Vegan Potluck @ Roma Street Parklands: Last Saturday my housemates and me attended another vegan potluck event. Although living vegan for already more than five years I never was socially connected with groups or even single persons who share my view of a healthy, climate-friendly and cruelty free way of life. To live together with three other vegans definitely a benefit regarding connectivity to all kinds of vegan events. Daniel is befriended on Facebook with hundreds of other vegans and becomes informed about everything what`s going on for vegans in Queensland and James sometimes shares links to interesting pages, meet-ups, etc. with me, too. Under normal circumstances I am absolutely not the outgoing guy but since there is nothing wrong having for example a picnic in a park with mind-liked people, I have attended more events here in Australia than in the three previous years in Berlin. The potluck picnic was held at the Roma Street Parklands, a beautifully cultivated park on a hillside, adjacent to the big Roma Street train station at the edge of the Central Business District. James’ and my contribution were sandwiches. He prepared triangles with grey bread and cucumber plus sour cream while I had decided to go for square canapés made of white toast with tomato, cucumber, mushroom, cheese, salad, pumpkin spread/sour cream. (Yes, all these ingredients are also available without any animal products) Obviously we had hit the bull`s eye because our sandwiches were completely gone after 20 minutes. But before we could present our party food to the other 30-40 attendents we first we had to find the location in that huge park. It was a sunny day and temperature scratched the 30° C. Tediously we cycled up the hill, just to recognize that the spot for the potluck was at the very bottom of the park. 😀

The first half hour consisted of taking food pictures and testing all the delicious stuff. I was not in the mood to take the initiative and to start chatting to somebody but I didn’t have to because people approached me and began to ask questions. After a while Daniel showed up as well as Max (former housemate and my travel companion for Singapore in April). He had brought his slackline and some juggling balls with him. I hadn’t practised both for many months. Max and me tried to set up a juggling performance together with limited success as you can see in the video. The atmosphere was excellent. I had a couple of nice conversations, became introduced to more and more people and enjoyed lots of chitchat which ended in exchanging emails and phone numbers to send photos and to keep in touch. Summary: Awesome weather, lovely people, outrageous tasty food! For some guys vegans are pale skinned, hemp-clothes wearing, crazy animal activist but this event proved at least for me that they are just normal guys, having ordinary jobs, interests and exactly the same problems as “carnivorish” people, only with a different attitude when it comes to food, animals and environmental issues.

Earth Hour Evening & Cookiepalooza: Tomorrow, about 8 people are about to come around celebrating “Earth Hour Evening” in our house. For one hour all lights and electrical devices will be switched off to think about the use of energy. We will light up a bunch of candles and munch the food provided by our guests. On Sunday we go again to Orleigh Park in West End for another Eating for Animals happening, this time called “Cookiepalooza”. $10 donation per person will be donated to 100% for the Gold Coast Guinea Pig Rescue. The hosts Arly and Susan will bake tons of cookies, considering all kinds of special needs like gluten-free, nut-free, raw, no soy,… . Furthermore they have announced to guarantee entertainment by playing games with prizes to win.

P1080456Thailand Visa & Bookings: What about my private activities? – I have cycled to the consulate of Thailand on Tuesday and received my visa! I only had to wait for an hour which I used to bike to the University of Queensland in St.Lucia on the other side of the Brisbane River. Unfortunately my camera battery ran out of power and I had no replacement. AAAARGH! What a scenic campus! With the lakes, lush vegetation and diverse fauna it looked more like a botanical garden than a recreation area for students. IMG0013AA saurian rested on the footpath, unimpressed by all the students passing by. Dozen of lorikeets were sitting on branches of a picturesque looking tree and at the water’s edge of the lake I spotted heavy eels and some small turtles. I never use my mobile phone for taking photos but a hideous picture is better than none…so here we go. Have to come back for an extensive photo session with my Lumix FZ150!

Not only I am a proud owner of a Thailand visa but also I have booked my accommodation in Singapore and the flight to Bangkok on April 13th! This means I will stay for four days in Singapore. Long enough to acclimatize a bit and to do some touristy sightseeing. 🙂

P1080688BTeaser – Nightshooting from March 19th: I did another nightshooting along the Bicentennial Bikeway three days (or nights) ago. This time I put on a circumpolar filter which was supposed to increase the contrast, colour and rto educe reflections. Additionally I mounted a lens hood to avoid lens flare effects. – The results will be published in my next blog post.

istock Photography: Last but not least I have heeded James’ advice and applied at, a website where photographers can upload their photos and earn money every time somebody buys that photo, respectively pays for a license to use the picture. This site is probably the most choosy one amongst all istock photography sites concerning the pictures they accept. I had to pass a test first, then to upload three of my best shots. In a couple of days I will be notified if they are approved and I am “in” or if they are refused. At the moment I don’t feel like a “real” photographer but to sign in for free at different istock corporations can’t be harmful, more likely helpful. If you can earn some extra bucks for just uploading pictures you like to share anyway – why not!?

Have a great day, give away a smile to somebody on the street you don’t know and enjoy his/her reaction.

Chris 🙂

Note to myself: Make sure your next post is significantly shorter!