Up in the air again…..

 That’s where we’ll be very late this coming Monday evening :)

This will be a different journey to any other we’ve taken from Melbourne before in that we’re flying out at what to me is the middle of the night!

It’s a bit late now but I’m sort of having second thoughts about this because even after the thousands of miles we’ve flown over the years,  apart from a couple of near midnight flights from Honolulu I’ve never actually begun a ten hour flight that late in the day.

I will have been up since about 7am sorting out all those last minute bits and pieces – cant come home to a dirty house so there will have been a bit of cleaning tidying and clothes washing – making sure my case closes properly – not worrying about Kiera who will have been at her holiday home since the day before – left for the airport about 7pm (drop off car pick up shuttle to departures – check in starts about 9.30pm maybe earlier.  There’s clearing customs and then going through security to airside and then waiting for boarding.  Lets just say there might be some tears or at least sharp words spoken before bedtime! :)

Catherine is usually well into the land of nod at 11.30pm
Which is take off time lol

Abu Dhabi is the first stop, then on to Athens .  That’s another thing I’m up in the air over.  Political events have worsened in that part of the world, Australia will be sending troops to Iraq very very soon.  To get to Athens our carrier flies over Iraq.    There is absolutely no chance of the Malaysia Airlines disaster in Ukraine happening again BUT…………

Talking of political events –  our cruise ports were changed.  The days I thought we were going to spend in Odessa and Sevastapol are no more – at one time the cruise line had us up in the air wondering if the cruise was actually going to be cancelled but now Constanta is as far north as we go and then along the southern shores back to Istanbul.  Shame, as I really was looking forward to them, doubt if I’ll get to that part of Europe again :(

Up in the air I went in the city last Thursday – slippery tiles on the floor of the ladies loo in the Elizabeth Street underpass section of Flinders Street Station means I am now sporting an ankle of many colours.  Luckily the swelling has gone down and there is no pain when I walk – and there I was writing not long ago about being extra careful lol

The ever changing health issues with my brother in law has lots of aspects of our visit with my sister in Cyprus up in the air.  Daily radiation treatment is leaving him fatigued so I can’t forsee any of the ‘remember when’ day trips we had planned between us all months ago.  I’m sure we’ll enjoy it no matter what.

So putting all thoughts of all those ‘what ifs’ out of my mind I’m going to spend the rest of this week practising long forgotten greek words from the time when we looked like this.
Taken in July 1960 – a couple of weeks after I met The Golfer.

Us two 1960
We are going back to the scene of the crime as they say – only we wont be able to recreate this photo because the site of The Roundel Club where it was taken is near the Ledra Palace in Nicosia which is now in the UN buffer zone and out of bounds to all but peacekeeping personnel.

Kalimera – Good morning and Yassou – Hello/Goodbye
I think that  will do for today :)

Which do ‘you’ use – update

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Thank you all for your comments and emails on the ‘who do you use’ post - I really appreciate the fact that so many of you joined in the discussion.

Now blogging isn’t the be all and end all of my life, it’s something I enjoy and like lots of things in life if there is an easier way (to enjoy other’s writings) I’ll certainly be in it :)

The basic blog roll on the sidebar seems to be popular – there is a blogger/blogspot  style that updates when a new post appears.  It was the constant checking blogs for updates that used to annoy me.  WordPress has a reader but doesn’t appear to have the (obvious) updating blogroll facility right on the blog page.

The various ‘ feed readers’ seem to appeal to different bloggers. Some offer just blog feeds, others news feeds as well.   Sometimes I need a fresh look at things so after reading all the feedback on that last post I sat down again and looked at the pros and cons of the feed readers I subscribed to.

Oh, you should have heard the chuckles coming from my side of the room when I realised the one I thought didn’t do it for me would actually function better if I used it correctly – so – I decided to persevere with The Old Reader

Thanks again – Bye for now
Cathy

Which one do ‘you’ use?

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When Still Waters was over at Blogger I used to list the blogs I read down the sidebar but after a while I’d ‘gathered’ so many I began to use a reader.   That way I didn’t have to keep checking each blog to see if they’d been updated – the reader would do it for you!

When I moved over to WordPress I opened a separate page as a blog roll and listed blogs I enjoyed but didn’t necessarily read on a regular basis – the must reads were on the reader lol

i know lots of us used Google Reader, one click and the published blog feeds were there.  When GR closed I went back to an old account I had at Bloglines, which has a slightly different look about it but works in the same manner.

Then other bloggers started recommending The Old Reader and more recently Bloglovin.  So I opened accounts with them to see how they worked.

The old Still Waters blog is still open and even tho Im not actively posting there i do occasionally pop over.  Things have changed and all the blogs I used to ‘follow’ now come up on Blogger Dashboard which seems to me to be similar in a way to a reader.  And of course WordPress has it’s own reader that allows me to subscribe to blog feeds.

If you want to keep up with things readers are good – on the surface all those I’ve mentioned do the same thing.  But I’m noticing more and more that they aren’t.

The feeds on some are updated instantly – on others they can take up to 24 hrs.

With Bloglines each blog has it’s own little ‘box’ and I can see the past few entries all there together.  They are still accessible after they have been read.

Bloglovin lists blogs on the side but each update for all my subscriptions are posted as they come in one below each other so if I want to catch up with a particular blog I have to scroll down to find each entry or click on the list on the side.

The Old Reader is different again.  It only shows blog updates and yes if a blog has several they are all together but once the updates have been opened and read there is no way of locating ( well that I’ve been able to find ) the blog to reread it.

Blogger Dashboard is daily as they appear – WordPress is the same but has an even worse ( to me ) fault in that even tho’ I’ve subscribed to them they often don’t publish blogs from other platforms in the reader.  They just don’t appear at all – if it wasn’t for the fact I find the updates elsewhere (ie in one of the other readers) I wouldn’t be aware the bloggers had made new entries!

I know I’ve rambled on a bit here – haven’t really been able to organise my thoughts properly but I’d really like to know how others keep up to date with blogs they enjoy reading.

One hundred years ago today……

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A hundred years ago today (11 September 1914) some Australians fired shots in anger – it was the day the Battle of Bita Paka took place near Rabaul New Guinea, the day Australians first saw action in WW1, the day the first Australians were to die in WW1.

One month earlier on 11 August 1914 a new chum had answered the call and enlisted in what was called the Australian Naval and Military Expeditionary Force. He had arrived in Sydney three years earlier after having served in the Hampshire Regiment of the British army so was well aware of what he was doing.  His regimental number was 194 so it’s safe to say he was near the front of the queue and raring to go.  He was a first cousin of my maternal grandmother.

Today The Golfer and I went to The Melbourne Shrine of Remembrance
(photos enlarge with a click)

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The band played – colours were paraded

23

5

The armed Catafalque Party was there and banners were paraded

Band and Catafalque Party4

Politicians were visible – wreaths were laid

Politicians were thereWreaths were laid

Prayers were said and The Last Post played.

Last Post

 The Catafalque Party left – Soldiers and Sailors had been remembered

Catafalque partyPlaque

The Eternal Flame burned above the new plaque

Eternal Flame plaque wreaths

As we looked back at the Shrine on the hill

Melbourne Shrine

I thought of young James Bannister and wondered how well he would have done in Australia after the war had ended – sadly he never got the chance.
In January 1917 he lost his life on the battlefield in France

Bannister James William

What do you think…..

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'Our big girl' and me 1963

‘Our big girl’ and me 1963

I had coffee with ‘our big girl’ last week and in amongst all the other chat she mentioned looking at her teenage daughter’s twitter account.   That had me wondering if girls these days ever had problems with their mothers checking up on them.  I suppose it’s no different to what happened years ago when mothers surreptiously read a daughter’s diary that was tucked under a pillow. :)

 

'Our big girl' and me 2014

‘Our big girl’ and me 2014

With two children over 50 and another heading that way later this month
I’m beginning to feel like a dinosaur chatting like this lol

Thinking and Wondering…….

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think and wonder

Spring arrives here on September 1st – some say that’s a odd date but it’s always been that way.  For many years after we came to Australia in 1972 I would wonder why then and not on the equinox like many other countries, I learnt we have the troops from the time of early settlement in NSW to thank – seemingly they used that easily remembered date to change from their heavy winter uniforms to lighter weight ones to cope with the hot days as well as using March 1st to re-issue the heavy weight ones for the colder season.

However it’s also linked to Meteorological seasons as opposed to Astronomical seasons

http://www.calendar-365.com/seasons.html

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spring_(season)

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Like lots of ABC viewers I’ve been watching Anzac Girls on a Sunday evening – following the stories of Australian and New Zealand nurses during WW1.

http://www.abc.net.au/tv/programs/anzac-girls/

Anzac Girls

My maternal grandfather was a career soldier in the RAMC (Royal Army Medical Corp) and spent time in Gallipoli (he was mentioned in dispatches for bravery during the evacuation)

Grandad Thompson and   Gt Uncle Phillip Doyle

He and Gt Uncle Phillip (above left and right) never spoke of what they saw and had to do during that time but I often wonder about it.  Seeing these things dramatised on tv (as opposed to film) never actually brings the events to life to me , it all seems too gung ho, too rosy and cheerful – I realise that’s how fear was covered up but maybe we should just wonder.

Also after watching the very snooty British nurses and their matron and seeing their ‘things must be just so’ attitude I wondered if Grandad drilled that into my mother and why she always said ‘the opening at the end of the pillow slip must face away from the door’.  Obviously my mother must have done a good job on me as well because even now I always turn them so the opening is not visible :)

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While others are telling of the beautiful display of daffodils they are having in their gardens this spring I’m wondering what happened to mine.  Some of the neighbours have been doing the same thing and wondering as well – lots of long green healthy looking leaves and very few flowers.  Maybe the really wet winter is to blame.  Think we’ll find out in a years time.

Having moved on loads of unnecessary stuff that had been hanging around for a while I did wonder if any of the family could have used it – too late I cried.  It turned out the other day there was something I do still have they could use – my gumboots lol  A call from one of the grandaughters saw me lending them to her for a rafting trip on the Murray River later in the month.  Just bring them home I told her – no way I want them to end up floating all the way downstream to Adelaide!

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And now I’m wondering if it’s too early for my ‘Try before you Fly’ Day.  That’s the day I take out the clothes I might take away and try them on.  That’s the day I make up little outfits that look great in the bedroom but not quite so in real life.  That’s the day I try on all the shoes that will good with the outfits and then realise theres no way I can get all those pairs in my case as well as the clothes I need.  Thats the day I realise that my efforts at the gym may not have produced the end result I envisaged.

Well I’d best be off – I thought I might go for a quick walk but even though there are blue skies I am wondering if the build up of clouds out the back is a sign that I should find something else to do instead.

IMG_8934

 

Welcome to Sprinter……..

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Yes, Sprinter
It’s that time of the year when Spring has begun
but it occasionally reminds you of Winter.

Today is the first day of September – officially it is Spring.

SEPTEMBER in Melbourne
September is the first month of spring, which is the most changeable season of the year. A full range of weather may be experienced within a few days, from warm, calm and sunny to cold, windy and showery.  The temperature usually reaches the mid-20s for the first time since April. Nights are cool, frost is fairly rare, and the lowest temperature for the month in the city being about 4ºC.  http://www.melbourneaustralia.org/climate-weather

So being Spring there are spring blossoms to look for :)

A few years ago The Flowering Cherry at the top of the drive was getting to be nuisance.  No matter how many times I trimmed it the lower branches still hung over the drive and out over the pathway at the front so we took it down to shoulder height and were left with just a chunky looking stump.  I wasn’t too fussed if it didn’t recover but look at this –  It has sprung to life once more shooting up from the base and still isn’t fazed by a dull day.

(all photos should enlarge with a click)

Flowering cherry

With its tiny little flowers it really is the forerunner of spring – sadly they wont last long as soon it will be covered in little purple coloured leaves.

Flowering Prunus

 The white Flowering Quince by the side fence has been just bare branches all winter, it is slowly showing us the flowers we look forward to.  The pink one beside it seems to be opening later this year.

Flowering Quince (Chaenomeles)

Small roundish flowers – initially on the bare branches.  Then the bush takes on a greeny white look as the leaves start to appear.

Flowering Quince close up

Once the bush is in full leaf the flowers don’t stay long so need to be enjoyed while they are there looking pristine and clean

Chaenomeles close up

Also known as Chaenomeles or Flowering Japonica
they are virtually indestructible.
This pinky red one was planted back in 1977, we chopped it right to the ground at one time but couldn’t remove it completely.  Within a few months it started to shoot up again and I didn’t have the heart to attack it another time.  I just give the branches on the right hand side a bit of a haircut now and then so we are able to get down the side of the house

Pink Chaenomeles

Yes I think Spring has arrived
The days are getting longer – earlier sunrise, later sunset
We have been teased with some warm dry sunny days
However I do wonder how long it will take for Winter to leave completely??

How are you coping with the changing seasons?

All I needed was…..

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A little bit of understanding and chocolate

chocolate understands

 

Yesterday I told you all about my ‘misdemeanour’ and received lots of fun/ reassuring comments and an understanding that some days s***** happens.  The Golfer drove that way this morning and remarked how easy it would be to ‘forget’ if you had to stop at the traffic lights.

That certainly wasn’t the reception I got from a couple of so called ‘friends’ this morning when I very guiltily related yesterday’s events to them.  I came away with the feeling I was the worlds worst driver for not concentrating at the lights!

So that turn of events had me rummaging through the cupboard for the last of some chocolate I knew was stashed away and spending most of a glorious warm afternoon on the deck with a book in my hand.

And guess what I was reading?

Chocolat

 

Blotted my copybook……

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Yes, I most certainly did – here’s me normally being so good and controlled

Having learnt my lesson many years ago – these days I am so so careful

‘Cept yesterday I slipped up

Resulting in a very nice chat with a ‘very young’ gentleman of authority

and taking home one of these :(

infringement notice

 $295 fine and a loss of 3 demerit points
for driving over 40kmh in a school zone.

Not good at all – in fact quite embarrassing.

There is a set of traffic lights at an intersection (not just a school crossing) right in the middle of the zone – not far from that roundabout I wrote about last week.  I saw the school zone light flashing so checked my speed, traffic lights changed so I stopped at the lights, watched traffic come and go, got the green and totally forgot the time.

Not 4pm so the speed on the other side was still 40kmh :(

I had moved off and was going on my merry way at 56kmh – so the nice policeman who was standing further down the road said – which was under the usual limit of 60kmh for that place.

What was funny (to me anyway) was that I was on my home from a lovely lunch and unlike some of my lady friends who like to lunch had stuck with water because I was driving.  Even so I was shaking in my shoes when the other ‘very young’ man breathalyzed me lol

 I’ll certainly remember the next time I drive that way again!

Same as I can remember the spots the only ever 2 times I was pinged before
In 1997 and 2000 lol

Round and Round and Round we go……

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We call the place where roads meet and cross an intersection.  Some are simple like T junctions or Y junctions/Forks or busy like some Crossroads.  Lots of busy intersections are controlled by traffic lights but there are others that require a Roundabout which is sort of like a circular intersection where all the traffic in one direction round a central island.

As you can see in this moving diagram (below) we drive on the left here in Australia so following the road rules means we give way to all traffic on the roundabout coming from our right.

300px-UK_Roundabout_8_Cars

This (below) is a diagram of a busy intersection close to where I live – it’s a series of roundabouts – in fact it’s three roundabouts – put there to supposedly allow traffic on five roads to merge without any problems or hassles for the drivers!  I would pass through/go round this intersection about twice a week – in both directions.

five ways

So giving way to traffic on my right means that some of the times I use this ***** intersection it is so **** busy it’s often nigh on impossible :(

On my way out I’m usually driving down Cambridge Road (bottom right) needing to go round the big circle in front of me, then skirt the smaller one across the way to make my way down Manchester Road.  That means I would look to my right to see what’s coming down Hull Road and also what’s approaching the smaller ‘circle’ at Manchester Road.

That traffic could be turning left into Hull Road or left into Cambridge Road (where I’m waiting) or even carrying on past me.

Until I see their indicators I have no idea about where they intend to go or even if they know where they are going.

That’s if they have their indicators on at all lol

When it’s busy I sit and wait and also look across the roundabout to see if anything is making it’s way round it – any traffic at the roads on my right will have to give way and wait until it’s passed, in which case I have time to get onto the roundabout and make my way to my exit.

But wait – even tho’ I’m off and running and on my way round to Manchester Road I still have to keep an eye on traffic coming down Hull Road in the right hand lane because it could be turning right to go round the ‘little’ circle and into Manchester Road as well.  In which case I’ll have to stop at the road markings and give way to them.

However on those days when it all seems to be too much I’ve turned left and driven ‘back’ to the first roundabout (the one on my left) taken the right hand lane at the bottom of the Croydon end of Hull Road, driven past Lincoln Road which is on my left then sailed on past my usual ‘big one’ and taken the left exit into Manchester Road.

Only thing is that this method can have it drawbacks as I can get held up giving way to traffic coming round from Cambridge Road (the place I’ve just given up on because I couldn’t find a break in the traffic) and also got caught up in Hull Road traffic turning right.

I almost give a sigh of relief if I can see no other cars as I make my way down Cambridge Road – with several schools in Hull Road I try very hard to avoid the kiss and ride parent times before 9am and after 3pm!

The thing is you can’t win with this intersection – and there’s no point in chucking a wobbly and chancing your luck as right there on the corner of Hull and Cambridge Road (the building with the light coloured roof in the picture below) is the
Mooroolbark Police Station! :)

Five ways 2

source

Five Ways
One of Melbourne’s unusual roundabouts – located between Hull Road, Lincoln Road, Manchester Road and Cambridge Road.  It consists of three consecutive roundabouts which if used according to road rules works well but can be quite daunting to those who do not know the area.  It was designed to eliminate accidents caused by drivers failing to give way to those coming from adjoining streets.
source

Just for fun…..

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Sometimes we just need a bit of free time fun in our lives
Time when we can mess about on the computor and have fun
Some might call it time wasting
Not me!

 Do you remember those Interactive Videos made by Olivier Otten
where we had fun using our cursors?

(Click the links to take part in the fun)

The original one had him batting the cursor
when it was put over his face
don’t put that cursor near my face

selfcontrolfreak-1

Then the Cursor Eater turned up

selfcontrolfreak-2

While number 3 had him running away from the cursor.

selfcontrolfreak-3

When he had stopped running in number 4
and the cursor was passed over his head
blow me down if he didn’t grab the cursor and run a way with it.

selfcontrolfreak-4

Well now, over the years he made lots more  – they can be found on the
SelfcontrolFreak website

Time on your hands – use it for fun!

Maybe I need to heed warnings …..

With just over five weeks to go until we take off on our latest jaunt I’m mindful of having to watch how I go – never know what could happen between now and then.  Because we booked and paid for everything so long ago I’ve been almost paranoid recently about things going wrong and having to go through kerfuffle of claiming on insurance.

I had my ‘flu jab’ a while ago and have been making sure I clean off all gym equipment before I’ve used it (not just after) – hands cleaned as I leave the Leisure Centre as well.  Eating properly as well as trying to be as fit as possible and steering clear of people with coughs and colds.  Those long haul flights can be a killer on your body – and mine isn’t getting any younger lol

Stayed off the roads in busy times – I don’t normally leave home really early in the morning however with several schools close by it’s chaotic near here between 3 and 4 pm when the kiss and drive lines are bumper to bumper and all the families try to get out on the main roads as fast as they can.  For some reason oodles of them feel the need to shop before going home so shopping centre car parks are chockers.  So along with the ghastly weather we’ve had there have been days when it’s been safer to be at home and not taking your life in your hands on the roads.

Of course the wet weather has meant I’ve mainly kept myself busy indoors with the charity knitting (ongoing year round) lots of reading matter and some much needed ‘clutter clearing'; there hasn’t been a great deal of gardening  done – that was until yesterday.  We had one of those glorious sunny days where the temperature surprised us, enticing me outdoors to revel in the warmth.  So warm in fact mid afternoon I needed to take my windcheater off and potter around in a shirt.

Knowing what I wanted to do and cautious about overdoing it I used the barrow to move tools and mulch round the garden and took lots of breaks – I certainly didn’t want a reccurence of the ‘back problem’ pain and suffering I ended up with  because of not accepting limitations on time and effort one gardening day in the not too distant past –  (even if it did produce a definitive diagnosis )

Ooh I’m a bit stiff, says I about 4pm, I’ll call it a day – 6pm I’m hobbling around clutching my lower back – tightened up good and proper lol  So down on the floor to do some of the back exercises I hadn’t had to do for the past year and a half.

Pleasantly surprised and heaved a sigh of relief this morning when there was no discomfort – only thing was I did have a bit of discomfort somewhere else.  I sneezed a few times and felt a tingling in my lip – a look in the mirror confirmed I had the beginning of a cold sore!

So it was out with the lemons and honey, find the Echinacea and after it warmed up from the overnight 2c/35f and the fog had burnt off quietly enjoy another one of those fantabulous days.  Right this moment I’m not tempting fate by doing any more gardening or going to the shops to pick up more germs lol

Eyes down and looking…..

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Andrew High Riser featured the Block Arcade in one of his recent posts which reminded me of how long it was since we’d actually slowed down and taken in the sights of Melbourne.
January 2010 to be precise!

After finishing off some business in the city The Golfer and I had some time to spare before heading home and found ourselves following the crowd into the Block Arcade.  Here in Melbourne we have several of these little quaint arcades in the city centre and this one has to be the best.

Block Arcade is a heritage shopping arcade in Melbourne Victoria.
Melbourne’s Golden Mile heritage walk runs through the arcade
It forms a short, narrow laneway, connecting Collins Street to Little Collins Street in the central business district of Melbourne.
It is also connected to Elizabeth Street in the west, thus, forming a L-shaped arcade and connecting to Block Place through to the Royal Arcade

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Block_Arcade,_Melbourne

block signlink

Built in the 1890s – supposedly so ladies could shop in comfort (and safety) away from extremes of weather we get here in Melbourne.  Seemingly it was the meeting place of Melbourne with a reputation as the most popular place to been seen and shop.

“The arcade was a new shopping phenomenon – the arcade. Modelled on those developed in great European cities such as Milan, Paris and London, arcades were clean and modern, and protected the shopper from the heat, dust, rain and mud of the city streets.  Their architectural design facilitated new ways to display and purchase fancy goods. At this time, changes in manufacturing and higher wages made luxury more accessible than ever.  The modern shopping arcade enabled the buyer to indulge in the pleasures of looking, touching and contemplating goods without any pressure to make a purchase. Browsing became an accepted and expected pastime, and evolved into new leisure behaviour. A commodity that was no longer just a necessity but a thing of beauty, something to ponder and desire.”

http://www.theblockarcade.com.au/index.php/history-of-the-block-arcade

Nowadays you will find lots of little coffee shops (one of the originals, the Hopetoun Tea Rooms is still there) and other rather expensive exclusive boutique type shops.

All very nice to look at – Enter if you dare lol

We were there at a busy time and there always seemed to be someone in the way so I couldn’t get any photos of the shop windows but look at the beautiful glass canopy up top (being early January the decorations were still there).
click to enlarge
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What did catch my eye was the flooring – Look at the beautiful tiled floor- Seemingly the largest area in Australia – Imagine being part of the staff trying to keep it shiny and clean lol

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and this huge circular piece is at one end under the glass dome.

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glass domelink

Haigh’s Chocolates have a fabulous shop at one end of the arcade where they sell their very exclusive hand made chocolates – the sort of shop I’ll never pass by.    Glancing in the window, the sprig of Wattle that caught my eye then the display above it.

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For sale – Quandong filled choccies – $109.00 per kilo (2.2lbs!)

That was when I remembered the saying:
A moment on the lips – a lifetime on your hips
and walked away :)

Links with loads of historical information and more beautiful photos:

http://www.whitehat.com.au/melbourne/Places/Block.asp

http://www.theblockarcade.com.au/

http://www.melbourneplaces.com/melbourne/the-block-arcade-%E2%80%93-downtown-melbourne-cbd/

http://melbournecurious.blogspot.com.au/2010/07/block-arcade-introduction.html

http://www.thatsmelbourne.com.au/Placestogo/MelbourneLandmarks/Historic/Pages/6062.aspx

 

 

 

 

I don’t think so…..

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Wouldn’t this be lovely?

At the beach – Vickie Wade
 link

At the beach Vickie WadeAt the beach 2 Vickie Wade

Weather at Frankston beach at the moment is 7c/44f
High of 10c/51f and a chance of a shower or two

It’s even colder at our place plus
there’s an awful icy southerly wind blowing out there

Shall we go to the beach – no, I don’t think so.
Not just yet :)

You learn something new everyday…..

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For the past 15 months I’ve had a gift card lurking in the bedroom just itching to be spent – trouble was I kept forgetting to take it out with me.  That was until the other day.

I found myself in one of our clothing stores – the one with the red and white circle – and browsing their new season stock I saw some 3/4 sleeved t-shirt type tops that would be handy for those in between days.  You know, not really cold but cool enough for longish sleeves.

Not in their sale, a bit more than I’d usually pay for that sort of top but nice enough to pay full price for (a weird statement I know) and the best thing was the gift card would pay for two.  In different colours!

Made my way up to the checkout and that’s when I saw the 25% off the last price sign on more sale racks.  Consequently another little very nicely priced top I could wear in Greece next month was coming home with me.

Chatted to the young girl and paid the extra for the top (on my cc) but it all went on the same receipt. There was just one thing I didn’t do and that was try it on.  I did try the others on but as it was cold and I was rugged up I didn’t fancy going through the strip routine again :)

Don’t know about where you live but clothes sizes can vary so much, even with the same label and as most of our shops have good return policies it’s often a lot easier to buy, try on at home and return for a refund if not quite right.

So when I lined up at the T*arget store this morning to obtain a refund (for the shirt that didn’t fit lol)  I wasn’t quite prepared for what transpired.

They wouldn’t put my refund back onto my credit card because I’d used a gift card for part of the purchase.  Pardon, says I.  Company policy, my refund had to come in the form of a gift card – which meant my money would have to be spent in one of the stores in the group and not go back onto my card.  Was i ropable!

On reflection it was better than a credit voucher I could only spend in that store but it was such a small amount that if I did happen to see something else I’d need to add extra cash to the gift card to pay for it.

The young girl said, You could always spend it in the supermarket – if you shopped in that one I said!

i did find something to use it on in one of the groups other stores but I’m still annoyed.  I don’t mind being penalised for making a return when I don’t have a receipt with me and must accept a credit voucher in place of a cash refund but this just took the cake.

As I said you learn something new every day – lesson today is to be well aware of terms and conditions however involved or unusual they are!

We are one……

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national day of mourning MH17

“I Am Australian”

I came from the dreamtime
From the dusty red soil plains
I am the ancient heart
The keeper of the flames
I Stood upon the rocky shore
I watched the tall ships come
For forty thousand years I’ve been the first Australian

I came upon the prison ships
Bound down by iron chains
I cured the land
Endured the lash
And waited for the rains
I’m a settler
I’m a farmers wife
On a dry and barren run
A convict and a free man
I became Australian

I’m a daughter of a digger
Who sought the mother load
The girl became a women
On the long and dusty road
I’m a child of the depression
I saw the good time come
I’m a bushy I’m a battler
I am Australian

We are one
But we are many
And from all the lands on earth we come
We’ll share a dream
And sing with one voice
I am, you are, we are Australian

I’m a teller of stories
I’m a singer of songs
I am Albert Namatjira
And I paint the ghostly gums
I’m Clancy on his horse
I’m Ned Kelly on the run
I’m the one who waltzed matilda
I am Australian

I’m the hot wind from the desert
I’m the black soil of the plain
I’m the mountains and the valleys
I’m the drowned and flooding rains
I am the rock
I am the sky
The rivers when they run
The spirit of this great land
I am Australian

We are one
But we are many
And from all the lands on earth we come
We’ll share a dream
And sing with one voice
I am, you are, we are Australian

 

These are the lyrics to a well known song called “I am Australian” (also known as We are Australian) which was written in 1987 by Bruce Woodley of The Seekers and Dobe Newton of The Bushwackers.

A very patriotic song – often taught in primary schools and has even been one of the songs considered to replace our National Anthem

A very haunting version of this was sung today by Katie Noonan at the Australian National Day Of Mourning Service for the MH17 victims at St Patricks Cathedral, in Melbourne, Victoria.

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2014-08-07/australia-holds-national-day-of-mourning-for-mh17-victims/5653706

There were 38 people onboard who called Australia home
16 of them were from Victoria
Today we are especially remembering them

(but also thinking about the other 260 who were onboard and their families)

Are you a hibernator or an insulator?…..

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Are you a hibernator or an insulator?

A question asked of me the other day to which I replied – it depends on the day.
Cold wet and miserable – I’m certainly a hibernator
staying inside with the fire going to keep me warm.
Cold sunny and dry – I try to be an isulator
outside enjoying the day, wrapped up to keep warm!

Sunday morning was cold and frosty but oh so sunny with hardly a cloud in the sky – not a chance of showers anywhere in the state.
Looks like it’s an insulator day :)

Such a shame to miss one of those glorious precious Winter’s days so what do we do but pop out to Healesville to see how much water was in the Maroondah Dam.  Yes, such is the way of we older ones who look for ‘thrills’ on the cheap lol

Two minutes out of Lilydale and onto the Maroondah Highway
for a short half hour drive.  Trivia fact here – MH was originally called Three Chain Road because it was 66 yards (60 m) wide!

Photos were taken out of what turned out to be a grubby windscreen – they do look much better if you enlarge them.  With all this on my doorstep you’ll get the idea of why I love living out here in the eastern suburbs

Maroondah Highway

We pass lots of Yarra Valley Vineyards
Some with home paddock sheep to keep the grass down – some bigger establishments without!

Some with a few home paddocks sheep

Some without

There are definite signs of Winter along the way when you look at some of the big deciduous trees favoured in this area

Leafless trees signs of winter

Through the busy little town of Healesville, set in the foothille of the Great Dividing Range, busy on a Sunday same as any day, but see the trees are bare on one side of the street but not the other – must have a different micro climate. More sun more shade??

Healesville trafficHealesville Grand Hotel

Loads of cars in the car park
Looks like the cold 5c/41f weather hasn’t deterred too many.Dam car parkand this is what we have come to see

Maroondah Dam Aug 2014

I’ll leave it there and come back another day
Cathy

I just couldn’t help myself………

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It was a bit chilly this morning when I had to nip down to the library at Montrose this morning – it’s the one that sits at the bottom of the Dandenongs.  Chilly wasn’t the word for it – the wind blowing along Mt Dandenong Road was freezing.  We’d been warned about the cold blustery day that was forecast and bless their little hearts for once ‘they’ got it right lol.  It snowed all over the state, even up in those hills I was standing at the bottom of. lol

I’d finished doing the other bits and pieces on my list (yes, a list is needed in the cold, the wind gives me brain freeze – well that’s my excuse!) and making my way back to the car I had to walk past the bakery and what do I see but one of the girls filling the pie warmer.

pie warmer

Now meat pies are not normally found on our diet – they are what we call footy food.  Small not family sized, fits in the palm of your hand, eaten still in a paper bag, – comfort food best eaten when the weather is cold and you’re at the footy oval.

meat-pie1

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Meat_pie_(Australia_and_New_Zealand)

These were not commercial factory made pies – oh no, these were freshly baked there on the premises, just out of the oven and looking so good.  So, as it was nearly 12 noon in I went and bought one.

‘Home is just a couple of kilometers away, if I don’t get caught at the lights it’ll still be nice and hot when I get home so I can have it for lunch’.

Thats what was being said in my head as I paid for it.

Reality set in when I got to the car, I was cold, I was hungry, I just couldn’t help myself – this hot pie didn’t stand a chance.  I sat there watching the traffic go by and ate it, savouring every morsel.  Delicious!!

A is for ………………..

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Well none other than Alphabet Blogging

It’s been like a Friday Date this past 26 weeks
People were dropping by on Friday to see what the I thought
about the letters of the alphabet.

Mum who blogs at Mum’s Simply Living Blog wondered what we could come up with if we blogged about the letters of the alphabet.

The catch was they all come in reverse order.

We are up to A this week
so it looks like we are now at the end of the Fun Fridays
with Mum and her Alphabet Blogging that is

I’m hoping you enjoyed the fun
I’m all done – all finished
for the moment
I’m must away and see what I can come up with for next Friday lol

Away 
that’s a fun word if ever there was one
Look here at this link to see all the ways it can used

http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/away

There were others who took the challenge
Read all about it here

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