Saturday, November 12, 2022

Chin Chin darling

I remember chin chin as being a toast, like cheers or prost. 

The most excellent photographer Roentare correctly guessed the restaurant Fire Fighting Nephew and his wife visited as being Chin Chin in Flinders Lane. 

Household Management indicated a serious unwillingness to cook Friday evening and put his foot down with a firm hand, so at a reasonably early hour we set off to dine at Chin Chin. It was very busy even just after six. My preference was to order a la carte but R wanted the banquet for two. It was not cheap but we don't dine out nearly as often as we used and so could justify the cost. As soon as we ordered, R began to have misgivings and thought we should have not have chosen the banquet. I said do not worry. The food will be great and we leave what we don't want (though we both hate wasting food). I don't eat sashimi, but it seems I enjoy it very much in the right sauce. I eat brussels sprouts under sufferance, but they are delicious cooked Asian style. It was a really nice meal and ended with a dessert of junket panna cotta.

We were seated downstairs as that was where tables available. As an Asian fusion restaurant it had a great atmosphere and black, white and Asian were all mixed up in a human kind of fusion. The staff were fantastic in the highly organised chaos and the music was too loud but not conversation killing. We had already worked out the bill in advance but for a first in Australia for us, the eftpos machine had a tipping facility. Like what happens when we give money as gifts, I suggest half of what R suggests. I said $5, R said $10. There are more important battles for me to win. 

As we trammed home, R asked me what 10% of our bill was. I told him, as if he could not work it out himself. He then stated we should have tipped 10%. I replied, that is a ridiculous tip in Australia where waiters are paid lowly but reasonably, at least $22 an hour before penalty rates.

We enjoyed Chin Chin but next time we will book a table outside and order a la carte.

Once home I pondered the first time we came across an eftpos machine with tipping facilities and it was in Vancouver in about 2016. The waiter thrust her half clad breasts towards us as she pointed out the tipping buttons on the machine. I pondered further. Aren't waiters in Canada properly paid? Well, at just over $15 an hour, it is on the low side in British Columbia. What about Ontario? Much the same.

During the milder extremes of Covid, Chin Chin as did many businesses dropped their booking facility which led to queues at restaurants. But even as we left this evening at 8pm there was a short queue. Picture from Google Maps.

Friday, November 11, 2022

Fernsehgarten Friday

Fernsehgarten in Mainz, Germany seems to be the most wonderful music venue for mature people. The rain and snow never falls when music happens at Fernsehgarten. I am sure the woman at 3.13 is wearing one of Mother's hats. Doesn't the female performer look fabulous. Her make up, her hair, her dress and shoes are all terrific. But where does she buy her body stocking to pull herself into a good shape? I want one of those. Maybe I am doing her a disservice. Enjoy this fun clip and and have a bit of a bop and shimmy around.

Coco Jamboo. Happy music. Link here if you cannot see the clip.

Thursday, November 10, 2022

Growing the grass man

We have a lot of tall grass on what was once a beautiful boulevard where we live. The grass is very long. The road is under the control of VicRoads, our road authority but it did contract out the median strip maintenance to the City of Melbourne on its side of the street and City of Port Phillip on our side of the street. Something has happened and there seems to be a stand off between VicRoads and CoPP. That's all very well but the grass was last mowed roughly slashed by VicRoads in March. 

I have contacted VicRoads, our three ward councillors, a former and retiring state politician and our current local state politician. Only the retiring politician properly responded with some information about the situation. Absolutely nothing from our local councillors. I am a bit cross with them. I am a person of the written word, not the spoken, nevertheless I may well call their offices on the dreaded telephone machine. 

Photos tell the story. Would local councillors Marcus Pearl, Heather Consolo and Peter Martin tell me what is going on? 

What a disgrace. Meanwhile hundreds of thousands are being spent on the installation if separated bike lines, of which I do approve.

Wednesday, November 9, 2022


What happened to spring? There is normally a month or so when we don't need heating or cooling, but not this year. Sunday morning past was cold and I had the heating on for my and the twin boys benefit. Monday no heating or cooling needed. By Tuesday we needed cooling and every day since. The cooling is not working hard but just making life a bit a more comfortable. Some may judge us by our heating and cooling but I don't care. We like to be comfortable and why shouldn't we be.

John Gray of Wales mentioned the movie Mrs Harris goes to Paris after seeing it, and so we did today at Como Cinema. Suspend your belief and just enjoy the film for what it is. As with all British films, the acting was first class. 

Seems it will be July next year now when we go to Fiji to celebrate Ex Sis in Law's sixtieth birthday. 

Tomorrow is food shopping day in South Melbourne and the fortnightly day when I do the sums, that is fill in the ledger and pay the bills. 

Saturday we will either tour the St Kilda Pride Centre and have an early dinner with our Hairdresser Friend or take Mother out. Mother can be changed to Sunday. It is not like she will get a better offer. 

A twin visit

Sorry that this is somewhat disjointed.

Fire Fighting Nephew and his wife went to see the treasured and iconic Colin Hay perform at the Melbourne Recital Centre. They stayed in a nice city hotel. I was amazed how busy the hotel was, but why was I there? 

They had a nice Asian meal at a popular place with friends in Flinders Lane. FFN's wife estimated there was 100 staff. They sat outside and did not have to listen to overly loud music inside. Ha, they must be getting old. I know my city but it seems only daytime. I don't know what happens in the evenings when the real me them comes alive.

Their twin five month old boys stayed with us, in our care along with their grandmother, Ex Sis in Law. 

FFN's wife who I secretly refer to as The General was so well organised, told us exactly how to care for the boys and what time they would wake, each different. She was exactly right about their waking times. One for a feed at 3.30am, with R and Ex Sis in Law doing the care, and a full wake up at 5.30 by the other. I did hear the 5.30 wake up and got up to assist do nothing as Ex Sis in Law had it all in control.  

There seemed to be so many baby containing things with wheels, even our spacious apartment was looking rather full. 

FFN and The General were about to leave to have dinner before the performance. FFN had already mucked up by dropping his keys in the street before they luckily after backtracking, found them. The next disaster was that The General had left the baby formula to make milk in their hotel room. Their car was parked here so I went with them on the tram to their hotel to get the formula. As I was about to enter our building R called, how far away are you? Ruben is raging and he certainly was. He was hungry and wanted milk and screaming at the top of his lungs. Once home, both boys were fed lots of milk from silly little bottles. I spent half an hour in the kitchen making up milk, warming milk in the purpose made machine, washing bottles and then sterilising them in boiling water. I learnt new skills. 

When I was on the tram into the city to pick up the formula, we passed by Hamer Hall and FFN said that is where we later attend to see Colin Hay. It must be around the back of the Hamer Hall. I asked what it said on his ticket. Melbourne Recital Centre was his reply. Oh laddie, you have it so wrong. That is around the corner, maybe 800 metres away.

Sunday morning between 6.30 and 7.00 I spent the whole time dealing with these ridiculous bottles. The boys normally have a mix of breast milk and formula, but it was all formula today. The larger bottles you can see were already filled with boiled and cooled water. I added seven scoops of powder to each bottle, gave it a good shake and put it in the bottle warmer. Then it had to be decanted into the smaller bottles. All the bottles had to be washed and then sterilised by boiling them in hot water. Old Shaky only scalded his hand once with splashed boiled water. At the back of the cupboard I found an  old milk jug, so I boiled some water and left it to cool in the jug as we seemed to running short of sterilised water but my effort wasn't needed. The General had correctly calculated how much sterilised water was needed. Apparently the boys prefer the smaller bottles to drink from. From the screaming of Raging Ruben, I think you could pour the milk into him from a bucket. I do not understand the need for all this nonsense and not just one large milk feeding bottle. 

The next morning the parents arrived at about 9.30 with take away coffees as a reward for our efforts. We chatted for a while, all left, R collapsed on his bed and I fell asleep in an armchair. 

But it was lovely to have the boys here. They look quite different for twins and it is not too hard to tell them apart, unlike their five year old twin girl cousins. They smiled a lot and it was quite fascinating to watch them.

Tuesday, November 8, 2022

Mother and the birthday gift

Mother: What shall I buy my favourite son for his birthday? I know! He needs a Bluetooth connected device he can listen to in the shower. He can take phone calls and listen to radio and podcasts.

What I expect is that ABI Brother won the device at his club weekly raffle. 

While I haven't taken phone calls using the device, I have listened to radio. I tried to prise it from the shower door glass without too much effort and it would not remove freely. It has to be set quite loudly to hear over the shower noise and deeper voices are harder to hear than sharp lighter voices. I'll have to get it off when Household Management cleans my ensuite. 

I spoke to Sister last night. I recently asked Mother what her weight was at its maximum, I think when she was in her fifties. She replied 11 stone. I can't remember stones and pounds at all. Ok, 70kg/US154lbs. Sister told me Mother now weighs 38kg.

Her doctor who she calls Dumbo was booked out when she wanted an appointment. She was happy because that meant she could see the lovely Sri Lankan born doctor, with his 'big liquid brown eyes and constant white teethed smiling'. He patted her shoulder as she left the room and said "You'll be ok Mrs C. We'll look after you". In Mother's mind, that was a really good doctor's visit. Mother was only there to get blood pressure checked. I think she does this weekly. It was 190 but a few minutes later 170. Her upper blood pressure level is very variable, between 110 and 200. Of course she takes prescribed blood pressure medication but she obsesses about it. While she is a doctor's nightmare, she is a very profitable patient to have. 

Anyway, the device she gave me for my birthday is a bit of fun. It connected to my phone easily and works as it should. 

Monday, November 7, 2022

Monday Mural

I am joining with Sami for Monday Mural. I think this mural is in the suburb of Windsor. I don't normally like scribble on murals but 'pig' on an image of Trump is ok with me. The sentiments in the writing is not me, but I get it.

Sydney Day 7, the end

Having had dishwashers for most of my life, I hand washed dishes while we on holiday and it was revelation. Each morning after R's showe...