Thursday, August 28, 2008

The Visitor

While in Brisbane, we went to the Palace Centro to see The Visitor, a beautiful movie about a university professor whose life is turned upside-down by a couple he finds squatting in his seldom-visited inner-city apartment. So far is it from a mainstream Hollywood movie, it doesn't even have a happy ending. The rich characters and the meaning they find in their growing relationships were wonderful.

Recommendation: Definitely see this movie!

Tenth Anniversary

So we were in Brisbane last weekend for our tenth wedding anniversary (actually on Friday, 22 August). Friday was busy (mostly with shopping) and wet (it poured, but fortunately only in spurts). But Saturday, for our picnic in the park, the weather was perfect: sunny and warm, not a cloud in the sky. Although not as many people came as we'd hoped/expected, we enjoyed catching up with many old (and some more recent) friends.
Tenth anniversary (by Ian B-M)
We dressed up in our wedding gear—well, almost. We thought it might help people to find us in the park. Sherwood Arboretum is pretty big!
Fun afternoon (by Ian B-M)
More photos on Facebook.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Year 8 Camp

Last week (not the week just gone, which I started feeling ill and ended with no voice, but the week before: Monday 4th to Wednesday 6th August to be precise) I went on our school's Year 8 Camp. It was at Rowallan Park, just on the North-West outskirts of Mackay. The weather was perfect - cool but not too cold at night, and beautiful sunny days.

I saw a few clever T-shirts. Some students seemed to bring far too much - and some of their tents were huge! Fortunately nobody was without a tent to sleep in. (Except us teachers, but we had dorms well away from where the students were.)

Games and activities filled most of the day time. There were an incredible number of injuries, the first (a twisted ankle) within about 10 minutes of the start of the first activity.

The students' Year 11 mentors dropped in on Tuesday, and set up an awesome obstacle course. Even the teachers enjoyed it! But it certainly involved a lot of mud!

And of course no camp is complete without a campfire!

Before the campfire, the students were given a ‘survivor’ activity in which they had to prepare their own meal. But first they had to hunt for some slips of paper with food items written on them, which they could exchange for pieces of food. I was in charge of dispensing the food. My favourite moment was when one group handed me two bits of paper labelled “onion”. I gave them a piece of onion. They complained, “But that's only one piece, not two.” So I took the piece back, chopped it in half, and gave it back to them again, saying, “There you go, now it's two!”

Our Year 8 students really need to learn to look after their own stuff, though. They kept leaving personal items lying around. They just have no idea what can happen if they're not careful…

(I would upload a whole lot more photos from camp—some lovely portraits of a few of my students, for example—but they all have students in them, whose images I may not post here. Sorry.)

Sunday, August 3, 2008

I am not a film critic - honest!

Hmm, this blog is starting to look like a movie review site—or at least, like I do nothing but sit around watching movies. Ah well, year 8 camp for three days starting tomorrow, so that should spice things up a bit…

End of the Spear

Saw End of the Spear this afternoon. Very moving, it's a true story about Christian missionaries whose example of love and forgiveness saved the Waodani people of Ecuador from extinction. Well dramatised, beautiful photography (well, beautiful scenery, and skilful videography), and a gripping tale.

Recommendation: If you get a chance, see this film!