Most important things first: MrPloppy made it home safely a couple of weeks ago – no hassles at all on the return trip, thankfully. He still says he’s never flying long-haul again though.
Anyway, since he’s been back, it’s been all go. My brother and his family came to stay over Queen’s Birthday weekend – it was great to see them, and we had loads of fun with them (the boys are growing up so fast! Even in the few months since we last saw them there’s a noticable change – nephew #1 is capable of proper intelligent conversation now (and is an expert in all things mechanical – he drew me a picture of a train, and was explaining all the components to me, and when I built an aeroplane out of his k-nex blocks he chided me for not putting landing lights on it), and nephew #2 is suddenly no longer a baby, but a little boy racing to keep up with his big brother (even if he did sleep through the first attempt to blow out his birthday candles!)), but I was exhausted by the end of the weekend (even though MrPloppy and I did get some time out – I decided that Revenge of the Sith just couldn’t wait any longer, so we went and saw it (there was some talk of getting a babysitter so brother and sister-in-law could come too, but they haven’t seen Attack of the Clones yet, so they decided to stay at home and watch our DVD of it, and try and indoctrinate a new generation of Star Wars fans) – I can’t be bothered writing a proper review, so all I’ll say is SERIOUSLY COOL!!!!! (even though there were a few gaping plot holes…)) – when you don’t have kids yourself you forget how much energy they require! Still, who cares, it was lovely seeing them (and hopefully we’ll see them again briefly this weekend, on their way back to Auckland after a couple of weeks down south doing the rounds of the grandparents), and I had an excuse to visit Science Alive again, which is always fun 🙂
Oh, and the other achievement of the weekend was that I have finally joined the 21st century and acquired one of those new-fangled cellular telephones. After the fiasco of MrPloppy’s flight to the UK (and the $40 phone bill from the hotel in Auckland!), we decided we really did need one, and Dad was looking for something to buy me for my birthday, so I hinted that a mobile might come in handy (especially given the Brisbane trip coming up soon!). So I was given instructions to go and buy myself the one I wanted and send him a bill (not as dangerous an offer as it sounds, given that I’d already said that I didn’t want a fancy photo-taking bells and whistles type monster, just something cheap and basic that I could make phone calls on and maybe do that text thing), and I am now the proud owner of an absolute bottom of the line mobile phone. I’m very slowly getting the hang of using it, but it still takes me half an hour to compose a text message (I’m sure that like typing it will eventually become second nature and I’ll automatically know where all the letters are, but at the moment it’s very much hunt and peck), and I’m sure I’ll go into total panic the first time it rings with a proper call (I’ve only told a couple of people the number so far, so the only call I’ve received on it is when we rang it from our home phone to try it out) while I try to remember which button to press to answer it. Ah, the joys of technology… 🙂
Had my final exam for my linguistics course last week. A fabulously interesting course, but I’m so glad it’s over – it was seriously hard work! The exam wasn’t *too* bad – only 2 hours, and just one question: we were given two (made-up) languages and told all sorts of things about them, and had to say whether we thought they were related or not, and how strong the evidence was one way or the other. Of course, I haven’t had my results back yet, but I think I did a reasonable job of answering it. We’ll see…