15. November 2008 02:35
by Rene Pallesen

My Dad in Sydney

15. November 2008 02:35 by Rene Pallesen | 0 Comments

my dad in sydney

My dad was in Sydney for our wedding and arrived on the 5th November just in time for us to also celebrate his birthday (We took him to his favourite steak house to get his favourite T-bone steak).

It was great to have him here for the wedding as it would have been empty to not have any family members from my side at the wedding. It was also really sad that my mum couldn't come.

We had just moved into the house week before so everything was still messy and there was a lot of things that needed fixing on the house. My dad was really helpful helping me out with a lot of the thing I'd never done before such as replacing tiles in the bathroom. He also changed the locks, fixed lights, painted walls, fixed doors, leaking taps etc.

It gave us something to do together which was great for bonding. I just wish he'd been there a bit longer...but maybe I can convince him to come back to help me build a pergola.

We also managed to do a bit of sightseeing around Sydney and it was great that he got a chance to meet Kims family.

The wedding was something different for him and I think that he was pretty frustrated that he didn't know what the asian customs were (not a typical Danish wedding).

He did give a really good speech at the wedding and I'm sorry to say that everything he said is true (although not everything was accurate).

23. September 2008 08:51
by Rene Pallesen

Climbing Barrenjoey

23. September 2008 08:51 by Rene Pallesen | 0 Comments

climbing barrenjoey

This weekend we went up to Barrenjoey...a beautiful day. It was 31 degrees in Sydney but this time of the year the rocks here are mostly in the shade all day and there was a nice sea breeze running through the area.

We started with a couple of nice warm-ups and then moved onto one of my test pieces "Pillar of Mordor (19)". It is thin and sustained and really not very well protected so I have always back off leading it. Both Phil and I did lead it although not completely clean.

After this we did "Mescalito (19)" which is one of my favourite climbs there. Phil placed a cam in one of the breaks and it fell out and dropped down to the next bolt...fortunately he carried another cam to put in the break and eventually got up to the next bolt and through the climb.

The day was almost over and I had to go to the airport but Phil had his eyes on this climb "...Cab Sav (19)". The bottom bit of the climb is all protected by cams and the top bit is really thin and pumpy. Phil got up past the natural gear and clipped the first bolt. He then moved on and was struggling when clipping the second bolt but eventually got it. He then moved to the thirt and last bolt on the climb and as he moved up his foot caught the quickdraw and without him noticing the boltplate came off the bolt (He had clipped the botlplate upside down). He kept climbing up and got up to the third bolt, but because the previous bolt had fallen off it would have been a ground fall if he had fallen off. Phil was really struggling clipping it but we were so relieved on the ground once he did.

That was a really close one and it is the second time I've seen someone clip those types of plates wrong...bloody dangerous.

17. September 2008 02:42
by Rene Pallesen

Yeeeaaahhh - Bought a house

17. September 2008 02:42 by Rene Pallesen | 0 Comments

Bought a house

We have bought a house now. We have signed the contract from our part and paid the deposit and our solicitor has received the signed contract from the Vendor. The property has now finally been pulled off the market by the real estate agent (that idiot) and we are looking at moving into the new place in mid/late October (before 24th October). Now we just need to go through all the mortgage application documents which if anything like last time I applied for a home load will be a lot of bureaucracy filling out triplicates, getting copies certified by rocket scientists (whom you have known for at least 40 years and who have worked in the industry since the Apollo program).

The Lounge Room...we'll paint the walls

This will be perfect as it means that Kim and I will have something to live in after the wedding (The current apartment is not really suitable and I would like Kim to feel like it is her home as well).The place is in Botany in the Eastern Suburbs and it is very close to Kim's family (about a 200 meter walk to one of her sisters and 5 minutes drive from her dad). And more importantly it is reasonably close to the city (10km) and away from the flight path of the airport.

We don't have much furniture so the place will be a bit empty in the beginning until we get the essentials. Kims sister has already donated us a dining table but we need to get items such as a bed and a washing machine immediately and then also items such as a sofa, entertainment unit etc.

It is a terrace house and has got the potential to do some really nice things to it. It is spacious on the inside and has got a small backyard that doesn't require too much maintenance. There is a bit of painting and maintenance that needs to be done immediately to the outdoor areas but nothing that cannot be managed. I am also sure that Kim would like have some painting done internally. My dad will arrive just after we have moved in so I am sure he won't get bored while here.

The floor plan

This Torrens title oversized terrace offers an ease of living combined with great design features spread over three very generous levels. Be immediately impressed by the flawless presentation and the impeccable renovation of this striking tri-level terrace. Enjoying an elevated position.
A handy convenient setting with ample street parking. Generous living with separate formal and casual areas. Tranquil north facing backyard and outdoor entertaining. Modern kitchen with breakfast bar stainless steel appliances. Upstairs bedrooms with built-ins, two with private balconies. Well appointed for care free modern living. Intelligently designed to maximise space and light. Dressed in fresh contemporary tones and polished floors
Automatic garage for two cars with internal access. Easy walk to local parks, schools, shops and transport

If you read the score further down in this blog, then you will know that the score now is 4 out of 5...just the wedding to complete to get 5 big events done within the same 6 months timeframe.

26. August 2008 02:03
by Rene Pallesen

Climbing at Berowra

26. August 2008 02:03 by Rene Pallesen | 0 Comments

climbing at berowra

This weekend we went climbing up at Berowra (northern part of Sydney). It has been raining a lot and been very cold lately, but this day was sunny and very pleasant so no need for the down jacket and the gloved that I had brought with me.

Andy had just bought a new HD video camera and was keen to try it out and he got some really good footage og me climbing as well as Phil falling. Click here to see video

I actually had a really bad day climbing. I think work is stressing me out at the moment and one one of the first few climbs I freaked out when I got to a section with only slopers as hand holds (if you see the video then it was at the section where Phil shouts "YES!"). I was pretty upset when it happened and I was unable to get back into the right headspace.

The rest of the afternoon I was doing top ropes but had blown my strength and self esteem.

7. August 2008 07:10
by Rene Pallesen


7. August 2008 07:10 by Rene Pallesen | 0 Comments


Last week I was in Brisbane for some SharePoint training for the company. It was four days of intensive training but it was worth it and it was nice going up north where it is a bit warmer than here in Sydney at the moment.

I flew up there Tuesday morning leaving home at 5am to catch a 6am flight. It was the morning after my Birthday so Kim and I decided to just have a quiet evening and then celebrate some other time (Kim is going to take me to a nice restaurant).

Brisbane Bridge

I found a couple of good restaurants in Brisbane and one night I had Moreton Bay Bugs (Look like a giant cockroach). I also went for a walk to Kangaroo Point which is a big climbing area along the river in Brisbane. It is all lit up and actually looks like good climbing. I was surprised to find people climbing at night and also surprised to find that almost everyone was toproping rather than lead climbing (Everything is nicely bolted so there really is no excuse).

4. August 2008 05:00
by Rene Pallesen

Skiing - Snowy Mountains

4. August 2008 05:00 by Rene Pallesen | 0 Comments

skiing snowy mountains

This year we again went skiing on the weekend closest to my birthday. We tried to get the same house as we did last year, but unfortunately it was already booked so we had to settle for an apartment. This did mean that we only had two bedrooms instead of three so it was only Soeren and Nui (and Freja) and Kim and I staying there. Kims ex-colleague Mark had to settle with staying at a caravan park.

The first day Soeren and I drove up to Perisher in my new car (first long trip in it) while the girls did their own thing. When we got back late afternoon after a whole day of skiing they had organised all the ingredients for a nice BBQ and marinated all the meat…yummy. Mark came over for dinner with Daniel and we had a nice evening with a couple of bottles of wine.

Next morning we got a late start (it took the other guys a bit of time to get ready) and we went to hire some additional gear for the girls to go skiing as well. This time we went to Thredbo which is much better in terms of variation of the runs and also the length. The longest run there is 3.7 kilometers. The girls took an instructor class (I think it is better if Kim gets an instructor by herself next time as she will get more attention).


It was a fairly short skiing day as we finished at three and then went on our way to the 5+ hour drive back to Sydney. Next year I think I'll take a lesson as well...I am getting pretty good at it now, but just need a few pointers to get even better especially at black runs and moguls.

21. July 2008 07:45
by Rene Pallesen

New Car

21. July 2008 07:45 by Rene Pallesen | 0 Comments

new car

About two months ago a crashed and wrote off my old car...pretty silly but what can you do. Fortunately it was old and was already starting to cause problems and cost me a lot in repairs. Kim had already hinting that maybe it was time to get a new car and that the car was trying to tell me something.
The car was 11 years, the engine was leaking every fluid imaginable and the gearbox was slipping and there was rust developing so the timing to get a new car was pretty good.

The insurance paid me a good price for the old car...a lot more than I would have received if I had used it as a tradein to buy a new one.

After chasing around the city for a second hand car...amongst which there were some pretty dodgy deals the choice came down to either buy an 6 months old ex-rental or a new one. There was a $4000 difference and by the end of the day the decision came down to us needing that money once we buy a property so I decided to get the ex-rental. It is a nice blueish gray (Aztec Blue) Toyota Corolla. It will have its first test run this weekend when we go down to the snow in it.

My new car

Kim and I could probably have gotten by with just one car, but hers is too small to fit golf gear, ski & climbing gear etc. into and the new car is harder for her to drive because of the size...so for now we'll have two cars.

The score so far is:

Kim new job: Done
Rene new job: Done
New car: Done
Wedding: Pending
House: Pending

3 out of 5 aint bad

15. July 2008 12:17
by Rene Pallesen

My Mums hardship

15. July 2008 12:17 by Rene Pallesen | 0 Comments

my mum moving out

Some years back my mum had a stroke while my parents were traveling in Thailand. This left totally paralysed in the left side of her body and she has been bound to a wheelchair ever since.

The stroke was most likely caused by heavy smoking and drinking and in general an unhealthy lifestyle.

This all happened a few years after my parents retired and were planning to spend most of the winters traveling in warmer countries. They have always been traveling a lot and never liked the winters in Denmark.
The realisation after the stroke for my parents was that suddenly those dreams were burst and that my mum would need constant care. My dad negotiated with the council that they would look after her one week a month which left my dad with some time to realise some of his dreams and at leaft do some traveling and at the same time provide some relief from looking after mum. It has been a hard blow to my mum and it is still very hard for her to accept that she will be bound to a wheelchair and dependent on other people for simple tasks such as going to the toilet, washing and getting dressed.

My mum some time ago discovered that some of the traveling my dad had done hadn't taken place alone but with an old female school friend (How intimate they were/are I don't know and don't care) but obviously my mum got very hurt and set the ultimatum that either he stops seeing her or she moves out. My dad said that he didn't want to stop seeing her and that he would still keep looking after my mum except for that one week every month.

It has now come to the point where my mum has found an apartment in a care facility and it going to move there this month. I am sure that it hurts a lot for her to move out.

Another blow has been that I am getting married in a few months time and that it is not possible for her to attend my wedding but that my dad is. It will be really hard for her on the day itself and I wish there was something I could do to make it easier for her or somehow allow her to attend.

So how do I feel about this? I am disappointed, angry and understanding at the same time. I am angry at my mum because she insisted smoking and drinking the way she did and tat this caused a stroke.

I am angry at my dad that he's found someone else and that is causing my mum to move out...she is the one totally loosing out. I am disappointed that their marriage and thereby also my family is breaking up.

I also understand why my dad has been longing for some company on different level and at the same time I also understand why my mum is so hurt about it. I am hurt because I know that my mum needs some support but that I am so far away but at the same time my life is here and I am about to get married here.I just hope that she understands that my happiness is dependent on me staying here. Especially since the stupid danish immigration laws will prevent me from moving back to Denmark with my future wife.

I am also hurt because my parents during the last decade has been through so much hardship first with my brother, then with the stroke and now with all this.

This is certainly a year of change...

13. July 2008 09:51
by Rene Pallesen

Climbing Mt Ku-Ring Gai

13. July 2008 09:51 by Rene Pallesen | 0 Comments

climbing mt ku ring gai

A new climbing area in Sydney suddenly popped up on our radar. A new area up in the Mt Ku-Ring Gai national park near Berowra. And and May went there while I was in Hunter Valley and they said it was really hard to get to.

I wanted to experience it myself and convinced Andy that we should go there again. Yes, it is a long walk in (40 minutes) and yes it is hard to find the way but it helped that he'd been there before and it also helps that the track has seen a bit of traffic and marked with cairns.

The first few climbs the rock was a bit cold so the fingers went a bit numb which adds 2-4 grades to a climb. Later when the rock heated up a bit it was really good climbing. The area is new so rock still breaks here and there so it is important to be careful and safe but it is not as bad as Otherland and Stables where the rock crumbles.

During one of the last few climbs we heard some noises in the bushes but couldn't see what it was. Once we finished the climb Andy had a closer look and spotted an Echidna (A large porcupine). I grabbed my camera and went over there and it turned out that there was three Echidnas there trying to hide under a branch.

There are some other cliffs in the area that are being developed so I am sure that we will be spending a fair amount of time there in the future.

13. July 2008 09:40
by Rene Pallesen

Kims Birthday & Hunter Valley

13. July 2008 09:40 by Rene Pallesen | 0 Comments

kims birthday hunter valley

Late June is Kims birthday. We went out for her birthday with a lot of her friends to a restaurant called the Mantra. It was a fun evening with entertainment in the restaurant in the form of belly dancing. Kim also had a go at the sword dance. I thought the belly dancer was pretty good, but Kim having done belly dancing herself said that she'd seen better.

Click here to see more photos

My present to Kim was a trip to the Hunter Valley. I had hired a nice romantic place up there with a Spa, served breakfast on the balcony with a view from the mountains of the whole Hunter Valley. My aim for the weekend was to really spoil her and she loved it. Saturday morning we met up with a couple of Kims friends Linda & Warren do go through the wine districts. As usual we found some really nice surprises and also got confirmed that some of our choices in wine from earlier trips are excellent choices (I can recommend the Silvereye from Misteltoe and the Shiraz from Petersons).

Click here for more photos

In the evening I took Kim to this really nice restaurant called Mojo's. It is not cheap ($60 for two courses) but the scallops Kim had for entrees were without a doubt the best I've ever had before. They were fresh and just marinated and cooked slightly and still raw inside and really tasty. I had Quail for my entree and for the mains I had a beef ribeye fillet and Kim had the Lamb chops. After two courses we were absolutely stuffed. I saw some of the food other people were eating and it all looked very delicious. After dinner we went back for a nice warm spa bath as it was freezing outside all weekend.

Click here to see more photos from hunter valley

Sunday morning we went to another couple of Vineyards and then drove back to Sydney...a very relaxing and enjoyable weekend.