Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Cooks Hill gallery.
'Swing through the sadness to fly up into happiness'....well....that's what this Cooks Hill resident wished us.

Out of sequence photo, Newcomen street again with a puzzle. Find the remnant of brick fence or wall or whatever.
Council van with frogs, one of the larger than life animal themes now showing at work sites.
Too much light and sun but who's complaining about that. A new playground and more is underway in Islington park. Renewal is spreading around the city parks.
References take on new meaning.  Disaster....Boardwalk Empire (SBSTV)...'Under the boardwalk'.. super size...climate change...sea levels...snow.  Also note the Caribbean people and their difficulties.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Short fur is incorporated into this design.
Bilum or string bags made by people in PNG.  Often carried resting on the back and suspended from the forehead by the strap to act as a carrier for an infant or to hold a heavy load of vegies or maybe carry bui plant and lime to chew as a mouthful stained red.
The culture of PNG is one in touch with 'the spirits' which are used to explicate many incidents. 
Stories of rampaging superbugs are reported in our media, for instance around the serious problem of TB so maybe sharmans would be as good as any cure. TB is endemic in PNG and Indonesia and is infectious. Some form of preventative treatment is available.

Monday, October 29, 2012

Halloween must be on Wednesday, the eve of All Saints Day and arachnids and you name it, are sure to spook the shoppers at Lombards in Kotara. We are easily led. The surge of consumerism and primeval mythology is storming in the unconscious.     

Throsby Villages met for the third annual pow wow in Islington Park.  The long table could be compared to the length of an Olympic Pool.
So are the banks of Throsby Creek and Islington Park still shared with gays and prostitutes?  Everyone is welcome.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Wickham and Islington residents were celebrating today. Splendid weather and a cool southerly with a refreshing bite but free of storm clouds saw markets, Ukulele Fest, new playground, church goers, community garden and Throsby community partygoers meeting in the parks.
Sayonara...going cold turkey and leaving blogging soon.....

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Fast food in its strategic role of military support.
For the warmongers. The Bushman is an Australian military vehicle that has multiple uses.  Used in Iraq and Afgan areas and taken up by several nationalities the 4x4 vehicle has been licensed with North American customers.
Difficult to fall off this venicle even when it rolls considering recent reports.
Julia went for a driving test in a Renault car, the model where the gear lever emerges from the dash board, as well the brakes were given a work out on the steep streets on the Hill, just to make it more difficult, quite some time ago.
Au Revoir.

Friday, October 26, 2012

Thursday, October 25, 2012

That our economic survival is based on cupcakes was one of Julia's theories and more importantly is that of a coffee led recovery. A newish cafe next to Jim's in Tudor street combines both strategies. Sooo energising!
Adios adios adios adios adios.......

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Whimsy in the school yard.  It's unheard of.  What are they on?  Once before it was a moo cow standing there.  Schools in general: often difficult to understand what they are about.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Here's another 'boy'.  A lowboy seeking a new home.

Aldi are opening another store at Kotara in the group of independent stores which means one can avoid an excursion into Westfields.

We heard about American foreign policy today.  It's too much.
Julia has met one of the 'American watchers' who provide media commentary for us and who regularly visit the US Academic scene so that the university of Sydney can keep informed.  Where is the counterpart in the US?  Maybe found under Asia-Pacific studies.  

Monday, October 22, 2012

Retro messenger 'boy'.
Imagine travel round sixty years ago. Beijing or Shanghai and S E Asia before the building boom. Big things were traditionally carried on bikes. Coming to terms with another culture in its original form and without fully escorted backup and five stars was an adventure.
Julia is very old fashioned. In those times were fewer drunk, outspoken Aussie backpackers that disregard local dress codes.
No obligatory gap year devotees.  Fewer cashed up dowagers with a check list of destinations to create demand for Westernised this and that. It must have been hell in those days.

An extract barely relevant to anything is from an Australian adventurer who wrote, in 1963, about Spain. He and his wife went swimming at the Basque seaside.
'Laura's one-piece costume was well within the regulations, which are not stricly enforced at Ondaretta beach, anyway.  This being the beach favoured by the Corps Diplomatique, it would be embarrassing to have to bring indecency charges against some daughter of the French or Italian or American ambassador for being over-exposed in a two-piece.  But, diplomatically, she would not wear a bikini - any more that she would say, as a foreign playgirly in a two-piece is once supposed to have said when told she should be wearing a one-piece, 'OK. Which piece shall I take off?'
Take Me To Spain by Colin Simpson, 1963, published by Angus and Robertson, Sydney.

Over and out.

Were the pelicans about to take off again?  Mobile site shed at Civic.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Construction site. Created out of dust, the law court is in a cement hopper and about to take form.
Viewed from Hunter street towards the city council.  

Friday, October 19, 2012

The ocean drive remains closed to traffic as it has been for an eternity. Falling rocks.  Strangly, it is good enough for cyclists and joggers and that's nice. Forget about unlimited access – it is not going to happen.
In a similar spot down the south coast, a stretch of road out over the rock platforms is very trendy.
Another project to shore up Elizabeth Street Tighes Hill was completed in record time - once it was started which had been looking doubtful.
Rome wasn't built in a day. For years, Newcomen Street was half closed-up along an old fence line that probably became unstable and required sorting out and, at long last, a new fence has been unveiled. A remnant of brick work, unearthed during a building project, part of a very old structure, is displayed on the corner. Perhaps the new bricks match up with the colonial bricks. Hope this government property is not ready for a trade off with the developers. 

It just doesn't do to hear mumurings about the world's greatest democracy (yesterday comment) or revelations about what's behind all the razzamatazz. We hadn't noticed! Just imagine, all that and more is possible when we become a republic.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Celebrating Fifty Years - Old channel 3 or NBN TV Newcastle is our original TV operator. Somehow it has gone over to Nine network in Sydney who is trying to keep afloat in a very current bind involving Goldman Sachs and the hedge funds.
 So, is NBN secure?  I believe it is the only source of local TV news in long format.

SBS TV is where anything and everything turns up to entertain us.
The re-opening of the Bolshoi Theatre was celebrated with a concert and performances of outstanding style and quality. I guess the Bolshoi is the ultimate exponent of the classics, glorious, yet trapped in the past. Is it totally devoid of edgy bolshe pop cultural influences?
During the gala, Medvedev was basking in the tsarist glory but where was Putin?
The digital stage effects showed how any fantasy is possible with new theatre technology.
The Adagio from Swan Lake was absolutely perfect yet somehow unmoving. Song artists of great character took to the stage in old fashioned concert items.
What about the live white horse and donkey on stage?  Theatre ushers in iconic uniforms danced in a fun act while a grande finale in quasi Hollywood musical or oscar style remained dignified to the end. 

Love it or hate it the live debate today came from the US thanks to SBS again.  Is it a one horse race?  A difficult time to change a leader.  Obama is more a universal character in touch with the bigger picture and with a congruent ideology while Mitt is more a generic businessman.  Hopes are expressed over a return to the past, full employment etc, maybe it's not going to happen no matter what. New ways are required.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Something nothing. A truck stop. Logs, cattle and everything go by road.  The old rail line is for excursion rides on Sundays by rail obsessives. 

What does it do for the overall integrity of humankind when public figures are often found out for perjury?
It's all about what you can get away with.

Monday, October 15, 2012

How things were done.  A fleet of Land Rovers, utes and sedans etc in for a complete repair service from the ground up on the vehicles used in building Snowy Hydro about fifty years ago.
Many institutions and workshops of all shapes and sizes and previously used on the Snowy project can be identified in Cooma. The rail link (no longer in service) was utilized to transport all the gear and installations into Cooma for distribution to the construction sites in the mountains.
After all this time the shed is very rusty.  Construction by the tilt built method must have been influenced by barn raising as perfected by the Amish community althought their craft and hand work was in no way adopted.  Amazing amounts of timber and massive beams are seemingly available for building in the UK if the home shows are anything to go by.  Where are the forests?
While heritage has my support, the lengths that are adopted to restore or build are too much to take, the projects become too 'precious' and self centred. Modest homes with naive simplicity and recycled concoctions, adobe or pise are a good alternative.  

Friday, October 12, 2012

In Cooma, inside  a vast shed is shown part of a unit that takes data about the fleece inside a bale of wool.  The bale moves on a conveyor and sensors are pushed into the bale. The marks of the 'stabbings' can be seen in a grid pattern on the bales afterwards.  From Sunhill and Gleneira sheep stations etc to China and to those who still buy wool.  Today is a suitable day for a wooley coat because winter returned for twenty four hours or so, staving off summer for a little while longer. Even snow falls were seen in less likely districts.  Conventional woolen clothing is usually too warm to wear in Newcastle as far as I'm concerned.   

Thursday, October 11, 2012

The Man From Snowy River - an epic poem with themes about men and horses and daring rides by Banjo Paterson. Another literary work to catch-up on. As if. Photo from Cooma where life is quieter. No larger than life, nor in 'yer face crowds, or horses around there much or here either.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

This river is shallow and gurgles along past picnic spots, rustic cafes, stalls and lodgings many a few metres from the water in rural Indonesia.  When people were asleep,
one dark night the river suddently rose to an exceptional height and those who didn't scramble to safety lost their lives.  The water swept over a small township instead of flowing on its usual course around a bend just beyond this little foot bridge. Flooding wasn't a  usual occurance and a log jam upstream was blamed for the disaster. The banks of the river become steeper just upstream and a new town centre and houses were built on higher ground but slowly people returned to live and work along the edge of the river.  

Sunday, October 07, 2012

These 'flowers' stopped me in my tracks. The owners don't know the name of these either. 


King street and hilly Wolf street Newcastle.  The multistory building is Segenhoe Apartments (previously Segenhoe flats) with imagined views of the harbour, the plain and distant hills.
Aside from a few commercial buildings this residental would be unique as regards size and style in Newcastle although many similar examples are dotted around Sydney for example.  Segenhoe's Art Deco style from 1936 is marked by the brickwork, angles and pitched roof and who knows if some strange deed is underway to alter that roof area.
Emil Sodersten, a leading architect of the Australian Art Deco style is responsible for Segenhoe and, soon afterwards, in contrasting style, he produced Nesca House, Civic, (now part of the Con and Uni).
All the same, existing terrace housing up hill would have been deprived of their room-with-a-view and overshadowed by the construction of the apartments. The area wasn't 'gentrified' then and probably less opinionated.
Ideally, double story houses would be ruled out of construction on land and in streets with water frontage.  A good outlook is good enough without blocking out everyone else's views as well.

Our town is enhanced by tree planting and we wouldn't be without them but now that some cultivated trees are taller and thicker they manage to block out several favourite uplifting glimpses around the town.  Short trees have their place. Or a tiny bit of tree lopping done to benefit us overall.
There is that element of challenge to explore and hike without the certainty of finding any amazing view, that the journey is the fullfilment, which is how it is at Mount Sugarloaf where it's wall to wall trees to be enclosed in or to take that walk out into the wilderness.

Saturday, October 06, 2012

James Bond cars? Bathurst 1000?
Anniversaries: Bathurst 1000, Bond movies, the bombings in Bali, maybe the Beetles and Vatican 2.
Trivia: what's the link between Blackbutt and Obama? In yesterday's photo.

Friday, October 05, 2012

Emu. Feeling the effects of summer weather or about to chew on a visitor's finger? It's Big Bird. In the shade a furry shape is relaxing and could be a wallaby. Blackbutt nature reserve, Newcastle, has a crowd of visitors in the school hols.
Hunting would not eventuate in this reserve. Or would it?  Any shooters party represented on council?
As a youngster, living out of town, we had a rifle, a 303 from memory and sometimes the males went ferrel up in the hills and shot at tin cans or rabbits.