Wednesday, December 31, 2008


Well, my 2008 Weight-loss campaign was not as successful as I'd hoped. I just weighed in at 81.6Kg, having lost only 1.8Kg [The value 2.7Kg I reported the other day was wrong] since August 23.

I would like to thank my sponsors, including the generous sponsor number 7 who sent a kind pledge yesterday.

I would specifically like to thank the sponsor who tempted me with chocolates and cookies throughout this campaign. We joked about him doing it to reduce his payout, but in fact I resisted quite a lot of his evil offerings.

I'd also like to thank Megan for being the official weighing witness.

I will post all the calculations tonight and open up the dialogue with the leading sponsor, who has the right (and responsibility) to choose the Afghan charity that will benefit from this little struggle.

Peace to all.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Thank you donor number 6!

I'm on the final push of my 2008 weight loss campaign. I'm afraid I'm not going to make any donors poor but we do look set to raise about $60.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Our Holiday Photo

Clockwise from top right: Sharky, Angelica (who is actually a boy), Fernando and Tom

We wish all our friends happy holidays and a safe and healthy 2009.

The horror we are up against

This report suggests the risks that peace loving Afghans face in parts of this country.


There are unconfirmed reports of members of ‘The Emirate-Islamic-Mojahedin-e-Herat’ having resorted to cutting off the ears of a resident in public at the above mentioned location [Hirat province] and time. It is understood that the victim suffered the AOG reprisal for having been discovered with a voter registration card on his person


The Emirate-Islamic-Mojahedin-e-Herat had issued warnings to the residents of Engil and Gozara districts a week earlier through a publication called ‘Hamsangaran’. The warning termed the process of ‘Voter Registration’ and its support by foreign forces as invalid. It further went on to demand that Muslims not participate in the election process and also issued a threat warning to individuals participating or working for the election process as proclaimed enemies and liable for the death punishment. Considering the lack of any official response to the incident and taking in view that the residents of Ingil and Gozara districts are under the strong influence of the AOG, this is the development of a serious threat, with the potential to effect NGO staff operating and residing in these areas.


NGO may keep all staff informed of this latest development. Staff may be advised to safeguard against the possibility of being discovered with any documentary or other evidence, on their person or their property which can go to indicate their involvement in the electoral process. Sanitizing of staff with regard to their association with the voter registration process - especially while travelling through these areas - is also advocated. ANSO shall monitor the situation and issue updates. Until the facts of the incident are confirmed, the threat merits serious consideration.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Saturday, December 6, 2008

... and a more accessible view of the Three Gorges Dam...

Here are some more general photos of the Three Gorges Dam.

Three Gorges Dam - lock descent animation

I have created an animation of our descent through one of the locks at the Three Gorges Dam.

Warning - this is not for people without broad bandwith, impressive patience - and the clarity that ship locks are fascinating. (Thanks, Peter, for spotting that the link was wrong. I'm amazed anybody tried it!)