Category Archives: Culture

Gözleme all the way

Have you tried gözleme? If not you should absolutely put it on your ‘must try before I die’ list. Technically I do not have one of these lists (yet!), but it rolls off the tongue beautifully so I think it should be a thing 🙂

I have an amazing group of friends at my work. They are brilliant people and truly without them my day to day life would not be half as shiny. We often like to have lunch together and one of my friends had been eyeing off a gözleme place that has been under construction for some time now. Finally it opened, so obviously we had to go on the first day.

gozleme-potato

Potato, spinach & feta – SO GOOD!!!

Looks great on the plate and even better when you taste it. It is served on a wooden board with a wedge of lemon. We all loved it and have already visited again a couple of times. It is promoted as Turkish street food and is made fresh, you can literally watch them make it for you from rolling out your dough to placing the finished product on your board. It is completely tasty and the people that run it are (from what I can gather) 1-2 families who are all Turkish, spanning across 3 generations, which I think is really cool.

Last week we went there and were offered Turkish tea (or Rize tea), it was a promotion and you got a free cup with every gözleme. I was a little hesitant because I had been warned off Turkish coffee, but I promised to try new things this year so I did… and I LOVED it. It was super yum. It is served in this elegant tiny little glass with a teeny teaspoon and a sugar cube. My friend and I were only disappointed that there wasn’t more.

turkish-tea

Turkish tea with spinach and feta gozleme

Such an interesting contrast to be eating street food with your hands and sipping on tea out of an elegant cup like a posh lady.

9/10 will eat and drink again – A LOT.
It is probably not good that this is such a short walk from my work, but honestly it is not that bad for you is it?

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Dr. Evil

*Warning: we are still talking about lady parts 🙂

Who would have thought that my girl junk would give me posting fodder? You all seemed to enjoy my post from yesterday so I thought I would share with you what happened last night.

Yesterday the issue raised its Hulk-like head again, queue huge sigh from me because I knew I should probably go to the Docs, but I finished work at 6pm and as much as I know it is a natural part of life I really didn’t want to go and talk about my baby cannon with some random person. So I spent some time talking myself into it and off I went armed only with my somewhat rehearsed speech for the Doc and an ebook recommended to me by a really great blogger (I don’t know if she would be happy to be pinged in a post about pink bits so I will leave her alone for now LOL).

I asked for first available and silently promised myself that whoever it was I wouldn’t see them again. Husby came along for moral support… seriously I need to buy that guy a cape! Aaannnd I waited.

*Side note: waiting is not overly fun in general, but it is so much worse when you really don’t want to do whatever it is you are waiting for.

My name gets called and off went to the room. I stroll in as casually as I can, it was a pretty awesome performance if I do say so myself. All is going well, the Doc asks how he can help me and I start my speech… all good, I didn’t even stammer, I noticed a strange reaction when I said the word “vagina” his eyes slightly widened and he was blinking rapidly. I think back over what I had said, no everything was fine, why is he looking like a deer in headlights? The dude would easily be over 50… surely this is not his first cave of wonders expedition.

He wrote me out a script for a broad spectrum antibiotic, I have had this antibiotic before… for ear infections, so I was quite aware of just how broad it was. He then gave me a prescription for an over the counter cream, here I was thinking over the counter meant you didn’t need a prescription, but apparently I was mistaken. Then he asked if there was anything else he could help me with.

Umm… wait a minute… did we miss a pretty big step here? How about a physical examination? You have just prescribed me medication and aren’t even sure what the issue is. So instead of being a good little girl and running to the pharmacy with my little pieces of paper I decided to ask,

“Uhh are you going to give me a physical examination at all?” he held both hands up as if warding me off, dude wtf? My growler isn’t going to attack you.

“No, no, no” he said, “if you want a physical examination you must come in when a female doctor or nurse is on duty” pretty sure my jaw dropped open a little bit at this statement. I won’t lie I was pretty shocked and kind of annoyed because I had prepped down there as if I was visiting the gyno.

“You are not going to give me a physical examination because I am female?”

“No, you must be examined by a female doctor or nurse, I cannot examine you”

Why the hell not? WTF am I paying you for Dr. Evil? I have been examined by males at this practice previously, what changed? This is total gender discrimination. If my Husband’s balls were swollen I bet you would be all eager to get up in his shit.

evil  with cat

 

No, I did not say any of that, I sooooo wanted to, but I didn’t. I said okay and took my little slips of paper to the chemist and got the prescriptions filled, including the cream which the chemist informed me I didn’t need a prescription for… oh fancy that. I then had to stand there in front of other customers while she gave me a lecture on how to properly administer cream to my front-butt. Awesome… because this night hasn’t been embarrassing enough.

I was quietly simmering away about Dr. Evil’s refusal to provide me with proper medical treatment because I am a woman. Husby was not trying to engage me in conversation so I guess the look on my face said everything – I should mention that it didn’t help Dr. Evil’s case that he also told me I should try to lose weight. Oh really? Because I don’t think that anytime I catch a glance of myself in the mirror, truly quality Doctoring right there matey.

It’s not like this happens dude, I know what I look like!

On the way back through the surgery I suddenly stopped and said to Hubby, “I am just going to talk to the receptionist quickly”,

“Hun just leave it alone, we’ll go to another Doctor”

“No I won’t I want to confirm that is the rule of the practice because if it is I won’t be coming back and I will be spreading the news to all my local friends too” I approached the receptionist who is always completely lovely, I did feel a little bad that I had to put her in an awkward position.

“Hi, I have a bit of a sensitive question for you, one of your Doctors just informed me that male Doctors of this practice are not able to provide females with physical examinations and I just wanted to check the accuracy of that” she was already shaking her head by the time I was halfway through the sentence.

“No, that is not correct, that is a personal choice by the Doctor not a rule of the practice” ahh so Dr. Evil is just a douche (hahaha douche get it).

I did suggest that they have a sign up or just not send female patients to this “Doctor” because I felt discriminated against and horrible about myself and I certainly felt that I received sub-standard treatment. She apologised and I quickly assured her that it was not her problem.

Let me be very opinionated for a second here… I do not care what his reasoning was for denying me half decent medical attention (even a cursory glance would have been passable). I don’t want to hear his reasons because as far as I am concerned there should be no reason that any Doctor should ever refuse someone medical attention. If he doesn’t want to examine women then he has two choices…

  1. He market himself as only taking male patients
  2. He gives up his profession and takes on something more suitable

If your personal opinions or beliefs or whatever are going to impede your ability to do your job in a significant way then you should not be in your profession. 


Achievement Hunter Let’s Plays – Hilarity for all

In response to The Daily Posts – Roaring Laughter, the first thing I could think of was the Let’s Play videos that Husby and I watch together.

I am somewhat addicted to watching the Achievement Hunter Let’s Play channel. I enjoy playing games, but in no way should I be considered a gamer, regardless of this I LOVE watching this channel. Why? Well because I am pretty much guaranteed an awesome belly chortle at some point during the video. These guys are very talented, somewhat professional 😉 and totally hilarious!

My most recent favourite was the Jeopardy videos, yes there are two and I chuckled and snorted my way through both of them. Two different groups played the game each time (other team members were in the background), I don’t want to spoiler the parts I laughed so hard I cried at, but the one in the first video had to do with the Panda question and the second videos tears also related back to the Panda question in the first video. 

Here’s Part 1

Here’s Part 2

 


Standing on my soapbox

So I was trawling around the web this morning and came across two things that bugged me. The first was this video:

I have to say I loved how this dude talked about it. I have never actually seen either show before, but he is completely right about the double standard it is apparently not at all a moral issue that she welcomed half naked strippers onto her set that she then kissed, but it is a moral issue for two men to kiss on television. This woman has issues, honestly I have no problem with either, although to be fair I do not know when her show airs – if it airs at a time where young children are watching then I do have an issue with them parading strippers around because I find that kind of blatant sexual imagery unnecessary on general programming that children watch.

Here is what I have an issue with… did this man do a brave thing? Yes, he did and in my opinion that is the problem! I believe there is something seriously wrong in our society when in order for this man to speaking openly about his sexuality he had to be brave.

Then I saw this video:

I made it to 4 mins, honestly I wanted to turn it off way earlier than that, but I persisted… until I saw the ignorant bigot couple that popped up around 3:45, I got so upset I stopped the video. Prior to posting it I have now watched the entire thing and I did find a beautiful beacon of hope in there at the end, all the other people in this video need to be sent to tolerance school!

Please do not take this post as a stance against faith; I think faith is an amazing thing to have. Faith is beautiful, it is belief, it is love and it is hope. However, I believe there is a huge difference between someone who has faith and someone who has religion. Some people use religion as a shield to hide behind in an attempt to hide their discriminations, this is not acceptable, you cannot blame religion for making you a bigot, that’s just not fair and it’s not right. It is actually incredibly offensive to those that do have faith to see people twist the messages of love, support and acceptance that having faith should provide.

This debate is not something I usually talk about because my opinions aren’t others and I don’t like people preaching at me about what the bible says. I know what the bible says guys; I went to a Catholic school… I’ve read it. But the bible says a lot of kinda crazy things that pretty much everyone ignores; how about don’t cut your hair or beard? Or, no eating or touching pig carcasses? No tattoos, no divorce, no braids, no gold, no pearls, no shellfish… the list goes on. Unfortunately with Tony Abbott now in “power” in Australia this is a conversation that is in everyone’s face almost daily… so here is my 2 cents worth… this is what I believe:

I believe every human on Earth has the right to love, they have a right to happiness and as long as they are not hurting others in the process (to be clear I mean going all crazy stalker) they should be allowed to revel in that love peacefully.

There is so much hate and hurt in our world already… why as a species are we so insistent on adding to it?


Thank you Mr. T.

Queen Latifah:
And the winner of the 2014 Grammy for Best New Artist goes to… CatT.

The audience goes wild and my music fills the theatre as I throw my arms around my Hubby for a massive smooch and then make my way to the stage. Naturally I pause along the way to high five Adam Lambert and pound fists with Dan Reynolds. I make it to the stage and by some miracle do not stage a re-enactment of Jennifer Lawrence’s Oscar fall, I embrace and pay homage to the amazing Queen Latifah and accept my amazing award. I turn to the mic and clear my throat whilst trying to subtlety wipe away tears of joy.

Oh Jen, you fall so gracefully :)

Oh Jen, you fall so gracefully 🙂

Me:
Wow! Thank you. This moment… means more than I could ever convey in one acceptance speech.

I came here tonight fully prepared to bow down to any one of the amazing and talented nominees as they won this title; don’t worry I am not suggesting you need to bow to me. The thing is, no matter how hard we push and work and pour sweat, blood and tears into our work, at no point will you ever sit there and go… yeah, I got this in the bag… come at me Grammy. As one of the nominees for this award tonight I found myself in such esteemed company and I wish to thank each one of you for the amazing contributions you make to this industry.

I must also thank Universal Music Australia for taking a chance on an unknown artist from South-West Sydney, for believing in me, for hearing me and my music and helping me translate who I am for all the world to hear. Thank you for fine tuning me because God knows I needed it.  

To my fans, without you there is no way I could be here. Thank you for sharing this journey with me and for seeing something in my music that you love. I hope you continue to be touched by my music and I will do all that I can to keep this train going.

Mum & Dad… thank you for letting me play music too loud and for not yelling at me when I then sung over my too loud music with my even louder voice. Thank you for inspiring me creatively. Mum, thank you for always being my editor and grammar Nazi, you are my guiding light.

Mr. T. … Thank you for being who you are, thank you for being my soul mate and for keeping me laughing for the past seven years. Thank you for encouraging me to sing and not being afraid to tell me when I was flat, thank you for letting me listen to any genre I want and for letting me play Adam Lambert’s music in the car really loud… thank you for learning the words so you could sing along too 🙂 Thank you for missing me singing around the house when I go away, thank you for missing it so much you learned every Adele song so you could sing them to stop yourself being lonely without me. Thank you for loving me, thank you for being my best friend and always being there, thank you for your support. I know you are happy sitting down there right now… really happy, because we are married… and being married means half of this award is yours. Congratulations on your Grammy baby 🙂

Thank you all.

 Inspired by the Daily Prompt


Finding myself in the Red Centre

Recently I read a piece called “The top 10 tips I’ve learned from minimalists”  on the blog The ExtraOrdinary Simple Life by Lara Blair. This post discussed how to find the parts of a minimalist lifestyle that work for you and provided some great tips on putting them into practice.

After having a comments discussion with the author regarding single socks and their attack on the minimalist lifestyle and the zen of the human race in general (it made complete sense to us and I may blog about it at a later date) I discovered a comment written by All thoughts work outdoors, part of which really struck a chord with me. The paragraph that particularly caught my eye was as follows:

“I found that a simple, yet very powerful tool for decluttering is to reevaluate one’s social life. A lot of people hang onto stuff because they wanna be prepared for any social situation, be acceptable to anybody and everybody who will judge them. But when you get hard-core-honest about who you really want to spend your life on, you’ll find it’s the ones who don’t give a rat’s ass if you have festive holiday napkins or the right hemline”. – All thought work outdoors, 2014

I loved this comment! I absolutely remember being this way, wanting to be acceptable to all, be a pleaser, I somehow believed that being part of the pack and being accepted and acceptable was vital to being happy. What the hell was I thinking?! How much time and energy I wasted being this way is quite scary to think about. When I was 18 I even drank the same drinks as my friends because lolly water alcoholic drinks were so in, they tasted like Bertie Botts’s every flavour beans, but they were in so I had to like them.

My wakeup call came when I moved to Ayers Rock at the age of 19, for those who haven’t been let me tell you, it’s hot, it’s arid, there is red sand everywhere and pretty much everything about it is not conducive to wearing make-up and sexy dresses. Basically it is about trying to stay comfortable and always being prepared for a sand storm and visits from unexpected wildlife 🙂 It was fabulous and I loved it! I learned so much and I met amazing people from all corners of the Earth and all walks of life, it was a completely unique experience that I value so much. Though I didn’t realise it at the time I now believe having this experience at that age really played a part in shaping who I am today.

While I was living at the Rock at one point I had 3 jobs, I worked full time as an all-rounder for a tourism company (which pretty much means you need to be able to do anything), I was a guide on sunset champagne tours a couple of times a week and I ran Karaoke once a week. I didn’t feel overworked because we had so much play time as well, I explored all the amazing things the Red Centre had to offer, there were many times that I truly felt like I was being paid to be permanently on vacation.

When I moved back to Sydney at 21 I really didn’t understand the friends I had from High School anymore; I didn’t get wearing teeny tiny dresses to go out in 15 degree weather, I didn’t understand them wearing more make-up in one night than I saw in 2 years at the rock and I really didn’t understand these women I knew to be very intelligent giggling and flipping their hair in an effort to get male attention.

Did I feel out of place? Yup. Did I feel like the odd girl out because when I went out I mostly wore nice jeans, a pretty top and flats? Absolutely. Was I always on the outer edge of conversations with my old bosom buddy friends from school because I didn’t relate easily to them anymore? Hell yes! The above coupled with the fact that my grandfather passed away not long after I moved back had me in a pretty dark place; I would try to talk to my friends about how I felt about his passing and found that they just didn’t get it. None of them came to the funeral to support me and after a while I started getting comments like, “are you still sad?” (I don’t blame them for this really as I came to the realisation that none of them had dealt with the death of a loved one).

So I trudged along, I still went out with the group, due to the alcohol education I had received living at the Rock I no longer drank lolly water, or anything else the girls were drinking… it was mostly beer for me at that stage. After a few months I discovered something thanks to a male friend of mine, one night whilst the girls were tearing up the dance floor and we were chatting he divulged that the girls in the group were really intimidated by me. I was shocked and asked why; he gave me the following reason:

  • After school rather than go straight to Uni I had moved interstate, lived and survived on my own and thrived whilst holding down three jobs – all my friends were living the Uni life, some working casual in bars, the others living off the bank of Mum and Dad and they all lived at home.
  • When I go out I have the confidence to wear whatever I am comfortable in and am happy to strike up conversation with pretty much anyone (pretty sure this came from 2 years in a town of 1500 people where you knew everyone so you talked to everyone) – the girls were nervous about approaching new people, particularly guys.
  • I hold my alcohol really well and can keep up with most guys – thanks Ayers Rock alcohol education 🙂 Although I must say that this trait does run in the women of my family for some reason.
  • Because I wear sensible shoes I can pretty much stay out all night without complaining of sore feet – no running around the streets in bare feet for me. It also means I appear to have more stamina.
  • I am able to talk to guys easily, I can hold my own at the pool table and drink with them – What can I say they had a lot of pool tables at Ayers Rock and I like the game. Pretty rusty now though.

It was then I realised that the girls were having as much trouble relating to me as I was to them. By moving interstate and living/surviving on my own, working and paying bills I had matured significantly. In high school we were all having the same experiences and because my friends then went on to Uni even though they were at different Unis studying different subjects they were still having similar life experiences whereas my experiences were completely different. The fact that we were still making such efforts to relate to each other was quite admirable.

It seemed living there gave me the independence to grow into who I was removed from the variety of influences girls in the city have at that age. I am quite thankful for that now, it helped me discover who I was and I don’t spend as much time trying to impress people by behaving in any way that is unnatural to me. Take me as I am world 🙂


52 books in 52 weeks

New Years Eve 2013 resolution time. We are all familiar with the almighty resolutions list we create for ourselves each year, most of us are also aware of exactly how long that list usually lasts, so this year I wanted to create a different kind of list. I didn’t want my list to limit me as much as previous lists have e.g. lose 10kgs – things like this on your list are not fun, they are a chore, for those who are successful with things like this I truly salute you, but I hate them on there. So, since this is my list, this year I put what I wanted on it rather than what I thought I should put on it and so far it has been a lot more fun keeping to the list.

The list

  1. Try new things – Challenge yourself.
  2. Lead a healthier lifestyle – you can combine this with trying new things – e.g. new recipes, new foods, new activities, have fun with it.
  3. “Home truths” – Don’t lie to myself or blame things on others that are all on me.
  4. 52 books in 52 weeks – read 52 books in a year – try new authors, things you wouldn’t normally read and finally read the Hobbit – you have had it for years!!!

It’s a short list, but I have stuck to it for four months and it has been great! Here’s some of my progress:

Try new things:

Done

Home made waffles – I have eaten waffles before, but never cooked them… so good!

Image

Salmon steaks with rocket and walnut salad – never had either before and cooked it all… I am now a salmon lover! (Not big on seafood generally)

Roast pork loin with roast apples, onion, zucchini and potatoes – I have eaten pork before, but not pork loin and never with roast apples – it was amazing!

Image

Tried my hand at cake decorating for my brothers birthday, he loved it!

Image

Until yesterday I had long hair… now… big change!

Image

Coming soon

I have the ingredients to make individual baileys cheesecakes… that’s going to happen really soon

I am currently devising an Easter activity for my nieces and nephews (oldest is 2.5) which will not cover them in goop whilst still being fun – will post my failure or success haha.

Nieces and nephews are still a little young for tonnes of chocolate so I am thinking decorated cupcakes for easter – watch this space.

 

Healthier Lifestyle

This has ended up being mostly food based, but it is interesting how slight changes have made big differences, where before I would maybe munch on some potato chips I now go for black sesame brown rice crackers – so good! I have a bigger lunch now, rather than just a sandwhich I have salad as well which keeps me fuller and sometimes I don’t even suffer from 3.30itis 🙂

The harder part has been soft drinks, whilst I never had tonnes of it – maybe a glass a day I am now trying to not have any. It’s weird, when you have not had it for some time and you have a glass it makes you feel thirstier than you were originally!

 

Home truths

I came up with this because – well it’s kind of complicated, but I just started seeing so much violence in everyday life and it really bothered me. When I say violence I am being extremely general, in addition to all the horrible events I see in the news I mean the discourteous way people deal with each other on a daily basis. People are so self-involved these days that nothing external seems to penetrate their tiny universe. I had already started thinking along these lines, but decided to include it in my resolutions one day after a woman at the shops was on her phone in her own world and smacked into my trolley (which had my 2 year old nephew in it), lost her balance and impaled my foot with her stiletto. I helped her up and asked if she was ok, to which she replied, “why don’t you watch where you are going you fat f*&#!” My reply, “I might be fat, but you are ugly inside and out and no amount of hooker make up or heels can fix that. Get your potty mouth away from us, I don’t want my kid exposed to your filth” I am not going to lie, that come back felt good. I felt I had managed to knock her down a peg or two without stooping to her level, but hobbling home I found myself reflecting and wondering if I could have done more to avoid that scene. I decided I needed to be more reflective on my behaviour on a full time basis to try and balance out some of the ugly karma in this world 🙂

 

52 books in 52 weeks

LOVE, LOVE, LOVE THIS CHALLENGE!!! Please see progress below:

Number Title Author
1 –

Jan 1-5

Earthly Delights: a Corinna Chapman mystery (2004) Greenwood, Kerry
2 –

Jan 6-12

Heavenly Pleasures: a Corinna Chapman mystery (2005) Greenwood, Kerry
3 –

Jan 13-19

Devil’s Food: a Corinna Chapman mystery (2006) Greenwood, Kerry
4 –

Jan 20-26

Trick or Treat: a Corinna Chapman mystery (2007) Greenwood, Kerry
5 –

Jan 27 – Feb 2

Forbidden Fruit: a Corinna Chapman mystery (2009) Greenwood, Kerry
6 –

Feb 3-9

Cooking the Books: a Corinna Chapman mystery (2011) Greenwood, Kerry
7 –

Feb 10-16

Babies in Waiting (2012) Fiore, Rosie
8 –

Feb 17-23

Kushiel’s Dart(2001) Carey, Jacqueline
9 –

Feb 24–Mar 2

Kushiel’s Chosen (2002) Carey, Jacqueline
10 –

Mar 3-9

Kushiel’s Avatar (2003) Carey, Jacqueline
11 –

Mar 10-16

A Storm of Swords (A Song of Ice and Fire) Martin, George R. R.
12 –

Mar 17-23

A Feast for Crows (A Song of Ice and Fire) Martin, George R. R.
13 –

Mar 24-30

A Dance with Dragons (A Song of Ice and Fire) Martin, George R. R.
14 – Mar 31 – Apr 6 Divergent Roth, Veronica
15 –

Apr 7-13

Insurgent Roth, Veronica
16 –

Apr 14-20

Allegiant Roth, Veronica

 

Let me know if you want information on the books I have read, happy to share thoughts or recommendations. If you have a recommendation for me to include in my 52 books in 52 weeks journey please recommend away 🙂