening stuff to start off the process. I transfered the flowers into bigger pots and also put some new potting mix to help their growth. Starting a veggie garden is currently out of my budget and i'll start it after my next pay check as I intend to buy a raised garden bed frame and then start the veggie patch, so as to help the vegetables grow better. You will hear more about my gardening adventures in future posts no doubt.

For now - that's me.
Amit

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Thursday, October 02, 2008

The Week Gone

I have been walking to work and back ever since I moved into the new place in Grey Lynn and it is so refreshing doing that. It takes anywhere between 30-40 minutes each way [about 3.25 KM] depending on the route and the pace at which I am walking.

The move itself was pretty swift as Lance's parents and their neighbours helped us out - which made things very easy but settling in has been taking a little more of an effort with small niggles - like we still don't have broadband and phone because of some major technical fault between the phone exchange and our house. So if I haven't been emailing or replying to emails or phonecalls - that's because I don't have any access to broadband or phone at home. Then there seems to be some minor problem with the washing machine. And then there was the incident where I had a friendly encounter with the neighbourhood cat lady and the same day Lance found a dead cat in our basement. Luckily the landlord took care of removing the dead cat and also breaking the news to the cat lady.

So I have still not quiet settled into the house but still loving the place and the flatmates. It is a stone's throw from everything essential and has a lovely deck and backyard and close to the bus stop as well. I'll try and put some pics up when I get net access at home.

But till then,
Adios,
Amit

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Tuesday, September 16, 2008

STRANGE LIFE

Life is strange and is definitely unfair - last night I got a call from Doug - a south seas graduate of the class of 2004. He called in to let me know that Rhys Bonney - a graduate from the same year; a good friend; one of my favorite students (when I was teaching editing at South Seas); a gentleman to the core; very down to earth; super-talented and super-bright - had passed away from stomach cancer less than a month after he turned 35.

This is Rhys posing for a database snap for 'Memories of Tomorrow' in 2004

Rhys is now survived by a wife and 2 kids, who are both really really young. I couldn't believe my ears when I heard this and it was a total shock for me. It left me really shaken up - how can life do that? Is it just playing a game of russian roulette with each of us? And why is it that a genuine human being like rhys is snatched away in such a bizarre manner? Where is justice in this world? It is such a sad thing to have happened. Death is a part of life but not like this - this is just unfair. Very unfair.

Rest in peace Rhys. You'll always live on in our hearts.

UPDATE: Check Doug's rememberance of Rhys HERE. You will also find more photos of Rhys there.

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Thursday, September 11, 2008

Structures


We love structures. We have structures for everything and structures dominate our lives - for some more than the others. If there weren't any structures then it would be anarchy and chaos. The trick is in finding flexible structures and breaking away from rigid structures which can cause even more damage than chaos.

I am rambling now.
Till later,
Amit

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Monday, September 08, 2008

Grace is Gone

So after 5 years of living on the North Shore, I am finally making a move into the city as it made more and more sense. So after some house hunting - managed to get a nice 4 bedroom place in Grey Lynn. The rental process is a bit weird because you look at the place, then put in an application, they do reference checks and then decide who they are giving the place to - so it was pretty nice getting the place relatively easily. Now just have to find 2 more flatmates and Lance is on the task, so hopefully we will have them as we move in towards the end of this month. The best thing about the place is that it puts me in walking distance to almost anywhere central - so I can most probably walk everywhere and I am just toying with the idea of getting myself a road bike to cycle to work since it is only 3 KM from the house. The possibilities are endless and I am keeping a lid on them till I actually move into the place.

One of the things I love about NZ is the inorganic collection. Each suburb/locality has 1 day in a year where they put out any old/damaged stuff out on the streets, so that the council can remove it or if you want to you can drive around to pickup any stuff you might deem useful to you. Last night, Lance came back from work saying that there was inorganic collection in Torbay, so we went searching for any thing useful we could find for the flat. It was heaps of fun and we ended up with 5 decent chairs [4 deck chairs and 1 lounge chair] and 8 cups. :-)

'Grace is Gone' is a wonderful little movie. The performances by John Cusack and the 2 girls are sensitive and understated but spot on. For something that was made on such a shoe string budget it hits above it's weight and succeeds in dealing with such a hard topic.

I took a political test online at Political Compass to see what my political leanings are and it turns out that my political views are similar to Gandhi, Nelson Mandela and Dalai Lama - which makes me a liberal leftist. I don't know if that's a good thing or a bad thing. You can do the test on the website for free, to see where you really stand. Or just to look at how the scale works you can check out this page directly. The thought which cracked me up was what happens if someone does the test and finds out that their political leanings are similar to Hitler. I amuse myself sometimes :-)

That's me for now.
Till later,
Amit

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Friday, August 22, 2008

Freedom and Entrapment

Fortunate are the people who are free even when they are entrapped in their circumstances and unfortunate are those who are trapped within themselves even though they have freedom.

Amit

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Sunday, August 10, 2008

Nothing!!!!!

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Well almost nothing.
Amit

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Saturday, August 09, 2008

Weekends

Every weekend that I am free is a mixed blessing. I love catching up on my sleep and just recuperating from a full-on week as I tend to work smart and hard and long {just the fact and no exaggerations} but at the same time I hate being trapped inside, doing nothing over the stretch of 2 days. It is not that I am short of things to do - I have plenty of reading to catch up on and then there are the ongoing projects but somehow I am bored with the nothingness of the occassion. Dr. Mamea {nee Nurse Mamea} jokingly {or maybe in all seriousness} said that it might either be the winter blues or depression. I would discount depression outright because I am generally a positive person and I try and see the good side of things rather than the bad side. So that leaves the option of it being a symptom of winter blues. I am not totally sold on the idea but it seems to be the only concrete thing to go off at the moment. Or maybe I am becoming the person I don't want to become.

Turbulent times for sure.

Next week is going to be choke-a-block with so many things. We are talking some very long 17 hour days for atleast the next 8 days starting Monday. I am looking forward to it with muted excitement.

Till later,
Amit

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Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Soundtrack

The Dark Knight soundtrack is fantastic and the only way to describe it would be that it is consistently surprising and moving. The best way to listen to it is on a good set of headphones where you can hear all the tiny instruments that can cause chills down your spine or send your mind soaring. Needless to say the score is epic. You can listen to the soundtrack online for free HERE but since these are low-quality mp3's you can't really get a feel for the clarity and delicateness of the instruments used in the individual pieces.

I tried Astanga yoga yesterday evening for the first time and needless to say it was exhausting, challenging but good. I don't think I have sweat that much in that short amount of time in recent times. And it was good that I lasted the entire session, so i'll definitely go back again.

I finished transcribing the dialog list for FIVE on Sunday and it was a satisfying feeling. I mailed it off to the finnish distributor, so that they can now translate it into finnish subtitles. I also adopted a couple of Orangutans - which basically means that I have paid for upkeep of 2 of our closest primate relatives being taken care for by The Australian Orangutan Project. We share 97% of our genetic make up with these gentle creatures and yet we have driven them to extinction. The thing is that individuals can make a difference - even a small step taken by you can add up to big things in the bigger scheme of things. A lot of times it is our complacency and inaction that can make things worse. So yeah instead of debating too much about it, I went ahead and supported a cause.

Well that's really me for now.
Till later,
Amit

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Thursday, July 03, 2008

Clarity and confusion

In a bid to curb the rising power bill I donated both the oil heaters off and they weren't great anyway as they wouldn't heat the room because of the high ceilings. And on monday I went and bought myself a magnetic woolen underlay and it is so comfy to sleep in. I'll get to know in a month or so if it is any beneficial. I'll let you know how it goes then.

I made a decision that if within a year nothing significant happens with my film making career and I am not able to raise any funding for the next movie then I'll give up film making. It has been an incredibly hard decision but I am looking at the ground realities and I can't make another self-financed movie and get everyone to work for nothing - not on my third movie, no way. I'll give it a solid shot to try and raise money for the movie but if nothing eventuates then I'll have to hang up those boots. I have never had things easy and I have always had to fight for even the smallest opportunity to prove that I am capable of achieving things as well as others, so I am aware all this is again part of the pattern where I am still fighting for some sort of support and recognition. Am I feeling angry about where things are at - very much so and the challenge for me is to try and focus those energies into this coming year to make the next movie possible.

No feedback has come back yet on the script but Serena has started working on the revisions and hopefully by the time the feedback hits we would be in a position to start off work on second draft.

I don't know if I mentioned it but a finnish independent distributor has picked up FIVE for DVD distribution in Finland. I have sit and write down the dialog list, so that they can translate it into finnish and put it in as subtitles. That's the task for this weekend.

That's me for now.
Till later,
Amit

P.S - If you have any advice for me i am happy to hear it and if you have any brilliant fund raising ideas that are feasible then I am all ears as well. Feel free to drop me a line.

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Sunday, June 29, 2008

Time

Time is a funny thing - sometimes it flies past as if it was running late and at other times it just goes so slow that you wonder how the hell you managed to have so many thought processes and done so many things and still not have spent too much time on it. It is a fact that brain slows the internal time down in moments of extreme crisis (like in a car accident), so that it gets more time to react to the situation. But what if there is no crisis, does that mean you are going mad? More importantly, am I going mad?

Here is an interesting article as to why 'Flight of the Conchords' had to make their TV series with HBO to achieve what they've achieved. NZ has a tall poppy syndrome and the sad thing is that sometimes people in power can be extremely short sighted and ignore local talent completely. It is all a leadership issue and sometimes it is not about following the 'norm' but about taking calculated risks and taking responsibility for them.

I watched 'Eagle V/s Shark' based on the brilliance of 'Flight of the Conchords' and it turned out to be a disappointing watch. I didn't find it all that funny plus it really hurt the movie that one of the main protagonists of the movie was a complete arsehole and an unlikeable character. The only high point of the movie is the brilliance of Loren Horsley who gives the movie it's humanity and charm.

I have mailed off the first draft of 'REJECTED' to a select few people to hear their thoughts and feedback and it surely is a nerve-wracking experience. The idea is to remain open to everything and then filter the feedback to work on the next draft. I also have to start thinking about funding opportunities and how to raise money to make this movie.

Also as a blast from the past here is a recipe that I created while experimenting. It is called HONEY PEPPER CHICKEN

Ingredients:
1 teaspoon Olive Oil
400 gm diced boneless & skinless chicken
1 teaspoon freshly crushed black pepper
4 tablespoons Honey
1/2 teaspoon Marina Braai Salt (available at supermarket in international foods section - it is a south african bbq salt)
1 small can Wattie's Tomato Chunks with Garlice and Olive Oil
2 teaspoons Nando's Hot Peri-peri sauce
Preperation:
Take a teaspoon of olive oil in a wok and heat it up
Add 400 gm of diced chicken to it. Fry for 2-3 minutes
Add about 3-4 table spoons of honey to the pot and cook the chicken till it turns light brown {after about 12-15 minutes on high heat}
Add 1 teaspoon of freshly grounded pepper and cook it some more..
Add 1/2 teaspoon south african salt called 'Marina Braai Salt'.
Chicken will be looking brown at this stage, now add a can of wattie's tomato chunks with garlic and olive oil.
Also add 2 teaspoons of Nando's Hot Peri-Peri Sauce to the mixture and added half a glass of water and let the chicken cook till it is done.
The total dish took about 30 minutes to prepare and serve with white rice.
The chicken has a sweeteness to it when you put it in your mouth but then has a slight bite to it as you savour it. Very yummy.

Well that's me for now.
Till later,
Amit

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Saturday, June 28, 2008

Completely random

Well - maybe not that random. I found that my average resting heart rate is 57 bpm and my blood pressure is 105/70. Not bad I guess. My car gives me 14km/litre - which is again not bad at all considering the rising petrol prices. Time taken to finish the first draft of REJECTED has been 3 months (including the 1 month break) and we finished it 18 days before the self-imposed deadline.

Watched a couple of movies - 'In theValley of Elah' {was an OK watch - Tommy Lee Jones performance makes this predictable movie worth watching.} and 'Kung Fu Panda' {Hilarious with awesome kung fu combined with brilliant voice work by Jack Black and Dustin Hoffman combined with great animation}.

I also finished watching the first season of 'Flight of the Conchords' which is brilliant and funny. One of my favorite songs from the series is 'Mutha Uckers' and there are so many classic scenes through out the series that it is hard to have a favorite scene but still here is one really funny one.

Thats me for now.
Amit

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Friday, June 20, 2008

7 Periods with Mr. Gormsby

Seven Periods with Mr. Gormsby is one of the best kiwi TV series that I have seen in a long long time. It is politically incorrect and very very funny. I am surprised that a gem of a TV series like this never got a 3rd season and worse still the second season DVD hasn't been released yet.

On the other hand I wasn't too sold on Weeds - an american TV series that has completed 3 seasons and has been commissioned for a 4th season. It is marketed as a dark comedy but the comedy element is pretty subdued. Currently I am watching 'Flight of the Conchords' which is proving to be pretty funny. Quirky funny, especially if you know what NZ culture is like.

You know that there is nothing good on at the movies when you don't even think twice before watching complete crap like 'Don't mess with the Zohan'. I flatly refuse to see 'The Happening' because I think M. Night Shyamalan pretty much lost touch with the audience when he made 'Signs' and everything he has made after that has been pretty bad in terms of story. The Dark Knight's release date has been pushed back in NZ by a week and it is pretty annoying.

One of my favorite songs nowadays is 'I Know, I know' by Tegan and Sara. You can check out the song here. I am now back upto 85% of my normal level and it feels good to be almost normal again. Serena and me made small amount of progress on REJECTED but it is already looking better as I went back and fixed some story threads to bring a cohesiveness to the story. I got stuck writing the ending of the movie and it so happened that Serena had an idea on how to bring it to a conclusion, so she is writing the ending. Overall I am thrilled beyond words with the team work that we have been able to achieve in writing this script - no conflict, no egos, just pure creative instincts, listening and responding combined with lots of fun.

Well lots of paperwork and tasks that have piled up over the past few weeks and it is time to get through them and sort them out. But first of all is paperwork, which is the task for this weekend.

Till later,
Amit

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Wednesday, June 04, 2008

Wellington

Yesterday I flew down to Wellington along with my boss for a work trip to TVNZ's Avalon studio and archives and boy was it an eventful journey. In india everyone knows when a politician is coming or passing by judging by the road bloackades, massive police force and security personnel etc. etc. but here in New Zealand it is the complete opposite - at the airport after we checked in we were standing in the foyer waiting for the boarding when Helen Clark, the prime minister - walked past a hand's breadth away from us along with two of her security personnel. It was a bit surreal.

The facilities down at Lower Hutt were fantastic, especially the archives but man is it a long ride to get to the place from Wellington. We spent most of the day being shown around the building and also various productions that happen there. After a full day there, we went over to the city for a couple of drinks before the flight back. Wellington is lovely as always and I love the small city feel that the CBD has. Anyway having a few drinks combined with the potato fries didn't bode well with my body and funnily enough I threw up in the plane about 10 minutes before touching down in Auckland. It is not a good feeling when you are sick but I can now laugh at the incident because I made the airlines work hard for their money. The mess I left behind was really terrible. :-) I was lucky that my boss was traveling with me and he took care of me and dropped me off home. I was sick enough for my boss to ask me to take a day off to recover from the whole thing. Most of today has gone into recovery and I am just about coming right. I don't feel a 100% but atleast I don't feel like complete crap.

Anyway thats me for now. Time to sleep off the remaining sickness.
Amit

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Sunday, June 01, 2008

The Diving Bell and the Butterfly

The Diving Bell and the Butterfly is an extra-ordinary story and an even extra-ordinary film. And the thing I loved about it was that the director never tried to make it melodramatic. Everything about the movie is on the spot - the performances, the cinematography, the editing, the directing. It is a pity that it did not win any Oscars even though it was nominated for four. It is a highly recommended watch.

It is amazing that a week has disappeared without a trace. It was going to be a busy week but I never knew it was going to be this busy. This coming week is the same and I guess I am better prepared for this week - sort of. The long week will be broken up by a day trip to Wellington visiting TVNZ's archives on Tuesday, which I am looking forward to.

On the health front - the calf muscle has healed but I had fever on Saturday and have had a sore throat since then. It is getting better but I am now seriously getting fed up of this niggling health problems. I can understand if I wasn't taking a proper diet or doing proper physical exercise but I am doing all that and to me it is inexplicable that I still keep having these minor irritations.

That's me for now.
Till later,
Amit

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Wednesday, May 07, 2008

600

Well I forgot to mention it when I hit 500 posts, so I made it a point to give 600 it's due respect. 3.5 years and 599 posts later, which gives me an average of 171 posts a year, I am still blogging - that means I must be seriously insane. No one has asked me to shut it down or abused me for what I write, so I am presuming people like watching train wrecks in slow motion or they enjoy reading the banalities of the daily life of some complete stranger (this obviously doesn't apply to my family since I am not a stranger to them yet). Either way I will keep writing as long as I can.

The momentus occassion is also marked by the introduction of a new flatmate in our flat. His name is George - the unique thing about him is that he is a white tailed spider. Lance was the one who noticed him first and pointed it out last night. I asked him why he didn't kill him because they are not exactly harmless to which Lance's response was that the spider had a personality. I told him that I didn't care if it had a personality as it was a white tailed spider and that is when he told me that he had named it George. And also pointed out that I certainly couldn't kill it now since now the spider had a name to go along with his personality. I am still grumbling about it but I guess I can't kill George - we just have to wait for him to move out of the house of his own will.

That's me for now.
Till later,
Amit

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Friday, April 11, 2008

Long long day

Feeling a tiny bit tired after the long 17 hour day yesterday and it is going to be another long one today. Yesterday - we had the TVNZ Regatta straight after work and it was fun. There were a couple of moments where you actually had to work but overall I did feel a bit useless as all you do is sit on one part of the boat to balance it out. The good thing was we had a relaxed and experienced skipper and first mate and fun team mates, so it was well worth the experience.

Arrghhhh...Which boat shall we steal?

The hippy pirate - John

Even pirates need to look good - Jo and Lauren

The real psychedelic pirate - Bruce

I wanna sink that boat

Sulky pirate John (after loosing their pirate hat)

On this boat the first mate does all the work

The skipper assessing wind conditions

The race in progress

The final stretch of the race

Docks at twilight

Straight after the race - I raced off to watch my good friend and acting classmate- Claire's play 'Dead Meat' which she wrote and directed and it was great. I also got to meet a lot of new people within the acting community. It was put up as part of Smack Bang Theatre which is supporting new and innovative New Zealand theatre and writers. And after the play went to a farewell drinks party for Dave - another acting friend and ex-classmate. And again it was a pleasant surprise catching up with a lot of people including old film school classmates.

So all in all it was a really long day and today is going to be no different - not as much with social commitments but with work.

Till later,
Amit

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