Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Express to Malvern, stopping all stations to Bentleigh

Eventually I replaced all our tap washers with hydro seal washers. Some of what are called the flanges, the bit around the tap spindle were put on so tightly, I had to use vice grips to remove them. I used my basin taps as the guinea pigs as they are the least seen should they be damaged and damaged they were, in spite of me wrapping rubber gloves around them.

While I know that you can get touch up enamel for damaged tapware and I expressed a view that as hardly anyone sees them it did not matter too much, R insisted since that he sees them when he cleans my bathroom and they need to be replaced.

I touched up the chips with liquid paper and that worked reasonably well, but not well enough for R.

A few weeks ago I went to Trade Link plumbing supplies who give honest hard workers like moi a discount. They did not have the flanges but were helpful enough to suggest a tap ware place in Bentleigh. A week or so later on a Monday I drove to Bentleigh, but the shop is not open on Mondays. I cussed as I hate driving my car on my days off and it was a wasted trip.

Today I needed to go into town to Big W for a bulk purchase of dishwashing powder and I thought I could combine that with a train trip to Bentleigh.

I walked to South Yarra Station and caught the 12.28 to Bentleigh. It travelled express to Malvern and then stopped all stations. The housing observed from the train was of a generally high standard. The streets were quiet and clean.

A dude at South Yarra station asked me for money. He asked me again when I was on the train. He asked the wrong person when he asked the guy adjacent to me, as he paid out on him good and proper, to the complete approval of every other person in the carriage I think. I might try this one day soon, but only if R is there to protect me.

I alighted at Bentleigh and walked westward to the tap shop. So many shops of all varieties. I have a strong connection to the area as many of my now dead rels has market gardens there. I noted very slow traffic and seem to recall the from the last time I was there the local council had done things to Centre Road to deliberately slow and congest traffic. Twenty years ago the traffic used to flow very freely along Centre Road.

What is this? A totally inappropriate development of a whole street block of apartments with shops below. Every other building is of two storeys and blends in with the street scape. This one clearly does not. An effing abortion of a place City of Glen Eira, or more likely VCAT. For my bad thoughts about the developer, I was rewarded with a shower of small stones from the works happening on top of the building. I should sue. If I was actually hurt rather than shocked and surprised, I very well may have.

Where is this tap shop? Have I made a mistake? Was it North Road rather than Centre Road? It looked to be about 300 metres on the map. I have walked almost a kilometre. It was the very last shop.

White is not white when you are talking about enamelled tap fittings. They yellow in time and the new fittings were very bright white against the old one. They actually stand out more than a slightly chipped flange did. Now R says, they were ok, not sure why you bothered. Wring his neck sometimes.

I had checked the timetable for the trip back and my timing was good. Fifteen minute service was better than I thought it would be. I had guessed twenty minutes. I noted the local Federal member who I think is despicable has his office two doors from a pawn shop. The pawn shop is closing down. I expect the local member will be re-elected. Give them cake comes to mind.

I got to the railway line just as the boom gates came down. Oh, I am too late for my train. It is coming and the booms are down and I cannot cross the railway line to catch the train. I will have to fill in time by having coffee in Bentleigh. If I can't see the train actually approaching, could I use the emergency gates to get to the platform? I could not see the time on my phone as I was too confused to get my specs out. The train must be very early. Then I saw that that I could cross to in between the tracks where there was the walkway to the train platforms. The booms were down for the train going the other way and only the pedestrians for the Frankston bound train were locked off.

While we used to use the train a lot when we lived in Balaclava, to travel to Prahran or the City, I am a very occasional user now. I left home at noon to walk to South Yarra to catch the 12.28 to Bentleigh. I caught the 1.06 from Bentleigh to Melbourne Central and arrived at around 1.35. The trains were clean and very comfortable. I don't have to travel to work on a peak hour trains and I know it would not be a good experience, but from my usage today, I would say that our train system is excellent. It worked well for me.

I caught a slow tram home from town which took as long as it did for me to travel from South Yarra to Bentleigh. Wished that I could catch the proposed underground railway.

Unfortunately I was off the train at Melbourne Central. How long has that station been there? I remember when it was built, opened and I visited it soon after. I have probably been there perhaps fifty times since. I walked up five sets of escalators and realised I had walked up one too many. The exit to Swanston Street and QV, which I like, was lower down. I hate Melbourne Central and I will never work it out. I love QV.

Laden with heavy dishwashing powder from Big W, cheap Helgas light rye bread from Safeway, tap fittings from Bentleigh, I gave myself up to a strong latte when I reached home. There are big water pipes works happening on our road, but fortunately all was quiet as I sat outside my local cafe to have coffee. I only have to put $2.50 on the counter and the owner lass brings my coffee out to me.

It was only four o'clock. More happened. Another post coming.


  1. What is it about Melbourne Central? I've been to it's previous incarnation and it was ordinary. I've been to the new one and it's still ordinary. I don't quite know what it is, but they seem to be missing something. Mind you, that open balcony on Swanston St (I think it's the 100 Mile Cafe) looking over the state library would be worth another trip.

  2. Don't you wish you had a tape recorder for times like those? When he says "why did you bother?", you could play back his voice and say "that's why, darling." grrrr!

  3. You've got Rob. Something is not right about the place. Well it doesn't work for me and clearly you either. Along with a balcony bar at the lower end of Swanston Street, I noticed another yesterday in Elizabeth Street.

    Used to think that Daisy, but I have learnt that winning a battle does not win a war. That sounds too extreme. How about scoring points is not so useful.

  4. One day I'm gonna learn to use public transport... you make it sound quite enjoyable.

  5. When it works well Jo, it is marvellous. It doesn't always though and can leave you feeling so frustrated, much more so than any car incident you may experience, as you have absolutely no control over a situation, unlike when you are in your own car.

  6. Trains r not bad at all...but I hate it when some ppl pick their noses and various other things! YUKKKKK!


  7. Re: the Centre Rd development, I'll wait and see how it looks when finished, but I don't in principle have problems with medium-density housing in built-up areas like that. It can't be worse than the derelict hardware shop that's been there for the last few years.

  8. So that was your simple day and all in order to get a tap... unreal Andrew.

  9. And don't forget people who smell Keshi.

    Indeed hold judgement Daniel, but I just don't think it is going to connect to the street. You have a valid point about derelict buildings. People are so relieved to see them disappear, they are less judgemental about what is built. Was there a fuss the new building at all?

    Simple and pleasurable Cazzie.


Before you change something, find out why it is the way it is in the first place - unknown.