Saturday, October 28, 2023

Sydney Day 4

Thursday and our time away is rapidly passing. Our friend Victor has shown us some marvellous places in Sydney that we probably wouldn't have otherwise seen, such as the northern shores of the harbour, the old quarantine station, the Hydro Majestic Hotel in the Blue Mountains and he and his friend C came with us to travel on the Hawksbury River mailboat where we had lunch on board the boat as it delivered mail and parcels to water locked areas. 

This time he and C picked us up and we all drove the mostly inland route to the northern beaches, Palm Beach in particular. This part of outer Sydney is a delight and the stored wealth in housing is beyond belief. It is said that Australia is a very rich country and it is, except the wealth is very unevenly distributed. 

Victor has a personal connection to a part of the area, experienced during his formative years. We stopped off at a lovely little spot to take in the air and see the views. A map tells me we were looking out across the Hawksbury River to Currawong Beach, accessible only by walking track or boat. 



This direction dial was so worn out, it was barely readable.




We travelled the short distance to Palm Beach where the bay is used as 'Summer Bay' in the soap Home and Away. It was just so beautiful. Looking south. 


A bigger take.


Looking north with Barrenjoey light house featuring. 


Oh, my sand photo was photo bombed.


Isn't this just so cute. It was just sitting there we were sitting, without an apparent owner.


We moved on to the next beach of our choice, Mona Vale. I love seeing the flat rocks that will no doubt be covered by water


I've seen references to a sea bath of this being called rock pool but I am not sure. Use your own Google. 


Looking south.



We lunched at Fusion Point in Manly and Victor then took us to Sydney Harbour's North Head.



Looking south, there is South Head. What a surprise. 

It was a big day out and once back at the hotel, R took his afternoon rest. We had a drink at the very quiet mostly gay Colombian Hotel. More mixy is The Riley and The Burdekin and they were a bit busier. We should have gone to one them. The Thai restaurant at the base of our hotel is very good and is a training school for mostly Asian students. The food is always so tasty.

Friday, October 27, 2023

Most boring Melbourne tram route

I've nothing written for today and I came  across the oldish post in drafts.


In the last four years since retirement, at some point I realised I had travelled on many of Melbourne's tram routes. Why not make the easy target of travelling on them all. This day I discovered our most boring tram route, the 48 to North Balwyn. 

Shops, shops and more shops. A tram depot. Congested Kew Junction, the Kew Cemetery where Dame M was interred in the family plot. Mediocre housing, yet it is a very expensive area. North Balwyn is a bible belt suburb and very middle class boring and a lack of people of different race. Living there stamps something on you as people will immediately judge you. It is kind of one of Melbourne's last bastion of ultra conservatism, but not generally a nasty form of conservatism. A boring suburb can be a very pleasant place to live.  

The tram terminus was in the middle of nowhere at a busy intersection. It's patronage was poor but clearly depended on by older people and those of an age younger than driving age. On the return journey once the tram reached the inner eastern suburb of Richmond it at least became familiar to me and I felt close to home. 

I now only have route 75 to travel, plus a tiny 2 km of route 6. I think know both will be unexciting. I plan to catch a train to Camberwell, walk down the steep hill to Riversdale Road and catch the 75 tram from there. On the return journey I will bail at Hartwell Station and catch a train back to the city. 

You may note how productively I am using my retirement years for the betterment of society. 

Thursday, October 26, 2023

Just a day

I woke with no pain from yesterday's surgery.  After an hour of watching YouTube vids, I had to use R's bath and not my shower to keep bandages dry. I found the wrong plug and water was running out of the bath almost as quickly as it was filling. The whole bath thing went so wrong, and I have seven more days of not showering. Baths are for relaxing in, not for washing your body clean.

It was cold this Wednesday, a good opportunity for hot soup at the QV shopping centre, mine being potato, leek and bacon and R's being Moroccan spicy chicken. I was in such terrible pain and I am not sure if it was arthritis or my wounded neck that was the issue. I was almost ready to just go home. R went to Breadtop for a treat each and I sat on a chair with a back rest. I propped my hand under my chin to support my head and take pressure off my neck, and realised how tense my body was. I sat and consciously relaxed my body. Within three minutes I was close to stopping the pain. You have to work out ways to manage pain.

It was down to Soul Cafe for coffee then. R mentioned the handsome tall blond lad who was clearly new, and that he was very sullen. After a long wait, the manager brought out our coffee in take away cups. She knows us and mentioned the mistake of take away cups. R sent them back. A longer wait for coffee in china cups. 

The afternoon after my midday surgery I went across the road to the pharmacy for the prescribed antibiotics. It was closed. Closes at 2.30 Monday to Wednesday and not open Saturday or Sunday. Quite a few years ago I stopped using the place when I discovered the pharmacy price for my drugs was costing me $85 a month and the Chemist Warehouse cost was $35. I am happy to pay a bit more to local businesses, but not that much. So I went to the CW in the city and the antibiotics cost just over $6.

I spoke on the phone, my most hated communication instrument, to ABI Brother about him signing some paperwork for Mother's will. Also to the Alfred Hospital about next week's outpatient appointment and then called the Alfred again about its patient portal where you can see all your information and details.  I was advised to Google, Alfred patient portal and follow the links. If that is how it is done, why waste time with a phone number to call when a web address would have been fine. I get so exasperated at times.

I watched a few more YouTube clips, this time on the big screen. My medical file in the cabinet was becoming too thick. I reduced it to less than a quarter, filling an empty shredder bucket to over full and choking up he hand held vac with loose paper shreddings.   Any paperwork with our names, address and bank card numbers is shredded.

My afternoon sustenance was some left over roasties, potato, pumpkin and carrot. Later a couple of slices of toast. Then a couple of tiny tomatoes, a mandarin and the Breadtop egg custard tart. R brought home a tart each from Breadtop.

As I lay on my bed with my tablet at hand, I had a brief chat with my black gifted friend in New Orleans. (I know he is gifted and it was really him, because he told me the photo is really him) . He wants to do shocking things to me, but he amuses me and hangs on with the hope that I will set up a Western Union money transfer account.

I cleaned the spot on the balcony surface where the old barbeque large gas bottle sat, now replaced by a smaller one. 

At my suggestion R made cabonara pasta for dinner. Very nice. I am half paying attention to ABC tv as I type. I am also chatting to my newest FB friend, my step sister's husband. Bed soon and I will watch a a music video or two on my tablet. R will watch his wall mounted tv. 

There may be some dramatisation in this post.

Good night, good afternoon or good morning, wherever you are. 

Wednesday, October 25, 2023

Sydney Day 3

We have never been to inner suburb of Newtown, which has the Imperial Hotel, a gay venue with drag. Technically the pub is in Erskineville but no matter.  We did not wish to visit the hotel as we guessed there wouldn't be drag performances at 11.00am and the atmosphere may be subdued, but I thought a look around might be good. 

I snapped these of the front of the lovely war memorial. One day we will go inside.



A real creeper growing up the wall of this high rise.


Surprisingly the best place to leave the train to see Newtown is Newtown Station and it was quite impressive. This was a nice welcome. 


King Street and Enmore Road was once a very busy tram intersection before the Sydney tram removal crime was committed. 


We were looking for somewhere for brunch with an outdoor table and it was very slim pickings. We walked in both directions from the station, came across a Greek church giving out free lunches to Greek looking men. We looked too well nourished to take advantage of some Greek food.

I didn't take a photo but the Cafe Newtown proved very satisfactory. The traffic noise was quite awful though and honestly, while Newtown no doubt buzzes at night, we didn't find it very interesting. Not to  say I am not glad we visited.

Our train back to our hotel paused at Circular Quay Station. There wouldn't be too many stations with such views from the train window.




While R rested in the afternoon, I finished checking tram traffic light priority for the L2/3 by travelling north along George Street to Circular Quay and caught the train back.
 


On the Saturday it was to be my birthday. As a gift R had booked us for a Wednesday dinner at Sydney Tower, formerly Centre Point Tower. After a perfunctory security screening we zoomed up the shaft to the smorgasbord restaurant on the 82nd floor.


It didn't matter which direction we looked, the views were stunning. When I say which direction, the diners are rotating around on a circular platform. There was a low ledge where we warned not place anything there as it would we would rotate away. When we went to choose our food, we had to note that we were in area number 2, as the food area did not rotate. Here is short clip to demonstrate.


R had cleverly chosen the dining time of 6.30, which meant during the one hour rotation we began in daylight and the hour later, the sun had set and it was dark.








St Mary's Cathedral.







The marvellous Queen Victoria Building. Interior photos in a later post.




Nice. The food was fine but really it is about the experience. 


Unused ticket windows. Most people use a stored value Opal card to travel, as we did.


The war memorial as we trudged up the hill to our digs.

Tuesday, October 24, 2023

Style at our ABC

We can be quick to judge what female media people wear, even if we say nothing, we still notice things. Or is that just me? 

Men in figure disguising suits (like #45 with his girdle and suits that almost disguise his bloated figure) have it much easier. That's nothing against big people, it's just about him. 

But some men in media really get style right. I won't mention his extremely white teeth or his suspiciously black hair but local and most excellent ABC weekend newsreader Iskandar Razak really hits the mark.

His well cut jacket is perfectly teamed with a white shirt. The red tie, red kerchief and red watchband break the conservative look.

Some men paint their nails because they like to and good luck to them but I expect Iskandar's single painted nail is in support of "Nailed It, an organisation to raise awareness of physical and sexual violence against children, and that's not a bad thing.


I am sure you are relieved it is a brief post today. Ex Sis in Law stayed last night before surgery at St Vincents Hospital today, as I have another hole cut in my neck at the Alfred Hospital. Eventually the Herman bolt with fit through. 

Monday, October 23, 2023

Monday Mural

No comment needed.

Old Signs

Here are some old advertising signs I've recently come across to add to my already large collection. Some old signs I photographed have faded to become illegible, others that were uncovered by a demolition have now disappeared with a new construction  and some that were there for a long time have disappeared with a new construction.

This was a great find. We once had three airlines, our government owned flagship international Qantas, our also government owned domestic (edited) TWA TAA, later renamed Australian Airlines I think, and the privately owned domestic airline Ansett, which went broke in the late 1990s (edited) 2001 post 9/11 after being bought by a New Zealand company, I think.


Exposed by a demolition. Sadly I couldn't see any more.


This one says, United Paper Bag Co. of Australia. Pty Ltd.


I think at the top the sign says, W Rayner Tobacconist, and below, Dainty Maid Custard Powder.


This one is in South Melbourne.


I am not sure if I've photographed this sign before. As far as I know the company is now defunct but it is a bit special for me. 


When my maternal grandparents sold their market garden in Centre Road, South Oakleigh they had substantial amount of money. My father, his brother a plumber and my father's father built them a very nice new house in North Road, South Oakleigh in about 1958. The new house was completed furnished with brand new furniture by Mother. The Axminster carpet came from Malcolm Reid and lasted until my grandparents died, some twenty plus years later. Mother and my grandmother visited Malcom Reid. The furnishings were Mother's choice and she chose very expensive. I think my grandfather must have been presented with a bill, or a cheque was written at the time by my grandmother. What I do know is it was not itemised so my grandfather had no idea what was spent on what, just the total amount.

I know all of the furniture so well. We had the french polished four seat extendable to six Queen Ann reproduction dining table with the gold embossed fabric chairs for years before we went modern. The three piece lounge suite was re-covered by Mother when she took possession and before Mother died, she had chosen a new imported from England fabric to re-cover the suite again. It will soon be delivered back to ABI Brother's place where it has lived since Mother sold her house. The lounge suite will be about 45 years old. 

And here at home the 45 year old mirror from my grandmother's dressing table hangs on our hallway wall. The clips holding it to its original now painted timber frame are original as are the felt pads under the clips.

Words #397

I pronounce words so differently to many people in Australia. I don't know why. It is just how I speak. Here are some  examples. Integra...