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I Forgot to Mention

Entry 1290, on 2011-04-25 at 17:26:37 (Rating 1, Travel)

I recently spent a short time (5 days) in Brisbane, Australia. Even though I wrote two blog entries while I was there (or flying to/from there) I didn't say much about the journey itself, so now a week later, I thought I'd better do that.

I went to Brisbane for a three day iPhone programming course (which I have written a blog entry about, but haven't posted yet) and only had half a day free at the end to look around. Unfortunately it rained heavily that morning (the rest of the time the weather was good) so I didn't get to do much. Still, it had been many years since I had been there so it was nice to at least have an hour or two each day after the course to take a few photos.

In the short time I was there I grew to like Brisbane. It seems safe but is still lively, it is big enough (population 2 million) without being too big, and the climate is very nice (apart from the occasional tropical storm or flood). I like other Australian cities too: I have spent short periods in Sydney, Melbourne, and Adelaide (but not Perth yet unfortunately), but places always seem better when you visit them, and what New Zealander hasn't at least considered moving to Australia?

I got some quite nice photos of the city lights at night reflected in the water of the Brisbane River with the Victoria Bridge in the foreground. I have included a small version of one here (if you are on my main blog) and I'll try to find the time to put some in the photo section of my web site in the future.

I got quite short notice of the trip and I found my passport had expired, and a new one only turned up a day or two before I left which caused a certain amount of consternation. But apart from that it all went well. The new passorts with electronic identification can make checking through customs quite a bit faster and I didn't have much waiting in queues at either the New Zealand or Australian airports.

The iPad helped a lot. It is just the right size to use while flying (I find the laptop just a bit too big). I watched movies on it and wrote some blog entries. I also revised some basic programming courses (although you can only actually write programs for the iPhone and iPad on a Mac).

I had to resort to reading a real paper magazine during take-off and landing though because of the odd civil aviation requirement of turning electronic devices off at those times. I'm sure there is no real risk on a modern aircraft and I suspect the rule is either left over from older navigation systems or is designed to maintain the passengers' attention if there was an emergency.

So that was my time in Brisbane. Most of it was spent in that rather intense course but that was also worthwhile so I guess not having much free time didn't matter that much.


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