Porters 09

On the weekend I headed to Christchurch for a short holiday. While there I went skiing at Porters Ski Area. Awesome is an understatement. It rocked. Beyond Rocked.

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The road to Porters/Arthurs Pass
Looking up the right side of Porters from the base area.
Looking up the right side of Porters from the base area.
Looking down from the top of T1 nice wide open slopes.
Looking down from the top of T1 nice wide open slopes.

There were a few things that made Porters really special. The first was the atmosphere. Until 2007 it was a club field, and despite turning commercial it still has a really friendly feel to it. The second is the lack of people, because it has T-bars rather than chairs there are fewer people so you have more space to yourself. Finally the terrian just simply rocks. No dodging rocks or narrow runs. The beginners have plenty of space at the bottom of the field. The intermediates have some good runs down the 1km long T1 and there is expert terrain to die for. I didn’t get to go out on Big Mama because the vis was poor. But I did go down Bluff Face twice which was such an awesome experience. Would definitely rival my run down the waterfall at Turoa the other week.

The view from the top of Bluff Face
The view from the top of Bluff Face
Me sitting comfortably at te top of Bluff Face laughing in the face of danger.
Me sitting comfortably at te top of Bluff Face laughing in the face of danger.
Bluff Face as seen from the base area. 38 degree slope. Pure awesomeness.
Bluff Face as seen from the base area. 38 degree slope. Pure awesomeness.
The 2008 2.4L Toyota Camery Rental Car I took up the mountain. A dream to drive.
The 2008 2.4L Toyota Camery Rental Car I took up the mountain. A dream to drive.
The access road to Porters 6km of gravel. Was resonably wide and good, much shorter than the 15km Mt Hutt road
The access road to Porters 6km of gravel. Was resonably wide and good, much shorter than the 15km Mt Hutt road

As I sit here and post these photos it makes me want to go again, it was that good. Next year I will go for a week (maybe – if I can afford it).

Finally this was a cool inscription at Christchurch Cathedral.

2009-08-24 10.03.36

BREAKING NEWS: VSM back on Agenda

No right turn is reporting that Education (Freedom of Association) Amendment Bill (Roger Douglas) has been drawn from the ballot this morning:

http://norightturn.blogspot.com/2009/08/drawn_20.html

10 months. That is how long National has been in power for before this issue came up again. I sure as hell hope National do not support it. Everything they have said so far is that they support the current law. So leave it as it is.

More to follow later.

Whatever happened to the knowledge economy?

At the moment I am busy looking at options for my PhD study and methods to support it… aka… scholarships.

Now I know that a few government departments have scholarships available and one of them is the Tertiary Education Commission Top Achiever Doctoral Scholarships.

So off I go to the page to take a look: http://www.tec.govt.nz/templates/standard.aspx?id=675

And what do I find?

As part of the Budget announcement made on 28 May 2009, the Government announced that the Top Achiever Doctoral Scholarship scheme will be disestablished.

Say what?

Where is the commitment to educating the future. The government has made it clear they want to focus education on youth. How is applying for a PhD at 22 not youth? You can’t get through to that level much earlier.

Does the government now expect that each person pay their entire way through a PhD?

Grumble, grumble, grumble.

At least I have a few others to look at. And they are not all in this country either.

Quote for Today

We are told to remember the idea, not the man, because a man can fail. He can be caught, he can be killed and forgotten, but 400 years later, an idea can still change the world. I’ve witnessed first hand the power of ideas, I’ve seen people kill in the name of them, and die defending them… but you cannot kiss an idea, cannot touch it, or hold it… ideas do not bleed, they do not feel pain, they do not love…

From V for Vendetta regarding Guy Fawks.