Friday, March 30, 2007

Shark fins & scallops

I chose not to serve shark's fin at our wedding for environmental reasons. Defying tradition, said some guests. Now, more proof about the environmental impacts of overfishing shark: the New York Times today reported that besides devastating the populations of large sharks, it has also devastated the bay scallop fisheries on the U.S. Eastern seaboard. How does that work?

In the absence of large sharks, the researchers say, the smaller sharks, skates and rays that they feed upon have thrived. In turn, the study shows that as one of these middle links in the food chain, the cownose ray, has become more abundant, it has wiped out scallop beds in North Carolina.

Just another example of how humans wreak havoc on the ecosystem's balance.

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Clearly we're bullocks!

We've strung together video clips of our little adventure and added some music so that you can experience river boarding itself from the comfort of your armchair.

While in New Zealand, we went river boarding on the Kawarau River with Mad Dog River Boarding. It was fun, but not as scary as we were led to believe. Maybe it's terribly thrilling for some, but as surfers, we thought the rapids were...tame.

But, we did enjoy the scenery and the super-clear and clean water. Neil enjoyed the +20m rock jump at the end, and Berta enjoyed the hot showers (the glacier-fed river is really cold!). The staff were professional, and the activity well-run. We might some nice people doing the activity as well.

Overall, we'd recommend the activity. Of course, you must be able to swim and be comfortable in the water.

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

...and we're back!

We finally came back from our (slightly delayed) extended honeymoon. Yup, over the course of 25 days we traveled to New Zealand, Fiji, and Bangkok. We did things from attending New Zealand's largest wine and food festival to river surfing to visiting museums to seeing seals, penguins, and dolphins. We caught up with some old friends, and made new ones. We SCUBA-dived (and saw a few sharks!), river rafted, and lounged around. We saw the sun rise and the sun set. We read books and got mosquito bites. We ate good food and learned to cook some Thai dishes. A great vacation!

Pictures, details, and reviews to come later...

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

convert docs into pdfs...for free!

I personally haven't tried it yet, but it's a widget on the Google homepage and it sounds helpful - will convert your documents into PDF files for free.