seasonal stuff

I don’t mean THAT season, or at least, not really, although nature’s colour schemes might lead you to think otherwise.

I just mean the season of flowers and crazy weather and this being the sort of thing I see on my way home through the park (an example of nature’s colour scheme echoing the human overlay, you might think).

Red-flowering gum

Red-flowering gum

I mean, too, how fantastic it was that yesterday we could be sitting outside eating gelati at 8.30 pm and it would be warmish and, whats more, STILL DAYLIGHT! Heck, it’s felt like that’s been a long time coming this year.

I spent the evening in town with Youngest Aunt and Uncle, helping the former to celebrate her birthday and we had a wonderful time. I didn’t even mind having to wait for the bus. And wait a bit longer. And then wait some more because, obviously, the bus that was meant to come wasn’t coming and when one did it was already close to capacity and half the cabin lights weren’t working and it was a fairly quiet and oddly eerie trip home.

But, you know that other season? Some of those who really celebrate it already have their houses lit up like, well, Seasonal Trees, so if it was dark on the bus, it was by then light in a different way outside. And it felt quite appropriate and seasonal.

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Posted by on November 15, 2014 in Food



typical cuisine / cucina tipica

During Dr B and YoungB’s jaunt about Italy on their round of rellie-visiting, they posted lots of photos of food, much of it regional specialties. In fact, it became so much a part of the journey that I complained if their daily posting didn’t include at least some food porn. Now that Dr B is back, he’s continued the theme somewhat with a few postings on a recent interstate trip: typical fish and chips (at a seaside town) and typical local wine with local half-lobster (at another seaside town). So I thought I should get into the action, too. Yesterday Dr B brought me breakfast in bed. It doesn’t happen often, but he decided that I was tired (he was right) and needed a treat. What was on offer? Why, what else but cucina tipica?

Otherwise known as scrambled eggs on incinerated bread!

Otherwise known as scrambled eggs on incinerated bread!


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Posted by on November 9, 2014 in Food, Travel


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positively something or other

Monday mornings are usually fairly hard work, I admit. You’d think the weekend would have provided R and R and it generally provides at least a modicum of both of those. Sometimes the weekend has been busy yet there seems remarkably little to show for any of the busyness. So there I was on the bus one recent Monday morning, trying to cheer myself into a frame of mind that wouldn’t have me shedding tears if my computer looked at me sideways. I admired the last of the bottlebrush blossoms and all the greenness of the Botanic Gardens, admired the contrast between the architecture of the Wine Center and its neighbouring buildings and delighted in the splash of colour provided by a bougainvillea overhanging the top balcony of the Botanic Hotel.

I still wasn’t too sure about the sideways glances and how I might react to them, but I’d talked myself into a more cheerful frame of mind by the time I reached the office. And that’s where the truly positive bit happened: I was able to provide lots of helpful advice to a workmate whose son is a beginning rower. In a very strange twist of fate, there are three other rowing mums at work. Much as rowing is often seen as the domain of private schools, our kids all attended or, in her case, are attending, state schools. What’s more, we cover all three such institutions (and not to brag, it’s fitting that YoungB’s school has two representatives since it’s the one with the longest-running program). So that’s positively amazing all on its own.

Equally positively amazing is that we are now into November and Father Christmas is today making his annual journey to the Magic Cave where he’ll ensconce himself till Christmas Eve. In Bologna, YoungB is doing mid-semester exams whereas here the Wayville Showgrounds are hosting end-of-year deciders for his home university.

I must apologise for providing a sparse post with neither photos nor links, but we are presently computerless and this is being typed on a very old and correspondingly unreliable iPad. Fnigres corsesd that this works at all! And avagooday wherever you are, because that would be positively something, wouldn’t it?

Edited to add: I have no idea why that date is 20 October. I posted this on Saturday, 8 November 2014, the day of the Christmas Pageant. Perhaps my ancient iPad is so stuck in the past it couldn’t make the leap!!

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Posted by on October 20, 2014 in Musing, Rowing


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jollity all round

Sometimes, if you're lucky, you get to bring the balloons home with you!

Sometimes, if you’re lucky, you get to bring the balloons home with you!

I like this warmer weather we’re having. When I left the house yesterday evening on my way to a party, I merely pulled a light jacket over my dress (coincidentally, a purple dress that almost matched the evening’s balloons). No 57 layers. No extra scarves. No scarves at all, in fact. It might not yet be summer but we’re definitely heading in that direction and I cannot be grateful enough.

“Party?” you ask, refusing to be distracted by flippant references to garb, seasonal or otherwise. Yes, there was a 70th birthday in the family, which seemed like a good excuse to celebrate; so celebrate we did, with loved ones from far and near. I am not the official family photographer but, because I have a habit of taking lots of photos at every family occasion I attend, it often feels that way. I was happy to have my good camera working well last night. We even managed to get a group photo that included most of the attendees (one of our very young guests had gone home with her parents but her even younger cousin was still just about awake).

The party was held in what was at one time the dining room of the Cumberland Arms Hotel. The cousin celebrating her birthday spent some years of her childhood there with an aunt and uncle, who was then the licensee. Its locale has meant it was never one of the city’s more salubrious pubs and nowadays its clientele is often described by our younger fry as “feral”. When YoungB was playing chess for his high school, we sometimes had a meal there prior to the matches, or at least a bowl of wedges; and very nice they were, too. Early in the evening, it’s as unobjectionable as anywhere else and its proximity to my then work and the chess venue made it the obvious choice for us (you know, I could walk there after work, it didn’t have funny opening hours, nor was it likely to shut while we were trying to have a bite to eat like some of the cafes in the area).

So, as you’ll gather, there were several levels of family connection that worked well to make us all have an enjoyable evening, though the Birthday Girl was the one with the most uproarious tales and it’s undoubtedly right that that should have been the case. Middle and Youngest Niece didn’t join us for dinner but came in to say hello later on. Feral or not, they were there with friends and enjoying themselves on a Saturday evening, prior to moving on to another favoured night spot. Makes sense to me. But I got to keep one lot of balloons, so I reckon I had the best time of all. :)


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keeping the cheer going

 Odd enough to be cheerful

Odd enough to be cheerful

Some weeks are just less easy than others and some of those less-easy weeks are like that for everyone within cooee. It must be the phase of the moon or something. Today my workplace cheered things up by getting into the swing of Odd Socks Day. Our CEO wore the most wonderfully odd socks which were photographed at our celebratory morning tea, along with everyone else’s. The “guess how many jellybeans in this jar” competition is still running – our numbers are lower on Fridays and we thought everyone should have a chance to win – so it’s my thinking that we ought to be able to keep wearing odd socks for the same amount of time. Or do you think that would be just too odd?

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Posted by on October 3, 2014 in Musing


grumbling grumpily

Have you seen that Grumpy Cat about on the web? (I haven’t linked to any of the pages; but I’m sure you could google it for yourself if you haven’t yet encountered the fabulous feline.) In any case, that was pretty much how I felt yesterday as I battled my trans-seasonal cold and tried not to cough and splutter like a car that’s running on too few cylinders.

I wrote several posts but they all sounded as grumpy and unreasonable as I felt. You don’t need that! I wasn’t sure that I needed it either, to be truthful, so I put myself to bed early. In an effort to restore my usual ebullience, I’m intending to repeat that plan tonight with the addition of fishing out a piece of easy knitting to keep me occupied while I read the electronic news in bed. Do you reckon that will make my grumpy grumbling diminish?


Posted by on September 30, 2014 in Health, Knitting, Musing


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action photography

Netball action with percentage of rearguard action

Netball action with percentage of rearguard action

I reckon I’ve learnt how to take fairly good rowing photos by now. But netball? That’s a very different proposition. Eldest Niece and Youngest Niece were playing in their local association’s grand finals last weekend, so I made a day trip of it and went to cheer them. Of course I took my camera. I’m not sufficiently good at mathematical calculations to be able to tell you if netballers run faster than rowers row – that would depend on many factors – but I can tell you that their constantly changing direction of activity makes for tricky photographic work. The plane of movement is different. You often don’t see the ball but – again, if you were good with the maths – you could calculate where it is or where it’s been. There’s also the question of where you stand relative to the action.

You might think I have a pornographic penchant for photographing backsides, because that’s something you do quite a lot when you’re photographing rowers (if one crew is facing the right way, another is not, whether they’re actually rowing or merely carrying boats). Netballers are no different, because that’s the sort of game it is. Like hockey or soccer, half of one team is literally positioned in opposition to half of the other team at any one time.You know, I took hundreds of photos and I’m not really happy with any of them but I managed to capture some good action shots of the Nieces. That made it a worthwhile exercise. And the Niece who requested photos with no bums? Not likely! I did, however, try to make most of those belong to opposition players. :)

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Posted by on September 24, 2014 in Photography, Rowing


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