My first bike was a
Ducati 748 BP (pictured left, with me riding) is
still most definitely one of my
However, as much as I love my 748, this year became the proud owner of
a Ducati Desmosedici RR (1338 of 1500). It weighs 176KG, and develops 200BHP. When together, our power-to-weight ratio is over 800 BHP/tonne.
I am currently in the process of developing a deep and meaningful relationship with this awesome machine. :)
I did a little surfing when I was young, and recently have been taking some lessons.
I am now a fairly average surfer, the pic is from an early lesson and I have improved
a lot since then. We have been regularly nipping down to Newquay,
Cornwall for surfing trips this year, which is also a great excuse to take the
R8 for a decent trip!
SCUBA (Self Contained Underwater Breathing Aparatus) diving is one of my favorite activities!
I am a qualified PADI Rescue Diver and adore underwater digital photography (some examples here).
There is something very "zen" about stalking one's prey with a camera underwater; slowly, stealthily sneaking up on the local fauna and then scaring them half to death with a flash. ;)
I dislike the cold though and only tend to dive in warm climbs. I have dived in and around the Red Sea, Turks & Caicos islands, St. Lucia., Jamaica and the Bahamas, and I hope to visit the Great Barrier reef within a few years.
As well as being a fairly new but very enthusiastic Alpine (downhill) skiier I am also a fairly acomplished cross-country skiier, and have spent quite a bit of time pootling around the Swiss, Italian and French mountains (some pics). My favorite location for downhill is Whistler Blackcomb in British Columia, Canada (some pics from there).
Other water sports
As well as SCUBA and surfing I do some powered water sports (jetskiing, water-skiing), but my favorites (as with surfing) are wind-powered. I'm still a bit of a novice at wind-surfing, but I am a huge hobie-cat fan and am a modestly-experienced yacht crew-person. Unfortunately though, I only tend to do much sailing when on holiday.
I am very fortunate in that I have a Private Pilot's Licence for Helicopters and am able to fly Bell 47s and
Bell 206 Jetrangers.
Sadly I do not get to do as much flying as I would like but I hope to be able to carry on trundling around the skies now and then! I am also interested in light aircraft aviation as a whole.
I've always been a bit of a science-nerd and try to keen up to date with the latest developments in a rather strange set of fields; General medicine, Neuroscience, Immunology, Information & communications technology (ICT), and the Physics of the very large (eg. Astrophysics), the very small (eg. Quantum electrodynamics) and the theories that might bring the two into harmony (eg. Loop quantum gravity).
Movies / TV Sci-Fi
Who isn't?! I do try to know a little more than the average cinema-goer about which directors, producers & actors are hot, and keep an eye on some of the less visited genres, but in truth I mainly just like an excuse to sit on my bum and be passively entertained for a couple of hours! I'm also a big fan of a number of Sci-Fi series, including Dr. Who (yes, that's me hugging a Dalek on the right), Babylon 5, Battlestar Galactica and Stargate (SG-1, Atlantis & Universe).
I am a reformed MMORPG addict, and spent a truly staggering amount of time battling Evil (or sometimes battling Good!) in realms such as City of Heroes and World of Warcraft (some pics). I kicked the habit a couple of years ago now, but occasionally get twitchy fingers and have to go and blow things up with a quick blast on a first person shooter or RPG.