Weekend that Was: End of Jan


January has nearly gone in a blur of fun, December went so fast that all I remember is a lot of ham and chocolate mousse.

January began with a fabulous trip around the top of the South Island, memories of swimming with seals and standing on beaches with no one else on them a still very fresh.

After that it was back to work to a list of things to do as long as the lies the government told during the war but you get that on the big jobs eh?

So this weekeend we attended the premiere of Neil's first animated feature, a wonderful Sci Fi short which I hope helps get him places. The link takes you to a short demo, not the full feature. At the premiere there was tequila and pie. Lots of pie.

Gaming: got in some time on Mass Effect 2 - that game rocks! Cant.Hardly.Wait. till ME3! We also hit the Kinnect Sports game. I'm sure Kinnect will be an Olympic sport in no time because with it as there's no reason to go play out side when you can do the 100m sprint indoors!

Did you make her?

So I was checking through the analytics of my websites  (some of you have really interesting search terms) and I noticed that one day this month the Optimus Prime Experiment had one truly insane day for web visitors:


People usually come to The Optimus Prime Experiment to get advice from the Autobot Leader, look at pictures of sharks or check out chicks in bikinis playing football. But on this day google sent over 1500 odd more people to check out my Stair Way To Heaven Lyrics page. WTF? That's an OLD song! I began to wonder - had I finally optimised a page with Perfect SEO and this was my reward? Was this evidence of some evergreen content working?

People were entering the search term 'There's a lady who's sure all that glitters is gold' line from the song and ending up at this page. Why? I have no idea - certainly the phrase wasn't the subject of any news media recently - may be it was just one of those things, either way, it's nice to get a little bit of google love eh?

If only this would happen at my new site, Gears of Halo....

Here's a post on some pretty random ideas for SEO.

Ra Ra Oohhh Lady Gaga

meat bikini gaga
Meat gaga

What is it that takes people to the Edge of Glory, only for them to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory? I mean, the Black Caps can hardly win a match to save themselves. Maybe the players were all born this way, destined to be starring at the sun, forever playing second fiddle to what ever nation turns up at the Pavillion?

Marcus Fenix would never have this problem.

All I'm saying is the Black Caps were lucky it rained today......

Extra for Experts: Clearly this post is a bunch of nonsense. This link on SEO may explain why...

Check out lyrics to Marry the Night by Lady Gaga

Dark of the Moon Quotes Transformers Movie



Dark Side of the Moon Quotes from the Transformers Movie

Long serving fans of the Transformers film series will know very well the the movies have lots of hokey lines and goofey quotes. T3 has a bunch of quotes from Sam Witwicky that just make you want to punch yourself in the head. That is until the robot of all robots, Optimus Prime steps in with a few wise words.

Dark of the Moon Quotes from the first trailer:

Buzz Aldrin: You cannot believe what we're seeing...

Mission Control: We are not alone after all, are we?
Astronaut Buzz Aldrin: No, Sir. We are not alone.

Walter Cronkite: We now have had confirmation of loss of signal from Apollo 11. Apollo 11 is on the far side of the moon... 

[at Mission Control, someone turns off a transmitter to the news station]

Mission Control to Neil Armstrong: Neil, you are dark on the rock. The mission is a "go". You have 21 minutes...

Optimus Prime: Everything humans know of our planet we were told had been shared. You lied to us. You've made a grave mistake.

Agent Seymour Simmons: Years from now, they're gonna ask where you were, when they took over the planet.

Optimus Prime: You may lose your faith in us, but never in yourselves. From here, the fight will be your own.

Sentinel Prime:  The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few (which is a quote cribbed from Star Trek 2)


Starscream: My eye!

Starscream: I can't see! I can't see!

Shockwave: Optimus!

Bruce Brazos: WTF to that.

Sentinel Prime: The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few.

Brains: [sneaks aboard the space cruiser] Uh-oh, now this is a clufterf...

Lennox: What the hell was that?
Optimus Prime: That, is Shockwave.

Laserbeak: Is your Daddy home?

Megatron: All hail Megatron!

Sentinel Prime: Optimus... all I ever wanted was the survival of our race... You must see... why I had to betray you...
Optimus Prime: [picks up Megatron's gun] You didn't betray me. You betrayed yourself.
[takes aim at Sentinel]
Sentinel Prime: NO, OPTIMUS...!
[Optimus fires]

Sam Witwicky: [to Lennox] We gotta get Sentinel outta here, he is the key to all this...
Sentinel Prime: Indeed I am! What you must realize, my Autobot brothers, is we were never going to win the war! For the sake of our planet's survival, a deal had to be made with Megatron!
[blasts Ironhide]
Lennox: GET BACK!
Ironhide: [rusting away] Sentinel... what have you done?
Sentinel Prime: [to Ironhide] I hereby discharge you from duty!

Dutch: I am sorry. That is the old me.

Lennox: Snipers, take out their eyes.

Jerry Wang: [pulls guns on Laserbeak] Who wants some chicken dinner now, bitch? Huh? Looks like someone messed with the wrong Wang today!

Charlotte Mearing: [Repeated line] Don't call me Ma'am, I'm not a ma'am.

Dylan: The kid who saved the world. You think you're a hero? YOU THINK YOU'RE A HERO?
Sam Witwicky: No, I'm just a messenger.
[knocks Dylan into the pillar]

Megatron: Now, we need a truce. All I want is to be back in charge. Besides, who would you be without me, Prime?
Optimus Prime: Time to find out!
[attacks Megatron and beheads him]

Ironhide: Class dismissed.

Bumblebee: Good-bye my oldest friend.

Sentinel Prime: The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few.
[references Star Trek II]

Simmons: Don't worry, I speak their language.
[doorman opens sliding hatch]
Simmons: Do svidaniya.
Russian Bouncer: That means goodbye!
[closes hatch]

Starscream: [trapping Sam and Carly] What a treat! You and me, alone!

Que: Ah, good you're here. My names Que. I do hope you have answers for him, i've never seen him so upset!
Lennox: Optimus, you remember Charlotte Mearing, our director of National Intelligence?
[Optimus stays in truck mode]
Dino: He's in a bad mood. He's not talking to anybody today.
Charlotte Mearing: What is this, the silent treatment?
Ironhide: We've seen that and this is not that.
Que: Definitely not!
Ironhide: This is worse. Prime, make something of yourself!
[bangs fist on top of Optimus's cab, Optimus transforms]
Ironhide: He's pissed.
Optimus Prime: [pounds the ground] You lied to us! Everything humans know of our planet we were told had all been shared!
[points to engine part]
Optimus Prime: So why was this found in human possession?

Bumblebee: [to Bruce] Did you eat a lot of paint chips as a kid?

Simmons: [Wants to impress the Russians with a Russian phrase] Dutch! Give me something tough.
Dutch: Eh?
[browses dictionary in panic]
Dutch: Baryshnikov!
Cosmonaut Dimitri: We do speak English.
Simmons: Dutch! You suck.
Dutch: But... It's the Cyrillic... alphabet. It's like all the buttons you never push on the calculator.

Simmons: The Germans, they know how to make cars!

Laserbeak: [to Alexi Voskhod] Pleasure doing business with you!

[Buzz Aldrin and Optimus Prime meet]
Buzz Aldrin: It's an honor meeting you.
Optimus Prime: The honor is all mine.

Soundwave: Soundwave reporting Lord Megatron.
Megatron: And what news from your little assassin?
Laserbeak: Autobots have taken the bait! They've discovered the Ark, and returned with its cargo!
Megatron: You did me a great honour, tracking that ship to the moon. Your human collaborators have served their purpose, Soundwave. It's time to eliminate loose ends.
Soundwave: Laserbeak: kill them all.
Laserbeak: With pleasure!
[flies away]

Laserbeak: [caws] Jerry... you are my favorite...
Jerry Wang: I did what you want!
Laserbeak: [strokes Wang] I know... but my superiors need me to suicide you.

[the Dreads attack Simmons and Dutch]
Dutch: Oh mein Gott! I am fired!

[Ironhide smashes into Crankcase and Crowbar]
Ironhide: Is there a problem?

[Ironhide and Sideswipe vs Crankcase and Hatchet]
Sideswipe: Whoa, we got us a little Mexican standoff!
Ironhide: Weapons down!
Sideswipe: And we'll let you escape with your dignity!

[at the Lincoln Memorial]
Starscream: Oh, my master, such a brilliant scheme! So when Sentinel left Cybertron, it was to defect!
Megatron: He was meant to rendezvous with me here on Earth, before fate waylaid us both. The only way to revive him: we needed Prime and his Matrix.
[blasts the Lincoln statue]
Starscream: Excellent strategy!
Igor: [chomping Lincoln's head] Mine! Mine!
Starscream: So, he is now your partner.
Megatron: He is my greatest triumph.
Starscream: So impressive!

Megatron: Here we are. Fight us NOW.

Sentinel Prime: You're lucky, I didn't kill you when I had the chance.
Optimus Prime: ...it's not over.

Wheelie: Sammy, it's a trap!

Robert Epps: I still got my NEST friends out there. I'm a round 'em up, we'll find your girlfriend and we're gonna bring this guy in.
Sam Witwicky: Why are you helping me?
Robert Epps: 'Cause that asshole killed my friends too.

Sam Witwicky: I saw your ship explode!
Leadfoot: The SHIP! We were never ON the ship! We designed the damn thing, didn't we?

Carly Miller: Do you want this?
Dylan: I want to survive! You think I wanted this? I inherited a client, either I deliver good or I end up iced!

[a coffee cup hits Shockwave on the head. He looks up, and sees NEST in the skyscraper]
Robert Epps: The evil thing's looking at me!
[Shockwave summons the Driller]
Robert Epps: And it even got an ugly Decepticon with it!

Sam Witwicky: Dylan, don't do this! You can't do this!
Dylan: There's only one future for me!

[Cybertron looms above Chicago]
Megatron: Cybertron... you are saved, at last.
[Carly approaches Megatron]
Megatron: Oh, have you come to surrender?
Carly Miller: Was it all worth it?
Megatron: Obviously!
Carly Miller: All your work to bring Sentinel back, and now clearly he has all the power! It's actually almost tragic!
Megatron: YOU DARE LECTURE ME, SLAVE?
Carly Miller: Your Decepticons finally conquering this planet, and yet their leader won't be you!
Megatron: It will be me! It will always be me!
Carly Miller: In any minute now you'll be nothing but Sentinel's bitch!
[Megatron snarls and rises]

[Bumblebee drops some sprockets]
Carly Miller: Oooh, rings!
[Bumblebee plays wedding chimes]
Carly Miller: I love this car!
Sam Witwicky: Yeah, but Bee. you gotta slow it down. You gotta slow way down, ok?
Bumblebee: [through his radio] "I'm just trying to help out."

Ratchet: [to Bumblebee] You fought bravely.

Sam Witwicky: You love it, don't you? I'm just your American boytoy!
Carly Miller: [laughs] I love a boytoy.
Sam Witwicky: Do you know how demoralizing it is that I've saved the world twice and still be groveling for a job?
Carly Miller: People don't know that you've saved the world Sam, I mean I do, I believe you.
Sam Witwicky: Government knows, I mean they could hook me up with a job right here in DC. I should be working with the Autobots otherwise, it's not fair.

Wheelie: [coming in out of the rain] Fricking shortin' my circuits out here! Its inhumane is what it is, making us live in a box on a balcony right next to a beast, like a common animal!
Sam Witwicky: Stop, OK? You and your creepy sidekick, you can't be in here without permission.
Wheelie: According to who, Miss blondie blond?
[climbs on the dog]
Wheelie: Giddy up little doggie!

Wheelie: Ya' know Sam, i don't know about moving in with this chick. What if she dumps us like the last girl?
Brains: She was mean. Didn't like her.
Wheelie: Us guys gotta stick together
Brains: [Starts singing] We are family!
Sam Witwicky: No, we're not family. You're a political refugee and I have finally found someone who appreciates me for me.
Brains: Well you tell her that we're not your pets and we're not your toys, all right, we're an advanced genius alien race just looking for a home!

Judy Witwicky: Sam, I think for a job interview that you should wear real pants.
Sam Witwicky: I think for life you should wear real pants.
Judy Witwicky: [Sees Sam's new car] Oh, what... what happened to Bumblebee?
Sam Witwicky: He's off on his missions.
Ron Witwicky: Oh, your CAR has a job huh?
Judy Witwicky: What does it change into?
Sam Witwicky: It doesn't change into anything. It's a collectors item, I got it for a steal. It just needs a little work, trust me.
Judy Witwicky: Oh no, I think it's darling. It reminds me a lot of Bumblebee... if Bumblebee were a sad piece of shit.

Charlotte Mearing: CIA's up my ass about this mystery raid in the Middle East. So it's time to come clean. Was a unit involved?
Lennox: Uh, I'm not sure ma'am.
Charlotte Mearing: As director of National Intelligence, I'm a really big fan of intelligent answers.
Lennox: I really can't tell you definitively. These Autobots are like teenage kids, they like to sneak out of the house every once in a while.

Starscream: Oh, my poor master. How it pains me to see you so wounded, so weak...
Megatron: Spare me, you gaseous sycophant! You know what you are told, which is nothing!

Sam Witwicky: The Autobots are off saving the world and I've organized four binders.

Bruce Brazos: Come on people! Yes a workmate died but looking out the window is not going to bring him back! The man was depressed. You can keep watching him but his not getting up, you all read Humpty Dumpty.

Sam Witwicky: We got an emergency, you gotta get Colonel Lennox out here. I'm reporting Decepticons, Deceptions are back, you gotta open that gate right now.
NEST Guard: Easy sir, this is Heath and Human services.
Sam Witwicky: Right packing M4's! What are you protecting? Colostomy bags? Bed pans? Throat lozenges? Where'd you get that hat from? Nursing school? So your nurses and foot powder protectors, fantastic!

Sam Witwicky: Come here. Come here!
Bumblebee: [Through radio] Come on! Sam.
Sam Witwicky: What is your deal, huh? I know your Black Op stuff is important to you and i'm not trying to diminish it or guilt trip you or anything, I just never see you anymore! You can't come to the garage and hang out just one night?
Bumblebee: Sam, that makes me feel bad.
Sam Witwicky: Well I hope you feel bad, you should feel bad look at the jalopy i'm driving know I feel bad every single day!

Simmons: Tell Megatron, let's tango!

Sentinel Prime: So majestic and peaceful, this planet. Unlike the final days on Cybertron.
Optimus Prime: I've wondered what might have been, if you had fought the final battle instead of me.
Sentinel Prime: Never mourn the past, young warrior. Thanks to you, our race survives.
Optimus Prime: [offers the Matrix to Sentinel] You were our leader, Sentinel. it is your right to lead us again.
Sentinel Prime: In a world I do not know, I am no longer your teacher, Optimus, you are mine.

Simmons: We've go to beak this case down. What we have here, is an astronaut epidemic.
[Points to different photos in turn]
Simmons: MIA, dead, died in a car accident, killed, DOA, car death... it's like these guys can't drive, they can fly into outer space but they can't drive a car.

[Bumblebee is startled by Carly and crashes into the ceiling light]
Brains: Oh, that was smooth Bumblebee!
Bumblebee: Missed it by that much!
[Hides face embarrassed]

Charlotte Mearing: Mr Witwicky, I thought I made it clear to you that I did not want you calling this phone...
Sam Witwicky: Listen, the whole thing has been a set-up since the beginning! The Decepticons wanted Optimus to find Sentinel because he was the only one who could revive him.
Charlotte Mearing: But we have the space bridge...
Sam Witwicky: Mearing, you have five pillars - I just learned that they have hundreds! You're doing exactly what they wanted you to do! What do you need me to say to you? The Decepticons are coming for Sentinel Prime!

Optimus Prime: Why, Sentinel? Why?
Sentinel Prime: For Cyberton! For our home! What war destroyed, we can rebuild - but only if we join with the Decepticons!
Optimus Prime: No, it's not the only way! This is our home, we must defend the humans!
Sentinel Prime: So lost you are, Optimus. On Cybertron we were gods, and here they call us machines! Let the humans serve us, or perish!

Charlotte Mearing: These guys are the Wreckers. They take care of the Xantium. We don't let them off the base much cause they're assholes.

Optimus Prime: What your leaders say is true. This was all my fault, I told them whom to trust. I was so wrong.
Sam Witwicky: That doesn't make it your fault, it just makes you human for a change.
Optimus Prime: Remember this: you may lose you faith in us but never in yourselves.
Sam Witwicky: I need to know how your going to fight back. I know there's a strategy, I know your coming back with reinforcements, something. I know there's a plan. You can tell me, no other human will ever know.
Optimus Prime: There is no plan.
Sam Witwicky: If we just do what they want, how are we ever going to live with ourselves?
Optimus Prime: You are my friend Sam, you always will be. But your leaders have spoken. From here the fight will be your own.

Simmons: Years from now they're going to ask us: where were you when they took over the planet? We're gonna say: we stood by and watched.

Simmons: Excuse me, excuse me, It doesn't make sense! Can't we get any eyes in there at all?
Charlotte Mearing: They keep shooting down our drones.
General Morshower: They want us blind. But we do have a couple of mini-drones we're going to try.
Simmons: Well, whoever's manning these UAV drones, can we try to redirect them toward Trump Tower? The kid, Witwicky, was on his way to Chicago. Said some point man, human op is there, for the Decepticons! Listen, if I know anything I know this: that kid is an alien bad news magnet!

Robert Epps: [seeing destroyed Chicago] My god. We came here to find her in the middle of all of that?
Epps Team 'Stone': Are we really going out there Epps?
Eddie: I'm not going in there!
Robert Epps: No one's going in.
Sam Witwicky: I am. With or without you, I'll find her.
Robert Epps: You're going to get yourself killed Sam! Is that what you want? Is that what you want, you came all the way out here to get yourself killed? Listen to what I'm saying!
Sam Witwicky: She's here because of me, do you understand?
Robert Epps: Listen, if you go in this building, that's if she's still alive, there's no way you're going to be able to reach her!
Sam Witwicky: What do you suggest I do?
Robert Epps: It's over. I'm sorry, but it's over.

Optimus Prime: Your leaders will now understand: Decepticons will never leave your planet alone. And we needed them to believe we had gone. For today, in the name of freedom, we take the battle to them!
Sam Witwicky: I saw your ship blow up!
Roadbuster: The ship? We were never IN the ship! We designed the damn thing, didn't we?
Leadfoot: We were hidden in the first booster rocket to separate, splashed down back in the Atlantic just as planned. We ain't going nowhere!
Brains: Yeah, no one's exiling us!
Wheelie: The Autobots are staying right here. We going to help you win this war!

Robert Epps: [about Shockwave] That is one scary ass Decepticon!

Robert Epps: Why do the Decepticons always get the good shit? We about to be eaten people!

Lennox: Epps! Epps, I've been looking for your ass! How you doing?
Robert Epps: Your time is whack! Even worse, we can't get across the river to that building and the Autobots are upstairs surrounded.

Wheelie: We're in the heart of their ship. Lets give em a little ride.
Brains: Oh we gonna screw this ship up!

Dylan: Prisoners? You're keeping prisoners?
Soundwave: Yeesss...
Dylan: You need to teach them about respect! This was all business, but now it's all personal, do you understand me?
Soundwave: [laughs] I understand. No prisoners, only trophies!
[grabs Que]
Soundwave: You first!
Que: Wait! We surrender! Why don't we just settle this like good chaps...
[Soundwave shoots Que]

Optimus Prime: Get down here, Sentinel!
Sentinel Prime: [draws his lance] Optimus, you forget your place!
[jumps down to meet Optimus]
Sentinel Prime: I bring you Cybertron, your home, and still you choose humanity!
Optimus Prime: You were the one who taught me freedom is everyone's right!
Sentinel Prime: I will re-trigger that pillar!
Optimus Prime: Then you'll have to go through me!

Carly Spencer: I love you.
Sam Witwicky: I love you. You're the only thing I need in this world and I'll do anything to make it up to you. I promise.
Carly Spencer: I'm going to hold you to that. Just never let me go.
Sam Witwicky: Promise.

Jerry Wang: [yelling at Sam Witwicky] This is code Pink! As in Pink Floyd! As in Dark Side of the Moon! As in 1972!

[Sentinel attacks NEST base]
Charlotte Mearing: Sentinel, stop this!
Sentinel Prime: I am a Prime, I do not answer to the likes of you. Return what belongs to me!

[Optimus arrives at NEST]
Charlotte Mearing: Take a good look, Optimus! This is all your fault!

Dylan: I liaise.

Roadbuster: Wreckers, kill it!

Optimus Prime: I'm coming to get you!
[flies through the Driller]

Que: This gun is the perfect invention Ironhide.

Sam Witwicky: [Upset as it seems Bruce won't hire him for the job he wants] I've saved your life twice. I can't tell you how, but you are still alive because of me.

[first lines]
Optimus Prime: We were once a peaceful race of intelligent mechanical beings. But then came the war, between the Autobots that fought for freedom and the Decepticons that dreamt of tyranny. Overmatched and outnumbered, our defeat was all but certain. But in the war's final days, one Autobot ship escaped the battle. It was carrying a secret cargo which would have changed our planet's fate. A desperate mission, our final hope...
[the Ark flies from Cybertron into space... and is gunned down]
Optimus Prime: A hope that vanished.

[last lines]
Optimus Prime: In any war, there are calms between the storms. There will be days when we lose faith, days when our allies turn against us. But the day will never come, that we forsake this planet and its people. For I am Optimus Prime, and I send this message to the universe: We are here. We are home.

Optimus Prime: They're surrounding the city to make a fortress so that no one can see what their up to inside. Our only chance is the element of surprise.
Sam Witwicky: [looks at the Decepticon airship] I think I know where to look. Can you fly this thing?
[Bumblebee wiggles his fingers]
Sam Witwicky: What is that? So-so piloting?
Bumblebee: Uh-huh!

Dylan: If you want to survive a war, do business with the side that's gonna win.

Sentinel Prime: I will overlook your condescending tone if you understand the gravity of mine.

Megatron: The city is secured. The humans cannot stop us!
Sentinel Prime: As the afternoon falls, the rest of the pillars will reach their launch position.
Megatron: This is the victory I've promised you so many years ago where we rebuild Cybertron together.
Sentinel Prime: [grabs Megatron] I have gained to work with you that our planet may survive! I will never work FOR you! And you'll be wise to remember the difference.

Check out quotes from the first Transformers movie, and also quotes from Revenge of the Fallen.

Prime and The Chief Double Team a Moa

It would simply be rude of a website called The Optimus Prime Experiment to not post this picture of the time Optimus Prime and the Master Chief teamed up to destroy a moa.

Perhaps this is why moa are extinct in New Zealand? It's not because the Maori ate them, it was because of an intergalactic battle between giant robots, genetically engineers soldiers and birds that KFC only wish it could sell through the drive in!


This image was the result of a competition that Bungie has been running, check out more in the Bungie Weekley Update...

Why did Bungie trademark 'Dead Orbit'?



Why did Bungie trademark 'Dead Orbit'? Well, I can't actually tell you, only surmise...

The interwebs are all a buzz with the news that Bungie have trade marked a few certain phrases. Why the abuzz? It could mean they are in the process of firm up the names and whatnot of the new IP they have been so secretly working on.

The Four trademarks and their corresponding domains were registered: Osiris, New Monarchy, Seven Seraphs and Dead Orbit.

Osiris is popularly known as the Egyptian god of the Underworld and Seraphs are one of the highest choirs of angels in the Christian and Judaic system of beliefs.

Bungie’s games often include religious themes and motifs, as oft demonstrated by the theocratic Covenant coalition of the Halo series so it shouldn't surprise anyone that these terms are possibly be going to be used in the new IP that Bungie are working on for their new publisher, Activision.

I doubt Dead Orbit will be the name of the game, its sounds a lil too corny and similar to Dead Space.

Sadly this development doesn't give us any clue as to what Bungie Aerospace means, if any thing!

So what do you think these copyright / trade marked names represent?

Originally published on Gears of Halo. Gears of Halo is awesome.

Jimmy's new site: Gears of Halo

Wanna makeout?

So regular readers may have noticed I'm a bit of a Halo fan and that I've been neglecting The Optimus Prime Experiment to blog at Halo Reach Game News - well that site has undergone a little bit of a change. 

Starting with a new name. HRGN is now officially 'Gears of Halo' - a title designed to firmly focus the attention on what this blog is about - Xbox gaming! 

The focus will still be on all things related to the Halo universe, especially including whatever ever 343 Industries come up with - a remake of Halo: CE with Kinect anyone?

Whatever trick Bungie has up their sleeve, you can be sure that Gears of Halo will be on the case when it's revealed. Bungie Aerospace perhaps

Gears of War 3 is going to be a big game in 2011 so I'll be keeping a close eye on that too. Then of course there will have to be some news and discussion on Mass Effect 3 (I'm picking this to be the game of the year already!).

In the meantime check out four recent posts:


Week that Was: We’re all going on a summer holiday


Attacked by Moa in Able Tasman
Week that Was: We’re all going on a summer holiday*

Last year Jay Bee and I went to Thailand for a holiday, this year we thought it might be nice to see a bit of New Zealand. Long story short, after some very helpful advice from our friend and travel agent Angeline at Mt Wanganui Travel Com, we decided a week or so at the top of the South Island might be just the ticket for a classic Kiwi Holiday.


Day One: The Detour and the Camping Ground


An early start to be at the Wellington Ferry by 7.30am to get ourselves and a well laden car to Picton. So after driving the car off the Ferry (a very novel experience in itself) we had sandwiches in the cute lil town of Picton.

We’d heard overnight that the road to Nelson was paved with gold or possiblymajor flood damage and of the rumours, the latter proved true. So we headed on a detour route to Blenheim which is basically wine country. Blenheim is a pretty place; the city is surrounded by miles of vines and sun. The sun is everywhere!

Due to the floods, we cut through State Highway 63 which is flanked by copious amounts of wild lavender and then back up north to our destination of the Marahau camping ground. In all, a trip of about 4 hours (plus 3.5 on the boat) but a most beautiful drive through some amazing NZ scenery.


It's a hard life...
Marahau is a small beach community right next door to Abel Tasman National Park. After pitching our tent and listening to an old man play some blues on his guitar, we dined at a lovely restaurant called Hooked on Marahau and drank some average wine from Sacred Hill.

Later we chased pheasants and walked along the beach. After dark we read in our tent by torch light. For me it was CS Lewis’ version of the Bible’s Book of Genesis i.e. The Magician’s Nephew and Jay Bee read some popular book about vampires. 


Day Two: What Happened at Able Tasman

Island in Tasman Bay
We were woken by the dawn chorus, lead by some tui, celebrating the arrival of a fabulous NZ summer’s day. Marahau is a place that could not be more ‘New Zealand like’ if you tried, except of course for the folk in the camp site who had come from all corners of the Earth to spend the summer. It was most amusing to hear a mother tell her child off in French. Something about wee Francoise being a cute little dog, I think!

Our mission today was to hike in the Abel Tasman National Park. A water taxi took us North to Anchorage Bay so we could hike back to Marahau through the Abel Tasman. We did the 14 km trip in just under 3 hours under a blazing sun, sheltered by a beautiful forest cover and the songs of many birds. The views of the various beaches are just absolutely fabulous, I can see why Abel Tasman is a popular spot for tourists and kiwi travellers a like. 

Back at Base Camp we enjoyed a BBQ after which I moved onto The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe and learnt about some good old Christian values (on which we can rely?)

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