krazykitkat: (Luke (GGs))
I've been so lazy about posting here. Feeling disconnected, missing the heyday of here and tWW fandom and fic and being part of something. Going to try and get back in the habit, and would love to see you all again.

Last Saturday saw the new Australian production of Les Mis. It was amazing. The new staging is FANTASTIC!

Valjean and Javert were perfect. The only other production I saw back in ~97, they'd imported both from the UK and the Valjean couldn't reach the notes. So thrilled to see such fabulous portrayals. Eponine and Fantine were also great.

A few minor issues, but not enough to take away from the overall fabulous. Marius was a bit wishy washy & always found Marius/Cosette boring (forget Marius, Eponine! Go for Enjolras.). I felt that one of the other students who had a few solo parts & a stronger voice would have been a better choice for Enjolras.

And found Master of the House strangely lacking. It's the number that usually gets your feet tapping and the audience clapping, but nothing. Wondering whether it might be because they have a lot more props & staging to deal with? Because Beggars at the Feast was great with a lot more energy.

So wish I could see it multiple times. I hate the limited seasons as opposed to 15-20 years ago when shows would stay for a year or two.

But it was all a bit complicated by us all having throat/cold bug. Sis was up from Canberra but was so sick that she decided not to go. Plus it's winter and we're having colder nights. Usually for theatre, sis drives us into Sydney, but that wasn't possible. So mum and I were going by train, and hoping against hope that dad would be able to come in and pick us up (he was terrible with the bug). We were calling around to see if anyone wanted to take sis's ticket, finally called long-time neighbour up the back and she thought her sister might be interested. And yes! Caroline is ~6 years younger than I am. We met her in at the theatre, and Belinda (her sister) and Ros (her mother) offered to come and pick us up after and drive us home. So thankfully it solved all our problems and meant I didn't have to face the even colder 11pm train trip home.

Plus my overheating issue and not being able to dress to the weather and risking chilblains. I wore a summer maxi dress, socks and sandals (proof I'm old and don't give a shit), and sis's red winter coat. I basically looked like a waif who belonged in Les Mis ;) In the theatre I took off the socks and the coat, was too warm.

Thankfully mum and I waited till after to get sicker, so we weren't coughing through it. Been a not nice time since, called in sick to work on Monday. We're finally feeling better but still bit coughy and sniffly. Thankfully my eyes aren't bloodshot anymore.
krazykitkat: (bird love)
It's been 4 days since I bought a bird.

So, 12 budgies weren't enough.

I'd never had much interest in cockatiels. My brother's, Jock, isn't the friendliest and has turned into a chronic egg layer. But in December mum said there was this unusual cockatiel in the petshop, and I visited and oh so pretty, and oh so tame, and so in love. And sis and I wore the parents down, and hey presto, we got a George in mid December (I named him George as soon as I saw him - "I will name him George, and I will hug him, and pet him, and squeeze him"). For the first couple of weeks, George just slept and cuddled on my lap. Now prefers to be patted/scratched in the cage, and climb and wander on us when out of the cage.

George calls when he sees us first thing in the morning, or when he hasn't seen us for a while. And he goes nuts when we get home, usually starts yelling when he hears the car in the drive or garage door go up or us coming up the stairs.

Poor baby has a clipped wing and has broken a number of blood feathers (new feathers, they have a blood supply as they grow). Last major one ended up with blood across my face/neck/arms. Wish could get it through to him that he can't fly and he needs to stop flapping and jumping off things. Bit worried whether he'll end up with a full wing.

Seeing the avian vet in just over a week for a checkup, hopefully she'll have some advice on helping with the wing beyond bubble-wrap. And will be getting a dna test, while the petshop/breeder thought was a boy, a few things have me thinking is a girl. But will still be George.

hey there, Georgie bird )

But this isn't the end of the bird madness...
krazykitkat: (bird love)
We lost our second oldest budgie, Daffy, on Thursday :(

He was my sister's, [ profile] rinkle, bird and was 6.5 years old. As she's living in Canberra I coordinated the vet care. I took him to an avian vet on Monday as he was very fluffy, not doing much, and I found him sitting on the bottom of the cage (really bad sign). He was very weak, hadn't been eating and wasn't producing any poop. Vet didn't know if he was going to make it. She was doing tests, making sure it was nothing that could spread through the flock. He stayed there from Monday to give him a better chance with heat/fluids/forced feeding/antibiotics. Really impressed with her. Explained everything, what tests for and costs.

Got a call from her Tuesday saying, much to her surprise and ours, Daffy made it through the night and was eating on his own, and perching instead of lying on the floor. He did have a bacterial infection but the treatments seemed to be working. Went down and visited him and he looked so much better. She wanted to keep him there until Thursday to keep up with the treatments to give him a better chance. Call from other vet on Wednesday saying he was still doing well.

Then the call we weren't expecting. The vets were very surprised to find him dead when they came in Thursday morning. He'd been doing so well, had a full crop, poo normal, was whistling late Wednesday. The treatments were working for the secondary bacterial infection. She thinks it may have been a brain tumour and he had a seizure. Which fits in with the wobbliness she saw (and thought might have been heavy metal toxicity which she was also treating for) and the weird way he'd been acting late last week. He'd been flying around the cage and couldn't seem to land until I intervened. Then he was lying down along the perch.

I was worried that I'd done something wrong, didn't pick up he was ill soon enough. But she doesn't think it would have made any difference. I was talking to her about the birds we've lost and how my brother has had 2 long living budgies (one died ~10 years, the other is still going at ~12 years). She said with budgies it's all about the genetic lottery. And with older budgies it's usually tumours.

He was a beautiful bird, a yellow face albino. Also very sexy in the budgie world. 2 of our younger boys (Kensi and Deeks) fought each other over him. After bloody eye & sore wing, we couldn't risk more serious injuries and had to give Kensi to the pet shop.

photo )

TV meme

Nov. 10th, 2013 01:28 am
krazykitkat: (oh my (Giles))
I watch a ridiculous amount of tv, and could add too many to this list.

Bold all of the following TV shows of which you've seen 3 or more episodes.
- Italicize a show if you're positive you've seen every episode.
- Asterisk * if you have at least one full season on tape or DVD
- If you want, add up to 3 additional shows (keep the list in alphabetical order).

long list )
krazykitkat: (mixed emotions (SVU))
Just watched the L&O:SVU ep with Munch's retirement.

I'm going to miss the Munchkin. Have watched him since Homicide:LOTS (and so good to see the gorgeous Clark Johnson, who played Meldrick Lewis, at the roast), and loved the HLOTS clip at the end and Munch's "Homicide" when he answered the phone.

21 seasons over 2 shows, plus multiple guest star spots. One of a kind.

The video at this article has an extended version of the roast.
krazykitkat: (cj and gail (WW))
Following [ profile] melyanna - You can only keep five West Wing episodes. What are they?

Really difficult...

1) Celestial Navigation
2) In Excelsis Deo
3) Two Cathedrals
4) Posse Comitatus (unpopular opinion - but I think this ep is brilliant)
5) He Shall, from Time to Time

With Galileo just inched out, adore the Mars storyline.
krazykitkat: (bunny!)
Went to Kellyville Pets today. They had a display of two common marmosets, so damn cute! Spent quite some time watching them, and was funny watching these tiny monkeys race over to the side to watch the little kids & dogs. Unfortunately didn't get any good photos.

But got some good photos of birds (red tailed black cockatoo displayed for us) and bunnies and lizards and fish. And hilarious budgie who was lying on its back (but wouldn't roll over again so I could video it), and then was lying flat on the floor, eyes closed, claw pulled up, chatting away. Not sure whether there's something wrong with it or just strange! My most fantastic budgie, Snowy, would sleep on her side or back in my lap, or in my pocket, but she'd been hand-raised and didn't really understand she was a bird.

Back in March I bought myself a Canon DSLR (feel guilty about it considering the job situation). I'm loving the quality of the photos (18mp), but frustrated at issues with focussing etc and lack of experience. Problem with photography, like all things, is my perfectionist streak. I want the photos to be fabulous & perfect & arty & the best.
krazykitkat: (smart (CJ))
Brilliant speech by ex Prime Minister Julia Gillard. Particularly from ~7min 20s. She is a huge loss and history will treat her much more kindly.

"I want to just say a few remarks about being the first woman to serve in this position.

"There's been a lot of analysis about the so-called gender wars . . . me playing the so-called gender card because heavens knows no-one noticed I was a woman until I raised it, but against that background, I do want to say about all of these issues, the reaction to being the first female Prime Minister does not explain everything about my Prime Ministership, nor does it explain nothing about my Prime Ministership.

"I've been a little bit bemused by those colleagues in the newspaper who have admitted that I have suffered more pressure as a result of my gender than other Prime Ministers in the past but then concluded that it had zero effect on my political position or the political position of the Labor Party.

"It doesn't explain everything . . . it explains some things.

"And it is for the nation to think in a sophisticated way about those shades of grey. What I am absolutely confident of is it will be easier for the next woman and the woman after that and the woman after that - and I'm proud of that."

video )

And fabulous balanced article here.

Julia Gillard is incredibly brave, astoundingly resilient, one of the toughest people we have seen in The Lodge. Through all the difficulties of her prime ministership she was stoic, dignified, composed, resilient. She departed in that style on Wednesday night. Shoulders back. Head high. In the circumstances - the provocation, the consistent undermining by colleagues, the terrible erosion of her authority executed by her enemies within Labor, Kevin Rudd's slow terrible revenge - she exited with class.

There was no self pity. She was confident it would be easier for the next woman, and the one after that. She had done her best. She had achieved difficult things in tough times. She had blazed a trail.
krazykitkat: (hot passion (Xena/Ares))
Have gained an appreciation for Ricky Martin since he's been one of the coaches on The Voice Australia. Even more so in the finale where he sang El Tango de Roxanne (from Moulin Rouge) with his finalist (unfortunately I find him bland). Smouldering and that voice...

video to melt your socks )
krazykitkat: (undercover scientists)
Really interesting story about the 2003 Canberra bushfires and the reasons behind why they were so devastating. Including the first scientific documentation and video of a fire tornado. Video and transcript of the story from Catalyst here or watch on the Youtube video below.

video )
krazykitkat: (blowing in the wind)
Gorgeous performance on The Voice Australia for National Reconciliation Week. Geoffrey Gurrumul Yunupingu and Delta Goodrem perform Bayini. Hopefully my overseas friends will be able to view it. Sublime.

krazykitkat: (bird love)
A month ago in my last week of holidays, I bought a big bird cage, twice the space of our old one. Kensi & Deeks were fighting and we were hoping that more space might stop it (the last brawl ended in Deeks with a sore wing and Kensi with a bloody eye & vet visit), and the old cage was showing signs of wear. And with the new big cage, our budgie tribe grew from 7 to 10 when we brought home 3 new babies: Castle, Beckett & Alexis.

Castle was the youngest and as his wings were clipped, I got to handle him a lot. He was a sweet little thing and he'd sit on my finger and I could pat him and then he'd do his cute little flutter down to the floor. I really fell in love with him.

On Saturday I found him sitting on the floor of the cage, which is never a good sign, and especially bad when it's the first sign you see of illness. I picked him up and he was very skinny. Kept an eye on him, put him back on the perch every time he went back to the floor. Dad took him to the vet Sunday morning. Vet thought it might be an UTI and gave him antibiotics. We moved him into the small cage to keep him warmer and quieter and hoping he would eat with being closer to the seed. He didn't :( Monday night we started trying to force-feed him with wet mushy crumbles and a spoon. Got tiny bits into him, so hard. Continued Tuesday with the feeding and I was veering between wondering whether I should take him to the vet to be put down and some hope.

He started eating seed himself & kept trying to get out of the hospital cage. He escaped twice when I had my hand in the cage (and was jumping onto my chest which was awkward with his poopy bum), & then latched onto my finger & wouldn't let go as he was trying to get out a third time. It was echoes of Danny just before he died, it was like they wanted company. But before I went to bed Tuesday night he was on the floor & when I put him back up on the perch he wouldn't stay there. So I wasn't surprised to wake up Wednesday morning and find him gone :( He was only around 3 months old.

We do wonder whether he had an underlying issue. He was such a quiet little bird, never had one who made so little noise, he didn't chat like the others & rarely whistled. He didn't do the normal baby budgie climbing all over the cage and exploring, and he mostly just sat there. His posture was a little odd too. So it's probably not surprising that I didn't notice any change in behaviour (birds are notorious for masking sickness) when he wasn't active or noisy to begin with.

But I feel like such a bad birdie mum. Maybe if I'd noticed earlier, or started force feeding earlier, or taken him to an avian vet, or... I wasn't this upset when Danny died. There were tears Tuesday & Wednesday and today has been incredibly down. But the youngest we'd lost a bird before was 2 years old. It feels like Castle never got a chance and I don't know whether there was anything I could have done to give him that chance. And now I kinda wish I hadn't bought more birds, that maybe it is better to stick to just a few and not get attached. It just hurts too much.

handsome Castle )
krazykitkat: (tears (Ever After))
Reposting what my sis has posted (she used one of the telescopes for her honours).

It's 5 days until the 10th anniversary of the 2003 Canberra bushfires, in which lives and houses were lost, and Mt Stromlo, one of two Australian optical research facilities was destroyed.

Today, a bushfire swept through Siding Spring Observatory in Coonabarabran in NSW, the other of the two Australian optical research facilities.

They'd evacuated all staff. The site has around 10 operating telescopes, plus a visitor's centre, sleeping quarters, kitchen, etc. It's got the largest telescope in Australia, the AAT, which has innovative technology to do surveys.

Since the 2003 bushfires, they changed things to try to help the observatory survive this sort of event. That included special paint on the domes.

It's looking a bit hopeful. 3 of the telescopes are still alive by the looks of it - I'm presuming they mean 'alive' by the fact that they're getting temperature, etc. info from them. The temperature spiked to over 100 C (212 F) outside and the reading inside the dome at that time was just under 50 C (122 F). It's all the smaller things around, plus the other buildings that I'm worried about. And all the telescopes that they don't know whether they're alive yet. From what one of the people involved is saying, it's sounding like possibly the clearing around the area forced the fire around the mountain, that it didn't actually go through the site. I'm crossing my fingers that this is right... Even then, the high temperatures may have been enough to do a reasonable amount of damage, as well as embers.

Feeling a bit teary. Seeing the devastation up at Stromlo was horrible. Let alone this.

ETA: Rural Fire Service has said that there's significant damage. From allsky cameras, the domes they can see are still standing and they can contact some telescopes. Also, Mopra, a mm telescope (antenna) is just down the road. It seems to be still standing, but not contactable (i.e. offline). The antenna structure may survive a bushfire, but electronics/cabling, and the support building likely wouldn't.

2nd post:

This does not look good for Mopra. The antenna itself will have survived (although I'm not certain at what temperature you get warping) but likely cabling etc. will be gone and it does not look good for the support building. I'm hoping I'm wrong... Do not watch if bushfires are triggery for you.

video )

They've confirmed from the webcams (which too many people are visiting - making it difficult for the firefighters) that buildings (not domes i.e. the telescopes themselves) are definitely on fire at Siding Spring. Some of the staff are fearing for several of the telescopes, particularly one that is a replacement for a telescope that burnt down at Mt Stromlo ten years ago.

It's going to be an incredibly horrible night for a lot of people...
krazykitkat: (blowing in the wind)
Never knew the Asquith Corner Shop, which I went past every day to and from high school, was the inspiration for the Moving Pictures song 'What About Me' It's no longer, was bulldozed on Monday. :(
krazykitkat: (gaaah! (Bridget - Medium))
I want to order the Hetty for President mug & sticker from CBS Store. Have tried numerous times in Firefox/Chrome/Internet Explorer (last resort!) on my PC (Win 7) and in Firefox/Safari on sis's Mac. With and without Flashblock. I can go through all the steps, but after I pay by paypal and then am sent back to the CBS store page, my 'Order Review' is shown for only seconds and then disappears (each step kinda expands out). There isn't enough time to click on 'Place order'.

I emailed customer service, their brilliant reply: call them and order over the phone. I replied I'm in Australia and am not making an international call. Their reply: well fax us the order.

Still the issue of international call and no way I'm faxing them my credit card details thank you very much. That is why I use paypal whenever available.

Gah! I don't understand the problem, especially when it's doing it on multiple browsers. And since it's doing it on both Windows & Mac, I'm assuming I'm not the problem. And why do all the other steps expand out all right, but not that last one. Their international mail cost is bad enough, but I decided I wanted the Hetty mug badly enough. Now I can't even order the bloody thing!

A friend suggested that I ask them to send me a Paypal invoice, but considering how unhelpful they've been so far...
krazykitkat: (Kensi & Deeks)
TITLE: Medical Reasons
AUTHOR: [ profile] krazykitkat
GENRE: Gen with an edge of UST
CHARACTERS: Kensi, Deeks
DISCLAIMER: All publicly recognizable characters and places are the property of Shane Brennan Productions, CBS Television Studios and Belisarius Productions. No copyright infringement is intended.
THANKS: To Shawn for reassurance.
SUMMARY: "Stop staring at my ass." Missing scene for 4x01 - Endgame.

NCIS:LA fic )
krazykitkat: (bird love)
My Danny bird died tonight :(

He hasn't been well the last ~6 months. He stopped whistling & chatting around March, sleeping a lot, breathing heavily. Yet he was still flying like a nut, having such a great time, and not breathing any heavier after. Since he kept going, knew it wasn't an infection. Was probably a tumour, but there's not much you can do with tiny birds. Danny was also difficult because he's had gut/crop issues his whole life. He'd regularly throw up seed and look absolutely miserable, but then be back to normal. The past few weeks I've thought he was getting worse, but it was so hard to tell. I decided to leave him as long as he seemed reasonable and wasn't struggling to breathe etc. (Now I worry that I left him too long.) He stopped flying on Tuesday.

I initially thought it was just the normal weekend throw-up. But today he was looking more miserable and later realised he wasn't eating. The other birds were bothering him and Deeks kept trying to climb on his back. Decided to move him to the smaller cage. I was stroking him and he wasn't reacting, so knew it was bad (in the last few years he's become a bitey thing). Decided that we'd take him up the vet in the morning to be put down, there was no more quality of life. I knelt down in front of the small cage and he was suddenly the brightest he'd been all weekend and was looking at me and leaning forward like he was going to jump onto the front of the cage. He then climbed around so he could be near me. It broke my heart, he was lonely.

Within an hour he was on the floor of the cage and it took another hour or so till he was gone. He was 7 years old (and 2 months). We'd had him 6 days short of 7 years.

He'd become a cranky old man in recent years, but he was a gorgeous bird (even vets had commented how beautiful he was). He had a great range of whistles and was a bit of a comedian. He developed this long whistle (always slightly different) that he'd use when something happened, usually when one of the other birds fell off the perch. And he went crazy over being sprayed with water, adored his showers and ended up looking like a drowned rat.

We still have his brother, Snoopy. Will so miss my Danny bird :(

my beautiful birdie )
krazykitkat: (flip (CJ))
Description of Australia's location on the NBC website... Someone needs a geography or literacy lesson!

in case they fix it )
krazykitkat: (bird love)
Had eye doctor today. Humphrey Visual Field test and Optical Coherence Tomography. Everything's fine, no damage to the retina from the Plaquenil, but as long as I'm on it I'll have to have these tests yearly. Also no sign of any other problems. Annoyingly OCT isn't covered by Medicare, so got less than half of the cost back.

Just continue treating the dry eyes with the artificial tears which is working well. Strangely enough I'm actually best at putting the drops in in front of the mirror. If it gets too bad he can put plugs into the tear drains.

Did bit of shopping after. Walked past pet shop, said "Bunnies!" And then made the mistake of going to the budgies...

I have a new baby budgie :) He's trouble, so I've named him Deeks. Also very laid-back.

the cute! )

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