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Life Is Always Where We Are

Archive for February 2011

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Think Sydney. Think Opera House .Think Crystal.
One of the world's most important modern buildings occupies an extraordinary site on Sydney Harbour, the Serenity of course.



- - -- by Ed Reif»
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‎7 Days can make one weak but I think these 14 will have the opposite effect
Voyage 4 Bali and the GR8 B R    February28-March 15, 2011

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Dispatches from the Frontline Of Australia



Talkin' 'bout My Demographic

Where there’s a hit there’s a writ-- Listening to "Down Under" on MTV was my first exposure to Australia Veg-e-Mite as a kid growing up in the badlands of Long Island, pronouced LAWN GUYLAND New York by we dees, dem, and dose guys who tawk New Yawk. The song "Down Under" remains an unofficial anthem for Australia and was ranked fourth in a 2001 music industry survey of the best Australian songs...but now I found out...

 Danger Men At Work-- lines were lifted from an old OZ  campfire song...  'Kookaburra sits in the old gumtree', and the band has had  to pay off a judgement of 5% of their royalties (OUCH).


At sea right now headed for Sydney...Video to follow..."Who Can It Be Now?"

- - -- by Ed Reif»
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They sleep 22 hours a day, eat eucalyptus leaves and just hang out
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Blogging is literature in a hurry.These trip reports are getting shorter and sweeter, and so are the destinations.

In America, only the successful blogs like the Huffington Post and Boing Boing are important, in France all blogs are important, in England no blog is important, and in Australia you have to explain what a blog is.
 Melbourne is an outdoor city. People only go inside to use the toilet. And that's only a recent development. I can't believe I am indoors (See photo above) at a shopping mall (Ikea actually)

This dude literally gave me the shirt off his back when I  wanted to take a picture of it, like the end of a  Rugby match or something like that.

- - -- by Ed Reif»
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The Calm Before The Storms

This was the scene before the Christchurch Earthquake and before we headed across the Tasmanian Sea---Although I am a metric atheists, I now know what 15 meter waves can do-cause mal de mer: Motion sickness affected everyone, including a seasoned veteran sailor like myself.

New Zealand's Shattered cathedral is quake city's 'broken heart'
What a difference 48 Hours can make!

In my previous post,  I was comparing Norway's Western Fjords with New Zealand's South Island's and using this score keeping system-Norway 5 New Zealand 3.5 --No disrespect because 3.5 became a 6.5 magnitude earthquake. Weird how we missed the quake by hours, and more weird, is the picture I took exposing my heart.

 I certainly was one of the last American's to go into Christchurch's Cathedral before it shattered this  Kiwi Architectural Landmark.

Some better days...Roll Video

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A View From the Not-So-Cheap Seats
Norway 5 New Zealand 3.5



- - -- by Ed Reif»
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Rudyard Kipling once said Milford Sound is the eighth wonder of the world. I guess he hadn't visited Norway!
 A lot of people ask me if I were shipwrecked, and could only have one book, what would it be? I always say "How to Build a Boat". Traveling by sea sure is fun.


“Only the guy who isn't rowing has time to rock the boat.”
- Jean-Paul Sartre


- - -- by Ed Reif»
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Claims for pyramid power have yet to reach the mystical pitch in Dunedin

The Pyramid Effect meets The Butterfly Effect

As a SNAG,a  sensitive  new-age guy (Similar to the Metrosexual, but more timid), I feel the Celtic soundtrack of Enya... Paint the Sky with Stars and Let The Orinoco Flow...here in New Zealand's South Island town of Dunedin (pronounced DO-NEED-EN); your source for everything Anglo, including today a little drizzle of rain and some London Fog.
 To be frank I can't tell you the difference between Celtic, Scottish , Irish or Magnetic North, and, even though I have been all over the British Isles, NZ reminds me of every place I have ever been and more some, because it is so diverse. It acts as a safe house for ex pats and patriotic misfits such s myself.


So with nothing to do, and all day to do it, I conducted my own myth busters --What better than to take an adult Time Out to study a bit of sacred geometry and, in honor of Hosnio Mubarik's demise, and the esoteric effects of Egyptian Pyramid Power. It is alleged that they possess supernatural powers, sharpen razor blades and unspoilt fruit, but one thing is for sure, it seems to be the symbol of perfection (Check one of your dollar bills)

I Am Taking Names

Holographic Universe model, Fractal patterns, the laws of synchronicity aside,The Butterfly Effect, and chaos theory---now that's a different story-The idea that on a global scale, even small events can have a ripple effect around the world, I get that--It is a way to understand that your life matters.


Can the small wings of a butterfly really affect the weather conditions of the environment, enough to create a tornado or to alter its path, not so sure, but where we live and who we live there with define the terms of our relationship to the world and to humanity.

I just bought some t shirts and souvenirs that say I ‘love’ New Zealand. Sure I care about the nice kiwi  people. It is altogether different to love an individual with a name, a street address, a shoe size. I'm taking names!



- - -- by Ed Reif»
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No Silence of The Lambs Today

There is no pine in pineapple and no ham in hamburger, but the English language is nothing as I "get to grips" with some basic Kiwi-ese. Going to the diary means going to the store, a dummy is a toilet,  lollies are sweets and sweet as  means excellent, as in these lamb chops  tonight are going to be sweet as.

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Is a healthy breakfast the best way to start your day or is eating it with these fjords in the background?


"There has never been a greater concentration of intellectual power here on board The Crystal Serenity since Ed Reif  dined alone."

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What would Jesus Do, drink coffee at Starbucks or Dunkin Donuts? How about visiting Christchurch today.

- - -- by Ed Reif»
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Rugby is a beastly game played by gentlemen; football is a gentleman's game played by beasts!
Football or Rugby?We have all seen a football game on TV, but not everyone has seen a rugby match, played mostly in Europe.

Ok, for the record, I have played both sports--- I broke my nose three times-- twice playing football, and once playing rugby..but with a little meatball surgery, some prop just snapped it back into place, and I carried on playing, unlike my football injuries, which knocked me out unconscious! Here I am in front of the upcoming  World Cup Rugby hosted by NZ, only 205 days to go...


Makes me think of that George Carlin skit--In Baseball, you wear a cap, in football you wear a helmet. In rugby, you don't wear any equipment.

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The Myth Continues


I didn't wake up this morning, I came to-realizing that I  "get to" go to work...This may not be the  4-Hour Work week of Timothy Ferriss, but one thing is for sure, any day in New Zealand, beats a day at the office.
There might be more cows  here--but I'm still counting sheep--and no way am I falling asleep doing it.


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Only a "convienent" 24 hour flight away to Green and Clean!

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I'm 18 with 34 Years Experience Today

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 new Zealand

Coffee is my cup of tea
Deja Brew- Ive had that coffee before
Taste like chicken, looks like Vancouver, in Auckland I hit the ground running, getting some dental work done-After a root canal, there's nothing like a cup of  SBUXS Joe.

Lots of sail boats here too...even on the billboards.

Auckland NZ, with Crystal Serenity in the harbor
Ed and Sarah


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Mr. Frodo Baggins  
  THE SUPERLATIVE NATION


6 degrees of Seperation is tired; 360 Degree Discovery Tours are Wired

I've never been to New Zealand before. But those location shoots for Lord of The Rings ,comes from there. The beauty of some  LOTR locations is that they can easily be incorporated into this cruise I am taking! I am expecting big things out of Fjordland, on the Superlative index ranking right up their with The Geirangerfjord 0f  Norway. (Insert left)







Gandalf: A wizard is never late, Frodo Baggins. Nor is he early. He arrives precisely when he means to.

- - -- by Ed Reif»
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Football...and we don't mean Soccer

The last time Bob Reif gave up prime seating at a sporting event was The Atlanta Olympics in 1996 See Going For The Title 

This week, after some arm twisting, Bob  decided to miss his first Super Bowl in 17 years to join me onboard the  cruise ship, Crystal Serenity  in the South Pacific as our Guest Speaker; watching the international feed on Super Bowl MONDAY! ( since we crossed the  Dateline, when We went to bed on Friday and woke up on Sunday losing a day, which was actually Saturday in Texas)
ROLL Video



Passengers are advised on this crossing 24 hour  loss of existence will occur
You see, every time you cruise or fly from North America to the South pacific, and without anyone asking you how you feel about it, a day is taken away from you when you cross the international dateline. But don’t worry because when your return, it is given back to you which is even a neater trick to arrive in Los Angeles before even   leaving, Fiji. For one 24 period, in the history of Earth, it appears that you have no being… So there is a certain sense of accomplishment in just arriving in the South Pacific…I vaguely understand the principals involved here. I see that there has to be a notational line where one day ends and another begins, and when you cross that line, you gain or lose a day.

- - -- by Ed Reif»
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Voyage 3 Aukland,  New Zealand to Melborne, Australia February 13- February 28, 2011

Duct Tape America's Universal Power Tool vs, JAFA, (Just Another "Friendly" Aucklander's #8 Wire Ingenuity. Headed for some Eco-Tourism...this place promises to be a bit like Norway--fjords, mountains, white water rivers...

From some other planet, I get this funky high on the yellow sun/Boy I bet my friends will all be ­stunned, they're stunned /Straight up, what did you hope to learn about here/
If I were someone else, would this all fall apart-
Real World

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I'm sorry this water is reserved for special people...try spelling Evian backwards
 Why am I so gullible when it comes to its bottled water?    To the east of the International Date Line lies an exquisite garland of islands known as Fiji. Dignified smiling people bid you "bula," or welcome, to their unspoiled homeland and give you bottles of water called Fiji, bottled at the "source".

Coke admited that Dasani is tap water, and at the end of the day, isn't it  it is all just  the audacity of hYpe.spin, and PR, and, more than that,  per liter, more expensive than gasoline.

Now that I have had a chance to visit Fiji, Fiji bottled water is just reconsitituted tap water and probably  has jumped the shark (Think Fonzi)

In the dark-green consumer tree-hugger segment, FIJI has about as much street cred as ExxonMobil.. Paying over $8 per gallon for the dubious privilege of taking water from the locals is about over for me.

There are some exceptions... 

Last summer I was in  Norway  and drank plenty of (public water) ie tap water from the municipality of Iveland in Voss. Oh yes, the same stuff I was paying in las Vegas for $6 bucks a gallon.

What's in bottled water besides water?

The story of bottled water is half the story and half the truth  is still a lie. When you get down to it, 90% of bottled waters is filtered, treated and purified, but even though the claims are unprovable, I prefer Voss. I will be sampling Tasmanian Rain next week! on  the island of Tasmania and is supposed to be the purest water in the world because it never touches the ground. 

I am  not sure how that part works (we imagine some high-tech rain water catching system) but the water is also supposed to contain traces of hydrogen peroxide, which turbo charges (supposedly) our enzyme systems.

All I know is that every chemical reaction that takes place needs water, and I have been drinking a lot of it lately.



Oh you're in my blood like holy wine
You taste so bitter and so sweet
Oh I could drink a case of you darling
And I would still be on my feet
Oh I would still be on my feet
  Joni Mitchel


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They say it's the best kept secrets but you know me...I can't keep one.

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