Saturday, February 17, 2024

On the road repairs

There are a few of these around. This one is near Malvern Train Station. You used to be able to fix your bike with an adjustable spanner, a couple of screw drivers, a bike pump and a bike tyre lever. It seems to be much more complicated now. I've no idea what all these tools do but I think it is a very useful pubic facility. There is probably an app to show you where these facilities are around the city. I know there is one at Southbank too. This is the most sophisticated I've seen. Clearly this is to pump up bike tyres. 

Maybe you hang your bicycle on these handles. Otherwise, I can't guess what they are for.

I wonder if a surgeon would find any of these tools useful?

I think you put the front tyre of your bike in this slot to work on it upright. Good, hey.

Friday, February 16, 2024

Pay us and we'll employ you

Driving buses in Sydney is hard work. Generally the privatised bus companies treat their staff very badly. Maybe Lorna works for Transport for New South Wales as a bus driver which has decent working conditions. This is a nice little story about Lorna

And another story posted below. Post Covid lockdowns there has been a huge shortage of Sydney bus drivers, with timetables having been altered to deal with the shortage of drivers and nightmare waits for some passengers as full buses pass them by. Yet they, Sydney Buses or a private company had the cheek to ask potential drivers for an application fee. That is outrageous. 

Photos from Channel 9.

In 1964, Lorna’s first job in the bus industry was as a conductor, collecting fares on a double decker – just like this one.
She went on to become a driver, breaking down gender barriers in an industry that’s been historically dominated by men.
Our buses look a little different in 2024, and collecting fares is as simple as a tap of the Opal. But 60 years after her first shift, Lorna still loves the bus industry and is now working as a duty officer at Kingsgrove depot.
There’s around 400 women driving buses across our network today, about 6% of the workforce.
As we work to fix the bus driver shortage in NSW, we know getting more women behind the wheel will help.
We’ve simplified the paperwork, removed the application fee, and we're working every day to improve driver conditions and facilities.
You could have a career as wonderful and rewarding as Lorna’s by signing up to be a driver today.

Thursday, February 15, 2024

Creating world peace #23

This is a very clear map of the area of great concern in the Middle East from a company called Mapporn. Tens of thousands Palestinians have been killed by Israel, in response to an attack by Palestine against Israel that killed some hundreds and hostages were taken and many have not been returned. The unnamed  yellow coloured bit on the coast to the left of Palestine is the Gaza Strip, so consider it is part of Palestine.

1. Some in Palestine don't think Israel has a right to exist. It does, and that has to be recognised by Arab countries and the world. 

2. Palestine needs to stop all of its nonsense about Israel's right to exist. Israel existence is backed by world opinion. The state of Palestine is also is also backed by world opinion. 

3. Israel needs to stop the settlers invading disputed land, and get the settlers out of Syria.

4. Israel has created a new generation of Arabs who will hate Israel. That is really an own goal, perhaps the worst outcome there could ever be. 

5. Jews and Arabs have so much in common. Why can't they just get along. 

6. Victories over other nations can be very hollow, with the subjugated rebellious. 

7. What is needed is negotiations in good faith. It might take months or even years. Just keep on climbing up the rockface. 

Wednesday, February 14, 2024

There would be a balloon or two

A wise blogger would dribble out these photos, most taken on different days and receive admiration for each photo. I am not a wise blogger, but what I do seems to work well enough. 

At certain times during a year I arise at the correct time of 7am to see balloons in the sky. 

Landing in nearby Fawkner Park.

Are there six or eight passengers in each basket? Maybe five or seven as the pilot has a space. I should remember from the balloon flight gift given to me by R for my sixtieth birthday. Whatever, eight balloons in the sky is impressive. 

PS To save you some possible anxt, remember today is Valentine's Day. It is not a day to forget for some, or you will be in big trouble. 

Tuesday, February 13, 2024

Just a day

I think it reached 37/98 degrees today. It might be our third day of a temperature over 35 this summer. That's unusually cool. I can't remember the last time we had 40 degrees. It has been a nice summer, with temperatures often between 22/71 and 26. 

I had a big afternoon lined up, so we just went across the road to a cafe for arancini balls and coffee. It wasn't too bad sitting outside under trees and an umbrella. 

At 3.00 I had a dental appointment in Footscray and intended to go by tram and train but R said I should take the car. I am not familiar when driving in the area, so I didn't take the car. I left plenty of time for things to go wrong but they didn't. I was most worried about waiting for my appointment in the heat, but of course I could have waited in the dentists' rooms. 

As it was, I didn't have too much time to kill. I was sitting for five or so minutes under the shade of a tree and the man in doughnut van called out hello to me. He fries your doughnuts while you wait. Very nice. 

I like Footscray and contrary to what some people think, I always feel safe among the dark African immigrants and many Asian people, fleshed out with a number of white people. 

My dentist is of Vietnamese heritage and speaks perfect Australian, as does another similarly aged dentist at the practice. He gave me my  final root canal treatment. He is so particular in getting the filling right. So he should be for what I've paid him. I can't say it was pleasant but you just have to grin and bear it, well not grin while the treatment is underway.

The dentist is not bad looking and at times sat on a stool with wheels as he worked away. Sometimes he stood and when he stood, being quite short, I could feel the heat from his body on the side of my face. Now if I turned my head to the right, my face would have been directly lined up can guess. 

I was there for nearly an hour and when I left the surgery, the weather had cooled quite a bit. Gosh the public transport in Footscray is so well used; the tram that doesn't go to the city, the trains for three lines plus regional trains and multiple buses. All of our trains and buses have air conditioning but only about half our trams. I made sure I caught aircon trams. Some don't have the choice. 

Monday, February 12, 2024

Monday Mural

Joining with Sami and others for Monday Mural. 

This is not really a mural but rather a building name, the building being encased by Brighton Antique Dealer's posh retirement home, although I can't understand how it doesn't show in my photos. It must be set back a bit further. 

My parents banked with ES&A Bank, English, Scottish and Australian Bank. At some point there was a merger and it became known as the ANZ Bank, Australia, New Zealand Bank. I've subsequently banked with the company for all of my adult years. In the 1980s we wanted to change our home loan from a building society to the ANZ. After an interview with a relieving bank manager at our local branch, we were denied the loan. This was wrong as we could clearly service the load repayments.

I wrote to ANZ head office and intimated that we were denied a loan because we were a male couple applying for a loan. That set a cat among pigeons. 

We were invited to meet an area manager at a drive through bank (what were they about?) in Hawthorn, who immediately apologised and approved the loan on the spot. He was a nice down to earth bloke.

So through thick and thin, we've stayed with ANZ Bank. It ceased making money from us for many years ago, but it used to do quite well out of us with mortgage and credit card interest. 

Well, that is more than you needed to know as I post this most unusual building sign. I've never seen a font like this. Have you?

Sunday, February 11, 2024

A return from a holiday

As often happens, our winter annual in a pot on the balcony had reached the end of its life (sorry River) and coincided with our last trip to Sydney. No sooner than we were home, I wanted a new plant for summer. Acorn Nursery is brilliant and very popular. The quality of its plants is high and nothing like the rubbish we've ended up with from the big green shed plant nursery.

Acorn Nursery also has a pretty good cafe. Its tuna patties are so good, as is its samosas. 

I thought $25 for a dark red petunia was reasonable and for weeks it looked wonderful. Last year I cut the summer petunia harshly and it did come back again to be quite good, but I did it too late and it took about three weeks to return to flowering. I didn't do that this year and it has become a bit leggy but will be fine until we take a week's holiday towards the end of March. I heavily watered it and brought it inside, getting some sunlight through the windows when were away a Christmas and away late January. 

The samosas could have had more spice in them but regardless, they were so nice. FYI, I did eat the pansy too. R doesn't eat flowers. 

Bumping another car

I once had a bit of an inappropriate laugh when I read in the online Fiji Live electric newspaper that someone in Fiji was killed after two ...