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Showing posts from June, 2024

New Photo Albums: From Iceland to NZ via Wales

Couple new photo albums as I discover I have groups of photos over time, or visited a place and went wild with the camera. Icelandic Art Seems I was extremely arty and sophisticated during my brief trip to Reykjavik The Icelandic Phallological Museum (Hið Íslenzka Reðasafn) A normal part of a male mammals anatomy and it's got its own museum, strange eh (giggle giggle, fnarr fnarr, r r r) Mappa Mundi, copy (Hereford Cathedral, England) I think I saw a copy but heck it was awesome anyway Levin (Horowhenua, Aotearoa) Strangely I've taken very few of "town", or, "the big smoke" despite living near it for over 2 years Monmouth's Shire Hall So many photos it deserves an album of it's own Abandoned buildings So many of us love a good solid abandoned building, I wonder why

Best Reykjavik Fast Food

Since 2009 there has been no McDonalds in Iceland , which is not to say they don't have typical US fast food joints at all, they do. They also have they're own versions, Metro for instance is a burger and fries caper that the old McDonalds franchise runs. It's basically McDonalds with a different name. Ignore them all  as it is in Reykjavik that you'll visit the best hotdog stand ever. So good that they are also at the airport and around the capital city, although make sure you go to the original. Bæjarins Beztu Pylsur (translated to The best in town ) has been doing what it does since 1937 having be setup by the grandfather of the current owner, Guðrún Kristmundsdóttir. While most hot dogs in the world are made out of pork or beef, the hot dogs here are made from lamb meat. The sauces and sides are also something to shout bravo for! You can have a hot dog with homemade crispy onions and sweet mustard, along with raw onion, ketchup and remoulade. The ketchup is actuall

Soundtrack Of My Life: Mike Riversdale

Saw this from Katherine Parkinson and thought, what a great idea. Easy as, copy the questions, fill in your answers (with links to YouTube or Spotify), pop this message at the top, and send it on to someone else. The first song I fell in love with The first gig I went to The song I wish I’d written The song I do at karaoke The song I can’t get out of my head The song I can no longer listen to The song I want played at my funeral The song that makes me want to dance I nominate: Keith Jo Rob

More Reykjavik Statues

Part 2 of statues around Tjörnin in Reykjavik .

Statues, Reykjavik Loves 'Em

A wander around Tjörnin , "a small, prominent lake in central Reykjavík , the capital of Iceland" is a statue lovers dream. I am definitely into a bloody good statue, any 3D art tbh.

It's Coming To Us All

Quick note. I've been spending more time on writing and one of my paths has been to finally pick up my draft posts and finish them off. Welcome to yet another ... Death . Oops, sorry, did I make you jump, so sorry. It's a word that is so so much more than just a word. Feel the difference between, "death", the word, and oh I don't know, "stick". Both just words but wow the weight of the word "death". For some the weight, that dark heavy lead smell and taste, is too much and we sidestep it by using one of many euphemisms available such as: passed on no longer with us departed resting in peace All used to deflect the power of the word "death", we just don't want to state it in the face and feel it's presence. I have been around a number of deaths, some friends that committed suicide, a few work colleagues, and some family members most notably my Dad, Derek . There are also famous people dying that, through their art, work, and p

Once You've Seen One You've Seen Them All

A normal part of a male mammals anatomy and it's got its own museum, strange eh (giggle giggle, fnarr fnarr, r r r). The Icelandic Phallological Museum (Hið Íslenzka Reðasafn) is a fascinating visit. A well layed out professional museum, great café , merch, and as many preserved penises as you care to look at. The large ones are eye opening at first but after a while it all becomes a bit samey, one penis, no matter what the size, colour, or shape, is much like the next one. Visit? Hell yeah, you'll kick yourself if you don't go. It won't take a whole morning, and you won't have to revisit for a long time after. But definitely go at least once.

Concert Hall Reflected In Pond

Mike Riversdale (b. 1967) Concert Hall Reflected In Pond , 2023 Google Pixel 7 Pro  f /1.9 • 1/690 • 6.81 mm • ISO47 8.8MP • 2225 x 3956

Jawa Sandcrawler Spotted In Downtown Reykjavik

Expect a few more photos of the absolutely spectacular Harpa Concert Hall and Conference Centre on the waterfront of Reykjavik. (on a side note, there was a red double decker bus in the original photo and wow, Magic Eraser can certainly hit the mark sometimes)

Teasmade, Yes Please

A teasmade was the height of sophistication when I was growing up. The Sparkes had a teasmade, it was like visiting the Avengers when I went around. OMG, how futuristic. So, please buy me a teasmade.

In Another Universe

In another universe I am living with a woman called Jane. I've never seen Sliding Doors , but I get it. There's a small number of times I can consciously pinpoint that changed my life. There's also an infinite number of unaware moments that determined the person writing these words. Go figure, it's a wonderfully complex and slightly bonkers thing to be alive . I am not living with Jane, she lives a life far from me. That doesn't mean I don't wonder what could've been, sometimes. You know, a certain something plucks the synapses and I have a smile at the imaginary life that slid by due to choices. It's easier to think about the lives, the many lives, that could've been however what about the one that I have. It's a life full of choices, and each moment is a choice. I really thank my previous selfs for the choices I've recently made to be where I am, I feel a person full of love and joy. Unemployed, but full of joy and love 😁 Choices, we all h

Wall Of Swan Heads

Is it an art gallery, perhaps a museum, maybe a place of nostalgia. The House Of Collections is a bit of everything and then some. When visiting Reykjavik then absolutely go and visit. Give yourself time though, you'll be captivated by such things as a wall of swans heads.

Passing On The International Rugby Calendars

I've been updating, sharing, and managing the International Rugby Calendars for as long as Google Calendar let me do so, over a decade. It's time for me to pass them on to someone else that can manage them (which includes granting contributor access so you don't have to update them on your own). Is that person you? Drop me a line and I will add you with supreme access. If more than one responds I'll give the first 5 the access and then pass on everyone else's details to those 5.

Pride Month + Daily Photo = You $weating

As you are aware my daily photo is a trawl through my photos in a particular order. It's pure coincidence that this is today's choice during 2024 Pride Month*. A very happy coincidence. Being bisexual by nature, having gay friends and family members, and knowing a tonne of queer / gender fluid / non-binary people means Pride Month lasts a Pride Year for me. Welcome to your annual peak inside. If you wanna support your gay, bisexual, non-binary friends or the community in general please give generously via  Hannah's Sweat For Pride fundraiser : Inspired by my brave and amazing transgender teen daughter, I’m taking on Sweat with Pride this June to raise money for our Rainbow communities! 💦🌈   * Hang on Mike, I thought Aotearoa New Zealand's Pride malarkey happened in February / March. Well, it does coz good weather and history. But hey, it just means we Kiwis get to celebrate with Pride twice a year, yay!

"Right Wing" Comedians

Too many people comfortably plump themselves into an army of one type or another . Surrounded by those that sound like you, listen to you intently whilst nodding, and echo your thoughts on why the fight is a good fight and that the other side are such bad terrible people. I used to be more like that than I am nowadays ... hmmmm, aren't we humans meant to become more conservative and reactionary as we age, strange Mike. These thoughts have me thinking of two UK comedians that have been tagged as "right wing", which is putting them into an army for the benefit of someone but, I suspect, not them. First up,  Simon Evans who makes me laugh when he's talking about his family, kids, and life in Brighton. He then hit my ears big time with: Simon Evans Goes to Market , has had six seasons, delighting audiences with his witty and insightful take on the comedically unpromising territory of economics, all of which prove among the most popular downloads on the Sounds App. On the

Now THAT'S A Church

Hallgrimskirkja is quite the build for a church when standing in front of it and the 10am winter sun is still rising. The  Leif Eriksson Monument is an American gift for, something, which isn't a surprise when you get close as it is quite the Disney depiction of a Viking, rawwwr!

WTF! There Is A Surcharge To Use Paywave

This is NOT a new rant. People far better than I have had rants about the extortionate costs to use PayWave.  If you mention PayWave at any place that uses it, any customers that use PayWave, anybody anywhere to be honest, they will have nothing positive to say about PayWave costs and will roll out their own rant. This is my rant. Cash is free. EFTPOS is free. PayWave, which uses the same machine as EFTPOS, costs. The retailers tell us that it costs them $$$ to use the PayWave functionality and so they pass on the costs to us. The banks tell us it's not them but the Credit Card companies that are charging and they are passing on those charges to the retailers. The Credit Card companies (of which there are really only two, Visa and MasterCard) tell us ... nothing. I have found this from SmartPay an EFTPOS system vendor: To accept payWave in NZ, you will likely be charged 0.7% to 1.0% if you are on Interchange plus (unblended) rates with your bank.  Which also had The Commerce Commi

Women Are Better At Sport

I am so enjoying women's sport. For now. Back in the 1950s football in England was a thing. Leading up to 1966, of course. In the 1960s rugby in New Zealand was a thing. For the 1970s, rugby in Wales was a thing. They were times of incredible crowds, astounding games, memories that we, that weren't even born, have. Those that were there wrote songs about it . Rugby now has followed football into the abyss of accountants, business, marketing, and even ROI. MEN'S sport. Everything I say above is about men's sport. At the moment women's sport, especially rugby, football, and cricket here in AoNZ, is on the rise. Finally! The games get big crowds because there is so much joy on the field and in the crowds. The games are fun and that's the point of it all. Remember when sport was fun? Even amongst the older, dour, and very serious All Blacks fans they knew a good game, a fun game, when they saw it and loved it. Womens sport is fun, joyful, and awesome to watch. For n

Reykjavik Murals

A bit quicker than I thought , murals of Reykjavik as I wandered the city on my first morning.

1950s UK Industry Films

Is the background music, the tone and accent of the narrator, the script, or just the mandatory pun at some point. Whatever it is, something makes me love these British Pathé videos ! Of course the topics themselves are glorious: Paperweights (0:00 - 2:01) Jukeboxes (2:01 - 5:20) Candles (5:20 - 8:06) Rock Sweets (8:06 - 11:32) Fairground Toys (11:32 - 12:49) Footballs (12:49 - 15:07) Globes (15:07 - 17:43) Gold Leaf (17:43 - 20:57) Ice Cream (20:57 - 23:03) Model Aircraft (23:03 - 25:32)

Reykjavik, A Government City

Like most capital cities Reykjavik has it's fair share of street art, especially murals which will be coming in the next few days. This, The Unknown Bureaucrat / Óþekkti embættismaðurinn  (Magnús Tómasson, 1993) was my first and I love it having seen so many similar scenes back in Wellington.

Iceland In Iceland

On the coach from Iceland's Keflavik airport there is a delightful sight of an Iceland store.  I see on Google Maps I'm not the only one to snap it with a smile as we hurtle through Hafnarfjörður and into Reykjavik.

Sunset Over The Atlantic

The adventure of a lifetime begins. I can't remember when I first had the burning desire to visit Iceland, but it must've been a long time ago as everyone I've ever known is aware of it. "I'd love to visit Iceland", says I, "Oh, I've been there, it's awesome", replied almost everyone I've ever mentioned it to. Grrrrr  Why? A land of fire and ice. A land that looks so different it must be alien. A people that seem both extremely kind and hugely solid and rock like.  You've seen the photos of Iceland , it is an incredible place. Late last year I went.

"Don't Jump!"

The Clifton Suspension Bridge (construction started 1831 and it was opened 1864) is a place of great wonder and also immense sadness. Clifton Suspension Bridge was designed by Isambard Kingdom Brunel. A young and innovative engineer, he was 24 when he was appointed for the project which came about through a competition. Brunel described the bridge as ‘my first child, my darling’, and the ingenious bridge, which took 33 years to complete, marked the beginning of a great engineering career. Wow, TWENTY FOUR! I wasn't able to design a table seating plan at that age let alone an incredible suspension bridge. Brunel also died five years before it was opened, bugger. Over the years over 120+ people have leapt to their deaths from the bridge and either side there are now notices advertising the Samaritans phone number (UK 116 123) . One such attempt is noteworthy for a pleasing outcome: 1885, a 22-year-old woman named Sarah Ann Henley survived a suicide attempt off the bridge when her

Spider Time

What glorious colouring of this European Garden spider , also known as  Araneus diadematus or cross orbweaver, diadem spider, orangie, cross spider, crowned orb weaver, and even sometimes the pumpkin spider.

Climate Change, It's A Worry Eh

We all know the climate is changing even if there are  differences of thoughts amongst us as to why (not the people that actually know, just the "us"). Change, it's a pain in the arse eh ... as a Change Manager (amongst other skills) I am aware of the platitudes that "change is hard", and, "no-one likes change" which are sort of true , and we can get settled in our lives be that work or actual. Famously we don't like our cheese being moved. However, some people, I am one of them, get quite bored and restless when there is no change, it can become a sign of staleness, of allowing the pond scum to grow across the surface, of decay and putrefaction ... ok, maybe just boredom. Work change though happens either quickly (week, months, even a year or two) or glacially slow that it doesn't get noticed. The change of a new IT system is usually one that occurs, for the actual people (not the IT bods), quickly, akin to a plaster/Band-Aid being ripped o

Dual Language Signs

"Buuuuuuttttt, what if I wanted the toilet in an emergency, how would I know where to go!?" waaaaaah waaaaaah waaaaaah go the racists and/or the boomers. For those of you from Wales, reading this you'll be confused, "What the fuck is your problem Mike?" Here in Aotearoa New Zealand the national roading agency has stated they'd like to put all road signs in dual language, English and Māori. This has caused general racist angst with old white people concerned they won't be able to get to the shops. I know, incredible eh.

"Well I've never seen anything like that before!"

What do you think they are transporting?

The Riversdale Surname, Who Else Has It

Our Riversdale surname, as we all know, was made up . I am often asked, "So, are you the only Riversdale in the world?" Apart from my 2 grown-up kids and perhaps my ex-wife, who knows ... let the Googling adventure begin. Before we get into the results you should know that I will be ignoring all places called Riversdale . There are quite a lot around the world, two are in Aotearoa New Zealand ( Riversdale Beach  - the one I'm named after - and  Riversdale in the South Island ). How these places came to be called Riversdale is as different for each place as there are places and I am not gonna try and find out. General info about the Riversdale surname Well, I can only find the following scant info, first from Ancestry.com : The Riversdale family name was found in the UK in 1891. In 1891 there was 1 Riversdale family living in London. This was 100% of all the recorded Riversdale's in United Kingdom. London had the highest population of Riversdale families in 1891. Wow,

Rosella Dahlia

A large pink  Rosella dahlia  to you, let it make you smile.

Brushed With Colours

Autumn hill trees with a rainbow's arc brushed across.