Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Road trip

My recent road trip down country was def a much needed break. We had a great time starting with lunch on the Thurs at Tauranga then spending the rest of our weekend in Taupo and the Whakapapa ski field. Enjoy the photos...

Views from the bach we stayed at

Some shots on and from the ski fields

A shot from the car

Wednesday, September 19, 2007


I'm halfway through my 2nd week of holidays at the moment and it's ok. I worked 3 days last week and 2 this week. It was originally 3 days this week as well but because it has been extremely quiet I managed to weasel my way out of work today. Rather nice actually considering I had a mountain of things to get done before I headed down country for a proper hoiday.

Tomorrow, myself and 3 other friends are heading to the snow in Taupo. (Well, we are hoping that the snow cover is still good). We will be driving to Taupo via Tauranga where we will be having lunch at a hotel that my friend works at. It's been a long time since I last saw him so it'll be a nice catch up. This trip will be filled with eating, drinking, skiing and just plain chilling.

I think all of us deserve this time away. We all spent the last term doing ridiculous hours at uni training for compeitions and decided that we'll make sure we have a good time away before term started back on Monday. I'm definitely looking forward to it.

On other news, it's been decided that I will be having surgery to try and fix my wrist. Not the best predicement but hopefully it'll be fixed once and for all. This means that plans for my Melb trip are still up in the air as a dates has yet to be decided upon.

Physically, I'm definitely less drained. The slightly slower pace of the past week has helped despite being at work. However, emotionally and mentally I am still rather exhausted and raw. I am doing better compared to the past month but still a fair way to go before I am even near 100%. The good thing is that I do have a very strong support system here and I am very grateful for that.

Anyhow...I will be taking heaps of photos while I am away so look out for this space!

Saturday, September 08, 2007


Well, well,'s officially the end of the insanity of my 52-day week!

As you would have read from the previous posts, the past 52 days have been go, go, go. Do I regret any of it? No. I know what the Hospitality industry brings in terms of social life (or rather lack of), sleepless nites, crazy hours of being in the kitchen. But when you are both a student AND working in the industry, it is doubly mad.

Culinary fare
Well, as you'd expect...I think it could have been better. But such is the result: Kitchen came away with a silver (and this DOES NOT mean we came second!) and FOH also came away with a silver. We all were hoping and thought that we did well enough to come away with a gold but much to our disappointment...
My team mate got selected for the spot of Junior Chef of the NZ Culinary team. Since this will be read by the world, I'm going to reserve my judgements about it on this post.

I thoroughly enjoyed myself, both the training as well as the competition and am def doing it again next year. I know you may all say that I'm mad and crazy but nothing new there! It was a good experience with good training from our tutors and all credit to them that I want to do it again. If you remember, I said a long time ago that I vowed never to compete again after a bad experience in 2005. But I have since had my mind changed.

Here are photos of our food from the day:

Fruit wood Smoked Salmon on Apple Cucumber Slaw, Kumara & Savoy Fritter with Horseradish Creme Fraiche

NZ Beef Sirlion filled with Bone Marrow, Spinach, Parsley accompanied with Parsnip Puree, Brocollini, Braised Portabello & Dauphine Potato with Red Wine Jus

Blood Orange Bavarois, Chocolate Beignet with Passionfruit sauce and Salt Caramel

Industry placement
I hated the first week! I was so bored I was literally climbing the walls. Each day was such a drag and I was wishing I was somewhere else every minute. The second week, was a little more interesting. I actually had things to do and all in all a better time. I guess, they were happy enough with me...they've asked me to come back during Xmas to give them a hand.

I'm officially on holidays at the moment but it wouldn't be Jean if she actually took the holiday, would it?! Well, I'm actually being better these holidays. I'm only working 6 days as opposed to the usual 10 days. AND, I am going away for some of the holidays too. So I'm not all naughty...

I am due to see the specialist again on Tuesday. My wrist is slowly on the mend but too slow to make anyone happy! So hopefully, when I see him on Tues he'll have a better solution idea for me. It's just getting so annoying...It's been sore for over a year now!

So what do I do with myself now? Well, it is very much an anti-climax now that everything is over and there is no big thing happening in the next month or so. Uni will not be the same; considering I spent 12-13 hours at uni for majority of the week last term and will only be there for the usual 4-6hours next term. I guess, I'll just have to try and enjoy the slow pace for a little bit.

In between doing a million things over the past month, I've been able to find some time to do some reading. The current book I have been given to read has been fun, enjoyable, interesting but yet challenging, hard and often I just felt like not wanting to read it anymore. I was handed this book because all the characters in the book have funny little things about them that when all put together, become me! And just being able to see that really has been helping with the searching and questioning I have been doing lately. Not far away from finishing it now...

Well, I'd best be off! Adieu