Friday, December 31, 2004

Goodbye 2005

As noted last week, it's that time of year again (Or not in a few hours). Due to non-relativistic time differences across the globe, the New Year is celebrated at different times depending on where you are. If you lived in New Zealand and had a fast aeroplane, you could probably celebrate it twice, which means that you would have to drink twice as much and in all likelihood get twice the hangover.

I opted out of doing that this year, so I decided to have my New Years Eve celebratory drinks on December 30 at Kristy's rather impromptu bbq, which was in part brought on by the fact that Greg Boorer and Margie Hemsley were passing through town. Definitely a fun evening and I have added two new words to my lexicon, courtesy of Greg: Tidy and Complete Package.

After draining the last drop from the Grand Marnier bottle, we called it a night, or to be more accurate, an early morning. I'm certain that they put stuff in Grand Marnier that makes your head spin, round and round, up and down. It was still doing it 6 hours later when I arose, bright as a brand new pin to greet the dawn and start work. It was approximately at this time when I decided that I wasn't going to drink tonight (being NYE).

Translating Portuguese with a spinning head is never easy, but fortunately I had a trick up my sleeve courtesy of a Christmas present from Uncle Ron and Aunt Kate: a book called Superfoods: Fourteen foods that will change your life. For some reason, neither beer, potatoes, or chocolate are mentioned in this tome but I'll overlook that glaring lacuna.

To save you reading the book, the 14 Superfoods are: Beans, Soy, Blueberries, Spinach, Broccoli, Tea (not herbal), Oats, Tomatoes, Oranges, Turkey, Pumpkin, Walnuts, Salmon and Yoghurt. There are a number of allegorical similar foods in each Superfood group, e.g. cherries, strawberries, red grapes, cranberries, raspberries, blackberries and currants in the blueberry group. But blueberries are the tops in terms of the size of their nutritious punch. They even contain a couple of compounds (one is salicylic acid) that are anti-inflammatories!

Although it's obviously aimed at Americans with rubbish diets, I did find the book interesting reading. These foods are singled out because of their role in reducing diseases like cancers, stroke, arteriosclerosis, death etc. They're better than other "health foods" in this regard. Hell, even apples don't get a mention.

So I decided to eat a healthy breakfast this morning, having concocted the ideal Superfood brekky in my head: porrige (oats) with LSA mix (Linseed/sunflower/almonds - all good Omega 3 sources, like walnuts), blueberries and strawberries, soy milk and yoghurt, and a couple of cups of tea. That's six Superfoods in one meal, and it's actually almost identical to my standard breakfast anyway.

I must say that it had a remarkable effect on me. I went from feeling like I had been eating pure salmonella out of the can to feeling human again after having ingested brekky. Much better than a Berocca any day.

I still have to work on the rest of my diet, as for lunch I had two cheese and tomato sandwiches, an apple, a power bar, some chocolate and some muesli bars (jeez I was hungry). For arvo tea I had a cheese and tomato sandwich, a muesli bar, an apple and a cuppa tea. For dinner I had two toasted cheese and tomato sanwiches, a bowl of ice cream - with extra nuts - some muesli bars and a cup of milo - with LSA added.

OK you have to take these things a step at a time. No point going cold turkey...

NYE crit racing

I saw that they were racing at Sutherland on NYE so I thought it might be a good head clearer. It was nice and quite remarkable to ride 30 km out there from work along the Princes Highway at peak hour in almost no traffic.

We only had 10 starters, including the 9 foot tall Troy Glennan (FRF) and Dave Treacy (who has just joined Randwick/FRF). I went with the first attack and that ended up sort of being the winning break. We had three for a while and I was the strongest, which was nice. But then Troy and Dave bridged up, we lost one, and I suddenly became the weakest, which was not nice.

Troy eventually just rode away and we were quite happy to see him go. Dave stopped working because he was in theory a teammate (and I guess I was too) but it was academic. For some reason I ended up doing the last lap in front, even having a little dig up the hill when the other two started playing cat and mouse. But they came back, I led out, and of course finished last.

I had planned a ride home with Dave and Troy's brother but my tyre went flat just as we were leaving. I put one tube in and it was a dud, then another one in that almost worked, but then suddenly it died (the patch wasn't good enough). The auspices were not in my favour and it was getting dark so Dave's partner Mel kindly gave me a lift home. It was actually a bit of a relief to spend NYE fixing tubes and eating toasted cheese and tomato sandwiches.

I also bought my plane ticket back to Belgium today. Leaving Sydney on Feb. 14 and getting in a day later, I hope.

er, Happy New Year and all that. I'm getting auld. That makes approx. 50,000 words of bilge since I started this in May. What dribble.

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